IF YOUR GERMAN SHEPHERD HAS DEVELOPED A DISEASE , OR AILMENT OR JUST ACTING WEIRD , THINK BACK HOW MANY TIMES THIS HAS HAPPENED AFTER VACCINATIONS.
EVEN AFTER BUYING A NEW PUPPY, AFTER THE FIRST SHOT , IF THE PUPPY IS WEAK OR HAS SOME STRESS, YOUR GERMAN SHEPHERD PUPPY MIGHT ACTUALLY GET THE DISEASE FROM THE VACCINATION.
MAKE SURE YOUR GERMAN SHEPHERD PUPPY-DOG IS HEALTHY AT THE TIME OF VACCINATION AND ONLY DO ONE VACCINE IN A DAY OR JUST ONE COMBINATION
( 5 IN 1 ).
BUT DO NOT DO RABIES, PLUS VACCINES SAME DAY OR SEPARATE VACCINES.
BE CAREFUL OF LEPTOSPIROSIS VACCINE AND ONLY GIVE AN ADULT DOG AND NOT A GERMAN SHEPHERD PUPPY AS IT HAS STRONG SIDE EFFECTS.
YOUR GERMAN SHEPHERD PUPPY NEEDS SOME VACCINES, BUT AFTER THAT JUST ONCE IN 3 YEARS AND NO MORE .
RABIES HAS TO BE GIVEN BY LAW EVERY 3 YEARS , NOT EVERY YEAR, ASK FOR IT AT THE VET.
Dogs may be getting too many vaccines, vet specialist says
Cox News Service
Tucson, Arizona | Published: 07.29.2007
WASHINGTON — Despite warnings that America's dogs are being vaccinated too much and too often, most veterinarians continue the practice as a way to keep clients coming in the door, according to a leading animal immunologist.
Vaccines for rabies and three other major canine diseases — distemper, canine adenovirus-2 and canine parvovirus — should be given no more often than once every three years, said Ronald Schultz, a veterinary immunologist at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
"Unfortunately, most veterinarians recommend annual revaccinations for these core diseases," said Schultz, "and many of them are using the procedures as what I call 'practice management tools' — to keep clients coming in on an annual basis."
He said many vets send annual vaccination reminder postcards because they know that when the animal is brought in for shots, they can give it an important physical examination.
"The dogs ought to be coming in for the examinations, not shots," said Schultz.
And since all vaccinations are potentially harmful, it makes no sense to expose an animal to that risk when it already is immune, he said.
"Some vets argue that it's better to be safe than sorry, but if you turn that around, you might be sorry and not safe," he said. Most states require rabies vaccinations for dogs every three years.
U.S. vet bill tops $670 million
Nearly 45 million American households include dogs, more than any other pet, and the nation's canine veterinary bill runs more than $670 million a year, according to a survey by the American Pet Products Manufacturers Association.
In addition to the four deadly diseases, more than a dozen other "non-core" vaccines against diseases such as Lyme disease, intestinal parasites, kennel cough and others provide immunity that lasts only a year.
Vets often vaccinate for these ailments annually in large, multi-disease injections that Schultz says are often unnecessary.
If Lyme disease doesn't exist in your area, don't have your dog vaccinated for it, he said. If your dog is not going to be kenneled or boarded, don't have it immunized for kennel cough.
"They give a lot of these vaccinations in 'mambocombo' injections," he said. "Imagine what an assault it is to an animal's immune system to have 12 or 13 vaccines injected at once."
Although dog vaccinations, like human versions, kick-start the immune system to prepare antibodies and other immunity weapons for specific diseases, they can also be dangerous, Schultz said.
"The most common problem is anaphylactic shock," he said, referring to the devastating and often fatal allergic reaction, "but there are others. Some vaccines can actually cause the disease or other diseases."
DO NOT GIVE YOUR GERMAN SHEPHERD HEARTWORM MEDICATION
Veterinarians and animal owners are encouraged to report adverse experiences and product failures to the government Agency that regulates the product in question. Pretesting by the manufacturer and review of the data by the government does not guarantee absolute safety and effectiveness due to the inherent limitation imposed by testing the product on a limited population of animals. CVM encourages you to contact the manufacturer of a suspect product. Reporting information for the following product categories:
Animal Drugs, Devices and Foods
Veterinarians and animal owners may report adverse drug experiences to FDA by:
A. You should first call the drug company to report an ADE for an FDA-approved animal drug. Drug company phone numbers can usually be obtained from product labeling. Inform the drug company that you wish to report an ADE, and ask to speak to a technical services veterinarian. The technical services veterinarian should ask a series of questions about the event, complete the FDA 1932 form, and forward the report to CVM. In addition, the technical services veterinarian may also contact the veterinarian who treated your pet to obtain more information regarding the ADE.
