Eirene is a sweet-natured 16-month-old male Ragdoll, who had an unexpectedly dramatic trip to the vet. Eirene’s mum attentively presented him for his very important first adult health assessment, and vaccination. Eirene was calm and composed during his appointment (thanks to our ISFM-approved cat-only consult room!) and was not at all worried about his needle; what a pro! With Eirene’s head-to-toe physical examination & report that his Feline Asthma was stable with treatment, he was given the all clear by Dr Chantelle and received his F3 or ‘core’ vaccination.
When Eirene returned home some 10 minutes later, his mum noticed he was not himself and phoned right away. Eirene had become lethargic and passed some watery diarrhoea; as this was quite unusual, so Eirene’s mum brought him back to the clinic right away on the instruction of our veterinary nurse answering the phone.
Back in the consult room again, Dr Chantelle could see Eirene’s gums had become pale, he was much more subdued, and his heart rate and breathing was faster than before. It was highly suspicious a vaccine reaction was occurring, although his history of feline asthma was also considered. After administering antihistamine, which helps resolve most cases, Eirene was no better. In fact, within minutes he was going into shock, and had an IV catheter placed immediately. Eirene became so sick that Dr Chantelle was not certain he would make it and he would need Intensive Care on the spot. Thanks to pet insurance, Eirene’s mum could consent to the (potentially costly) life-saving care Eirene would need, with peace of mind.
After a challenging 2 hours of constant monitoring, oxygen, IV steroids, adrenaline and some very skilled nursing support, Eirene was finally stable enough to be transported to the emergency specialist team at CARE. Dr Chantelle (assisted by nurses Kate and Miranda) drove Eirene to CARE ready to administer any further treatment in his car ride over. Thankfully, the trip was uneventful.
Once in the care of the emergency team, Eirene progressed to make a full recovery, and was even discharged the next day!! Everyone involved was overjoyed at Eirene’s speedy return to health.
Oh my gosh – should I vaccinate my pet?!
If your pet is well, healthy and doesn’t have a history of vaccine reactions, the answer is absolutely YES. Let us stress that this is a one-of-a-kind story; the fact is, there is only a 0.002%* chance of reaction, and the majority of reactions are minor (temporary high temperature, lethargy). Eirene’s case is one-in-a-million!
The World Small Animal Veterinary Association’s (WSAVA) stance on vaccination “.. is currently accepted that the vaccines that we use are very safe with a very low incidence of side effects. The benefits of protection from serious infectious disease far outweigh the risks of developing an adverse reaction.”*
What happens for Eirene now?
Because of this event, it is unlikely Eirene will be suitable for vaccination in future, and this makes him vulnerable to the diseases this ‘core’ vaccine prevents. Eirene will therefore depend on the rest of the population to remain vaccinated (immune), so there won’t be any disease outbreaks to expose him to the “severe, life-threatening diseases that have global distribution. … feline parvovirus (FPV), feline calicivirus (FCV) and feline herpesvirus-1 (FHV-1).”* (WSAVA). These diseases can significantly shorten lifespan and at worst, prove fatal.
So Eirene will now rely on other cats that *can* be vaccinated, to get vaccinated!
If you have any further questions, contact our friendly team to make an appointment for your pet’s tailored vaccination program. And don’t forget, our Best For Pet members receive their annual health check, examination and *core* vaccine FREE!