I have a few more thoughts on vaccines that I gained from the recent I took to pass on.
In my last post I mentioned a 2005 vaccine study. It showed that the smaller the dog, the more likely it is to have a vaccine reaction. One more nugget from this study was available from Boehringer Ingelheim specifically because they bought out the company that provided the vaccines for the vet clinics in the study.
It turns out that the number of adverse vaccine reactions increases with the number of vaccines given but not the number of antigens given. In other words, if the Distemper, Parvo and Adenovirus antigens are combined in one vaccine, it was safer than giving each one individually.
To understand why this might be, think back to my last blog and how the antigen portion of the vaccine makes up only 1/10-13 of the total volume (1 drop in the amount of water carried in 1,000 tanker trucks each carrying 80,000 gallons). So any given vaccine contains mostly preservatives, stabilizers, adjuvants, and other nasty chemicals.
From this standpoint it makes more sense to give combination vaccines than to give individual antigen vaccines – your pet gets far less chemical stew that way.
Another thing this study showed is that overall about 4 dogs out of every 1,000 vaccinated will likely experience an adverse reaction. Those reactions can range from mild rash and facial swelling to anaphylaxis and death. So the incidence of a vaccine reaction is low, but that is of little comfort if yours is one of those dogs that had a serious reaction.
Having said all of that, it is important to note that this study only noted problems that occurred within 3 days of vaccination. As a holistic vet I’m often more concerned about the long term effects of over-vaccination that may take months to rear their ugly heads.
You can’t screw with the immune system without causing problems. This study found that vaccinated dogs with twice as likely to develop an autoimmune disease (The immune system stacks cells of its own body). This human study found that the more vaccines given to infants, the higher the infant mortality (death) rate (and the US ranks #1 – go USA).
Vaccines are a double-edged sword. To avoid vaccines, do titers!
Do you titer your dog?