“It is safe to say that if your veterinarian is recommending every vaccine every year, your dog is being over vaccinated. I recommend a consultation with your veterinarian regarding your dog’s individual needs, its lifestyle, overall health, and vaccine history. Vaccine protocols should be based on that information.”
~ Dr. Trusheim of Seattle, Washington
When you don’t feel comfortable approaching topics with your veterinarian, it’s time to find a new vet. Our vet is amazing, but he terrifies me and I feel like a child being sent to the principal’s office whenever I go in for an appointment. We recently received the postcard reminding us of upcoming vaccinations and I wanted to ask if they’re necessary, but was terrified, afraid that I would get stonewalled in my search for more information. So we’re now looking for a new veterinarian.
Keep the Tail Wagging has opened my eyes to affordable, safe alternatives to our dogs’ diet, supplements, flea treatments, and vaccinations. And I want to learn more. That being said, I’m wondering if annual vaccinations for our dogs are necessary. Here are the thoughts that are running through my head…
Are Annual Vaccinations Necessary?
- We don’t continue to vaccinate humans into adulthood; does it make sense to subject our pets to annual shots?
- If there is a 1 year rabies vaccination and a 3 year rabies vaccination, then why are we vaccinating annually?
- Why isn’t a tither test (a test to see how many antibodies our pets have left after the last round of vaccinations) required before vaccinations?
- Does the dosage vary depending on the age and size of our pets? Is your Chihuahua receiving the same dosage as that guy’s Great Dane?
- Why should my indoor only cats receive annual vaccinations when they never come into contact with another feline?
I’ve been reading and found that there are two issues that we as pet owners should be concerned about…
- Over Vaccination
- Vaccinosis – an adverse reaction to a vaccine
I’ve recently started following a site by holistic veterinarian Dr. Karen Becker and I love what she’s sharing. She’s helping me understand that it’s okay for us non-medical types to question what our educated, professional veterinarians are recommending. Just because it’s always been done this way doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t question the status quo.
Over Vaccination: I’ve learned that the current vaccination schedule of boosters through 20 weeks and then annually through a dog’s life could lead to over vaccination. This excessive vaccinating can lead to a compromised immune system and some believe that it is the cause of the rise in cancer in our dogs.
Vaccinosis: This is an adverse reaction to a vaccine. We’ve were warned that our dogs may feel a little punky after a round of vaccinations and that they’ll sleep it off and be find the next day. But is this really okay or are they having an adverse reaction? When should we be concerned?
I believe that we should educate ourselves about the vaccines injected into our pets and avoid unnecessary vaccinations and boosters. Therefore, I’ve put together a page that shares great information about vaccinations so that you can read the information and start a dialogue with your veterinarian. Don’t allow yourself to second guess your right to ask questions like I did.
Because I think this topic is important, I created a page in the Health Section that discusses annual vaccinations and shares data from veterinarians around the country who believe that have also asked “are annual vaccinations for dogs necessary?” and have come to their own conclusions after years of experience and research.