Rabies and other vaccinations - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 32 (permalink) Old 12-12-2017, 08:08 PM Thread Starter
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Rabies and other vaccinations

I took my dogs to the vet today, Ton for his 16 week appointment and Girl for her "annual checkup" which was probably overdue. I've not been good at taking my dogs in just because of the date, I've always waited until something needed fixing. As a former medic I know all about preventative care, yet just like with my own care I like to avoid going to the doctor. Anyways, something has changed with my vet's office, I think there's new blood in charge of the business aspects. In the past they weren't as quick to push costly care as quickly as they are now. At my young guy's first visit a month ago I got suckered in to this puppy package that's supposed to cover everything he needs for $220. When I agreed to the package I was at the end of a stretch of a few days without sleep and couldn't think quickly enough. Other options have been offered as well, all always much more than what I'm currently doing, for example suggesting switching flea treatments from a one month type to a three month type that costs more than three times the amount of the one month. Today, they insisted after I put up a bit of a fuss with vaccinating Girl with some of the same vaccinations she had as a pup. I was told these are yearly. I get why kennel cough would be an annual, but a few of the others I seem to remember with other dogs I've had the vaccinations were one-timers. The kicker was they said if I was to continue getting care there my new guy would have to have his rabies by six months of age. That's another one I remember holding off until at least 1 year of age with Girl. Look, I get I'm probably over-protective, but it surely seems like there is a more concerted effort to pump things into our dogs. So am I wrong, is this the standard of care nowadays? I know with children there's been a dust-up over vaccinations, is this carry-over from that? Or again, am I just being over-protective?
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post #2 of 32 (permalink) Old 12-12-2017, 08:46 PM
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I have my boy titered for parvo and distemper. Waiting a year before giving the first Rabis vaccine may be putting your dog at risk and in conflict with your state laws if a bite or scratch happens and is reported.

Do some research concerning titer tests. It is more expensive but worth it imho. My vet and I had a bit of a conversation when I first requested it.

"If you can't see his soul when you look in his eyes, then you need a seeing-eye dog"
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post #3 of 32 (permalink) Old 12-12-2017, 09:32 PM Thread Starter
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Your point was made by the vet this morning. She described the potential situation if a bite were to happen and what the remedy is, but I'm still torn. My initial thought is I keep my dogs under a very close eye, I train them, and they both have good, sweet temperaments. Knock on wood for the young guy, but so far he seems to have the potential to be sweet. But I have taken Girl with me everywhere and plan to do the same with Ton, so the potential is there. I did the math and I didn't wait a whole year+ as I thought I did with Girl, she was about 9 months when I had her rabies done, so I'll probably concede this one, but still make sure I spread out the date some from her last shot.
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post #4 of 32 (permalink) Old 12-12-2017, 09:46 PM
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Four to six months old is pretty typical for the first rabies vaccination, a couple of weeks from any other vaccines. I would personally not wait a year, it's not worth the risk.

Here is Dr. Dodd's recommended vaccination schedule, which is more conservative that many veterinarians: http://www.hemopet.org/clients/14145...16_Updated.pdf

Cava 1/6/18
Keefer 8/25/05-4/24/19 ~ The sweetest boy
Halo 11/9/08-6/17/18 ~ You left pawprints on our hearts
Dena 9/12/04-10/4/08 ~ Forever would have been too short
Cassidy 6/8/00-10/4/04
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post #5 of 32 (permalink) Old 12-12-2017, 10:06 PM
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3 of mine vax'd @6 months for rabies. Ollie our youngest pup, had his rabies done at 4 months. Bats are common carriers and we have lots of them in WA or maybe it just seems like it. Every place I've hiked and camped around the state I've seen them buzzing over head feeding off the bugs drawn to our lighting. Rabies is rare, but there are no second chances.
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post #6 of 32 (permalink) Old 12-12-2017, 10:58 PM
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I think most states require rabies vacs by 6 months unless there is a vet waiver for health reasons. Senior dogs near end of life I have seen. I got one for a previous dog that was due for a rabies vacs. She was near end of life and the vet agreed it wasn't in the dogs best interest and also not at much risk.

