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Our task must be to free ourselves... by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty. Albert Einstein

Is it necessary to vaccinate indoor pets?

As an animal owner, you may wonder and question the necessity of vaccinating indoor animals. Your pets are not exposed to outside environment where they could acquire contagious diseases. Also, vaccination appointments with the vet can be expensive. So you ask, how is it necessary?

Veterinary small animal practitioners still recommend to have indoor pets vaccinated. The reason? Most of the fatal viral diseases are air-borne -- which means that the disease agent can still gain entry inside the house through the window and other access points. Indoor pets have a lower chance of getting infectious diseases but it is wrong for pet owners to believe that their pets are safe.

An indoor pet can still contract disease through other animals that your pet has contact with regardless if he does not go out of the house. Instances such as new pet acquired in the household, pet  visitors in your home and encounters with other disease-harboring vectors may introduce infection inside your home. Unless your pet is strictly an indoor animal, doesn't ever get outside the house and encounter other animals, the shots are still needed. The fact is, viruses are so tiny and invisible which can be carried through air to which not even an indoor animal can be safe from.

For dogs, diseases such as canine parvovirus, canine distemper, infectious canine hepatitis, parainfluenza, kennel cough and leptospirosis remains a threat even to an indoor animal due to aforementioned reasons. Your indoor cats on the other hand may still get diseases such as feline rhinotracheitis, feline leukemia virus, feline panleukopenia and chlamydia.  If you want to make sure your indoor pet has a higher immunity against these viral diseases, you need to have your pets vaccinated. Vaccination starts at 6 weeks of age.

Do I need to say vaccination is one the best things you can do for your animal's health as a pet owner? Although vaccination will not transform your pet into a super pet and render 100% immunity, it does significantly help your pet's immunity and resistance. I have seen how pets suffer from disease and it is saddening to know that most of the disease that these pets are suffering from could have been prevented if only their pet owners had them vaccinated.

Especially to this air-lover.