Vaccinations

When, why, and what does my pet need vaccinations for? There’s so much information out there about vaccinations that it can be confusing to know who to trust, which is why we’ve taken the time to answer all of the most common questions about vaccination here.

Dogs

In order to prevent serious and life-threatening diseases, all puppies require a primary vaccination course. This consists of two injections, usually given when your puppy is around 8 to 10 weeks’ old. After this initial course, booster vaccinations are required yearly in order to maintain protection. If much longer than a year has passed between vaccinations, we may need to restart the course.

Although kennel cough vaccination is not compulsory, most of our customers ask for it and we would recommend it for all dogs who are in contact with other dogs or are walked in public places e.g. Moat Park, Comber Greenway, Stormont Park. Contrary to popular belief, kennel cough is mostly caught by walking your dog in public places. If you are planning to put your dog into kennels, kennel cough vaccination is compulsory.

No vaccine is 100% protective, and with very heavy exposure, mild symptoms of kennel cough may occur. However, the duration and severity of the illness will be much less than in unvaccinated dogs, and your pet is much less likely to develop serious complications.

 

Vaccination protects against leptospirosis, canine infectious hepatitis, canine parvovirus, distemper, and kennel cough.

Although we trialled the L4 vaccine here at Ashwood a couple of years ago, we found the rate of adverse reactions was too high. In addition to this, the extra protection provided by the L4 vaccine versus the L2 vaccine is not of clinical relevance in Northern Ireland. Consequently we no longer use this vaccine. 

 

A primary vaccination course (including the kennel cough vaccine) is included in the price of a puppy pack, which is £50. Otherwise, the cost varies depending on whether you require a full restart (which is £42) or a booster (which is £32). The cost of the kennel cough vaccine is £20 when given with another vaccine, or around £28 when given alone.

Cats

In order to prevent serious and life-threatening diseases, all kittens require a primary vaccination course. This consists of two injections, usually given when your kitten is around 9 and 12 weeks’ old. After this initial course, booster vaccinations are required yearly in order to maintain protection. If much longer than a year has passed between vaccinations, we may need to restart the course.

Yes. Feline leukaemia virus is common and here in Northern Ireland we have a large number of feral cats who may transmit the infection. Once contracted, the disease is fatal and no cure is available. Although indoor cats have a lower risk of contracting feline leukaemia, there is still a risk and so we routinely include it as part of our vaccination protocol.

Vaccination protects against cat flu, feline panleukopaenia virus, and feline leukaemia virus.

A primary vaccination course is included in the price of a kitten pack, which is £50. Otherwise, the cost varies depending on whether you require a full restart (which is £48) or a booster (which is £32). 

Rabbits

In order to prevent serious and life-threatening diseases, all rabbits require regular vaccination. This consists of a single injection which may be given from the five weeks’ old. Your rabbit will then need an annual booster vaccination to maintain protection.

Vaccination protects against myxomatosis, rabbit haemorrhagic disease strain 1, and rabbit haemorrhagic disease strain 2. 

Following the latest advice from the Rabbit Welfare Association & Fund (RWAF) and British Rabbit Council (BRC), we recommend that all rabbit owners vaccinate their rabbits against RHD2. This vaccine must be given at least 2 weeks’ apart from the usual vaccination. Booster vaccinations are required annually.

The price of each vaccination is £30. 

We offer vaccination for dogs, cats, and rabbits, including rabies vaccination for pets travelling abroad.