Sunday, August 10, 2008

Vaccines - Do the Benefits Outweigh the Risks?

Most of the problems with vaccines involve the immune system. They stimulate it in an unnatural way and it can be overwhelmed and confused. The body may overreact to normally harmless substances (allergies, especially flea allergies and other skin problems), or even produce antibodies to itself (auto-immune diseases). Their bodies may be sluggish in responding to those things that it should reject, such as common viruses, bacteria, fungi, and parasites. This can result in increased susceptibility to acute infections (such as parvovirus), chronic or recurring infections (such as ear infections in dogs, bladder infections or feline leukemia in cats or other chronic problems such as arthritis, kidney disease, or even cancer. Vaccines can trigger a fatal cancer in cats and a deadly blood disorder in dogs. There is a great deal of evidence implicating vaccination as the cause of many serious chronic health problems.

Booster shots don't work when your pet's system already has antibodies from previous vaccinations. Those existing antibodies neutralize the booster shot. Your dog can't get "more" immune.

Humans get lifetime immunity from most of their childhood vaccines. The same is true for pets.
Ronald Schultz, a Veterinarian Immunologist at the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinarian Medicine did an experiment. He vaccinated dogs for rabies, parvo, kennel cough and distemper and then exposed them to the disease causing organisms after three, five and seven years. The animals remained healthy. He continued his experiment by measuring antibody levels in the dogs' blood nine and fifteen years after vaccination. He found the levels sufficient to prevent disease!

The more vaccines a pet gets, the greater the chance of adverse reactions. Veterinarians have known for years that yearly vaccines are dangerous, but continue the practice. My suggestion is to find a vet that doesn't believe in annual or bi-annual vaccines.

Remember, that all vaccines, including rabies, are medically approved for use in HEALTHY ANIMALS ONLY. This is explicitly stated in the package insert for every vaccine. If you have a older pet or one that has health problems, do not get them vaccinated. Since the rabies is required by law, ask to have a rabies titer to avoid unnecessary re-vaccination. IF YOU DO VACCINATE, DO NOT GET MORE THAN ONE VACCINE AT A TIME!

It was heart breaking for me to do this research and read the stories of beloved pets that died as a result of a vaccination. These pet owners were all just following their veterinarians recommendations and they wanted what was best for their pets. The conclusion is clear: YOU must take charge of your dog's vaccination schedule. Please share this information with anyone you know that have pets, so they will be informed also.