Some expert groups recommend that cats should be vaccinated with non-adjuvanted feline leukaemia virus (FeLV) and rabies vector vaccines, which, in the European Union, are currently not licensed for concurrent use and have to be administered at least 14 days apart (different from the USA) and thus at separate visits, which is associated with more stress for cats and owners. The aim of this study was to assess the anti-rabies antibody response in cats after vaccination against rabies and FeLV at concurrent vs separate (4 weeks apart) visits using two canarypox-vectored vaccines (Purevax Rabies and Purevax FeLV; Boehringer Ingelheim) and to evaluate the occurrence of vaccine-associated adverse events (VAAEs). Healthy FeLV antigen-negative client-owned kittens (n = 106) were prospectively included in this randomised study. All kittens received primary vaccinations against rabies (week 0) and FeLV (weeks 4 and 8). After 1 year, the study group (n = 52) received booster vaccinations against rabies and FeLV concurrently at the same visit (weeks 50-52). The control group (n = 54) received booster vaccinations against rabies (weeks 50-52) and FeLV (weeks 54-56) separately. Anti-rabies virus antibodies (anti-RAV Ab) were determined by fluorescent antibody virus neutralisation assay at weeks 4, 50-52 and 54-56, and compared between both groups using a Mann-Whitney U-test. Four weeks after the first rabies vaccination, 87/106 (82.1%) kittens had a titre ⩾0.5 IU/ml and 19/106 (17.9%) had a titre <0.5 IU/ml. Four weeks after the 1-year rabies booster, all cats had adequate anti-RAV Ab according to the World Organisation for Animal Health (⩾0.5 IU/ml), and the titres of the study group (median = 14.30 IU/ml) and the control group (median = 21.39 IU/ml) did not differ significantly (P = 0.141). VAAEs were observed in 7/106 (6.6%) cats. Concurrent administration of Purevax FeLV and Purevax Rabies vector vaccines at the 1-year booster does not interfere with the development of anti-RAV Ab or cause more adverse effects and thus represents a better option than separate vaccination visits for cats and owners.

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