Can your pet be vaccinated during the Covid-19 outbreak?

Many pets require yearly vaccinations, but what has changed during the coronavirus crisis in relation to your pet?

What vaccinations do your pets require?

Rabbits

Require vaccinations against myxomatosis & RHVD 1 &2 (Rabbit haemorrhagic viral disease strains 1 & 2).

Ferrets

Ferrets require vaccinating against K9 distemper.

Cats

Cats must be vaccinated against feline enteritis, feline influenza (or cat flu), and if your cat goes outside, we recommend vaccinating them against feline leukaemia virus (FeLV). As long as your cat has had the vaccinations the previous year, they will still have a degree of cover, so can continue to go outside. Their vaccination would then need to be restarted once appointments are available again.

Dogs

A full list of vaccinations dogs require can be found here. A person who is not self-isolating can take your puppy or dog to the vets on your behalf.

Canine coronavirus is not Covid-19: Canine coronavirus is a long-established canine virus that causes diarrhoea. Please ask your vet for advice on your individual dogs circumstances.

Vaccinating puppies

If your puppy hasn’t been vaccinated, or his vaccination schedule has been delayed, there are things you can be doing to ensure he doesn’t miss out on critical socialisation and habituation. Please click here for advice on socialising your puppy during this time. A person who is not self-isolating can take the puppy/dog to the vets on your behalf. They should follow guidelines for washing hands, and if possible, use their own lead, and not a lead you need to touch or use. They should take some tasty treats from their home to help the dog hope with getting in and out of the car, and to cope with the vet visit. When they return, ensure you wipe the dogs coat down with dog or baby wipes. It’s important to remember that dogs lick their coat, so anything used to wipe him or her down needs to be safe. If possible, the handover should take place in a secure area where they can detach the lead safely for you to collect your dog once they leave (such as an enclosed back garden).

COVID-19 changes for pets, and what you can do

Due to the current COVID-19 outbreak, all veterinary practices have been advised to reduce their appointments down to emergencies only, and initially this meant that vaccinations were put on hold. However, now that many practices have had the time to assess how best they can support their clients’ needs in a safe way that follows the government’s guidelines, many are now offering limited vaccinations services for pets who are at highest risk.

Please contact your vet practice to find out their policy on vaccinations at this time.

If your veterinary practice is currently not offering vaccinations, a few basic steps you can do to help keep your rabbits safe against myxomatosis include using mosquito nets around their enclosures, and discussing with your veterinary practice flea treatment options. If you have been out to get supplies, ensure you change your clothes and footwear, and wash your hands thoroughly before interacting with your rabbits to help reduce the chances of VHD.

Read the latest UK government advice for pet owners and COVID-19 

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