Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 19

Thread: Rabies Vaccination

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    1,443
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Rabies Vaccination

    Would like some opinions on when I should do this. Today, we had BellaMia's 3rd puppy vaccinations. Our vet wants to do rabies next month. Our breeder feels that this should wait until she is a year old (she's 4 months now). Just wondering on the pros and cons on the best time to have it done.
    Joyce - Proudly owned & loved by

    BellaMia (Aug. 30, 2012) My Beautiful Ruby Milo (Jan. 20, 2014) My Handsome Tri
    Sydney (
    April 16, 2000~April 4, 2012) Always and Forever In My Heart

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Yorktown, Virginia USA
    Posts
    1,426
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Well, first check the local laws about the rabies vac. In my area dogs over 6 months are required to have them unless there is a vet documented reason they can or should not have it. If you have the option of waiting then you really need to think about BellaMia's risk factors. We have several cases of wild animals biting people and testing positive for rabies in my area every year. I do believe dog have been over vaccinated for years and years. However but laws and risk factors made this decision for me. Fletcher had no ill effects from the vac and neither has any other animal my family has ever owned.
    Melissa
    "If you don't own a dog, at least one, there is not necessarily anything wrong with you, but there may be something wrong with your life."
    -Roger Caras

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    1,443
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Not really worried about the "legal" aspect as I don't think Animal Control is going to come knocking at my door. Just want to know any pros and cons to doing it now or waiting. I agree with you that many dogs are over vaccinated and over medicated, so just trying to avoid the unnecessary without risking her health.
    Joyce - Proudly owned & loved by

    BellaMia (Aug. 30, 2012) My Beautiful Ruby Milo (Jan. 20, 2014) My Handsome Tri
    Sydney (
    April 16, 2000~April 4, 2012) Always and Forever In My Heart

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    482
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    On my last two dogs I waited until they were one year old. If you live in an area where your dog will come in contact with wild animals you might want to have her vaccinated sooner.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Dublin, Ireland
    Posts
    24,001
    Post Thanks / Like
    Blog Entries
    15

    Default

    One thing very important to understand: the laws on vaccinating dogs for rabies at a particular age are not there for the dogs' health alone -- they are there because rabies is a devastating and often fatal and extremely painful disease for humans. In most parts of the world where rabies is endemic it is spread to humans, particularly children, by dogs. Vaccinating dogs in North America and Europe is the single biggest reason that rabies is now rare in humans and that almost no cases come from dogs. But unvaccinated dogs are totally vulnerable to it and can easily pass it along simply by licking a child -- it doesn't require a bite!!

    I would not advice anyone to flout legal requirements on age for rabies vaccination, in their particular state, country or region, for this reason. It is part of being a responsible citizen to get this done when needed.

    If an unvaccinated dog comes in contact with a possibly rabid animal -- which means a bite from ANY wild animal -- the dog under California law could have to be fully isolated for SIX MONTHS (eg the owner cannot see or visit the dog for half a year!) to be sure the dog was not infected.

    Rabies reactions are rare -- compared to the devastation of the illness or losing half a year with your pet because unvaccinated.

    This is a good explanation of the vaccine and why it is important for animals in rabies areas (and California with its wide range of wildlife including animals now routinely found in urban areas -- foxes, raccoons, coyotes, rats, bats, skunks, possums etc, is ALL a rabies region):

    http://www.arcataanimalhospital.com/...ng-for-rabies/

    I did a google and see that San Diego County has had a spate of rabies cases in bats as recently as last month when four were found with the disease. Dogs easily will catch/chew ill or dead bats and thus acquire rabies. Last year several San Diego teens were feared to have been exposed to it when they found and handled a dead bat:

    http://www.nbcsandiego.com/news/loca...125631548.html

    That is how easy it is for rabies to spread.

    Folks, do not risk the life of your dog or the people in your region -- please follow the laws in your own jurisidiction on rabies vaccination.

    There is a very important and laudable effort underway to prove that standard rabies vaccinations for dogs give immunity for longer than currently recognised in some areas but avoiding or postponing beyond the local laws, that first critical vaccination that gives initial immunity is, I think, both foolhardy and irresponsible.

    For general background, here is another piece carried last year in one of the San Diego papers:

    http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2011/...from-wildlife/

    Nowadays most US rabies cases come from wildlife

    By SUE MANNING, Associated Press

    Tuesday, August 9, 2011

    LOS ANGELES — Rabies prevention in the United States is by and large a success story, with just one to four people dying of rabies each year in the U.S. thanks to widespread pet vaccinations and aggressive treatment for people bitten by potentially rabid animals.

    Around the world, however, rabies remains a major problem with more than 55,000 human deaths annually, along with millions of animals. Half of the human victims are under 15.

    In Asia and Africa, where 95 percent of human rabies deaths occur, dogs spread most of the rabies, according to the World Health Organization.

