Back to Kittens

Health and Personality

What's included with your kitten



Vaccination Guidelines

All 27 veterinary schools in North America have changed their protocols for vaccinating dogs and cats. Current recommendations for cats can be found here:


"Dogs and cats immune systems mature fully at 6 months. If a modified live virus vaccine is given after 6 months of age, it produces an immunity which is good for the life of the pet (ie: Feline distemper).

If another MLV vaccine is given a year later, the antibodies from the first vaccine neutralize the antigens of the second vaccine, and there is little or no effect. The titer is not "boosted" nor are more memory cells induced."

Not only are annual boosters for distemper unnecessary, they subject the pet to potential risks of allergic reactions, and immune-mediated hemolytic anemia. "There is no scientific documentation to back up label claims for annual administration of MLV vaccines."

Vaccinations given 2 weeks apart suppress rather than stimulate the immune system. A series of vaccinations is given starting at 8 weeks and given 3-4 weeks apart up to 16 weeks of age. 

Another vaccination given sometime after 6 months of age (usually at 1 year, 4 months) will provide Lifetime Immunity.


Feline vaccine related Fibrosarcoma is a type of terminal cancer related in inflammation caused by rabies & leukemia vaccines. This cancer is thought to affect 1 in 10,000 cats vaccinated. Vaccines with aluminum adjuvant, an ingredient included to stimulate the immune system, have been implicated as a higher risk. We now recommend a non-adjuvanted rabies vaccine for cats. Testing by Dr. Macy, Colorado State, has shown this vaccine to have the lowest tissue reaction, and although there is no guarantee that a vaccine induced sarcoma will not develop, the risk will be much lower than with other vaccines.

Feline Leukemia Virus Vaccine

This virus is the leading viral killer of cats. The individuals most at risk of infection are young outdoor cats, indoor/outdoor cats and cats exposed to such individuals.

Indoor only cats with no exposure to potentially infected cats are unlikely to become infected. All cats should be tested prior to vaccination.

Cats over one year of age are naturally immune to Fel.V whether they are vaccinated or not, so annual vaccination of adult cats is NOT necessary. The incubation period of Feline leukemia can be over 3 years, so if your cat is in the incubation state of the disease prior to vaccination, the vaccine will not prevent the disease.

Feline Panleukopenia Virus Vaccine

Also called feline distemper is a highly contagious and deadly viral disease of kittens. It's extremely hardy and is resistant to extremes in temperature and to most available disinfectants. Although an effective treatment protocol is available, it is expensive to treat because of the serious nature of the disease and the continued presence of virus in the environment, vaccination is highly recommended for all kittens.

Cats vaccinated at 6 month or older with either killed or MLV vaccine will produce an immunity good for life. Adult cats do NOT need this vaccine.

Feline Calicivirus/Herpesvirus Vaccine.

Responsible for 80-90% of infectious feline upper respiratory tract diseases. The currently available injectable vaccines will minimize the severity of upper respiratory infections, although none will prevent disease in all situations.

Intranasal vaccines are more effective at preventing the disease entirely. Don't worry about normal sneezing for a couple of days. Because intranasal vaccines produce an immunity of shorter durations, annual vaccination is recommended.


Chlamydia or pneumonitis.

The vaccine produces on a short (2 month) duration of immunity and accounts for less than 5% of upper respiratory infections in cats. The risks outweigh the benefits.

Feline Infectious Peritonitis.

A controversial vaccine. Most kittens that contract FIP become infected during the first 3 months of life. The vaccine is labeled for use at 16 weeks. All 27 vet schools do not recommend the vaccine.


A new vaccine for feline bordetella has been introduced. Dr. Wolfe of Texas A&M says that Bordetella is a normal flora, and does not cause disease in adult cats. Dr. Lappin of Colorado State says that a review of the Colorado State medical records reveals not one case diagnosed in 10 years.


Giardia is the most common intestinal parasite of humans in North America, 30% or more of all dogs & cats are infected with giardia. It has now been demonstrated that humans can transmit giardia to dogs & cats & vice versa.

August 2007

back to top

Copyright © 2014 Windwalker Maine Coons - All rights reserved. | Updated 9/13/16 | Contact Us