Prolong Your Cat's Life
Associates Animal Hospital provides a full range of preventive care services to help your cat live a longer, happier life and to increase the odds of detecting problems early, before they become severe and costly.
Our veterinarians make their annual preventive care recommendations based on the guidelines established by the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) and the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) and take into consideration your cat's hereditary factors, age, medical history and lifestyle.
Annual preventive care for cats typically includes:
- At least one annual Physical Examination at which time our veterinarians will take a complete medical history, make nutrition recommendations, assess behavior, and review any known medical conditions.
During the exam our doctors will perform a:
- Ear and Eye Examination
- Cardiopulmonary (Heart and Lung) analysis
- Temperature Reading
- Abdominal Palpation
- Dental Exam
- Dermatological Exam
- Musculoskeletal Evaluation
- Vaccination recommendations include core vaccines Rabies* and Feline Distemper.† Your veterinarian may also suggest the Feline Leukemia‡ vaccine for outdoor cats.
- Parasite Control Products to prevent and repel heartworms, intestinal parasites, fleas and ticks. Round worms can be transmitted to humans, so controlling these parasites protects your cat and also your family.
- Diagnostic Testing to check for Feline Leukemia and/or Feline AIDS (FeLV/FIV), heartworms or other internal parasites and early stages of diseases which cannot be detected during a physical exam. We recommend annual fecal examinations for cats.
- Your veterinarian will also discuss other services, such as dental care or microchipping, that can lead to a longer and healthier life for your cat.
*Rabies Vaccination Schedule for Cats — Every cat living in Massachusetts, whether they live indoors only or go outside too, must be vaccinated for Rabies. Each cat should receive a Rabies vaccine by the age of 12 weeks and no later than 6 months which will be good for one year. If the cat receives a Rabies booster before the first vaccine expires, which is before 365 days has passed, a 3 year certificate can be issued. In Massachusetts, if the Rabies is past its year anniversary when it is boosted, only a 1 year certificate can be issued. Any cat that is bitten or has a wound of unknown origin without a current Rabies vaccine must see a veterinarian for appropriate isolation and treatment. Stay current on your pet's Rabies vaccine and save a world of worry.
†Distemper Vaccination for Cats — The Feline Distemper vaccine is a combination of Calici Virus, Rhinotracheitis Virus and the Panleukopenia Virus and is called the FVRCP vaccine. This vaccine is given to all kittens at 8, 12 and 16 weeks of age. The cat should return the following year for a booster vaccine during the annual exam. After that we recommend the vaccine be given every three years. This is considered a core vaccine for all cats whether they live indoors all the time or they go outside too.
‡Feline Leukemia Vaccination for Cats — All cats that go outside should receive the Feline Leukemia vaccine (FeLV). Feline Leukemia is a virus that causes cancer. Vaccinating to prevent a type of cancer is a great thing. The disease is transmitted by hissing and spitting. If a positive cat hisses at another cat that does not have the disease and the spit gets in the healthy cat's eyes or mouth, the disease will be transmitted. We all know how strange cats greet each other so this is a great way for the virus to get around.
This virus cannot be given to people or dogs. You, your children and your canine friends are safe. Only cats are at risk. Cats that are at risk for this type of exposure should receive two FeLV vaccines 3-4 weeks apart. We recommend this vaccine be boosted every 2 years after the initial series.
This vaccine also has its own set of health risks. We do not recommend vaccinating indoor cats with no risk of saliva contact.