CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – Bringing home a new puppy or kitten is an exciting time. In between playtime, potty training, and naps, new pet owners should schedule a vet appointment to get the animal checked out and get started on vaccines.

“Vaccines are super important because they help prevent diseases that could shorten life spans, and affect the human population as well. We just want our pets to live long happy lives and vaccines are a key part of that,” Meg Eddy, Second Chance Animal Services told 22News.

According to the American Kennel Club, puppies need vaccines for Bordetella, which causes kennel cough, HPP, and rabies. Kittens need the Bordetella vaccine, the rabies vaccine, as well as vaccines for feline leukemia and FVRCP.

Both dogs and cats need the vaccines given in different doses at different ages depending on their size. As the puppies and kittens get older, they will need to keep up with vaccines to stay healthy.

Your vet can help guide you through the timelines for each shot.

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Taylor Knight is a morning anchor and I-Team reporter who has been a part of the 22News team since 2018. Follow Taylor on X @TaylorKNews and view her bio to see more of her work.