Hello we are you gonna pick a girl? Hey friends! Today I want to talk about kittens immune systems and vaccines Oh my gosh If your fostering or adopting a kitten, it’s your job not to just care for them when they get sick But to give them preventive care, which stops them from getting sick in the first place. So today I’m going to talk about one of the most important preventive care measures. We can take Giving kittens vaccines Why are you so bitey?
Tiny but bitey But before we talk about vaccines, let’s talk a little bit about the immune system The immune system is an incredible bodily system that all mammals have, including cats, dogs, And even you and me. Think of the immune system as an army that’s there to fight for you when there’s a virus or bacteria That enters your system The army is made up of little green army men called antibodies, which are designed to tackle the threats that enter your body Healthy adults will have a large army to help keep them well, but when you’re a newborn you hardly have any defence at all When a kid was born they have virtually no immune system So they have to borrow some assistance from their mother in the form of maternal antibodies The only opportunity these kittens truly have to get those maternal antibodies is to consume colostrum Colostrum is a natural component of breast milk which is rich in immunoglobulins which deliver passive immunity to the kitten It’s like a temporary defense loan from the mother’s own immune system that keeps the kitten safe for the first weeks of life But there are some problems with this system. For starters the colostrum phase of lactation Only lasts one week after the cat gives birth, an even bigger problem Is that newborn kittens can only absorb colostrum through the gut for the first 18 hours of life After that point that gut closes and forms a barrier, so they can’t absorb colostrum through the gut anymore That’s why it’s so critical that newborn kittens nurse during the first hours of life Right Barnaby? So understanding how the immune system works It’s easy to see why so many kittens are at risk and animal shelters and on the streets. If the kittens in a high-volume Environment with a lot of different animals like a feral cat colony or an animal shelter They’re going to be exposed to a lot of different viruses that their bodies are not prepared to take on This is like putting a kitten into a war zone with no army to fight for them Clearly, unvaccinated kittens need our protection even more They need to be guarded from viral and bacterial agents that can hurt them, then kept in a confined safe space like a foster home As kittens get a little older they can get vaccinated. A vaccine helps give kittens immunity So it’s like helping them suit up with armor. That’s going to protect them for months to come There are two main vaccines that kittens will receive. The first is a series called the FRCP vaccine This is a combination vaccine that protects against some of the most deadly viruses out there Rhinotracheitis, calicivirus and panleukopenia These are horrible viruses that are totally preventable through vaccination the FRCP vaccine is a series Which means that you don’t just get one They get a series of vaccines that help boost their immunity. The second vaccine that every kitten will get is the rabies vaccine Which protects against the rabies virus are other vaccines available But they’re not generally recommended unless the kitten is at specific risk for those diseases However the FRCP vaccine and the rabies vaccine are considered core vaccines Which means that every single kitten should be receiving these vaccines. So all of these are preventable diseases And we want to protect these kittens and cats Through vaccinations. Make sure that your adult cats in your home are vaccinated too. Here we go
Gotcha! The vaccination schedule is going to vary depending on the specific event or program So always follow the medical advice of the team that you’re working with. Different programs have different Protocol because it all depends on the risk to the individual kitten. For instance a high volume animal shelter might start vaccinating As young as four weeks of age But a private practice vet might tell you to start vaccinating at eight weeks It really depends on the program. Winston is a perfect example of when I vaccinate my kittens He’s six weeks old and today is his first vaccine I personally start vaccinating at six weeks of age, and then I boost every two to three weeks It’s important to know that maternal antibodies can impact the efficacy of a vaccine So depending on how much passes immunity the kittens obtained from their mother Vaccines might not be entirely effective until they’ve reached 12 to 16 weeks of age To ensure that there’s been no antibody interference Adopters should continue booster shots until the kitten has reached 16 weeks Ok buddy
Good job, that’s it!
Good boy, that was easy After that it’s just an annual booster Now let’s talk about the rabies vaccine. The rabies vaccine is generally given at 12 weeks of age so sometimes It’s done once the kittens already been adopted. The rabies vaccine is required by law in many states So make sure you know your local laws. After the first rabies vaccine, it’s boosted in one or three-year increments Even if you think a kitten is at very low risk of contracting rabies It’s still an important vaccine for them to get.
You’ll need proof of rabies Vaccination if the kitten ever becomes impounded, goes to a boarding facility or bites somebody It’s a really really good thing to have a record of Once you’re ready to get a kitten vaccinated it’s time for you to go to a local clinic. The good news is that if you’re fostering for a Rescue or animal shelter, they will do all your vaccinations for you They let you know when it needs to be done and where to go and they’ll even pay for the cost of the preventative care So if you’re working with a local organization Just be sure to ask them what the vaccine schedule is and where you need to take them If you’re raising a kitten on your own, you’ll want to go to a local vet Many communities have a low-cost vaccine clinic that can do your vaccinations for super cheap so hop on Google type in “Low-cost vaccine clinic” and the name of the area that you live And find out what resources are available near you.
If you run a rescue Organization or you’re vet tech or you’re trained to do vaccines, you can do the FRCP vaccine at home However, this is not something you should ever do without training and you can’t learn how to do it from a video. You should really be trained in person by a professional If you want to learn how to administer FRCP vaccines at home Talk to your medical professional and see if they’ll train you how to do it We do our FRCP vaccines right here at our home And we do our rabies vaccines on-site at event.
A veterinary clinic always has to do your rabies vaccine If you’re going to be doing FBRCP vaccines at home ensure that you’re using them safely and in accordance with rules and regulations with sterile supplies and under the guidance of a veterinarian And that’s it! Now you know all about why vaccines are important, what vaccines they need And when, and where to go get them. Of course make sure that you’re keeping good records of their vaccines And going back in for their booster shots. By taking good preventive care measures for these little guys We are setting them up for a lifetime of success. Thanks for keeping kittens healthy and best of luck! You did it!
You got your vaccine! You did a good job!