Vaccination in Large Animals

Pashu Sandesh, 14th September 2020

Himani K., Smita Bordoloi, Aishwarya Lade, Poonam Shakya, Joycee Jogi, Ajay Rai and Anju Nayak

Department of Veterinary Microbiology, Co.V.Sc.&A.H., NDVSU, Jabalpur

Large animals are susceptible to different diseases caused by bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites. It makes sense to protect animals from these threats wherever possible. Vaccination is an extremely effective way in which to promote both good animal health and good animal welfare. This may be especially true in some types of farming, such as organic livestock production, where the use of traditional therapies is restricted in order to minimise residues and prevent the development of resistant strains of microorganisms or parasites. Vaccination helps provide for sustainable and economic stability for farmers and the communities they serve. Vaccination is used primarily to promote animal health by preventing disease outbreaks that can have a devastating effect on animal production, as well as on human and animal health. Vaccination is the administration of a vaccine to help the immune system develop protection from disease. Vaccines contain a microorganism or virus in a weakened, live or killed state or proteins or toxins from the organism. Vaccines are used to protect animals from a wide range of diseases that affects the production, fertility and economic losses to the farmers. They are efficient in preventing the transmission and spread of contagious animal diseases (zoonotic diseases) from animals to people and from animal to animal. Vaccines ensure that the products such as meat, eggs and milk from animals are safe for consumption. They also help in the conservation of food and water into animal proteins and other essential nutrients. Vaccines will continue to be an important tool to protect human health, animal health, food safety and food security and must be accessible and economical. However, vaccines have to be affordable and animal stockkeepers have to have the knowledge of different methods of administration, ability and inclination to use them. The benefits of vaccination extend beyond the prevention of specific diseases in inpiduals. Vaccination can play an extremely important role in the promotion of the psychological well being of animals through disease prevention, disease control, population control and the replacement of routine painful procedures such as castration. It is relatively inexpensive, highly effective. The major goals of vaccination are to improve the health and welfare of animals, increase the production of livestock in a cost-effective manner. It is always vital to have a vaccination program in place to ensure that livestock herds and profits are well managed. Vaccination increases immunity, reduce the impact of subclinical disease, reduce the spread of disease, helps in reducing morbidity and mortality and eradicate the disease. Preventative health measures, such as a robust vaccination strategy can reduce the need for veterinary treatments and improve responsible antibiotic use. There is no ‘one size fits all’ vaccination strategy and consultation with your vet to discuss specific disease risk factors is important to decide on the most appropriate vaccines for animals in your care. 

Vaccination Schedule for Cattle & Buffaloes


Age and booster doses



Vaccines available

Foot and mouth disease(FMD)

4 months; booster at 2-4 weeks after primary vaccination; repeat every 6 months.

3 ml SC

Pregnant animals above 7 months of pregnancy should be avoided



Oil adjuvant vaccines 4 months; repeat 9 months after primary vaccination; then Annual

2 ml IM



Black quarter (BQ)

6 months; repeat yearly before monsoon

2 ml SC

May – June


Hemorrhagic Septicaemia (HS)

6 months; repeat yearly before  monsoon

2 ml SC


RAKSHA-HS., Bovilis HS


6 months; repeat yearly

1 ml SC

Only in the endemic areas-One month before grazing season or prior to the time the disease usually occurs



2 months and above; repeat every 3 yrs if recommended

3 ml SC

Do not vaccinate animals in an advanced stage of pregnancy



4 to 8 months

2 ml of reconstituted vaccine by SC

Only in serologically negative female calves.-Male calves should not be vaccinated.-Do not vaccinate the pregnant animal