Animals, like people, are susceptible to a wide range of diseases caused by viruses, bacteria, fungi and parasites’.
Pet vaccination has been a hot topic recently and it mirrors the controversy of human vaccines. But the truth is vaccines are as important to your pets as it is to you. Vaccines enable the immune system of your pet to prevent illness. A vaccine has disease antibodies that mildly stimulate the pet’s immune system without affecting the pet. This immune system then creates the required antibodies to fight off such diseases if the pet is ever exposed to it.
Dogs, cats and almost all other pets have specific vaccinations available for diseases such as Distemper, Parvovirus, Adenovirus, Rabies, Herpes virus and so on. Those of you who have birds as pets should know about the vaccines available for bird diseases such as Marek’s Disease, Infectious Bronchitis, Avian RhinoTracheitis, Salmonella, Polyomavirus and so on.
Pet owners have the responsibility to protect their pets against diseases. Animals, like people, are susceptible to a wide range of diseases caused by viruses, bacteria, fungi and parasites. Vaccines are available for many of these diseases, making them preventable or mitigating the losses or long-term consequences of such diseases. Therefore, we should prioritise preventing disease or minimising the clinical signs of disease at the first instance to protect the health and welfare of animals.
(Sandeep Varma is a wildlife biologist with specific interest in herpetology and conservation)