In this article we want to talk little about kittens immune systems and vaccines, it’s your job not to just care for them when they get sick But to give them preventive care, which stops them from getting sick in the first place. So in this article, we’re going to talk about one of the most important preventive care measures.
Before we talk about vaccines, let’s talk a little bit about the immune system. The immune system is an incredible bodily system that all mammals have, including cats, dogs, And even you and me. Think of the immune system as an army that’s there to fight for you when there’s a virus or bacteria That enters your system The army is made up of little green army men called antibodies, which are designed to tackle the threats that enter your body Healthy adults will have a large army to help keep them well, but when you’re a newborn you hardly have any defense at all When a kid was born they have virtually no immune system So they have to borrow some assistance from their mother in the form of maternal antibodies The only opportunity these kittens truly have to get those maternal antibodies is to consume colostrum Colostrum is a natural component of breast milk which is rich in immunoglobulins which deliver passive immunity to the kitten It’s like a temporary defense loan from the mother’s own immune system that keeps the kitten safe for the first weeks of life But there are some problems with this system.
For starters the colostrum phase of lactation Only lasts one week after the cat gives birth, an even bigger problem Is that newborn kittens can only absorb colostrum through the gut for the first 18 hours of life After that point that gut closes and forms a barrier, so they can’t absorb colostrum through the gut anymore That’s why it’s so critical that newborn kittens nurse during the first hours of life Right Barnaby? So understanding how the immune system works It’s easy to see why so many kittens are at risk and animal shelters and on the streets. If the kittens in a high-volume Environment with a lot of different animals like a feral cat colony or an animal shelter, They’re going to be exposed to a lot of different viruses that their bodies are not prepared to take on, This is like putting a kitten into a war zone with no army to fight for them Clearly, unvaccinated kittens need our protection even more They need to be guarded against viral and bacterial agents that can hurt them, then kept in a confined safe space like a foster home As kittens get a little older they can get vaccinated.
A vaccine helps give kittens immunity So it’s like helping them suit up with armor. That’s going to protect them for months to come. There are two main vaccines that kittens will receive. The first is a series called the FRCP vaccine This is a combination vaccine that protects against some of the most deadly viruses out there Rhinotracheitis, calicivirus, and panleukopenia These are horrible viruses that are totally preventable through vaccination the FRCP vaccine is a series Which means that you don’t just get one They get a series of vaccines that help boost their immunity. The second vaccine that every kitten will get is the rabies vaccine Which protects against the rabies virus are other vaccines available But they’re not generally recommended unless the kitten is at specific risk for those diseases However the FRCP vaccine and the rabies vaccine are considered core vaccines Which means that every single kitten should be receiving these vaccines. So all of these are preventable diseases And we want to protect these kittens and cats Through vaccinations. Make sure that your adult cats in your home are vaccinated too.