If the drug is not FDA-approved for animal administration, or if it is approved but you do not wish to contact the manufacturer, the report may be submitted directly to the FDA on Form 1932a.
Reports should preferably include a good medical history, all concomitant drugs the animal has been given, any recent surgical procedures, and as much in the way of clinical findings as is possible. Clinical findings would include veterinary exam, clinical chemistries, complete blood counts, urinalysis, fecal exams, radiographic results, and hemodynamic data such as blood pressure, any other pressure measurements in or around the heart, and neurologic assessments.
B. Submitting FORM FDA 1932a, "Veterinary Adverse Experience, Lack of Effectiveness or Product Defect Report." The 1932a is a pre-addressed, prepaid postage form which can be completed and dropped in the mail. This form may be obtained by <clicking> the highlighted title above or by writing to:
ADE Reporting System Center for Veterinary Medicine U.S. Food & Drug Administration 7500 Standish Place Rockville, MD 20855-2773
The Center may occasionally need more detailed information about an incident and the reporter may be called by a CVM staff veterinarian.
IMPORTANT: The identities of all persons and animals is held in strict confidence by FDA and protected to the fullest extent of the law. The reporter's identity may be shared with the manufacturer or distributor unless requested otherwise. However, FDA will not disclose the reporter's identity to a request from the public, pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act.
Leave your name, address, phone number and the brand name of the drug involved. Ask to have a 1932a form sent or ask for the phone number of the drug company you should call to report the problem.
Animal Biologics: Vaccines, Bacterins and Diagnostic Kits
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (800) 858-PES
U.S.A. top vet on Vaccinosis in this country ,Dr. Jean Dodds:
"This schedule is the one I recommend and should NOT be interpreted to mean that other protocols recommended by a veterinarian would be less satisfactory. It's a matter of professional judgement and choice." For breeds or families of dogs susceptible to or effected with immune dysfunction, immune-mediated disease, immune-reactions associated with vaccinations, or autoimmune endocrine disease (e.g., thyroiditis, Addison's or Cushing's disease, diabetes, etc.), the following protocol is recommended:
Age of Pups / Vaccine Type
9 weeks MLV Distemper/Parvovirus only (e.g. Intervet Progard Puppy)
12 weeks MLV Distemper/Parvovirus only (e.g. Intervet Progard Puppy)
24 weeks or older , if allowable by law Killed Rabies Vaccine
After 1 year, annually measure serum antibody titers against specific canine infectious agents such as distemper and parvovirus. This is especially recommended for animals previously experiencing adverse vaccine reactions or breeds at higher risk for such reactions (e.g., Weimaraner, Akita, American Eskimo, Great Dane). Another alternative to booster vaccinations is homeopathic nosodes. This option is considered an unconventional treatment that has not been scientifically proven to be efficacious. One controlled parvovirus nosode study did not adequately protect puppies under challenged conditions. However, data from Europe and clinical experience in North America support its use. If veterinarians choose to use homeopathic nosodes, their clients should be provided with an appropriate disclaimer and written informed consent should be obtained.
I use only killed 3 year rabies vaccine for adults. In some states, they may be able to give titer test result in lieu of booster.
I do NOT use Bordetella, corona virus, leptospirosis or Lyme vaccines unless these diseases are endemic in the local area or specific kennel. Furthermore, the currently licensed leptospira bacterins do not contain the serovars causing the majority of clinical leptospirosis today.
Do NOT recommend vaccinating bitches during estrus, pregnancy or lactation. Do not vaccinate during times of stress such as: surgery, travel, illness or infection.
Viral disease and recent vaccination with single or combination modified live-virus (MLV) vaccines, especially those containing distemper virus, adenovirus 1 or 2, and parvovirus are increasingly recognized contributors to immune-mediated blood disease, bone marrow failure, and organ dysfunction.
Potent adjuvanted killed vaccines like those for rabies virus also can trigger immediate and delayed (vaccinosis) adverse vaccine reactions.
Genetic predisposition to these disorders in humans has been linked to the leucocyte antigen D-related gene locus of the major histocompatibility complex, and is likely to have parallel associations in domestic animals.
Beyond immediate hypersensivity reactions, other acute events tend to occur 24-72 hours afterwards, or 7-45 days later in a delayed type immunological response.
Even more delayed adverse effects include mortality from high-titered measles vaccine in infants, canine distemper antibodies in joint diseases of dogs, and feline injection-site fibrosarcomas. The increasing antigenic load presented to the host individual by modified-live virus (MLV) vaccines during the period of viremia is presumed to be responsible for the immunological challenge that can result in a delayed hypersensitivity reaction.
