Preventing Kitten Health Problems Through Vaccination

Vaccinations build up the kitten's immune system and are essential to overall kitten health. A vaccine contains a small amount of virus which activates the kitten's immune system and prepares it for further exposure to the disease or virus. Presently, vaccinations are capable of safe immunization without the risk of developing the disease.

Certain vaccines are mandatory for every cat, while others can be selectively administered.

Diseases for Which Vaccines Prevent

  • Feline Calcivirus
  • Feline Leukemia (FeLV)
  • Feline Pneumonitis (Chlamydia)
  • Feline Rhinotracheitis (FVR)
  • Feline Infectious Peritonitis (FIP)
  • Feline Distemper
  • Rabies
  • Bordetella
  • Giardia

How Often Vaccines Are Administered

Kittens are given their first vaccinations at 6 to 7 weeks of age. Generally the vaccine for Chlamydia is administered to kittens, 10 weeks old. Kittens are vaccinated at intervals of 2 to 4 weeks with a series of shots.

Feline Calcivirus

Calcivirus is known to cause respiratory disease in cats. It's contagious and shows symptoms of fever, nasal discharge and mouth ulcers.

Feline Leukemia Virus

This virus attacks the cat's immune system and makes them more susceptible to new infections or disease. FeLV is contagious and fatal. Most cats die after 2 to 3 years of becoming infected.

Feline Pneumonitis (Chlamydia)

This is a chronic upper respiratory disease caused by bacteria known as Chlamydia psittaci. Although some cats don't show symptoms, others suffer from nasal discharge, sneezing and coughing. Chlamydia is contagious to humans and is transmitted if you come in contact with contaminated surfaces.

Feline Rhinotracheitis (FVR)

FVR is a feline herpes virus. It's an upper respiratory infection that last for 7 to 10 days. The symptoms include eye and nasal secretions accompanied with high fever. It causes corneal ulcers in the cat's eye. Some cats are latent carriers as they don't exhibit the symptoms, but can easily spread and cause new infections.

Feline Infectious Peritonitis (FIP)

FIP is a viral infection caused by a certain string of the coronavirus. Although most cats are able to combat the virus, it progresses in a few cats and develops into FIV due to an abnormality or mutation of the coronavirus. Infected cats show upper respiratory illness symptoms like, watery eyes and sneezing. Other symptoms include weight loss and fever.

Feline distemper

This disease is also known as panleukopenia. It's a life threatening virus that's easily contracted by kittens and cats who don't receive the vaccine. It causes infection of the lymph nodes, dehydration and diarrhea. It also suppresses immune cell production and progresses rapidly.


Rabies is a fatal disease that can be transmitted to humans through bites or scratches. The age for administration of the rabies vaccine may differ by local law. The rabies virus spreads to the cat's brain and salivary glands. It also causes damage to the central nervous system. The disease goes through 3 stages and leads to death.


This infection is caused by bacterium bordetella bronchiseptica and shows symptoms of weight loss, nasal discharge and lethargy. It's easily transmitted to other pets and is often confused with cold or flu. Bordetella usually infects cats with weak immune systems.


Giardia is a parasite found in contaminated sources of water. Cats infected by giardia suffer from diarrhea, vomiting and weight loss.

It's mandatory to vaccinate your cat to prevent her immune system from weakening and to reduce her susceptibility to various diseases. It's also necessary to complete the entire series of shots for any particular vaccine. Follow up with routine vet checks to diagnose and treat infections in time.