Lichfield Road, Brownhills, West Midlands, WS8 6LS
01543 373 033



Vaccinations are a very important part of the preventative health care we provide, helping to reduce the risk of serious infectious diseases for our pets.

Included in our Pet Care Plan

What Is A Vaccine?

Vaccines are biological agents administered to your healthy pet so that your animal has immunity against particular diseases or conditions. Vaccinations generally contain tiny doses of de-activated microorganisms that stimulate your pet’s immune system.

Immunity starts within a few days after the first dose but research has shown that the full cover and longer-lasting effect is approximately 2 weeks after the second dose. This is the reason why it is recommended not to socialise your pet (particularly a puppy) before the second dose. 

Subsequently, a booster dose is required on an annual basis to ensure the immunity response doesn’t decrease and your pet stays protected. Once the ‘safe’ time for the booster dose elapses (3 months over one year in dogs and cats) your pet will need a restart course consisting of two injections, similar to the very first vaccination course. 

What Are The Benefits?


Vaccinations protect your pet against many diseases, some being deadly.


Vaccinating your pet will help you avoid costly treatments.


Most importantly, ensure your pet lives a healthy and long life.


Protected Against

Canine Hepatitis (Adenovirus) – Infectious hepatitis is a virus that attacks the liver, blood vessels, immune system, kidneys, eyes, lungs, and heart.

Canine Parvovirus – Parvovirus is a virus that causes severe illness and death in dogs. It damages the lining of the intestines, causing severe vomiting and diarrhoea. It also attacks infection-fighting cells inside the bone marrow, which weakens the immune system making it very difficult for dogs to recover.

Canine Distemper Virus – Distemper is a nasty virus that attacks several different organs in the body including the guts, heart, immune system, lungs, brain and nerves. Distemper causes a variety of symptoms ranging from mild cold-like signs to seizures and death.

Canine Leptospirosis  – Leptospirosis (often shortened to lepto), is a bacterial disease that causes serious illness by damaging vital organs such as the liver and kidneys. Leptospirosis bacteria can spread in urine and can enter the body through the mouth, nose or wounds.

Infectious Tracheobronchitis (Kennel Cough) – Kennel cough is an airway infection that causes a dry hacking cough in dogs. Similar to human colds, kennel cough can be caused by several different germs (viruses and bacteria).

Rabies Vaccination – Essential if travelling with your dog. Rabies is a deadly virus that attacks the central nervous system (brain and nerves), causing severe symptoms and eventually death. It travels in saliva, so dogs tend to catch it if an infected animal bites them, or if they have an open wound that’s licked by an infected animal (but this is much rarer).

Rabies is a zoonotic disease, which means it can spread between animals and humans.

Symptoms & Treatments


Protected Against

Feline Calicivirus – Feline calicivirus (FCV) is a highly contagious virus that is one of the major causes of upper respiratory infections (URIs) or cat flu in cats.

Feline Rhinotracheitis Virus – Feline viral rhinotracheitis (FVR) is an upper respiratory infection of the nose and throat in cats.

Feline Panleukopenia Virus – Also known as FPV, feline parvovirus and feline infectious enteritis, is a nasty virus that attacks the guts, immune system and sometimes, the heart. Sadly, FPV often causes severe illness and sometimes death. 

Feline Leukaemia Virus – Feline Leukaemia Virus (FeLV) is a virus that attacks the immune system and causes cancers such as lymphoma and leukaemia. Cats with FeLV have an increased risk of developing other infections and diseases.

Rabies vaccination – Essential if travelling with your cat. Rabies is a viral disease that specifically affects a cat’s central nervous system (CNS).

Symptoms & Treatments


Protected Against

Myxomatosis – Myxomatosis is a severe disease (caused by a virus) that affects rabbits. It damages multiple areas of the body such as the skin, eyes, lungs, liver, and genitals, and puts infected rabbits at a high risk of catching other nasty infections.

Rabbit Haemorrhagic Disease 1 & Disease 2 – RHD is a virus that targets rabbits, attacks their internal organs (such as the liver), and causes internal bleeding. Sadly, RHD is fatal in most cases.

There are two types of RHD virus, RHD1 & 2. RHD1 causes very sudden illness and is nearly always fatal within two days of catching it

Symptoms & Treatment

When To Vaccinate Your Pet?



Primary vaccination is made up of two doses, approximately two weeks a part. 



To keep your pet protected you will need yearly vaccinations known as boosters. 



If it has been more than 15 months since the last booster your pet should restart the vaccination course.

What To Expect From A Vaccine Appointment?

Your vaccination appointment is a chance for your vet to really see how your pet has been doing. Your dog will be weighed, and have a thorough medical exam.

You will be asked some questions about your pet’s behaviour, and specific topics such as eating and drinking habits.

Your vet will also listen to any concerns you may have, and help you manage these.

As well as the thorough exam, your vet will administer the vaccinations.



What are the side effects?

The benefits of vaccination far outweigh the side effects, and we recommend that you vaccinate your pet to provide the best possible protection. There are some side effects that you should be aware of when vaccinating your pet, but most are harmless and don’t last long.

Common Side EffectsLess Common Side Effects
Lethargy (A lack of energy)Diarrhoea
Sleeping moreVomiting
Loss of appetiteItchiness
Fever (A high temperature)
A lump at the injection site - should disappear after 2 weeks.

Rare Side Effects:

Very rare, your pet can develop a severe allergic reaction called anaphylaxis:

Symptoms include swelling, especially in the face, and difficulty breathing.

They usually develop within minutes of application. If you think your pet is showing these signs, contact us immediately.

If my pet stays indoors do they still need vaccinating?

Unfortunately it is impossible to fully protect your pet from exposure to diseases.

Pets can escape; some diseases can live in soil on boots and be brought into the house; cattery or kennel stays can expose pets to other animals, and wildlife such as rats can enter homes.

While an indoor pet is safer from disease exposure than an outdoor pet there are advantages to outdoor access in terms of welfare and, while house rabbits and cats can do well indoors, all dogs need outdoor exercise as part of their regular routine. 

Does my pet need vaccinations every year?

There is good evidence that the vast majority of dogs are protected against viral distemper, hepatitis and parvovirus for three years after the primary course of vaccinations.  Similar data exists for panleukopaenia and feline leukaemia in cats, and for this reason, our vets have carefully selected vaccines that allow extended intervals between vaccinations against these diseases.

For other diseases such as leptospirosis in dogs and flu in cats the vaccine protection does not last much beyond 12 months - that is why revaccination against some diseases is recommended on an annual basis. 

This means if you look at your vaccination card you’ll see that, while your dog or cat has vaccinations every year, it won’t always be against the same diseases.

Do rabbits need vaccinating?

A combination vaccine is available to protect rabbits against the three most common fatal diseases, myxomatosis, Rabbit Haemorrhagic Disease 1 (RHD1) and Rabbit Haemorrhagic Disease 2 (RHD2).

Myxomatosis is a highly infectious and usually fatal viral disease that causes swelling and inflammation of the mucous membranes and discharge around the eyes. Both RHD1 & RHD2 are extremely contagious with a high mortality rate.

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