If you've ever had a cat before, chances are you know that cat vaccinations can help protect your kitty from potentially fatal diseases like feline leukemia and AIDS. However, it might surprise you to learn that one of the core cat vaccines can also protect your cat from the common cold. Read on to learn why it's so important to protect your kitty from getting this virus before they can be vaccinated, and why they should be vaccinated as early as possible.
FRV and Your Cat
Feline rhinotracheitis virus is one of the leading causes of cats having symptoms of a common cold, like sneezing and coughing. Like most viruses responsible for colds, this virus can't be treated with antibiotics. It can be quite unpleasant for cats, too, causing wide-ranging symptoms like pink eye, fever, eye ulcers, nasal congestion, and even lesions in the eyes.
The Illness That Doesn't Go Away
The symptoms of FRV may sound unpleasant, but you might think that it's just a simple cold. In reality, FRV is a form of the herpes virus. Once a cat catches the herpes virus, they have it for life, and symptoms can flare up at any time due to stress, another illness, or a compromised immune system. A cat who is exposed to FRV without being vaccinated first may potentially go through their entire lives experiencing the aforementioned symptoms.
Vaccinate Right Away
Thankfully, the core cat vaccines can protect your cat from FRV, but only if they haven't already been infected with it. While receiving the vaccine if they've been infected won't do them any harm, it won't kill the virus. Because of this, it's imperative that you protect your kitten until they're ready to be vaccinated.
Kittens can start receiving their core vaccines as early as six weeks old. Until then, keep your kitten away from any other cat that's have shown signs of the symptoms of FRV. Since FRV can flare up when a cat is stressed out, and the presence of kittens often makes adult cats territorial and anxious, your adult cat could potentially experience a flare up and infect the kitten in the process.
While FRV is rarely life threatening, it can have a serious impact on your cat's quality of life for their entire lifespan. Make sure that your kitten is vaccinated as soon as they're old enough to prevent them from ever acquiring this awful illness.
If you have any questions about pet vaccinations and how to prepare for them, consider contacting a local animal care specialist, such as Edinburgh Animal Hospital.