Welcome New Kitten!
Congratulations! You have now acquired a wonderful new addition to your family who will provide countless hours of unconditional love and enjoyment. This section should help you with some common questions and concerns most new puppy owners have.
When is the best time to bring my new kitty to the veterinarian?
The best time to bring your new kitty to the veterinarian is immediately! Remember this kitty may be carrying a contagious disease that may infect other people or pets in your home. We can find problems before they make your pet ill. We may also prevent disease from happening in the first place through timely immunizations and parasite control. Getting your new baby off to a healthy start is of utmost importance to us. Click here for a complete list and description of what your kitty needs during the first year of life.
What can I expect at my kitty’s first visit?
Your kitty with have a complete and thorough physical with the doctor. Once finished, we will explain our findings and make recommendations to treat any problems and prevent disease. Your kitty will need immunizations, fecal parasite testing, and de wormer against round and hookworms. We will also start a monthly prescription to protect your kitty from fleas, heart worms and intestinal parasites. We will also discuss litter box training and proper feeding and nutrition. Please come prepared with any questions you might have.
How often does my new kitty have to see a veterinarian?
Just like a newborn infant, your kitty’s first year is crucial in setting the stage for a healthy life. Therefore, the kitty must visit the veterinarian most frequently during the first year of life. We recommend visits and vaccines at monthly intervals until 4-5 months of age. At that time, most cats will be finished with their immunizations and parasite testing for the next six months.
Why does my kitty need so many vaccines?
Kitties have an immature immune system and cannot fight off diseases as well as older pets. Each vaccine they receive acts like a building block to build sufficient protection against certain diseases. Puppies and kittens will receive some antibodies from their mother called maternal antibodies. These antibodies, however, interfere with the more permanent antibodies obtained from the vaccine. The series of vaccines are needed to build longer lasting antibodies while the maternal antibodies decline.
Should You Vaccinate Your Own Pets?
To help ensure the protection of your pet and other pets under our care, we require that your pet be vaccinated for commonly communicable diseases, especially if it is to be hospitalized, boarded, or surgically treated at our hospital. We ask that you provide a certificate from a licensed veterinarian or clinic where vaccines were given so that we can we can obtain the information. If your pet is not currently vaccinated, we will provide the service upon admission to the hospital for the appropriate fee.
WE DO NOT ACCEPT OWNER-ADMINISTERED VACCINES AS VALID FOR THE FOLLOWING REASONS:
- Written instructions provided with the over-the-counter vaccines cannot adequately educate you on proper vaccine administration. Would you vaccinate your own child for measles if the pharmacist provided you with the vaccine and syringe?
- Injuries can occur because of lack of training. Children can pick up a needle and stick themselves, or you may be bitten while attempting to vaccinate your pet.
- Vaccines purchased over-the-counter are often improperly handled and thus ineffective. You have no control over the handling of the vaccine before you purchase it. Veterinarians know where their biologics come from and choose them based on effectiveness and handling.
- Vaccines administered to an unhealthy animal may be ineffective or even harm the pet. No animal should be vaccinated without a prior physical exam performed by a licensed veterinarian. Severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis) may occur following routine vaccine administration. Pet owners are not equipped to handle this complication.
- Syringes and needles are considered hazardous waste. Disposal of such items in a landfill can lead to devastating consequences.
If you or someone other than a veterinarian has vaccinated your pet, we will ask that your pets be properly vaccinated by our staff or any licensed veterinarian prior to being hospitalized. The health and well-being of your pets and the promotion of responsible pet ownership are our primary concern.
How do I know if my kitten has intestinal worms/parasites?
Most intestinal worms cannot be seen with the naked eye. A microscopic stool sample should be performed to see if your puppy or kitten has intestinal worms/parasites. Not all intestinal parasite/worms shed their eggs or cysts everyday. Therefore, your puppy should have at least 2 fecal samples checked.
Are these intestinal parasites/worms harmful to the rest of the family?
Certain worms are contagious to humans. Your kitty should be de-wormed for these parasites. Cleaning up their stool immediately and washing your hands after playing with your kitty will help prevent transmission as well.
Why should I spay/neuter my kitten?
Certain diseases and cancers can be prevented by spaying or neutering your pet. Some of these conditions are life threatening, especially if not detected right away. Spaying and neutering also stops pet overpopulation. Thousands of unwanted pets are euthanized each year due to irresponsible pet owners. For more information click here.
Does my kitten need additional tests?
Kittens should also be tested for Feline Leukemia (FeLV) and Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV). Both of these viruses suppress the immune system and prevent your kitten from fighting off infections. FIV is sometimes referred to as Feline AIDS. FIV is not transmissible to humans. Kittens can obtain these viruses from their mom. If a cat is tested shortly after exposure, a false negative could result. It is also recommended to re-test anytime your cat become ill. The virus can go into remission where it hides from the test but will become active at some time in the future.