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Pet Vaccinations: Preventing Illness

Immunizing your pets is the easiest way to prevent many serious or even fatal diseases. Queenstown Veterinary Hospital’s veterinarians recommend starting vaccinations for your new pet when he or she is between 6–8 weeks of age.

Because maternal immunity is short-lived, we will work out a schedule for giving the immunizations that best fit your pet’s lifestyle at his or her first visit.

We believe that no two pets are the same and a vaccine protocol should be tailored for your specific pet. For example, because it is an ever-increasing problem in our area, we recommend vaccinating against Lyme Disease for pets whose lifestyle puts them at greater exposure to ticks.


Core vaccines we recommend for dogs include:

DHPP that combines:

  • Distemper
  • Adenovirus
  • Parvovirus
  • Parainfluenza
  • Rabies

In addition to the core vaccines, and in accordance with AAHA guidelines, we also may recommend any of the following:

  • Leptospirosis
  • Bordetella
  • Lyme
  • Canine Influenza

Recommended core vaccines for cats are:

  • Rabies
  • FVRCP that combines:
  • Panleukopenia
  • Calicivirus
  • Rhinotracheitis

Outdoor cats or cats that spend anytime outside should receive the following vaccinations:

  • Feline leukemia

Puppies and kittens require a series of vaccinations to adequately protect them. Once your pet is an adult, additional boosters will be given to maintain his or her immunity.


Other Preventive Protocols for Your Pet

Deworming medications will be dispensed to eliminate internal parasites, some of which can be transferred to humans. Just like vaccinations, these medications also will be tailored to the needs of your dog or cat.

Heartworm is a parasite that lives in a dog’s heart and nearby blood vessels. Adult heartworms produce larvae that circulate in an infected animal’s blood. Mosquitoes easily transmit these larvae by biting an infected animal and then your pet. Because dogs are susceptible to heartworm, diagnostic testing and preventive medications have been developed. We recommend that your dog has a heartworm test prior to using a preventive and year-round medication is important.

Preventing fleas is easier and more cost effective than trying to eradicate them after your pet and your house becomes infested. We will recommend the best flea-prevention product for your pet and demonstrate how to administer it so your pet—and your home—is protected.

Tick prevention is very important in our area. The Deer tick is well known for transmitting Lyme disease from deer to pets and people and there are many other ticks that transmit diseases which can make our pets sick. From collars to topical liquids to an oral chew, there are many options for protecting your pet from ticks. Our staff wants to help you decide which product is right for them. 

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