As we start the new year, we have been looking at wellness and preventive care strategies. Parasite control and examinations are very important, but when I say preventive care, most people think of vaccinations. The veterinary community has developed many, many new vaccines over the past decades. At the same time, we have been able to document the deleterious effects of over-vaccination. Diseases such as parvovirus, distemper and feline leukemia are extremely dangerous and can be prevented with vaccination. In fact, the widespread use of vaccines has made distemper very unusual in the United States. Some of the diseases that we have vaccine against are not very common or very dangerous, and thus most pets will not benefit from immunization against these diseases. Most internal medicine specialists believe we have been vaccinating too frequently, and that few animals truly need booster shots every year.

So what are you to do? How do you know when to vaccinate and against what? At Animal Care Clinic we believe that every animal needs a tailor made vaccine protocol. Using low cost clinics usually does not save money and often leads to over-vaccination. Our doctors, customer service reps and veterinary nursing team will help you to determine how to best protect your pets against infectious disease while minimizing the chances of any vaccine side effects or reactions. Come by and talk to us some time.

by Bonnie Markoff, DVM, ABVP