Feline Rhinotracheitis Vaccine

This is a combination vaccine that protects cats against feline viral rhinotracheitis (feline herpes), calicivirus and feline panleukopenia (feline distemper). The feline herpes virus and calicivirus are both major causes of upper respiratory infections in cats with potentially long term, and even life long consequences. The panleukopenia virus is very contagious and can be fatal. Similar to the parvo virus in dogs, it manifests primarily as a gastrointestinal disease with suppression of the immune system. Infected cats typically display lethargy, vomiting, diarrhea and a high fever.

This core combination vaccine offers excellent protection to cats and kittens. It is important for kittens to receive this vaccination early and at an appropriate interval as a substantial percentage of the kittens/cats in the United States become infected with feline herpes virus at a very young age. Once a kitten/cat is infected with this virus, they will usually carry it for the rest of their life and may experience recurrent disease symptoms.


Rhinotracheitis is a respiratory disease caused by herpesvirus-1. “Rhinotracheitis” means inflammation of the nose and windpipe, or trachea. Herpesvirus-1 also affects the reproductive tract and can cause problems during pregnancy. Feline herpesvirus type 1 is responsible for 80% to 90% of infectious feline upper respiratory diseases.

Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis (FVR) is an infectious disease caused by feline herpesvirus type-1. As with other herpes viruses, the virus is very species specific, and is only known to cause infections in domestic and wild cats. The virus can infect cats of all ages. Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis is a major cause of upper respiratory disease in cats, and is the most common cause of conjunctivitis (inflammation of the tissues surrounding the eye, especially the lining of the lids and the third eyelid).

Benefits of Feline Rhinotracheitis Vaccine

1. Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis Virus

Also known as feline herpesvirus type-1 or FHV-1, FVR is an upper respiratory infection. Infected cats may show signs of:

  • Red, watery, goopy, or crusty eyes.
  • Conjunctivitis (pink eye).
  • Ulcers or lesions on the surface of the eyes (usually, you’ll notice your cat squinting).
  • Sneezing.
  • Nasal discharge.
  • A sore throat.
  • A fever.
  • Lethargy.
  • Inappetence (due to not feeling well, difficulty smelling food, nasal congestion, and difficulty swallowing due to a sore throat).
  • Less commonly, a cat may develop mouth ulcers and pneumonia.

Severity of symptoms vary from cat to cat. Most cats recover well with treatment, but in severe cases (particularly in kittens) the viral infection can be fatal. Unfortunately, the respiratory disease is so common and so contagious that most cats are exposed at some point in their life. And, after an infection, the virus remains in a cat’s body in a latent or “dormant” state. The good news is, cats who carry the virus aren’t sick all the time. Many only have illness flare ups during times of stress, such as when boarding or moving to a new home. On the other hand, some cats battle chronic flare ups their whole life. Certain veterinarian-recommended supplements can help cats with frequent flare-ups.

2. Feline Calicivirus

This virus, also known as FCV, causes symptoms that can be very similar to FVR, as listed above. But, painful mouth ulcers are much more common with this infectious disease. One clinical sign is drooling. While much rarer, there is also one strain of calicivirus that causes a severe disease affecting the rest of the body, and is much more likely to be fatal.

3. Feline Panleukopenia Virus

This virus, sometimes called feline distemper, is caused by a virus in the Parvovirus family and usually more of a risk in young kittens than in vaccinated adult cats. It affects blood cells in the intestinal tract, bone marrow, and brain, and is possibly the most dangerous of the viruses covered by FVRCP.

Panleukopenia virus causes:

  • Vomiting.
  • Diarrhea, which may be severe or contain blood.
  • A major decrease in white blood cells, which makes it harder for a kitten’s body to fight the infection.
  • A fever.
  • Inappetence.
  • Lethargy.
  • Death.

Side effect of Feline Rhinotracheitis Vaccine

Side effects of the FVRCP vaccine for cats are generally quite minimal. Some kitties will develop a low-grade fever, have a decreased appetite or feel a little sluggish. There may also be a little swelling at the site of the vaccine administration. These signs almost always go away within a few days. Rarely, cats will have a more significant allergic reaction to the vaccine, which generally happens within a few minutes to a few hours of receiving the vaccine. In these cases, cats may develop hives, redness/swelling around the eyes and lips, or a mild fever. Other symptoms include vomiting, diarrhea and itchiness. 

If you suspect an allergic reaction to the vaccination, contact your veterinarian right away.  Any swelling that remains at the vaccine site for more than three weeks should be checked by your veterinarian. Reactions to vaccines are very rare, and the vast majority are also mild and resolve without any treatment.

Prices of Feline Rhinotracheitis Vaccine

$30.00 – $60.00

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