What is the truth about vaccinations?
The conventional approach is to get "annual booster shots".
is a growing body of evidence against vaccinating yearly.
Most veterinarians just choose to ignore the research
they still feel the benefits of vaccines outweigh the risk, or that they
don't want to lose the income
from giving booster shots to all those
animals each year.
Vaccinations work by stimulating the immune
system - the positive
effect is to protect against infectious disease.
The negative effect can be the host of
immune related diseases.
These can include immune mediated hemolytic anemia, immune
mediated skin disease, vaccine
induced skin cancer in cats, skin
allergies, arthritis, leukemia, inflammatory bowel disease and
It is more and more common to see cancer in dogs and cats under 5 years of age.
Autoimmune diseases are on the rise as well.
Our companions are suffering from generations
which combined with inadequate nutrition, poor breeding practices
and environmental stresses
are leaving each generation more
susceptible to congenital
disorders and chronic disease.
Most veterinary schools are advising alternate vaccine protocols and
is showing that vaccine immunity lasts much longer
than previously thought.
In some cases, a vaccine given at 1 year of age may provide lifelong
immunity. The analogy can be drawn
to people and Tetanus vaccine. It only
needs to be boosted every 10 years, and this may be similar in dogs
Vaccinations do help prevent serious illnesses, but they should
used with caution. Before vaccinating your pet, consider the risk. If
your cat is indoor only and will never be
exposed to unvaccinated
animals, the risk of infection is low. The decision about vaccinations
is very individual
and should be guided by your own research on the
subject before you go to the veterinarian.
1. Puppies and kittens ONLY need a series of 2 vaccine
boosters, one at 8 weeks then repeated at 14 weeks.
find the most critical time to prevent infectious disease is
at this young age. In small kittens and puppies, I
wait until 12 weeks. The traditional" 3rd booster in puppies
necessary. If possible, delay giving the Rabies
vaccine until 6 months.
Puppies should only be vaccinated for Parvovirus and
Distemper. Give Bordetella if going to a kennel or puppy
Give Rabies vaccine at 6 months.
Kittens should be vaccinated for the respiratory viruses
and Panleukopenia (FVRCP). Feline Leukemia vaccine
only be given to "high risk" cats - those in multi-cat
households or outdoor cats surrounded by a large cat
Give Rabies vaccine at 6 months. ENSURE
that the vaccines are given in the subcutaneous tissue on
the lateral sides
of the right and left legs.
Common sense should to keep your companion safe by
avoiding exposure to public areas such as parks and pet
Keep them close to home and only expose them
to animals you know are healthy. 5. I do not recommend
virus, Leptospirosis or Lyme vaccines
The currently licensed leptospira bacterins do not contain
causing the majority of clinical leptospirosis today, so it is
generally not a useful vaccine.
I do not advise vaccinations for FIP, Feline Bordetella,
FIV and limited use of Feline Leukemia vaccine in Cats.
My current advice is to give Booster vaccines at 1 year,
then EVERY 3 years until the age of 10. As new research
this may even become more infrequent. We
are now just learning about the duration of immunity for
some vaccines, and
they may well be longer than 3 years.
The most IMPORTANT time for vaccines are the 2
boosters for puppies and kittens
and the 1 year booster.
Your pet should still see your veterinarian yearly for their
annual wellness exam.
8. Never vaccinate a sick or weakened animal. If your puppy
kitten is showing signs of allergies or skin problems,
Vaccinating an already compromised immune
system is almost sure to compound the problem!
As an alternative, some people are using Homeopathic
Nosodes. They can also be used before three months of
an animal is at risk. Many people use these homeopathic
medicines to help protect their companions
Distemper, Kennel Cough,
Panleukopenia and FIP. Some nosodes seem to work
more effectively than others. Homeopathic
not vaccinations. They do not produce titers against these
diseases like a vaccination. They do seem to
protection by reducing the severity of illness if the animal
is exposed, even if they don't prevent it.
Learn as much as possible about vaccines and diseases
in your area. Your veterinarian cannot make this decision
you, nor should they. It is your responsibility to make
this decision for your pet. The best road to good health is
a diet rich in fresh foods, raw meats for the
carnivores, fatty acid supplements, adequate exercise,
lots of positive
human interaction and avoiding disease.
To your pet's good
Dr. Andrew Jones
Holistic Dog Health,
PO Box 1471, Marina, CA