I'm going to go out on a limb and guess your vet might be part of the VCA network. If so, yes they will push to over vaccinate. Push back. That said you already paid for the vacs as part of the puppy package. Did they tell you you would get a significant (50%) discount on spay/neuter as part of the package? If they did read the fine print.

I got a puppy package and regretted it. There always seemed to be some additional charge that wasn't covered. Then there was the spay issue. I had told my vet I didn't plan to spay until after a first heat or over one year of age at the earliest. I was told (didn't get in writing) that it wouldn't be an issue with the package. Well that wasn't true. At 19 months when my girl still hadn't had a heat we decided to spay. Thinking it was going to be discounted I was stunned at the over $300 estimate I had to sign before the procedure was booked. I balked and asked for an explanation. Short of it...the puppy package requires spay/neuter at 6 months of age. Since I waited (vet even agreed with my reasoning for the wait) I gave up my discounted rate. Given a long explanation how it's a more complicated surgery on an adult than a puppy. I didn't ague that point but expressed my displeasure with the appearance of deceit. They gave me the discount initially. When I go to pay the final bill after the surgery the price was jacked up again. Reason: extended anesthesia, additional OR time, complications. The fact was there were complications so I couldn't argue additional charges. In the end they got a good chunk of change out of me.

I love my most of the vets at the VCA hospital I go to. Been going to them since before they joined VCA. But since joining their fees have gone way up.

Sorry for the novel. Just know if you're dealing with a VCA vet they are corporately pressured to push for higher billable services. Vet might be great but you will have to advocate for your pet more proactively or find a different vet.

Also: personal choice but for many reasons it's not advised spay/neuter before growth plates have closed which is way after 6 months
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Last edited by Springbrz; 12-12-2017 at 11:03 PM. Reason: added information
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post #7 of 32 (permalink) Old 12-13-2017, 07:21 AM
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Hi monster,

Personally, I'd find a Holistic Vet who would be more in line of your views.
I can give you a list for your state if you wish.

Dr. Dodds Vaccination Protocol (that Cassidy's Mom mentioned) is a perfect one to follow. Vaccination "Cocktail's" or Multiple vac's at one time may not bother one dog, but could be a lifetime of health issues for another.

You could use a Homeopathic Remedy to combat the effects of the vaccines. It's used: "Immediately after vaccination - and continue as above, twice per day for 2 days": https://market.dogsnaturallymagazine...nti-vaccinosis

The vets statement of repeating vaccinations yearly?????
Titer your older dog before agreeing to yearly vaccination. I'd find another vet if this clinic poo-poo's titers or won't do it.

Dr. Ron Schultz's (Vaccine Research) study results:
Minimum Duration of Immunity for Canine Vaccines:
Distemper- 7 years by challenge/15 years by serology
Parvovirus – 7 years by challenge/ 7 years by serology
Adenovirus – 7 years by challenge/ 9 years by serology
Canine rabies – 3 years by challenge/ 7 years by serology
Dr. Schultz concludes: “Vaccines for diseases like distemper and canine parvovirus, once administered to adult animals, provide lifetime immunity.”
Lifelong Immunity - Why Vets Are Pushing Back - Dogs Naturally Magazine

As Springbrz said....YOU are your dogs advocate.

