HERMITAGE, Pa. (WKBN) – Thanks to a grant from the Petco Love Foundation, Tails of Hope in Hermitage is able to give certain vaccines and its booster to any cat or dog that hasn’t gotten it or is due for it again.

Canine distemper vaccine will protect your dog against distemper, hepatitis, parvo and parainfluenza. On the other hand, feline distemper will protect your cat against distemper, including rhinotracheitis, calici and panleukopenia.

“We are offering the vaccine to them along with the booster shot that is needed three to four weeks after, and that is also provided at no cost to the client,” said Soraya Hejazi, executive director of Tails of Hope.

Dr. Nicole Grable said the booster is critical to making the entire vaccination work.

“It’s very important to get the booster at the three to four-week mark because when you give the first vaccine, the antibodies rise up and then they stay for a while and then they start to drop back down again. As they start to back drop down, we give that booster vaccine so they come back up and those antibodies stay up,” she said.

According to the American Veterinary Association, nearly 30% of pets don’t see a veterinarian on an annual basis, and that has a huge impact on pet health.

“Pets are affected by preventable diseases, and we want to use this grant and this program to bring awareness and education to our community and let people know that simple vaccines can save your pets and the life of other pets in our community,” Hejazi said.

Grable said by visiting a veterinarian regularly, pets will get other important vaccines they need and prevent them from spreading disease to other animals and humans.

“We strongly recommend that clients form a relationship with a full-time veterinarian so they can receive their boosters and their yearly vaccines,” Grable said.

For more information about vaccine distribution, contact Tails of Hope at 724-346-4673.