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Why do Cats need Annual Vaccinations when People don't?

(30 Posts)
lljkk Fri 07-Dec-12 11:30:34

Are cat immune systems rather pants? Their supplemental wild diet too ridden with horrors? The cat jabs just not very effective?

I am usually very pro-jabs, but am wondering why cat owners are advised to get their pets boosters every year for up to 20 years and more, when most humans can manage 80+ years on a max. of 5-6 shots, often just 1 or 2 vaccinations will confer lifelong immunity. And we are pretty filthy creatures ourselves, on the whole.

Locally offered cat jabs for Feline leukemia, FIV & Cat flu. Does the cat flu get updated every year, maybe, like human flu jab?

Fluffycloudland77 Sun 09-Dec-12 22:18:27

One of our kittens got flu from her first jabs, I am going back 27 years though, she was the runt of her litter and got put back with mum to recover (she was a chinchilla persian pedigree, we had 3).

She pulled through, she was a feisty madam. Size of a kitten, temperament of a bengal tiger whose cub had been threatened.

lljkk Mon 10-Dec-12 08:04:05

... But most humans don't get annual jabs against flu, either. We don't have any herd immunity on that one, either. So back to why should cats be more protected than people usually are (leaving aside animal rights' type views).

Fluffycloudland77 Mon 10-Dec-12 09:08:47

I think the human flu jab is down to funding, the adult population is bigger than the childrens one so to mass vaccinate would cost more than they can afford. So the risk groups are done because basically they risk dying.

Are you going to vaccinate this cat?

Lonecatwithkitten Mon 10-Dec-12 13:58:00

Because in most people flu is a miserable, but not life threatening disease. Whereas in most cats flu is a life threatening disease.
Human flu is caused by influenza viruses. Cat flu is caused by calici virus and Herpes virus. The diseases may have the same name, but are vastly different. If cats catch the herpes part if they survive the first initial disease they become chronically infected typically suffering from an out break every 8 to 12 weeks making these cats very miserable.
I treat quite a large number of chronic herpes cats and when they have a flare they are so miserable this alone makes me feel we should ensure protection.

lljkk Mon 10-Dec-12 15:51:14

That's helpful, thanks Lonecat.

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