Vaccinating Your Dog Every Year May Cause Them More Harm Than Good?

Vaccinating Your Dog Every Year May Cause Them More Harm Than Good?

A lot of people think that vaccinating their pups can save their fur balls’ lives, but let it be known that nothing is without risk. A new research has just surfaced that immunity lasts much longer than initially though and hence it’s safe to decrease the frequency of shots.

Vaccinations can save your pup’s life, but nothing comes without a risk factor, in fact some of the side effects of vaccinations include mild itching, swelling, to shock and even death. Dogs may develop certain autoimmune diseases from their vaccination shots. Some vets suspected that annual vaccine shots aren’t required, but no such studies were conducted to prove the point. The US Department of Agriculture doesn’t require data beyond one year for any vaccine except for rabies.

While vaccine manufacturers encourage annual shots, most vets are concerned about the side effects of the same on pets. According to veterinarian Jean Dodds, founder of Hemopet, the first nonprofit national blood bank program for animals, located in Santa Monica, Calif, “We know that for distemper and parvo, for example, the immunity lasts a minimum of five years, probably seven to nine years, and for some individuals for a lifetime.”

This only means that vaccinations can be given less frequently than before. Dodd said, “Current vaccine protocol is to properly immunize puppies and kittens with two or three doses, starting later than we used to, maybe at eight weeks and not earlier than six weeks. Then you can give a booster at one year and either repeat it every three years, stagger it by giving one vaccine per year instead of combination vaccines, or do titers instead.”


According to veterinarian Link Welborn of North Bay Animal and Bird Hospital in Tampa, Fla., and a member of the most recent panel of veterinarians that revised vaccination guidelines for dogs and cats, “Annual boosters for the core vaccinations are excessive for most dogs and cats. Limited studies suggest that booster vaccinations for many of the core vaccinations last for at least seven years. However, given the limited number of animals involved in these studies, three years seemed like a reasonable compromise.”

There’s an advantage of giving single rather than combined vaccines. Welborn says, “Giving more vaccinations increases the likelihood of side effects. Separating vaccinations allows the veterinarian to determine which vaccine caused a side effect if one occurs.”

So what about the annual exams then? Remember that the annual exams are more important than the regular vaccines. Dodds said, “Many people, because the animal is living with them, don’t notice subtle changes in the behavior or the clinical state of the animal that a veterinarian would notice. Care should be individualized for each pet. The days of treating all dogs and cats the same are gone.”

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Feature Image Source: Pixabay

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