Vaccines — how often and what for?

woman cuddling a cat

I am Dr. Dawn Brown, one of the veterinarians at Royal York Animal Hospital. As one might imagine, the veterinarians here spend a lot of time discussing new break throughs and trends in veterinary medicine. No topic is more topical than vaccinations and immunity to disease and most clients have a few questions about our recommendations.

At Royal York Animal Hospital we believe it2012-04-15-20.31.09 is our primary responsibility to keep your pet as healthy as possible so we do recommend physical examinations and a vaccination assessment on an annual basis for both adult cats and dogs. For proper immunity Puppies and Kittens require a series of boosters optimally beginning at 8 weeks of age.

Vaccinations offer a high degree of protection against common disease. The veterinarians at Royal York Animal Hospital take the opportunity at a pet’s annual examination to discuss with each owner which vaccines are required on an individual pet basis. The decision is based on a balance among disease incidence in Etobicoke and Southern Ontario and the severity, vaccine efficacy and safety, and the health, welfare, and lifestyle of the individual pet. Vaccines and immunity levels should be assessed on a yearly basis. Both dogs and cats, by law, have to be up to date on their Rabies vaccine. A lapse in certain vaccinations can also pose a safety risk for the individual pet, to those involved in handling the pet, and also to the other pets. For these reasons, you may be advised that your pet must be vaccinated if your pet is coming into the hospital for boarding or grooming if immunization has lapsed. Our vets would be happy to discuss the most current information on individual disease and vaccination protocols with you, based on your pet’s individual lifestyle and needs.


Just becau2012-04-15-20.32.47se your pet ” seems fine” it does not always mean he is healthy. Regular check ups and blood tests are very 518924695important. We are able to detect disease early with Wellness Blood Screens. Early detection is important for disease control and ultimately longer and healthier lives for your pets. We have diagnosed a significant number of pets with early stages of diabetes, kidney, and liver disease with the Wellness Screen that we generally recommend yearly. Once your pet enters their mature years, for most pets this is at age 10, we recommend a complete physical examination twice yearly. We also highly recommend Wellness Blood screening yearly. Our wellness and vaccination programs are designed to prevent diseases and prolong the lives of your pet.

Is your pet overdue for a checkup and/or vaccine assessment? Give us a call today!

Dr. Dawn Brown