    In the United States, most rabies cases before 1960 were also in domestic animals, but today more than 90 percent of all animal cases reported annually to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control occur in wildlife, most frequently in raccoons, bats, skunks and foxes.

    About 7,000 animals die as a result of rabies in the U.S. each year; Hawaii is the only state where there is no rabies. Around the world, Australia and Antarctica are also rabies-free.

    Rabies is a virus that targets the brain and spinal cord. It is found in the saliva of infected animals and is most often transferred through a bite. Birds, fish, insects, reptiles and other non-mammals do not get rabies, and it's rare in chipmunks, gerbils, guinea pigs, hamsters, mice, rabbits, rats and squirrels, health officials said.

    Americans spend more than $300 million annually to detect, prevent and control rabies, the CDC estimates. This includes the vaccination of companion animals, animal control programs, maintenance of rabies labs and medical costs.

    About 40,000 Americans a year have to get the two-week series of four shots (five if you have immune problems) after being bitten. Often the shots are administered as a preventive measure after a bite, whether or not the animal is caught and tested. These shots cost more than $1,000 a series and are injected into the hip rather than the stomach as they once were.

    The American Veterinary Medical Association has no statistics on pet vaccination rates, and laws requiring vaccinations vary by state. But inoculating pets against rabies - which costs just $15-$30 - is a no-brainer for many owners. Rabies is always fatal in unvaccinated animals, and pets can get the disease from raccoons or other wildlife. And if your pet bites someone, proof will be required to show that your animal is rabies-free.

    "Protect yourself and your pet, not just from rabies, but from legal trouble and emotional stress and strain," said veterinarian Louise Murray, vice president of the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals' Bergh Memorial Animal Hospital in New York City.

    During 2009, 81 rabid dogs were reported in the United States, an 8 percent increase over 2008, and 300 rabid cats were reported, a 2 percent increase compared to the previous year, the CDC said.

    In 2009, Pennsylvania reported the largest number of rabid domestic animals - 65 - in any state, followed by Virginia with 55. Both states have laws requiring dog and cat vaccinations.

    Nationwide, raccoons are the biggest rabies carriers, comprising 34.8 percent of all cases in 2009.

    People consider them cute, Murray said. "People are never going to go to a bat on purpose. Raccoons are different. People feed raccoons," she said.

    To cut down on rabies in wildlife, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Wildlife Services Program distributes rabies vaccine cubes by air and ground. The agency started drops for gray foxes and coyotes in south Texas in 1995 and since 2002, has maintained a 30-mile wide rabies-free zone north of the Mexican border, said USDA spokeswoman Carol Bannerman.

    More recently, the agency has made annual vaccine pellet drops for raccoons east of the Appalachians from Maine to Alabama. Last year, about 5.6 million baits were distributed in 16 states, she said.

    Arizona's gray foxes also get annual drops.

    In Southern California, bats are the primary source of rabies, said Dr. Karen Ehnert, acting director for the veterinary public health and rabies control problem for Los Angeles County, which is on track to record about 20 rabid bats this year.

    Around the state, rabies has been documented in 50 bats so far this year, and 144 bats in 2010, with other cases in skunks, foxes and a couple of dogs, said Dr. Gil Chavez, state epidemiologist with the California Department of Public Health.

    In Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Puerto Rico and Grenada, the main source of rabies is the mongoose, a ferret-like creature, according to Brenda Rivera Garcia, acting state public health veterinarian for the Puerto Rico Department of Health.

    She also heads the coordinating committee for the 22nd International Conference on Rabies in the Americas, which takes place in San Juan, Puerto Rico, a few weeks after World Rabies Day, Sept. 28, when individuals and organizations around the world work to create awareness about the disease.

    "So many lives are lost as a result of this preventable disease," she said.

    The Associated Press

    Print page
    Copyright 2012 The San Diego Union-Tribune, LLC.
    Karlin
    Cavaliers: Jaspar Leo Lily Tansy Libby (foster) Mindy (foster)
    In memory: Lucy
    Cavalier SM Infosite:www.smcavaliers.com

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    1,443
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Wow, appreciate all that information. My worry was over vaccinating when it's not necessary. With Sydney, I just followed what the vet said as I didn't know any better and didn't research. And I have to say, she took excellent care of him and I know she will take excellent care of BellaMia. She is very open to answering my questions and is not threatened by me bringing in information that I have come across. I am now more informed on this issue (and so many more) so I want to make sure I competely understand any medication or procedure before I agree to it.

    As to my decision, will definately be getting rabies vaccination. We have coyotes roaming behind the house and this past summer we had work done on the house and the contractors pointed out 5 bats on the house!
    Joyce - Proudly owned & loved by

    BellaMia (Aug. 30, 2012) My Beautiful Ruby Milo (Jan. 20, 2014) My Handsome Tri
    Sydney (
    April 16, 2000~April 4, 2012) Always and Forever In My Heart

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Newfoundland
    Posts
    289
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    In addition to the risks of spreading rabies, if you want to have your dog groomed, borded, or travel cross-border you will usually be required to show proof of rabies vaccine. In my area, especially around dog parks, the by-law officers will sometimes check to make sure your dog has the up-to-date vaccine tags.

