Shelburne Veterinary Hospital



Vaccines not only protect your pet from potentially deadly illnesses; they also protect your family. Some diseases, such as rabies and leptospirosis, are zoonotic—which means they can be passed to humans.

While there are many different types of vaccines, they all work by preparing your pet’s body to defend itself against a virus or bacteria that causes disease. They do this by imitating an infection, causing the body to produce disease-fighting antibodies. Once the imitation infection goes away, your pet’s body will remember how to fight that disease in the future. Some of the more important vaccinations for pets include:

DA2PP—Distemper, Adenovirus-2, Parainfluenza and Parvovirus

Canine distemper is a highly contagious illness that resembles measles for humans, while adenovirus-2 and parainfluenza are related to kennel cough. Parvovirus has a high mortality rate and can survive in an infected area for up to a year.


Prevention of this deadly disease is not only extremely important for dogs and cats, it is a legal requirement—and for good reason. With a 99.95% mortality rate, it remains one of the world’s deadliest diseases.


If you have a dog that loves to go on adventures, or even one that spends a lot of time outdoors in a yard where there’s wildlife, then a leptospirosis vaccination is important. This disease is transmitted through direct contact with contaminated urine, water or soil and can make your pet and family very sick.

Canine Influenza (CIV)

There has been a significant outbreak of this highly contagious respiratory disease across the country. Elderly dogs and those with existing heart and lung conditions as well as those who regularly encounter other dogs (through boarding or at dog parks) should be vaccinated.


This is another vaccination you should seriously consider—and may be required—if your dog is a social butterfly. Bordetella causes inflammation of the upper respiratory system which leads to coughing and illness, ultimately exposing your pet to secondary infections.

FIV—Feline Immunodeficiency Virus

FIV is most commonly transmitted through wounds accrued from biting and fighting. There is no cure for FIV, so the best way to avoid it for your cat is by proper prevention.

FeLV—Feline Leukemia Virus
Feline leukemia virus is commonly transmitted when cats groom each other or share a water bowl. The disease can target your cat’s white blood cells, making your feline more vulnerable to serious illness.

If your pet is overdue for his or her shots or if you’re going to be boarding your best friend soon, give us a call at 802-985-2525!