The Most Important Pet Vaccines

puppy with happy vets

When you choose to become parent to a wonderful new pet, you open yourself to a whole host of different responsibilities. Keeping your animal safe from harm is undoubtedly one of your biggest priorities, and one of the best ways to do this is do everything you can to keep her healthy. This means feeding her the right nutrition, ensuring she gets enough exercise and, just as importantly, is protected from the diseases that can that put her health and wellbeing at risk.


There are numerous illnesses and diseases facing our pets, some of which can have life-altering consequences or even prove deadly. As caring and conscientious owners, we have the ability to prevent our beloved animals from contracting some of these illnesses, which will protect them from their devastating and debilitating effects. This is because there are now more pet vaccines available than ever before.

What are pet vaccines and how do they work?

Pet vaccines are identical in design to human vaccines. They involve injecting tiny amounts of antigens that are masquerading as the disease into your pet, triggering her immune system to fight against it. If your pet is exposed to the disease in the future, your body will recognize and automatically fight it again and much more effectively. While some vaccines may protect your pet entirely, others may simple reduce the severity of the associated symptoms so that the disease is safer and more manageable.

Why you should be vaccinating your pet

As loving pet parents, we want to protect our animals from any unnecessary pain and suffering. Other reasons we should be vaccinating our pets include

- Controlling the spread of infectious diseases to other animals in your home and the surrounding area.

- Some infectious diseases can be spread to humans in your home, so vaccinating your pet can help keep your family safe too.

- Reducing the risk of complications associated with the disease.

- Fewer stressful visits to our veterinarian.

- Fewer expensive veterinary bills!

- Support your pet to live a long, healthy life.

What are the most important vaccinations for my pet to have?

While there are a wide range of preventative vaccines available, there are certainly some which are more important than others. The vaccines that your pet needs will depend on her species, age and breed, and our veterinarian will be happy to work with you to establish a robust vaccination schedule that will ensure that your pet remains protected at all times.


Core vaccines for dogs

- Parvovirus

- Distemper

- Adenovirus

- Leptospirosis

- Parainfluenza

- Rabies

- Canine hepatitis


Core vaccines for cats

- Feline calcivirus

- Feline infectious enteritis

- Feline herpes virus

- Feline chlamydophilosis

- Rabies

- Panleukopenia


Core vaccines for rabbits

- Myxomatosis

- Rabbit haemorrhagic disease (RHD2)


Core vaccines for horses

- Rabies

- Tetanus

- West Nile Virus

- Eastern/Western Equine Encephalomyelitis


Our veterinarian will be happy to discuss the finer points of each of these vaccines with you before you commit to a preventative vaccination schedule.

You may be breaking the law if you are not up to date with your pet vaccinations

Some states have very definitive regulations with regards to the vaccination of pets living there. For example, Washington State specifies that all domestic dogs, cats and ferrets must be vaccinated against rabies, and failure to show proof of this to the animal control department could result in you being issued with a fine.


If you are planning on putting your pet into boarding kennels, will be using a grooming parlour or enlisting the service of a dog sitter or walker, you may also be asked to show proof of your pet’s vaccinations. This is so the service you are using can be sure that your animal will not pass infectious disease to others using them.



For further advice on pet vaccinations, arrange an appointment with our local veterinary team.