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Thread: Over Vaccination Issues, and Titers

  1. #1
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    Over Vaccination Issues, and Titers

    Dr. Jean Dodds is world-renown vaccination expert. Our pets are over vaccinated, that much is undisputed. Dr. Dodds has shown links between overvaccination and thyroidism in dogs, as well as a connection between vaccines and other health issues.

    Her blog includes these 3 highly informative postings:
    VACCINES: WHEN TOO MUCH OF A GOOD THING TURNS BAD (Part I) http://drjeandoddspethealthresource....63/dogvaccines

    VACCINES: WHEN TOO MUCH OF A GOOD THING TURNS BAD (Part II) http://drjeandoddspethealthresource....rns-bad-part-2

    AVOID UNNECESSARY VACCINES WITH TITER TESTS (PART III) http://drjeandoddspethealthresource....esting-animals

    The articles above discuss both dog and cat vaccine issues.

    This is from Part 2:

    Although all dogs are susceptible to vaccine-related side effects, breeds at highest-risk of vaccinosis (in alphabetical order) are:

    • Akita
    • American Cocker Spaniel
    • German Shepherd
    • Golden Retriever
    • Irish Setter
    • Great Dane
    • Kerry Blue Terrier
    • Dachshunds (all varieties, but especially the long-haired)
    • Poodles (all varieties, but especially the Standard Poodle
    • Old English Sheepdog
    • Scottish Terrier
    • Shetland Sheepdog
    • Shih Tzu
    • Vizsla
    • Weimaraner

    Breeds with white or predominantly white coats, as well as those with coat color and pigment dilution such as fawn (Isabella) or blue Dobermans, the merle coat color, blue Yorkshire Terriers, grey Collies, harlequin Great Danes, and Australian Shepherds are also more susceptible.

    Note: Breed-susceptibility data are generally unavailable for vaccinosis in cats.
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  2. #2
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    The only downfall to titering is that it's expensive... clients would much rather pay $20 for a distemper vaccine than $100 to titer... is one better for the pet? Yes... but with the economy the way that it is, I can easily see how the $20 vs $100 is the easier option...

    Don't forget, if you can't afford the bloodwork to titer for these, talk to your vet about vaccinating only every 3 years!! This is not only cost-effective, but safer than vaccinating every year.

    Now... from working in a clinic, I can tell you... the only time some/most clients bring their pets in is because they're due for vaccines. If we started offering 3 year DHLPP (we already offer 3y rabies), we would NOT see those pets for 3 years... just because you have vaccines for 3 years does not mean your pet still should not be examined by your vet on a YEARLY basis. This is ESPECIALLY important in older/senior pets! Also, in senior pets (age 10+, depending on breed), talk to your vet about discontinuing their vaccines altogether (granted, you will still have to get rabies as per the law [in the US, anyway]).

    I know most of you on pet talk already know all of this, but on the off-chance that one person doesn't I felt it needs to be said.

    If you can afford to titer, absolutely do it!! If not, ask your vet about vaccinating every 3 years instead

    Very good reads, thank you for sharing.

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  3. #3
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    I've been doing three year vaccinations with my dogs and cats for quite a few years. Thanks for the info Sandie.

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  4. #4
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    At this point, my cats are only getting the required 3 year rabies. They are indoor only, so they really aren't exposed to much. I stopped doing cat rescue several years back.

    The dogs are as well. But for them, I keep tabs as they are out and about for walks, and 2 are in classes, so I may get them a booster.

    Jessika, I also think it is so important for people to know about issues with their breed. Bichons should never have the Lepto vaccine, they have an extremely high reaction rate.

    Someone on the bichon forum just brought home a puppy, age 12 weeks, through a rescue group. She was looking through the vaccination paperwork, and this wee baby has already had DHLPP THREE TIMES!!! She needs to work with her vet and give this baby's immune system a break for as long as possible.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Freedom View Post
    Someone on the bichon forum just brought home a puppy, age 12 weeks, through a rescue group. She was looking through the vaccination paperwork, and this wee baby has already had DHLPP THREE TIMES!!! She needs to work with her vet and give this baby's immune system a break for as long as possible.
    If they are going to have a reaction to a vaccine, though, they will get one within a few hours of administration. So if her Bichon has not has a reaction to lepto, chances are likely she won't in the future, either.

