Taking your cat to the vet may not be your idea of a fun time, but we try to make the visit as stress free as possible. The Cat Clinic is for cats only, making our entire facility much quieter and you won’t have to worry about sitting next to a big dog in the waiting room. We add towels for comfort on the exam tables which also aids in providing a place for a shy cat to hide, or spinning around to face the doctor for physical examinations with minimal handling.
For our young patients (8 weeks to 1 year old) we recommend starting them on a sequence of kitten vaccinations. Depending on your kittens’ living situation (indoor and/or outdoor) we will make appropriate recommendations for which vaccines they need. Booster shots are recommended after the initial vaccination within 3 to 4 weeks to boost their immunity to an appropriate level. Deworming is always a good idea when bringing a new kitten into your home, sometimes we just aren’t sure what they could have picked up before they found their way into our lives. FIV/Felv testing is a good baseline to get when first getting a new kitten. Both FIV and Feline Leukemia virus are immune suppressing viruses that kittens can get from another infected cat or even their mom.
For our adult patients (1 year to 9 years old) we recommend seeing them once a year. At their annual visit we will check their weight, discuss how they have been doing at home and update any vaccinations that need updating. Vaccinations are given one year following their kitten shots and is then given every three years until they are into their senior years. We also check for fleas because even an “indoor only” cat can pick up a flea or two on occasion. We have various flea treatments to choose from should your cat ever need one. Outdoor cats should be treated monthly to keep them flea free. We recommend testing outdoor cats annually for FIV/Felv and annual deworming since they run the risk of coming in contact with other cats (and other cats’ feces).
For our older patients (10 years and older) we recommend seeing them every six months. A lot can change in an older cat’s health in a short amount of time. Six months is equivalent to three kitty years which makes it important to see them more often than a younger cat. During a senior exam we check their weight which can be a big sign to their general health. Any amount of weight gain or loss holds more meaning in an older patient. Weight loss can be a sign of many things such as hyperthyroid disease, kidney disease, diabetes, etc. These types of changes are common in older patients and can be detected with senior lab work recommended at their six month check ups. The earlier we pick up on changes to our senior patients the better the treatment and outcome. We also get a clear history on how your older cat has been doing at home and depending on the doctor’s recommendation we may update vaccines.
Each cat is unique in how they like to be handled (or not handled) and we try our best to work with them to make each visit as stress free as possible. We look forward to meeting you and your cat. It is important to us that you feel supported in caring for your furry friend and we love to be the ones to do it.
There are two vaccines that we recommend depending on where your cat dwells. The FVCRP-C and the Feline Leukemia vaccine are the only two vaccines that we administer.
For cats that live strictly indoor with no contact with other outdoor cats we only recommend the FVRCP-C vaccine. This is a four way combo vaccine that protects cats from Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis, Calici Virus, Paneleukapenia, and Chlamydia. These are viruses that you could potentially bring into your home if you were to come into contact with a sick cat and got the contaminants on your clothing. Initially we recommend a first kitten FVRCP-C vaccine be given at 8 weeks of age and a booster second FVRCP-C vaccine be given 3 to 4 weeks after. We then boost the FVRCP-C in 1 year and repeat the vaccine every 3 years from this point on.
For cats that spend any time outside we recommend the Feline Leukemia vaccine be started at 10 weeks of age. The frequency of the vaccine is the same as the FVRCP-C vaccine with a booster in 3 to 4 weeks, then in a year and maintained every 3 years. Feline Leukemia can only be contracted from contact with an affected cat and therefore we do not recommend this vaccine for strictly indoor cats.
While FIV is an outdoor cat concern, we do not vaccinate with the FIV vaccine. There is no evidence that the FIV vaccine is proven to work and causes the FIV/Felv combo test to come up positive no matter if the cat has the actual virus or because the cat is vaccinated. We recommend testing with the FIV/Felv combo test annually to be sure your cat does not contract either of these viruses while they are outdoors.