Tuesday, January 27, 2015

The Vaccination Debate

The case for vaccinating your pet

500 yds
500 yds
Pickering News Advertiser
As the debate rages on about vaccinating your children, a quieter trend of people not vaccinating their pets has started to emerge.  Some just want to avoid the costs of the vet visit and the vaccinations, while others believe that the vaccines are no longer necessary or they cause more harm than good.
While there is some debate between veterinarians concerning the frequency at which vaccinations are required, almost all are in agreement that they are necessary.
Recent outbreaks of parvovirus in Thunder Bay and Quebec provided a stark reminder that this disease is deadly.  
Parvovirus is spread through feces, which means that dogs can come into contact with it at parks, on walks or at daycare.  It attacks the white blood cells, can damage the heart and is life-threatening.  It is just one disease that can be prevented with a vaccine.
In the case of rabies, getting your pet vaccinated is the law.  In Durham Region, all cats and dogs must have current immunization against rabies.  Failure to provide proof of a current vaccination can lead to a fine.
Some vaccines are optional and it's up to the owner to decide if their lifestyle warrants them.  
Leptospirosis can be contracted by dogs who sniff contaminated urine, or swim in or drink contaminated water.  There is a vaccine that protects against several strains of leptospirosis.  
Bordetella, more commonly known as kennel cough, is a highly contagious respiratory disease that affects dogs.  The bordetella vaccine is recommended for dogs who spend time at kennels, daycares, dog parks, groomers or anywhere dogs congregate.
The vaccines for these diseases are far easier to administer and considerably less expensive than treating the disease after your pet contracts it.
The veterinarians at Pickering Animal Hospital are happy to talk to you about your concerns regarding vaccinations, the use of vaccine titres and their pros and cons.
They will help you make an educated decision about what vaccines are necessary to keep your pet healthy.
Pickering Animal Hospital is located at 14-1450 Kingston Road in Pickering.  For more information, call (905) 420-1734 or visit www.pickeringanimalhospital.ca or visit www.pickeringanimalhospital.ca.

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