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  6. #6
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    That is not the point, Jessika. With so many vaccines (and doubled up, at that!) she is now high risk for thyroidism, allergies and wide range of issues.
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  7. #7
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    Thanks for posting this info. I know that used to overvaccinate my cats because the vet's that I went to required yearly vaccines. It wasn't until I went to my current vet that she told me to stop giving Storm vacccines because he was over 10 years old. I had stopped giving them to Sky because he had bad reactions which then made him sick. She also does the 3 years shots and I really don't need to give them rabies shots because I live in a city that doesn't require them for cats. All of my cats are indoor only too. Ziggy and Pearl did receive another FVRCP shot this past year because Alani & Blaze had been very sick and they hadn't been vaccinated in a while. I'm one of those people that will still bring in their pets for annual exams only with no shots. My vet knows this so doesn't try to push me to get shots unless they are really needed. I still feel that my RB Starr's Colitis/IBD may have been caused by overvaccinating him.
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Freedom View Post
    That is not the point, Jessika. With so many vaccines (and doubled up, at that!) she is now high risk for thyroidism, allergies and wide range of issues.
    I did misunderstand since the sentence prior you were mentioning how Bichons have a higher reaction rate to lepto...

    As puppies, it is very important to vaccinate a series of times to catch when the maternal antibodies wear off (since there is no exact "date" of when this happens). I hope the poor thing wasn't given lepto with the distemper three times as two is all that's necessary for lepto (at least, that's protocol at my clinic...). She should be getting the third one at 12 weeks; if she had three vaccines prior to 12 weeks that's a bit much (and wasted... some breeders vaccinate their puppies at 3 or 4 weeks!!!!!).

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  9. #9
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    Very good topic.
    I am curious what the vet techs on this board will post.

    THe new protocal I thought was not to give yearly shots?
    I think depending on the county/state some vets still follow the old school way of thinking.


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  10. #10
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    Jessika is a vet tech.

    The new protocol goes to 3 years. And as you say, not all vets are switching.
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  11. #11
    So I am taking my dog for her yearly check up soon and she shouldn't get her yearly vaccinations? It should be every 3 yrs instead? Is that what I am understanding? Except for rabies? I think my vet is going to disagree with me, but I surely want to do what is best for my dog. I am sort of confused with what harm over vaccinating can do versus the harm under vaccinating might do...??
    Like I said, I just want to do what is best for my dog.
    Thanks, Sharon
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  12. #12
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    Rabies goes according to state law.

    Distemper, Parvo, etc. every 3 years and even then, you can just titer instead of getting the vaccines.
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sharon_FL View Post
    So I am taking my dog for her yearly check up soon and she shouldn't get her yearly vaccinations? It should be every 3 yrs instead? Is that what I am understanding? Except for rabies? I think my vet is going to disagree with me, but I surely want to do what is best for my dog. I am sort of confused with what harm over vaccinating can do versus the harm under vaccinating might do...??
    Like I said, I just want to do what is best for my dog.
    Thanks, Sharon
    The best thing to do, in my opinion, is do research and make a decision for yourself which route you wish to take with your pet's health. Then please discuss your decision with your vet. Your vet will have local information on your area, ie say they've seen a lot of distemper cases in wildlife, or lepto cases have risen over the last 2 years, she will have information that pertains directly to you and your pets that the internet can't possibly know that may also play a role in how you decide to vaccinate your pets. Some of these diseases are zoonotic (transmissible from your pet to people) so not only can it be a health risk to your pets, but to you as well.

    The vets I work with are on a yearly protocol for DHPP +/- lepto, and a 1 or 3 year vaccine for rabies. HOWEVER, if a client comes to them with these concerns, they are very happy to work with them. There are many clients that titer, and a few that are on a 3 year vaccine protocol. My concerns about blindly offering a 3 year vaccine protocol to clients in my area, however, is that we would not see those pets for 3 years (and coming in once yearly for a pet is like us coming in once every 6-8 years for our health checkups. So if they only came once every 3 years... thats like not going to a doctor for 21+ years!!!).

    If you and your vet feel that the previous vaccines are adequate coverage, s/he may agree to go with a 3-year protocol or start titering for distemper/parvo.

    Rabies vaccines are regulated via state, so you HAVE to get rabies. Most states recognize a 1 or a 3 year vaccine for rabies, however.

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