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Here at Roosevelt Veterinary Center, our entire veterinary wellness team take the care of your pets very seriously. We believe in the importance of preventing diseases before they happen, letting your cat enjoy a happy and healthy life. Following the American Association of Feline Practitioner’s guidelines for vaccination of cats, our veterinarians offer several vaccines which are important for all cats and one that may be important for your cat depending on his or her lifestyle.
We are proud to be among the leading veterinary hospitals in Brewster and Beacon, and the only veterinary hospital to offer Laparoscopic surgery. In addition to rabies and other pet vaccinations, our pet hospital also offers regular wellness exams with a veterinarian, dental care, surgery, and emergency pet care. Whether your cat needs a major surgery or a rabies vaccination, our pet hospital and veterinary team is ready to provide the best care possible.
Our vets strongly recommends the rabies vaccination for all eligible pets. Rabies is a dangerous and deadly viral disease that causes inflammation of the brain in infected animals. Humans or animals can contract rabies if they are bitten by an infected animal. Infected saliva from the bite can enter the bloodstream, leading to infection and, in many cases, death. For humans, rabies is nearly always fatal if a vaccination is not administered prior to the onset of severe symptoms. A rabies vaccination is extremely important and life-saving, and is required by New York state law for all dogs, cats and ferrets. Even indoor cats can be exposed to rabies if they sneak out or if a wild animal (such as a bat) sneaks in.
The state of New York and local health department laws are extremely strict regarding the vaccination and veterinary care of pets who may be exposed to rabies. If an unvaccinated pet who may have been exposed to rabies has bitten a human, the health department may require that pet to be humanely euthanatized and sent for rabies testing. If an unvaccinated pet may have been exposed to rabies but has not bitten a human, that pet must be quarantined for six months.
Even if an unvaccinated pet has never been exposed to rabies, if that pet bites a person, the pet must be quarantined for 10 days and monitored. If the pet becomes sick and exhibits signs of rabies during this period, the pet must be euthanized and submitted for rabies testing. Sadly, our veterinarian has seen far too many cases where an unvaccinated family pet scuffled with an oddly acting raccoon in the backyard, and the owner who tried to break up the scuffle was bitten. In these sad cases, the family pet had to be euthanized for rabies testing. Our pet hospital strongly recommends that all pet owners comply with state law and vaccinate their pets to avoid the untimely death of their pet or harming the health of another human. You can learn more about state requirements and pet vaccinations at veterinary hospitals by visiting www.health.state.ny.us/diseases.
At Roosevelt Veterinary we are proud to offer the PureVax® feline rabies vaccine which is administered annually. Unlike other rabies vaccines, this one is formulated just for cats - which we all know are not just small dogs!
This vaccine protects against feline viral rhinotracheitis (feline herpesvirus-1), calicivirus, and panleukopenia. These diseases are highly contagious and can be fatal, especially for kittens. Although it is often referred to as “feline distemper,” panleukopenia of cats is actually very similar to parvovirus in dogs. The vaccine is about 60% effective for calicivirus, 50% effective for herpesvirus, and nearly 100% effective for panleukopenia, the most fatal of the three diseases. Kittens should be vaccinated every 3-4 weeks starting at 6 weeks of age. Vaccination of adult cats can be decreased to every 1-3 years.
Feline leukemia is spread through direct contact between cats. For those cats who become infected, it is generally 1-3 years before they develop signs of illness in the form of fatal cancers such as leukemia or lymphoma. This disease affects approximately 3% of cats in the northeastern US; at Roosevelt Vet on the Hudson we diagnosed our first case of feline leukemia within 2 weeks of opening. Any cat who goes outside without direct supervision should be vaccinated. Cats should be tested for feline leukemia before vaccinating. After an initial series, this vaccine should be repeated annually.
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