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Ray Geisman, D.V.M.
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Vaccinations

Dog:    Core vaccines - against distemper, parvo virus, adenovirus type 2, parainfluenza (some people call this the 4 or 5 in 1) and rabies. These vaccinations are recommended for every dog. When your dog is a puppy, we begin to vaccinate at 7 weeks of age, and vaccinate them every 3 weeks until they are around 18 weeks of age. Puppies acquire a certain amount of protection from their mother, and that protection goes away sometimes between 7 and 18 weeks of age. By vaccinating them every 3 weeks, we can protect them by causing them to produce their own antibodies against these diseases once their mother’s antibodies are not protective anymore. At 18 weeks of age, we also give your puppy a rabies vaccination, and issue you a city or county license. These vaccinations are given to adult dogs on a yearly basis, except for rabies, which can be given every 1 or 3 years, depending on the vaccine given.

              Non-core vaccines - protect against bordetella, canine flu, lyme disease, corona virus, and leptospirosis. These vaccinations are given if you are boarding your dog at a kennel, going to some dog parks, day cares, or training classes (bordetella and flu), or if it seems like your particular dog needs to be protected against these other agents. These vaccines are given on a yearly basis.

     Cat:    Core vaccines - against feline distemper (panleukopaenia), rhinotracheitis, calicivirus, and rabies. These vaccinations are recommended for every cat. When your cat is a kitten, we give the first 3 at 8 weeks of age, and again at 12 weeks of age. At 12 weeks of age, we also give a rabies vaccination, and issue you a city or county license. These vaccines are given to adult cats on a yearly basis, except for rabies, which can be given every 1 or 3 years, depending on the vaccine given.

              Non-core vaccines - protect against feline leukemia (FeLV). We recommend these only if your cat is going to come into direct contact with other cats. To protect against FeLV, we need to give your cat 2 injections initially, separated by 3 to 4 weeks, and then a yearly booster. 

Wellness checks: Whenever we give a dog or cat a distemper vaccination, we also do a complete physical examination. I feel that this examination is just as important as the vaccination that we are giving. Once your pet is an adult, this will happen once a year. As your dog or cat becomes an older adult, we may want to start examining him or her twice a year, to try to pick up problems in their early stages, when we have more options and more success in dealing with them. We also do various types of blood, urine and fecal testing when we examine your pet. We recommend that a fecal test be done on your pets once a year, and we require that dogs be tested for heartworms once a year, even if you give them a heartworm preventative year round. After your pet reaches middle age, we recommend doing other blood tests and possibly urine tests to detect internal problems once a year also.