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Discussion Starter #1
I was wondering whether those of you who vaccinate your dogs at home could give me some information and input regarding vaccinating at home.

I know that the only shot you have to get done at the vet's is rabies since that is required by law and you need a vet's rabies certificate in order to get your dog license.

Can all other shots be done at home?
Where do you guys get your vaccines from?
How do you keep records of them?
How often do you vaccinate?
Are all vaccines given intramuscular?

I think it would be more cost-effective and easier for us to do shots at home. Both DH and I are proficient at giving shots / running IV lines / etc. on humans, and I would assume that giving an intramuscular shot to a dog would not be much more complicated. I'm just not sure where to start looking into vaccinating at home.

I saw Drs. Foster and Smith carry all the supplies as well as a chart to record shot dates in / place the labels from the vials. Where we live now, pretty much all the feed stores carry vaccines as well, but they only carry the 7-in-1 annual vaccines for dogs.
 

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You can buy them on line. When I vaccinated I used Drs Foster & Smith or Rival Pet or Omaha Vaccine. The vaccines are given sub-q, it is really easy, just lift the skin and inject.
 

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I have ordered from KV Vet and Dr F&S in the past. Other than rabies I dont think my vets have given ANY of my dogs vacs since Lakota was a pup 11 years ago.
 

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Save the receipts for the vaccines. Funny story: DH is an insulin-dependant diabetic, and he gave Grimm his sub-Q antibiotic injections at home when Grimm needed them a month or so ago. And, a diabetic does more of a 'jab' to get the needle into the chub of the abdomen or thigh, and he at first assumed it was the same in giving the sub-Q to a dog. Poor Grimmi jumped a bit.
When we give sub-Q to a dog, we just sliiiide the needle into the 'tent' we make grasping loose skin..(skin is tougher on a dog, but the slant of the needle end makes it sofly 'pop' through the dog's skin) no jabbing required.
 

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I get mine either through rival or jeffers and only time mine go to vet for anything like that is rabies I also have my own shot records like you would get from the vet plus you can peel the label off the small bottle and put on the record. It is really easy to do
 

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Depends where you are boarding as to whether home vaccination is accepted. Things are changing, but I know many facilities that require either vaccines by a veterinarian or titers. One issue with vaccinating at home is that the handling and storage of the vaccines prior to administration is unknown.
 

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Originally Posted By: Historian

Can all other shots be done at home?
Unless your state has regulations against it (which I don't believe any do) than yes.

Originally Posted By: Historian
Where do you guys get your vaccines from?
KV Vet Supply, Revival Animal Health, Fosters & Smith... basically whomever has them on sale when we need to order more.

Originally Posted By: Historian
How do you keep records of them?
The lables on the individual vaccines peel off, so we put the lables (which show type, lot number, exp date, etc... ) in the medical records section of each dog's binder, along with the date administered.

You could use anything to record this info. When you buy vaccines you'll get a little brochure type medical record thingy that you can fill out, or you could just stick the lables on a piece of paper and file that away.


Originally Posted By: Historian
How often do you vaccinate?
Generally every 3 years. And we alternate so they don't get their rabies (every 3 years by MI law) and other vacs in the same year. The senior dogs are done though, and won't be getting any more vaccinations.

Same for our cats. We vaccinate them ourselves too. We let the vet vaccinate the horses, since he comes out once a year to do a check up anyway and it's not that much more expensive to have him do them.

Originally Posted By: Historian
Are all vaccines given intramuscular?
Sub-cu in the scruff of the neck between the shoulder blades. If you've not vaccinated a dog before it's a good idea to have someone show you how before you try.


Originally Posted By: Historian Where we live now, pretty much all the feed stores carry vaccines as well, but they only carry the 7-in-1 annual vaccines for dogs.
I would not purchase vaccinations from feed stores. Vaccines must be kept cold, or they are ruined. When you buy on-line from any of the places I mentioned, they are shipped by 2nd day air in a cooler box with ice packs. Then they can go right from shipping container to your fridge. If something happens in shipping and they aren't still properly chilled when they arrive, the company will send new ones. That happend to us once when UPS somehow got lost and it took them almost a week to get the vaccines to us. KV Vet sent out new vacs to us for free, and refunded us the additional shipping we'd paid for the 2nd day air.

Buying from a feed store you have no idea if the proper proceedure was followed. The vaccines would have been shipped properly, but then might have sat in a warehouse for a week or two getting ruined before being put in the fridge. You just don't know, and I wouldn't trust it.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Chris - thanks so much for your very comprehensive answer. That really addressed anything I needed / wanted to know and will help me get started looking for these shots.

We're currently doing the 3 year shots for everything, including rabies, and our shots are spaced a year apart - everything but rabies is due this fall and rabies is due next year. So come fall, I want to be set up to do the regular shots at home.

I've ordered from Foster & Smith before, but not KV Vet. I'll Google them and make sure to bookmark their site.

Silly question - can you purchase heartworm preventive (we use Heartguard) from those places, or do you need to get it from the vet or get a prescription from the vet to get it?
 

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You can purchase Heartworm medication from PetsMegaStore.com and you do not need a prescription. I have been getting my Revolution from them for awhile now.

They have pretty good prices.
 

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Most likely thats the place she meant. I have used petsmegastore.com.au for at least 6 years for Heartgard and Frontline and have never had an issue with them or the preventatives.
 

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Yes it is in Australia. Apparently you do not need a prescription over there to buy heartworm medications.

They have served me well over the years and I have never had a problem with them. They have good customer service and their products have always worked well. The only difference is that the weights are in Kilos versus pounds.

It takes about 2 weeks to get it once you have placed an order.
 
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