What You Should Know About the Rabies Vaccine
“The rabies vaccine is arguably the most dangerous shot our dogs get. Because it’s required by law, it’s a difficult shot to avoid. Because the vaccine is made from a “killed” virus, rather than “modified live” virus as are the other important “core” vaccines, manufacturers add dangerous “adjuvants” to boost effectiveness. These adjuvants too often cause adverse reactions, some of which occur quickly, but many of which occur days, weeks or even months after vaccination. A “killed” vaccine (rather than one from a modified live virus), the rabies vaccine contains adjuvants (chemical boosters) to enhance the immunological response. In 1999, the World Health Organization “classified veterinary vaccine adjuvants as Class III/IV carcinogens with Class IV being the highest risk.”
Taken from Dr. Jean Dodds writing, The Rabies Vaccine and your Dog’s Side Effects
I have had many dogs over the last 30 years all of which have had immunizations with no apparent reaction. Before I was educated about the danger of excessive and unnecessary vaccinations my early dogs probably were vaccinated with parvo and distemper every few years along with the required Rabies with not noticeable side effects.
It was not until I took my first Border Collie for puppy shots to my wonderful vet in Phoenix announcing that I needed an 8-way shot that my education on vaccinations began. We were preparing to do herding and many of the herding people I worked with had ranches and regularly traveled to places where perhaps there were illnesses that their dogs had to be vaccinated against. Dr. Ingraham educated me as to the danger of over vaccinating based on research coming out of Cornell and set me on a path to become more knowledgeable about the dangers of vaccination.
Over time I had a Puli with lymphoma that could not be vaccinated. A Border Collie with genetic allergies that I was trying to manage and I knew that most states including Arizona would NOT accept a titer test or a written letter from our vet saying that my dog could not or should not have any further vaccinations including a Rabies.
See Rabies Laws By States: http://www.dogs4dogs.com/rabies-laws
I also learned that no letter or titer would prevent my dogs from being taken away from me for not being immunized with their required Rabies if they bit anyone or had to go to the vet after being bit by a wild animal. The reasoning being that one does not know if the wild animal bite was from an animal with rabies. Periodically there are rabies frenzies when wild animals have been found with rabies. This seems to happen in our rural areas every 5-10 years.
It is therefore a risk to not do a Rabies shot. I have worked with an excellent vet in New York that I have written about in previous writings who has informed me of a homeopathic nosode drops called Vaccinosis that helps to prevent reactions by giving it a day before, day of, and several days after, and weekly for at least a month after the vaccination.
Fortunately by doing this with my dogs until recently, I have not noticed any reaction or immune compromise with my Border Collie who has his allergies successful managed (see my Blog writing on “How I Manage My Border Collies Genetic Allergies.”
I guess I would say it was the perfect storm for the rabies vaccine reaction to happen this time. We traveled to California for a dog show, lots of home made treats at the show, raw duck for meals and a lovely run in the warm weather after the show. Normally this would not produce a problem, but the Rabies shot and perhaps the immune system compromise was enough to trigger a mild case of pancreatitis with early morning vomiting. Interestingly enough the blood work done on the day of the Rabies shot was beautifully normal.
I feel fortunate that we did no have severe pancreatitis with pain, inability to hold down food and the need for hospitalization. Perhaps due to the use of the Vaccinosis drops before and after the vaccine was administered. We are now 2 weeks out from the first early morning vomiting and doing well with a strict very low fat home cooked diet.
In 2 days blood work will check on our progress. However, we are slowly and carefully returning to more normal activities.
Things You Should Know When Vaccinating Your Dog
- Your vet may not recognize your dog’s symptoms as a vaccine reaction and probably won’t want to believe or admit that the shot he/she administered brought on this problem. If you believe it’s a vaccine reaction, be strong. You know your dog better than your vet does.
- If your dog has developed any unexplained health or behavioral problem within 45 to 60 days of vaccination, or even longer, it may be a reaction to the shot. If you suspect the problem may be connected to a vaccine, you’ll likely have to convince your vet. It’s common to hear “it couldn’t be the shot” or “a reaction like that isn’t possible” — even when the reaction is a common one.
- Reactions Commonly Seen: Common rabies vaccine reactions, followed by the percentage of reactions reported to the USDA (many of which are also reactions to other vaccines): Vomiting-28.1%; facial swelling-26.3%; injection site swelling or lump-19.4%; lethargy-12%; urticaria(hives)-10.1%; circulatory shock-8.3%; injection site pain-7.4%; pruritus-7.4%; injection site alopecia or hair loss-6.9%; death-5.5%; lack of consciousness-5.5; diarrhea-4.6%; hypersensitivity (not specified)-4.6%; fever-4.1%;, anaphylaxis-2.8%; ataxia-2.8%; lameness-2.8%; general signs of pain-2.3%; hyperactivity-2.3%; injection site scab or crust-2.3%;, muscle tremor-2.3%; tachycardia-2.3%; and thrombocytopenia-2.3%. (Oddly, they don’t list seizures which may occur after rabies vaccination. Click here for more on seizures.)
- Other reactions considered “possibly related to vaccination” included acute hypersensitivity (59%); local reactions (27%); systemic reactions, which refers to short-term lethargy, fever, general pain, anorexia, or behavioral changes, with or without gastrointestinal disturbances starting within 3 days after vaccination (9%); autoimmune disorders (3%); and other (2%).
First 2 items taken from: What To Do When Your Dog Has a Vaccine Reaction http://www.dogs4dogs.com/blog/2010/12/02/what-to-do-when-your-dog-has-a-vaccine-reaction/
- Vaccinate at the safest time. Vaccinate in the morning, early in the week, and don’t leave the area for at least an hour if possible. If you are showing your dog, try to schedule your vaccination at least 30 days from the time you are traveling. Dog shows can tend to produce stress and in some dogs. weaken a dogs immune system
- Tell your vet you want a Thimerosol-free vaccine. Thimerosol (mercury) in vaccines has been linked to adverse reactions. Merial, for one, makes one- and three-year thimersol-free rabies vaccines: IMRAB® 1 TF and IMRAB® 3 TF. Make sure you see “TF” on the label. (If your vet doesn’t carry the vaccine, you may have to vet shop to find the vaccine you want. You might also ask why the vet why he/she doesn’t carry it.)
- Find a vet trained in homeopathy to vaccinate your dog. Certain homeopathic remedies given before, during and after vaccinating can lessen the chance of ill effects from vaccination. Click the link to find vet referral lists.
- Report all vaccine reactions to your vet and make sure they’re recorded in your pet’s file. Have the vet sign relevant pages, get copies and put them in a safe place. (Vets lose records, retire and move away.) Also report the reaction to the drug’s manufacturer. (You’ll need the vaccine lot number.) Vets are notoriously bad at reporting reactions, but exemptions to rabies vaccination and drug safety require documentation.
References For Excellent Information on Vaccinations and Rabies Vaccinations
For More Information on what you should know about the Rabies Vaccine, visit this Informative Web site:
Treating Adverse Vaccine Reactions by Jean Dodds, DVM
What To Do When Your Dog Has a Vaccine Reaction
13 Ways to Vaccinate More Safely
NEW: Dr. Dodds Canine Vaccination Protocol 2016 http://drjeandoddspethealthresource.tumblr.com/post/147595920886/dodds-vaccination-protocol-dogs-2016#.V7j9EpMrJBw
Virus and Vaccine Related Articles by Dr. Jean Dodds
Holistic Pet Vaccinations