Vaccinations help protect your kitten against serious illness and potentially fatal diseases. You should start your kitten’s vaccination program shortly after they’ve been weaned off their mother’s milk and continue throughout their lifetime.

Vaccinations are a crucial part of your kitten’s health care, and they will help your kitten grow up to be a healthy and happy cat. The vaccines they receive as a kitten help their little bodies develop immunity against harmful viruses that can cause deadly diseases. 

Why do kittens need to be vaccinated? 

Vaccinations can help prevent serious illness by building up your kitten’s immunity to potentially fatal infectious diseases. They can also help to prevent the spread of disease to other cats, and more rarely, humans. 

The core kitten vaccines protect against feline herpes virus and feline calicivirus, two of the viruses that can cause cat flu, and feline panleukopenia 

Common non-core vaccinations include feline immunodeficiency virus, feline leukemia and feline chlamydia. 

At what age does your kitten need to be vaccinated? 

Kittens’ immune systems are very susceptible to disease before they develop immunity against common viruses, which is why their vaccine schedule is so intensive and starts almost as soon as they’re weaned. 

Kitten vaccination schedule 

  • First vaccine at 6-8 weeks old (your kitten may have received this first vaccine before they came home with you) 
  • Second vaccine at 10-12 weeks old 
  • Third vaccine at 14-16 weeks old 

 

Once your kitten has had their three core kitten vaccines, your vet will recommend an ongoing plan for vaccinating your cat, which may include an annual booster vaccine to ensure long-term immunity against common contagious diseases. 

 

Save on kitten vaccinations with Healthy Pets Plus 

Did you know that as part of Healthy Pets Plus, you can get all your kitten’s vaccines for free at Greencross Vets? And the savings extend beyond vaccinations. Healthy Pets Plus members receive free veterinary consults, unlimited access to WebVet, annual wellness health testing, exclusive discounts and more! 

What diseases can people catch from cats? 

It’s not common for humans to catch diseases from their cats, but it does happen. These types of diseases are referred to as zoonotic diseases. Small children, pregnant women, the elderly and the sick are more susceptible to the transmission of disease from cats, due to their vulnerable immune systems. These zoonotic diseases include worms, ringworm, giardia, toxoplasmosis, and cat scratch disease. 

Healthy tips for cat owners: 

You can reduce the risk of zoonotic disease transmission by: 

  • Washing your hands frequently 
  • Cleaning out litter trays regularly 
  • Disposing of faeces in the tray quickly 
  • Washing your cat’s bed if it is soiled or dirty 
  • Isolating infected cats 
  • Wearing gloves when gardening 
  • Bathing and grooming your pet regularly 
  • Keeping your children’s hands clean after playing 

 

To learn more about disease prevention and the recommended vaccination schedule for your kitten, talk to your local Greencross Vets.