Vaccination has revolutionised control of infectious disease in our pets. It is essential that all pets are adequately vaccinated to help protect the pet population as a whole. We encountered this challenge with our newly adopted shelter-rescue kitten – and soon our own healthy cat who had never had kitty cold was sick. Adult cats require regular vaccination to maintain immunity against disease. Kittens are ‘temporarily’ protected against many diseases by antibodies received through their mother’s milk. Only a minor population became EndoH resistant, but these molecules were processed aberrantly as indicated by their Mrs (100,000 to 120,000). FIP viruses can survive for up to three weeks on various surfaces in your house or be transported on your clothing.
Adult Cat Vaccination The immunity from kitten vaccination weakens over time and your pet can again become susceptible to disease. However, horizontal transmission by experimentally infected cats has been demonstrated (3) and was also assumed under natural conditions in tigers in Thailand (8). A Guide to Cat Vaccination Initial vaccination programs should provide at least two vaccinations 3-4 weeks apart against some or all of the following; feline panleucopenia, calicivirus, rhinotracheitis, Chlamydia and leukaemia virus at or after 8 weeks of age. Three vaccinations, 2-4 weeks apart, against feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) are recommended at or after 8 weeks of age. Keeping the puppy/kitten on a regular vaccine schedule during their beginning months of life is the right step towards early protection and prevention. FHV shedding rates increased from 4% to 50% in 1 week’s time. Most kittens get roundworms from their mothers.
FHV-1 is just about the most common categories of herpes virus located in cats. Infection is passed via bodily fluid contamination, and the virus can survive in the environment for prolonged periods. Calicivirus A common viral infectious respiratory disease, can also cause mouth sores resulting in severe oral pain. Symptoms are depression, loss of appetite, uncontrollable vomiting and diarrhoea, often with blood and severe abdominal pain. The symptoms can be treated rather than the main disease, but most dogs will survive. Commonly called ‘cat flu’ as its symptoms include sneezing, fever, discharge from the nose and eyes, and mouth ulcers. Feline Respiratory Disease (Catflu) It is caused in 90% of cases by feline herpesvirus (feline rhinotracheitis) and/or feline calicivirus.
Vaccination against cat flu and Chlamydia helps protects against clinical disease. About 50% of all cat-colds are this virus which has an incubation of 2-7 days. Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV) Feline AIDS is a disease caused by infection with feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) and affects the cat’s immune system. Vaccination against cat flu and Chlamydia helps protects against clinical disease. Spread by the feces and urine of infected cats, this virus attacks their immune system leaving the animal unable to fight infection. Bartonella can be easily treated with antibiotics, but it’s best to keep cats isolated until the symptoms are gone. Unfortunately in Australia, a lot of cats are infected with this virus.
On day 22 after the H5N1-infected swan was put in the animal shelter, 167 cats (5 kittens 4–6 months of age and 162 adults) were still available for further observations. The virus that causes the disease is present in saliva. The virus attacks the immune system and may be associated with lack of appetite, weight loss and apathy, pale or yellow mucous membranes, vomiting, diarrhoea, reproductive problems, increased susceptibility to other infections, leukaemia and tumours. Internal organs like the liver and kidneys are commonly damaged without some dogs ever showing any signs. The virus attacks the bone marrow which results in leukemia and sometimes lymphoma. Myxomatosis is a virus spread by fleas, mites and biting flies such as mosquitos. It is common in rabbits and can cause death for them within two weeks of being infected.
The early symptoms include puffy and swollen eyes, ears and face which can cause blindness. These then spread to the anus and genital area. The virus that causes the disease is present in saliva. Vaccinated rabbits may catch milder forms of the disease and recover with veterinary care. However recovery for an unvaccinated rabbit is extremely rare and euthanasia is considered the most humane option for them. RVHD is spread from rabbit to rabbit by contact only, but can live within the environment it is living in. It causes high fever, internal bleeding and liver disease and bloodstained fluid around the nose and mouth may sometimes be seen in post-mortem in affected animals.