Why Does My Pet Need Vaccinations?

Vaccinations are an essential component for the prevention of many diseases in pets and thus an imperative part of your pet’s healthcare program. We are fortunate that there are numerous diseases which we can protect against that are serious and potentially fatal. Of these diseases, many do not have a targeted cure and when a treatment is available it can be incredibly costly and prolonged in recovery time.

Protection for Your Pet

Vaccinations protect by stimulating the immune system diseases. Simply put this means that by vaccinating the body is armed and ready to fight off, rather than to succumb, to an infection. Young animals are initially protected by their mother’s milk. As this protection wears off, it is vaccinations that prime the body to be able to be protected. This is why puppies and kittens receive a series of vaccinations just like human babies. In adult animals most pets have a yearly booster. However, it is important to discuss this with your veterinarian to determine the most suitable long-term vaccination program. Your pet’s lifestyle including travel and environment need to be taken into consideration when deciding on their ongoing disease prevention program.


  • 8 weeks – First vaccination
  • 12 weeks – Second vaccination
  • 16 weeks – Third vaccination


  • Some vaccinations (such as canine infectious respiratory disease complex, formerly called “kennel cough”) and leptospirosis are needed yearly, whereas others (such as rabies) need a booster every 3 years.


  • 8 weeks First vaccination
  • 12 weeks Second vaccination
  • 16 weeks Third vaccination


  • Cats require booster vaccinations to ensure long-term immunity against many contagious diseases. Most vaccines need to be boostered every 2-3 years in cats.
  • Indoor cats should be vaccinated against rabies. The highest incidence report of cats bitten by bats (who may carry rabies) are actually indoor cats. This is because it is when a bat comes down the chimney, or flies through a door, that an indoor cat is interested and takes chase. With a disease as fatal as rabies, protection is paramount.


Why Should I Vaccinate My Companion?

Vaccination protects your dog from common infectious diseases which can be serious or even fatal. By helping avoid disease vaccination enhances your dog’s quality of life. In addition, some infectious diseases like rabies and leptospirosis also affect humans.

Why Are Repeat Vaccinations Needed?

When dogs are vaccinated as puppies, the immunity they receive will not protect them for the rest of their lives. To maintain protection, regular booster vaccinations are required for adult dogs. We will work with you to recommend an interval that is specific to your companion based on the vaccine, their lifestyle and any risk factors.

Are There Risks Associated With Vaccinations?

We will always recommend vaccinations that take into consideration the health, age and lifestyle of your companion. This ensures your companion receives only the necessary vaccines and that the potential for reactions is minimized. Though they can still result in adverse reactions they are generally rare, mild and short in duration and resolve on their own.

If you are worried that companion is suffering from an adverse reaction please call us on (250) 658 – 5922 and a staff member will be happy to assist,

Why Does My Companion Need an Examination To Get Vaccinated?

In short, examinations are required prior to vaccination to ensure your pet is healthy enough to receive them. We will perform a full physical examination to determine that is safe to administer the vaccines(s).

For more information on what our veterinarians perform during an examination see our Wellness Exams information page.