Advice for Kittens/Cats
Primary Vaccination Course
The initial vaccination course for kittens consists of 2 injections given 3 weeks apart. The second injection must be given at 12 weeks old or above, therefore the course is normally started at 9 weeks or older. We prefer you to have had your kitten for at least a week before starting vaccinations, to ensure that he or she has a chance to settle in with you and is not incubating any illnesses.
Your kitten is not fully covered by his/her vaccinations until 7 days after his/her second injection. Before this time, we advise you keep your kitten indoors. He/she will be fine with other fully vaccinated cats in your household.
The vaccinations provide protection against feline enteritis, and feline rhinotracheitis and calicivirus (the most dangerous and potentially fatal of all the cat 'flu viruses). Vaccination against feline leukaemia is also available; we recommend vaccination against this killer disease which is increasing in prevalence. The vaccine can be given at the same time as the 'flu/enteritis vaccines.
After the primary vaccination course has been given, we will issue a certificate containing a record of your kitten's vaccinations. Please keep your own record of when the annual booster is due - we try to send out booster reminder cards but inevitably a few do not reach their destination.
Our full kitten vaccination course includes:
- 2 vaccination injections (3-4 weeks apart)
- Full health check by a qualified veterinary surgeon
- 1 months free flea/worm treatment
- 4 weeks free insurance with Petplan
A yearly booster is important for maintaining your pets protection against the diseases mentioned above. The cost of a booster injection covers the cost of the vaccination and a 'nose to tail' health check by a fully qualified Veterinary Surgeon. They will also listen to your pets heart and lungs and examine their abdomen. With older animals any signs of mobility problems e.g. arthritis is also checked. They will discuss their findings with you and explain any action they feel needs to be taken. A yearly booster vaccination also gives you the chance to discuss any concerns you may have about your pets health or behaviour.
Flea and worm control
Virtually all kittens are infected with worms at birth, mostly transmitted via their mothers milk. Regular worming is essential. If your kitten/cat has not been wormed since you have had him/her, please contact us for advice. We recommend prescription wormers as these are highly effective and have minimal side effects. If we see your cat regularly (eg. for yearly check-up and booster vacccination) you will not need to see the veterinary surgeon before purchasing prescription wormers.
Effective flea control is also available only on prescription; if we have seen your cat within the last 12 months you do not need to see a veterinary surgeon to purchase this.
We find the most effective and convenient method for flea and worm control is a monthly spot on product which combines the two and also covers ear mites and skin mites. You can only get this from a veterinary surgery. Please contact us for more information about this product.
Please visit this website http://www.itsajungle.co.uk/ for more information on parasites.
The main part of your kittens diet should be a specific kitten food. These differ from adult cat food in that the balance of proteins, vitamins and minerals is designed for growth. Kitten food should be fed until your cat is fully grown (this varies between individuals). We recommend the higher quality kitten foods (eg. Hills, Royal Canin) as providing the best nutrition for your kitten. Complete dried diets are very good for cats as crunching dried food helps keep teeth free from tartar.
We recommend neutering any cats not intended for breeding use. This can be done from 4 months of age onwards. Apart from preventing an increase in the ever-enlarging unwanted kitten population, it will discourage your cat from wandering too far. This will reduce the chances of your cat being involved in a road traffic accident, and will also reduce territorial behaviour (ie. fighting with other cats) and therefore the risks of your cat developing fight abscesses or contracting feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) or feline leukaemia virus (FeLV) from other cats. In male cats, early neutering decreases territorial urine spraying and diminishes the strong smell of tom cat urine. There is no upper age limit for neutering a healthy cat.
85% of cats will develop some form of dental disease by the age of 3. Click here for more information or contact us for advice.
We strongly advise that you insure your kitten. Currently, Petplan are offering 4 weeks free insurance to healthy kittens aged from 6 weeks to 12 months old, at their first vaccination, after which you will be given the option to continue insurance at the normal rate. Please ask the reception staff for a free insurance certificate when your kitten has his/her first vaccination.
At Rhodes Vets we have always been enthusiastic supporters of microchipping all pets. We frequently have lost and stray pets handed in to our surgeries, which we are able to reunite with their distraught owners because we can trace them from the microchip. If they were not chipped we would often have no way of knowing where to start looking for their home. We have seen tragic cases where pets are lost and have not been microchipped because 'they never go outside' but a door was accidentally left open and they escaped, or 'they never go off the lead' but the collar broke and they ran away. With no microchip they are anonymous. Make sure this doesn't happen to you and your pet!
Don't run the risk of your pet getting lost without a microchip and having to be rehomed, or worse! We can implant a microchip, and register your pet's details immediately online with the database, for just £12.50. This can be done alongside your pet's vaccination, or neutering, or in a nurse clinic. Microchipping is free as part of our Pet Health Plan. Call the surgery today and book your pet in for a microchip. Give yourself peace of mind.
Click here for information on how to clean your cats ears and how to pill your cat.
Useful links -
International Cat Care (formerly Feline Advisory Bureau)
Pet Health Information (NOAH)