Here are some good reading materials about vaccinations.
Frequently Asked Questions about Titers and Vaccination Protocol
Dr. Ron Schultz on Lyme Vaccine
Dr. Ron Schultz on Leptospirosis Vaccines
Kennel Cough Complex Vaccines
Infectious Canine Hepatitis
Canine Influenza (H3N8)
Vaccinations: A Global Perspective

Puppy and Kitten Vaccinations: Timing is critical
Rabies: The Science & the Current Law
Vaccines: When too much of a good thing turns bad
Vaccines: When too much of a good thing turns bad (Part 2)
Avoid Unnecessary Vaccines with Titer Tests (Part 3)
Response: Immune-Mediated Thrombocytopenia Report and Article
Q&A with Dr. Dodds: Is the puppy’s severe physical reaction due to a routine vaccine?
Q&A with Dr. Dodds: What should I do to protect my adult dogs during a parvovirus outbreak?
To Vaccinate or Not to Vaccinate for Infectious Canine Hepatitis?
Q&A with Dr. Dodds: I had a dog who had a bad reaction to the rabies vaccine and now I am concerned about giving it to my other dogs. What should I do?
Q&A with Dr. Dodds: Kennel Cough Complex Vaccines
Yes or No to Snake Vaccines?
Canine Influenza H3N8 Article - Dr. Dodds’ Additions
Clinical Approaches to Managing and Treating Adverse Vaccine Reactions
Dr. Schultz on Lyme Vaccine
Dr. Schultz Update on Leptospirosis Vaccines (2012)
More on Vaccine Titer Testing
Q&A with Dr. Dodds: Newborns and immunity from mothers
Mercury-Induced Inflammation: Yet Another Example of ASIA Syndrome
Canine Non-Core Vaccines
Snapshot of Leptospirosis Strains and Vaccines
Puppy Vaccination Schedule and Socialization: Can they go together?
Kennel Cough Complex: A complicated phrase for the canine common cold
A Pilot Study: Dose Vaccines for Small Dogs
More on Vaccinations & Small Dog Vaccine Study
Canine Influenza H3N2 Outbreak
Immune Disorders and Vaccines
Know Your Bordetella Vaccine

Vaccinations and How They Disrupt the Immune System
5th Annual Joint American Homeopathic Conference - Poster Session 2010
Leptospirosis Vaccines Adverse Reaction
How vaccines dysregulate the immune system and impact genetic control over disease expression

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Last edited by Momto2GSDs; 12-13-2017 at 07:25 AM.
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post #8 of 32 (permalink) Old 12-13-2017, 10:55 AM
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Thanks so very much for providing that list of informative links! I, for one, really appreciate it. Two quick questions. First, could you suggest one/two sites with parallel information for cats? (I saw that many of the links speak to both species, but many/most do not). Second, and I really hate to make this request (yet another instance of "No good deed goes unpunished"), but the four links, shown below, all take you to the same page. Could you point me in the right direction for those papers?

Vaccinations and How They Disrupt the Immune System
5th Annual Joint American Homeopathic Conference - Poster Session 2010
Leptospirosis Vaccines Adverse Reaction
How vaccines dysregulate the immune system and impact genetic control over disease expression

Thanks again for the valuable info.


Last edited by Aly; 12-13-2017 at 10:56 AM. Reason: Added a problematic link to the list...
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post #9 of 32 (permalink) Old 12-13-2017, 05:13 PM
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My dog get first vaccinations at the age of 7 weeks, parvo etc, cause he came from other country. Next he got vaccinations at The age of 16 weeks etc. Dunno how it goes on other countries, here IT is normal to get them on the age of 16 weeks.
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post #10 of 32 (permalink) Old 12-13-2017, 05:34 PM
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I was a vet tech before I was a human nurse. I vaccinated my own dog for all the puppy series myself with vaccines from Tractor Supply Company, a nationwide chain. I also do my own heartworm preventative made with 1% Ivermectin diluted with glycerine. There are several strengths you can make, look it up. Some dogs such as some sighthounds and GSDs, are very sensitive to Ivermectin, look up ivermectin sensitivity. As for flea preventative, I used the pour on once a month from the store until fleas became extinct on this hill. Whenever fleas reappear I do this again. With rabies, however, you really have to play by the rules, sorry. I am not promoting owner veterinary care, just saying what I did due to vet tech experience.

Last edited by Nurse Bishop; 12-13-2017 at 05:36 PM.
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