Vaccinations for dogs, cats and rabbits


Preventative Care at the Ark


Vaccinations for pets

Vaccinations have been a hot topic in recent media and have received a lot of controversial attention. However, they remain an imperative tool in preventing serious infectious diseases. Both in your pet, but also others in the community. We want to clear up the misinformation surrounding vaccinations. Let’s make it a streamlined, easy process for you and your pet. On this page you can find information on:

  • What vaccinations are and how they work
  • Why you should vaccinate your pet
  • Cats diseases prevented by vaccination
  • Dogs diseases prevented by vaccination
  • Rabbits diseases prevented by vaccination
  • Recommended vaccination schedules
  • The Ark’s revolutionary vaccination program
vaccinations for cats, dogs and rabbits
What are vaccinations?

What are Vaccinations?

A vaccination is an injection which we give to your pet. It either contains a inactive form of pathogen, or a very small amount of the active form. The amount in the injection is not enough to make your pet sick. It only allows for their immune system to recognise the pathogen. As a result, if they encounter the pathogen in the future, their body is able to fight the infection before they get sick.

Vaccinations will not prevent your pet from getting a virus. But your pet is much less likely to become sick from it. In your pet’s first three months of life the vaccination schedules are most intense. After the first year they will require booster shots throughout their adult life for continued protection against disease.

Why should i vaccinate my pet?

Vaccinations are a critical tool in helping your pet’s immune system. They fight off dangerous diseases that can be life threatening. Many of the diseases that vaccinations prevent are airborne. Even if your pet doesn’t come into contact with other animals. They may encounter the disease through contact with items that have been outside and have been infected.

A vaccinated pet is much less likely to become unwell from diseases they are vaccinated against. If they do get sick the symptoms are much less severe. Furthermore, if your pet is vaccinated, then there is less chance that they will pass on a disease to other animals that have not been vaccinated. For example, if they are too young.

Most pet boarding facilities require up-to-date vaccinations. Therefore if you want to go away, it is important that your pet is fully vaccinated.

By vaccinating your pet you are not only making them much safer. You are also helping reduce the prevalence of disease in the wider animal community.

The Ark’s Vaccination Program:

It can be easy to lose track of what vaccinations your pet needs and when they are due for a booster injection. If you’re the new owner of a gorgeous puppy or kitten, the regularity of vaccinations combined with the worry of your new pet’s health can create a lot of stress.

At the Ark we want to make caring for your pet as easy as possible. To ensure that all of our patients receive the best protection against infectious diseases. Therefore we’ve introduced an automatic text and email reminder service. We let you know when your pet is due for their vaccinations. It’s as simple as booking an appointment online or over the phone and bringing them in and getting the vaccination (and giving a treat to your brave furry friend!).

Puppy and kitten packages

Our puppy and kitten packages include all vaccinations, to streamline the process of setting up your little one for a healthy life.

Vaccination program

Vaccination schedule

Depending on the species of your pet, they wil require a different vaccination schedule to ensure that they receive full protection. Some vaccinations need to be given more than once. To constantly boost your pet’s immune system and ensure the most effective protection.

Vaccinations for kittens

1st Vaccinations8 weeksFeline enteritis, Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus, Chlamydia
2nd Vaccinations12 weeksFeline enteritis, Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus, Chlamydia, Leukaemia
3rd Vaccinations16 weeksFeline enteritis, Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus, Chlamydia, Leukaemia

Vaccinations for adult cats

Every year your cat will need an injection. This will give them combined protection from feline enteritis, rhinotracheitis, calicivirus, chlamydia and leukaemia.

Vaccinations for pups

1st Vaccinations6-8 weeksDistemper, Hepatitis, Parvovirus
2nd Vaccinations10-12 weeksDistemper, Hepatitis, Parvovirus, Canine cough
3rd Vaccinations14-16 weeksDistemper, Hepatitis, Parvovirus, Canine cough

Vaccinations for adult dogs

Your dog should receive a canine cough and heartworm vaccination every year. Every three years they will need a booster vaccination for distemper, hepatitis and parvovirus.

Diseases in Cats and Dogs that can be prevented through vaccinations:


FELINE ENTERITIS (Panleucopaenia)

Similar to gastro in humans, this is a highly contagious disease in cats which causes vomiting and diarrhoea. It is often fatal as it progresses so rapidly and causes severe dehydration


Cat flu is caused by two viruses, feline rhinotracheitis and herpes. It is more common in exotic cat breeds and has similar symptoms to flu in humans: runny nose and eyes, sneezing, loss of appetite, fever and dehydration.


A disease which causes severe ulcers in a cat’s mouth, causing loss of appetite. Another symptom is fever.


This disease is very easily transmissable and is reported to affect up to 20% of all cats in Australia. In addition, it can be passed onto humans, so it is a highly important disease to vaccinate against. Symptoms include pneumonia, conjuctivitis and upper respiratory disease.


A highly contagious viral infection. It damages cats’ immune systems, which means that they are much more susceptable to bacterial, viral and fungal infections. Infection with the virus is also linked to development of leukaemia and other cancers, which are very often fatal.



A very dangerous virus as it is highly contagious and also progresses very rapidly.  It is often too late to treat if a dog is unvaccinated. The virus initially effects a dog’s respiratory and gastrointestinal systems. Causing a runny nose, vomiting and diarrhoea. Then progresses to affect their brain and nervous system. This stage is characterised by seizures and is often fatal.


It mainly affects a dog’s liver, but also causes damage to their blood vessels, kidneys and eyes. Infection is often fatal. Dogs that survive often suffer with chronic liver or eye conditions that require life-long treatment.


Parvovirus is one of the most contagious viruses that can affect dogs. It is invariably fatal, especially in puppies. Early symptoms include vomiting, diarrhoea, and dehydration. Followed by shock and septicaemia (blood infection), and commonly causes heart failure. Older dogs have an increased chance in survival. But they are still capable to passing the condition onto susceptible puppies. We strongly recommend that you vaccinate them regardless of their age.


Often called ‘kennel cough,’ this disease can affect dogs of all ages. It is caused by two types of viruses: canine bordatella, or canine influenza (which is similar to whooping cough). The disease causes cold-like symptoms like a runny nose, coughing and sneezing. So is transmitted through the air. Older dogs are particularly at risk, as the disease can progress to pneumonia.


Leptospirosis is caused by a bacterium which can affect any animal, including people. The bacterium is spread through animal’s urine, mainly rats (or cattle), which can then contaminate water, particularly stagnant water. Once infected the bacteria can cause many different symptoms in animals, this can range from lethargy, fever, diarrhoea and vomiting to kidney failure, liver failure and even death.

Vaccinations for rabbits

Diseases in rabbits that can be prevented through vaccination:


The myxoma virus was initially introduced in Australia to control the wild rabbit population. Unfortunately it can be passed onto our own bunnies. The symptoms of this fatal disease include a rash, difficulty breathing and swelling around the eyes, which leads to blindness.


This virus can be transmitted through contact with other infected rabbits. But also through mosquitoes or flies. It is incredibly hardy and can survive without a host for over 200 days. Infection progresses quickly and is fatal, as it causes severe internal bleeding.

Vaccinations for rabbits

Your rabbit requires a yearly booster vaccination to give them protection from myxomatosis and calicivirus.

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