Updated: Feb 3
Congratulations! You just got your new puppy, you selected your veterinarian and are now scheduled for a well-visit and a first round of vaccinations. Vaccination is a very debated topic and as a dogmom and dog trainer, health and safety are my top concerns for our pets and as I started to research the topic, I wanted to share the key findings here.
Note that I am not endorsing the sources presented in this article and that this quick read is to empower you to make the right decision for you and your puppy. Vaccination is an important topic worth doing some investigation and researching. I strongly encourage you to read the article and click on the resources on the last page as they contain a mine of blogs. vlogs and interesting articles from experts such as traditional and holistic veterinarians, veterinary school, to pet influencers.
Let's dive in.
Vaccination has eradicated some very serious diseases as it not only protects your animal, but provides ‘herd immunity’ to curb the likelihood of outbreak of infectious diseases.
The world of vaccination is mostly residing within the pharmaceutical industry and the veterinarian offices who have been providing recommendations.
VACCINATIONS SCHEDULE Vaccinations vary by states and countries, For example in California the first rabies vaccine is given at 16 weeks, while other states give it at 12 weeks. The chart below illustrates the recommended timeline as recommended by vets, however there is a mounting controversy on whether we are over-vaccinating our pets.
Excerpt from an article published by UC Davis
“The vaccine types and their frequency vary depending on the lifestyle of the pet being vaccinated, i.e. indoor vs outdoor pets, travel plans, kennel/boarding plans, and underlying health issues”
There are 2 types of Vaccines: Core and Non Core Core:
“Core vaccines are recommended for all puppies and dogs with an unknown vaccination history. The diseases involved have significant morbidity and mortality and are widely distributed, and in general, vaccination results in relatively good protection from disease.
Core Vaccines include vaccines for canine parvovirus (CPV), canine distemper virus (CDV), canine adenovirus (CAV), and rabies. In addition, the leptospirosis vaccine is now recommended as a core vaccine for dogs in California because the disease has the potential to occur in any dog (even in urban environments), can be life-threatening, and the vaccines are considered safe and efficacious, with recent improvements in safety over the last decade”
Non-core Vaccines: “Non-core vaccines are optional vaccines that should be considered in light of the exposure risk of the animal, ie. based on geographic distribution and the lifestyle of the pet. Several of the diseases involved are often self-limiting or respond readily to treatment. Vaccines considered as non-core vaccines are canine parainfluenza virus (CPiV), canine influenza virus H3N8, canine influenza virus H3N2 distemper-measles combination vaccine, Bordetella bronchiseptica, and Borrelia burgdorferi. Vaccination with these vaccines is generally less effective in protecting against disease than vaccination with the core vaccines”
Special section on Coronavirus * Canine coronavirus disease, known as CCoV, is a highly infectious intestinal infection in dogs, especially puppies. There are two forms of Canine Coronavirus: Enteric Canine Coronavirus (CCoV) and Respiratory Canine Coronavirus (CRCoV). Vaccines that protect against Enteric Canine Coronavirus infection do not provide protection against the respiratory form of this disease.The Enteric Canine Coronavirus (CCov) & Respiratory Canine Coronavirus (CRCoV) are not the same virus as SARS-CoV-2, that is responsible for causing the COVID-19 infection. For more information on COVID-19 & pets please visit the CDC website.
One of the leading expert in matters of vaccination is Dr Ronald D Schultz . One of his study looked at how long veterinary vaccines actually last – and he did these studies over a 40 year period.
“Misunderstanding, misinformation and the conservative nature of our profession have largely slowed adoption of protocols advocating decreased frequency of vaccination’; ‘Immunological memory provides durations of immunity for core infectious diseases that far exceed the traditional recommendations for annual vaccination.“
“This is supported by a growing body of veterinary information as well-developed epidemiological vigilance in human medicine that indicates immunity induced by vaccination is extremely long lasting and, in most cases, lifelong.
Below is the result of the duration of immunity testing on over 1,000 dogs and on every major vaccine
There is mounting questioning over the frequency of booster vaccinations and their possible unintended consequences. That’s where titer testing comes in.
Titer tests are antibody blood tests that evaluate the antibody response to core vaccination. You can test your dog with in-house titer testing (Vaccicheck and TiterCHEK) to find out if your dog has immunity from his vaccine.
Thank you for reading and we wish your puppy the strongest health!
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I am not a veterinarian. Any recommendations, tips, product ideas, food, treats, suggestions or advice are simply my opinion as a dogmom, professional trainer, and what works for me and the dogs I train. Please use your best judgment on what works for you and your puppy!