    I agree with the debate/conflicting feelings towards overvaccinating - but I think out of all vaccines, rabies might be the most important.
    Courtney
    Lady (1.5 year old tricolour) & Gracie (4 year old blenheim)
    "Happiness is a warm puppy" - Charles M. Schulz

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    482
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by cpell009 View Post
    I agree with the debate/conflicting feelings towards overvaccinating - but I think out of all vaccines, rabies might be the most important.
    I disagree, if you check with your vet office you can find out what diseases are common in your area. I live in a mostly urban area, my dogs never have contact with wild animals before the age of 1 year so the need for rabies is less. Of course our local rabies law is different than other places. Parvo is very common in my area so delaying parvo vaccine will put my dog at risk.

    Given the frequency of wildlife encounters for BellaMia I would vaccinate her for rabies at or before 6 months.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Dublin, Ireland
    Posts
    24,001
    Post Thanks / Like
    Blog Entries
    15

    Default

    Hi Joyce: I know you are a really responsible dog mom -- I'm posting not so much to you (though I quickly found a couple of situations in which there have been rabid animals in your own region, which can sure help put the issue in focus , but really as general points on an important discussion. It's great that you raised the question because I think we are getting so distant from remembering when dogs carried rabies (still a common fear when I was a kid) in the 60s and 70s, though in reality dogs were not so much the issue by then as the article above notes) and a lot of people wonder about the same things you do in your question. It's a very good question to ask.

    The rabies series of vaccinations is usually very painful for people. And none of us would want to be in the horrible position of having our dog put down after say an accidental bite if we weren't up to date on rabies vaccines.

    I really support the research project to attempt to change rabies vaccination laws and frequency by hopefully showing (as seems to be the case) that rabies vaccines last for many years and hence annual and perhaps even every three year vaccines (which are available) are not necessary.

    I do think most people overvaccinate the core vaccines -- the ones many vets push to have done annually. The current recommendation of US national vet bodies as well as many vet schools and of Dr Jean Dodds, is to do the puppy series (NOT starting til 9 weeks old or so -- evidence is vaccinating at 6-7 weeks, as many vets do, is pointless at best), the one year booster, then every THREE years. I don't vaccinate at all after age 7 as there is plenty of evidence that by that age, most dogs will remain immune for the rest of their lives. People can try titering to see if immunity lasts longer, but titers can be as or more expensive than vaccinations, and are not always accurate. I do not trust nosodes and have heard of cases where dogs given only nosodes have died of distemper/parvo. I think a good compromise is to follow the Jean Dodds etc recommendations.

    The difficulty is that this means many of us have to hold firm against vets trying to push more frequent vaccination, and that state laws and regulations at kennels etc are totally out of date in NOT accepting these vet-body approved recommendations!! So it can be a pain to find a kennel or groomer or day care that will take three year core vaccines. But many will.

    I think many people are very foolish in avoiding vaccination at all. To put this in perspective: people would be hard put to find a person working in dog rescue who won't vaccinate or uses nosodes -- we deal with too many dogs out of pounds that clearly were never vaccinated, and unvaccinated puppies, that tragically get out only to succumb to parvo or distemper, easily spread in kenneled environments. These are painful deaths and attempting to save a dog with either of these is extremely costly and burns through rescue funds and is very hard emotionally on the people doing rescue as the death is not pleasant. Hence the very first thing we do in rescue is get dogs vaccinated.

    PS Bats are actually wonderful and very useful animals -- they keep insect levels at bay and make our evenings outside in summer a lot more bearable by polishing off a lot of the mosquitoes and other pests flying about! They are generally protected too -- over here you cannot seal off an attic that has bats in it for example until all nesting bats have ceased to roost there.
    Karlin
    Cavaliers: Jaspar Leo Lily Tansy Libby (foster) Mindy (foster)
    In memory: Lucy
    Cavalier SM Infosite:www.smcavaliers.com

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    1,443
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default

    Thanks for the vote of confidence Karlin.........I try my best and pray it's always enough. Our vet does follow Jean Dodds protocol for vaccinations and so after the 1 year booster, it's vaccinations every 3 years. As for the rabies, she did explain most of the points you made, adding that by law she does have to recommend it, but ultimately is my decision. Since we just did vaccinations yesterday, I'll probably wait about 2 weeks and take her in for rabies. Armed with all this information, it is the right thing to do.

    I'm glad this discussion happened too, so as to help others who are trying to figure out all the information and opinions out there.
    Joyce - Proudly owned & loved by

    BellaMia (Aug. 30, 2012) My Beautiful Ruby Milo (Jan. 20, 2014) My Handsome Tri
    Sydney (
    April 16, 2000~April 4, 2012) Always and Forever In My Heart

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •