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Squeetie 06-25-2014 10:55 AM

Questions: Lepto Vaccine & Neutering (for Anxiety)
I have two questions for you guys and gals:

1. We live in a suburban area of north Texas and recently discovered that we have a rat problem in our back yard :sick: (well, mostly in our neighbor's yard but they don't seem to care and the rats are readily coming into our trees, climbing on the fence, and getting into our yard). I have seen multiple rats out at the same time, but it's impossible to know exactly how many we're dealing with. We are in the process of trying to get rid of them, but DH is concerned about possible Leptospirosis transfer to the dogs (an almost 13 y/o and an almost 2 y/o) because both pups have been interested in areas the rats have been. I wasn't planning on giving them the Lepto shot ever again, but wanted to see what you guys think in this situation.

2. My trainer has recommended neutering Red, saying it may help with his anxiety. He is (almost) approximately 2 years old and we have been working with this trainer for the last 6 months or so (LOVE her!). He is much better than he used to be, but still gets very worked up around other dogs - not in a reactive way, just whining and nervous energy when over threshold (teeth chattering, wide eyes, stress panting, etc.). I've had to stop letting him tinkle there because he salivates excessively when he sniffs where other dogs have urinated and gets so distracted. I know this is the "right" age to do it if we're going to, but I just don't want to regret neutering him if it's "unnecessary". :help: I know neutering Red does not guarantee that his anxious energy will be reduced, but do y'all think it may help? (Regardless, if we decide to neuter him or not, I will continue to work with him on his anxiety and obedience with our wonderful trainer, so please don't think I'm considering it just to "fix" him and be done with it.)

Thank you in advance for any advice you have!

Squeetie 06-27-2014 10:09 AM

Just wanted to :bump: this in case anyone has advice/opinions to share.


Blanketback 06-27-2014 10:35 AM

As far as the vax goes: do you have reason to worry about lepto in your area? Have your dogs had a bad reaction to the lepto shot in the past? It's hard to say one way or the other if it's something you need, without knowing your circumstances. What does your vet recommend?

I don't know anything about how neutering would affect anxiety, so I'm looking forward to more comments about this.

Jax08 06-27-2014 10:38 AM

Not a fan of the Lepto vaccine. To many dogs have had bad reactions, including one of mine and a friends Corgi. Unless you are at risk (high wildlife traffic, high rat traffic where your dog could drink water contaminated with urine from infected animals) then I would not do it.

Nancy is using a holistic way of building immunity to Lepto as her dog is an SAR dog. You might want to contact her.

Shade 06-27-2014 10:40 AM

I do the lepto vaccine because my dogs are exposed to forested areas weekly where feral cats, raccoons, foxes, and other wildlife is present. I spoke it over with my vet who is very holistic minded and we agreed it was worth doing. Neither of my dogs has had any reaction so far

IMO the dog is old enough that all the physical benefits of the hormones for growth has passed. Neutering may or may not help him mentally, it's really up to you, the trainer, and vet to make the best call possible

NancyJ 06-27-2014 11:31 AM

I still do belly flips on the lepto. I don't think the nosodes have good science behind them but it is one area where I maybe wonder if natural immunity might play in. ......I was on the cusp of immunizing when a team dog* had a reaction to the Merial which has zero adjuvant in it (the only one).

Here is the deal though. RATS are host for strains that take up residence in the dog who can become a host/carrier. A lot of the other strains just cause acute sickness. I do watch the dog like a hawk and if he were one day off his feed, tired, or feverish we would be at the vet - and that would include the ER vet. .........I don't know the answer...........

My dog is also exposed to forested areas more than weekly......with wildlife present.......

*60lb adult mix who has had lepto shots every of his 7 years. Now, no more lepto shots for this of the dangers of the lepto vaccine is that it there can be a lot of cross imminity with other things and the dog can have a reaction to something benign. I really don't know ....... I do have a lot of chipmunks in the yard (cat is slowly helping in that regard) but not rats.........but chipmunks can also carry lepto.

my boy diesel 06-27-2014 11:35 AM

i would probably skip the lepto too
it is a bacteria and if your dog got it he could be treated for it successfully
the key is knowing your dog and when they seem off or ill

IMO the dog is old enough that all the physical benefits of the hormones for growth has passed. Neutering may or may not help him mentally, it's really up to you, the trainer, and vet to make the best call possible
this :)

Squeetie 06-27-2014 11:41 AM

Thank you all for your replies so far!

I haven't asked my vet about the Lepto shot yet. Since learning more about vaccines and overall canine health on the forum and online, it seems that my vet isn't exactly the best. They berated me when I didn't want to give my senior BC mix the Lepto or Bordetella shots last time I went in and when I brought my GSD mix in after picking him up off the streets, they tried to tell me to neuter him or he'd get in fights with my current dog... :rolleyes: So, I'm not sure if I could trust what they have to say if I asked.

The older dog has had the Lepto shot in the past and no terrible reaction (just lethargy for the remainder of the day), but he is getting quite a bit older and I wasn't planning on giving him any more vaccines other than rabies. I have not given Lepto to Red before - all he's gotten is Rabies and he also got one set of the DHPP when no owners came forward and I decided to keep him.

I haven't found any current information on Lepto in my area, but I found some reports from a few years ago and it didn't seem to be too prevalent in north Texas. We don't go around much wildlife (other than the occasional hike before it got too hot), it's just this stupid rat issue that's bothering me. We don't have standing water around and I try my best to keep the pups away from where the rats may have been. I'm leaning against it, but it just makes me nervous - I love my boys!

Thank you for the thoughts on neutering Red. I will speak more extensively with my trainer and possibly some other trainers at the facility I attend and see what the consensus is. Any advantage we can get to help his anxiety would be amazing. Again, we're working through it with clicker training and lots of treats, but it would be great if I could lessen his anxiousness even more.

:D Thanks, guys! :D

ETA: Thank you for the info, Nancy! (Although it does make it all that much more confusing! Haha)

NancyJ 06-27-2014 12:05 PM

On top of it all, the CDC does NOT track lepto anymore so it is hard to get a handle on just how bad it really is.

I ask my vet who pushes it and basically, if a dog has a fever and kidney issues they "assume" it is probably lepto.........and they think "maybe" they had one case last year. .......... There are some areas, like the Pacific Northwest and Hawaii that are known to be havens for lepto......some others, not so is such a tough call.........that, and the fact that a some of the more prevalent strains are not even in the vaccine.

Jax08 06-27-2014 12:09 PM

You don't need a Bordetella shot unless you are boarding your dogs. That's kennel cough.

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