Today your pet received one or more vaccines. Adverse reactions can potentially occur with any vaccine, at any age and regardless of a pet’s past exposure to a vaccine. We want to make sure you are aware of what to look for, what to be concerned about and when to get medical help.
It is common for your pet to experience mild side effects from vaccination. Symptoms typically start within hours of vaccination, are most often mild and usually do not persist for more than a few days. This is a normal response by your pet’s immune system during the process of developing protective immunity.
Common symptoms are usually mild and include increased sleepiness, decreased appetite and activity, and mild irritation, pain, swelling or redness at the injection site for 1- 2 days following an injection, and mild fever. With intranasal vaccines, there may be transient sneezing or coughing. Generally, these mild reactions resolve without treatment.
Rare side effects, such as allergic reaction, may occur. Your pet may experience symptoms of a more serious reaction to the vaccine within minutes or hours of the vaccination.
Rare symptoms could include generalized or whole body hives and itching, weakness or extreme lethargy, repeated vomiting or diarrhea, or the swelling of the soft tissues of the head, especially around the eyes, mouth and ears. While swelling of the soft tissues of the head is very alarming to see, it seldom causes serious harm to the animal. The animal will frequently rub its mouth and eyes on the ground or with its paws. **These reactions DO REQUIRE TREATMENT and should be treated as soon as possible with antihistamines and/or steroids by a veterinarian to reverse the reaction and alleviate discomfort to the animal. ** Please phone our clinic ASAP to receive instructions on what you can do at home for your pet.
The most serious and severe allergic reaction is anaphylactic shock. The most common signs of this are restlessness, difficulty breathing, severe diarrhea and/or vomiting, collapse, seizures, coma and can result in death if not treated IMMEDIATELY. If any of these signs occur, IMMEDIATE EMERGENCY CARE IS REQUIRED. Fortunately, these reactions are very rare.
In cats there have been incidences of injection-associated sarcomas. The incidence of this reaction is about 1 in 10,000 injections given in vaccinated cats. Any soft tissue swelling near an injection site that persists for more than 3 months should be examined by your veterinarian.
NOTE: The recheck examination for a vaccine reaction, if performed at East Hills Animal Clinic, IS A COMPLIMENTARY SERVICE. However, you will be responsible for fees for any medical treatment (such as an antihistamine/steroid injection) rendered.
East Hills Animal Clinic Hours
Mondays & Wednesdays: 9:00am-8:00pm
Tuesdays, Thursdays, & Fridays: 9:00am-6:00pm
VCA Northwest Veterinary Specialists
24 HOURS EVERY DAY
16756 SE 82nd., Clackamas, OR 97015