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Anderson Creek Mobile Veterinary Services - Kitten Wellness
Kittens require a series of vaccines and medicines to support their developing immune systems. We want to avoid preventable and sometimes deadly infections and to protect the health of your family. We develop vaccine protocols individualized for your cat and their needs based on the American Association of Feline Practitioner's Feline Vaccination Guidelines.
Distemper combination vaccines: We recommend a series of four "kitten shots" that are individualized based on the size and breed of your kitten beginning at 6-8 weeks of age. These are the "core" boosters that contain the Panleukopenia, Feline Herpes, and Calicivirus vaccines. Some breeders claim to do their own vaccines before you purchase the kitten but it is important to note that unless a vaccine is given under the direction of a licensed veterinarian, we cannot be sure of the origin, transport, or storage of the vaccine or whether it was given appropriately. It is ACVMS's recommendation that kittens generally receive four scheduled vaccinations with the oversight of a veterinarian before they are considered protected from disease.
Rabies vaccination: Kittens will be vaccinated for rabies at about 12 weeks of age depending on their vaccination schedule. They will receive a rabies tag and certificate at this time.
Feline Leukemia vaccination: Feline leukemia is a highly contagious disease that is not curable once the cat has contracted it. Cats that come into contact with other unvaccinated cats or "carriers", whether outside or in your home, have a higher risk of exposure. This is not a "core" vaccine but is highly recommended during the kitten cycle. A kitten will receive two vaccines and then adult boosters will be based on risk of exposure.
Fecal tests: We recommend two comprehensive fecal tests during the kitten series. This allows us to identify any parasites that may not be covered during routine kitten deworming or a lag in the parasite life cycles. This is a critical part of the kitten wellness plan as many of the parasites carried can be passed to human family members.
Deworming: The American Animal Hospital Association recommends a regular deworming schedule for kittens beginning at two weeks of age. We integrate this schedule into three of the four kitten vaccine visits. The dewormer is chosen specifically for each kitten based on its history and fecal test findings.
Heartworm prevention: Monthly heartworm prevention is started near the end of the kitten series based on the individual's needs. Heartworms are spread by a single mosquito bite and the disease is considered endemic in North Carolina. This is a potentially fatal disease that is complicated, dangerous and expensive to treat. It is also almost 100% preventable when a prescription heartworm preventative is used monthly. When used appropriately, most heartworm preventatives will also protect your cat against common parasites. There are several options available and individual recommendations will be based on your kitten's risk for other parasite exposure and your family's comfort level of administering medications.
Female kitten spay: By spaying your female kitten before her first heat cycle, you can reduce her risk of the most common type of breast cancer by greater than 95%. If she is allowed even just one heat cycle before her spay, the risk reduction drops to only 75% and drops further with each cycle. We recommend spaying by six months of age.
Male kitten neuter: We recommend neutering male kittens also by six months of age to avoid the development of bad habits that are hard to break like marking in-doors and escaping the house and yard.
Microchipping: ACMVS recommends your kitten is microchipped when it is spayed or neutered in case they get lost. A microchip allows animal control, stray facilities, and other animal hospitals to reunite lost pets with their families. If you are a military family, this is of special importance to you as many countries require the pet to be microchipped before import during your PCS.