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Use of a web-based questionnaire to explore cat owners' attitudes towards vaccination in cats
  1. G. Habacher, DrMedVet, MRCVS1,
  2. T. Gruffydd-Jones, BVetMed, DipECVIM-ca, PhD, MRCVS1 and
  3. J. Murray, BScEcon, MSc, PhD1
  1. 1 Feline Centre, Division of Companion Animal Studies, Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, University of Bristol, Langford House, Langford, North Somerset BS40 5DU
  1. E-mail for correspondence: gabi.habacher{at}bristol.ac.uk

Abstract

This study aimed to develop a better understanding of factors involved in cat owners' decisions related to vaccination and to explore their views and knowledge of vaccination. Data were collected using a web-based ‘Cat Health Questionnaire’. A total of 3204 respondents participated in the survey, each answering questions with only one cat in mind. Forty-one questionnaires were not included; of the remaining 3163 cats, 69 per cent were reported to have been vaccinated in the last 12 months. Vaccination as a kitten was the strongest predictor of up-to-date vaccination status, followed by the intention to take the cat to a cattery or cat show in the next year. The owners' perception of the importance of stress on the cat, the age of the cat or the cost of vaccination was associated with the cat's current vaccination status. Owners who perceived the severity of infectious diseases or veterinary advice as very important were more likely to vaccinate their cats than owners who perceived these factors as less important. The owners' perceptions of the risk and their previous experiences of side effects in a cat were not associated with a decreased likelihood of vaccination.

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