The clinical signs associated with vaccine reactions typically include fever, stiffness, sore joints and abdominal tenderness, susceptibility to infections, neurological disorders and encephalitis, collapse with autoagglutinated red blood cells and icterus (autoimmune hemolytic anemia) (AIHA), or generalized petechiae and ecchymotic hemorrhages (immune-mediated thrombocytopenia)(ITP).
Hepatic enzymes may be markedly elevated, and liver or kidney failure may occur by itself or accompany bone marrow suppression.
Furthermore, MLV vaccination has been associated with the development of transient seizures in puppies and adult dogs of breeds or cross-breeds susceptible to immune-mediated diseases especially those involving hematologic or endocrine tissues (e.g. AIHA, ITP, autoimmune thyroiditis).
Post-vaccinal polyneuropathy is a recognized entity associated occasionally with the use of distemper, parvovirus, rabies and presumably other vaccines.
This can result in various clinical signs including muscular atrophy, inhibition or interruption of neuronal control of tissue and organ function, muscular excitation, incoordination and weakness, as well as seizures.
Certain breeds or families of dogs appear to be more susceptible to adverse vaccine reactions, particularly post-vaccinal seizures, high fevers, and painful episodes of hypertrophic osteodystrophy (HOD).
Therefore, we have the responsibility to advise companion animal breeders and caregivers of the potential for genetically susceptible littermates and relatives to be at increased risk for similar adverse vaccine reactions.
In popular (or rare) inbred and linebred animals, the breed in general can be at increased risk as illustrated in the examples below.
Commercial vaccines can on rare occasion be contaminated with other adventitious viral agents, which can produce significant untoward effects such as occurred when a commercial canine parvovirus vaccine was contaminated by blue tongue virus. It produced abortion and death when given to pregnant dogs, and was linked casually to the ill-advised but all too common practice of vaccinating pregnant animals.
The potential for side-effects such as promotion of chronic disease states in male and non-pregnant female dogs receiving this lot of vaccine remains in question, although there have been anecdotal reports of reduced stamina and renal dysfunction in performance sled dogs.
Recently, a vaccine manufacturer had to recall all biologic products containing a distemper component, because they were associated with a higher than expected rate of central nervous system postvaccinal reactions 2 weeks following administration.
Other issues arise from overvaccination, as the increased cost in time and dollars spent needs to be considered, despite the well-intentioned solicitation of clients to encourage annual booster vaccinations so that pets also can receive a wellness examination.
Giving annual boosters when they are not necessary has the client paying for a service which is likely to be of little benefit to the pet's existing level of protection against these infectious diseases. It also increases the risk of adverse reactions from the repeated exposure to foreign substances and contaminated vaccines .
Polyvalent MLV vaccines which multiply in the host elicit a stronger antigenic challenge to the animal and should mount a more effective and sustained immune response.
However, this can overwhelm the immunocompromised or even a healthy host that has ongoing exposure to other environmental stimuli as well as a genetic predisposition that promotes adverse response to viral challenge.
The recently weaned young puppy or kitten being placed in a new environment may be at particular risk. Furthermore, while the frequency of vaccinations is usually spaced 2-3 weeks apart, some veterinarians have advocated vaccination once a week in stressful situations, a practice makes little sense scientifically or medically.
An augmented immune response to vaccination is seen in dogs with pre-existing inhalant allergies (atopy) to pollens.
Furthermore, the increasing current problems with allergic and immunological diseases has been linked to the introduction of MLV vaccines more than 20 years ago.
While other environmental factors no doubt have a contributing role, the introduction of these vaccine antigens and their environmental shedding may provide the final insult that exceeds the immunological tolerance threshold of some individuals in the pet population.
The accumulated evidence indicates that vaccination protocols should no longer be considered as a "one size fits all" program.
For these special cases, appropriate alternatives to current vaccine practices include: 1. Measuring serum antibody titers 2. Avoidance of unnecessary vaccines or overvaccinating 3.Caution in vaccinating sick or febrile individuals and tailoring a specific minimal vaccination protocol for dogs of breeds or families known to be at increased risk for adverse reactions.
*** DO NOT OVER-VACCINATE , AFTER PUPPY SHOTS/BOOSTERS, VACCINATE EVERY 5 YEARS ( diseases vaccines ). ...The current law in Florida is just for RABIES ONLY AFTER 4 MONTHS OLD AND SUBSEQUENTLY EVERY 3 YEARS ( You need to buy/pay for the rabies tag every year, though ) ....You do not need to ever vaccinate at anytime for the other diseases, is not a law...***.
Considerations include starting the vaccination series later, such as at 9 or 10 weeks of age when the immune system is more able to handle antigenic challenge; alerting the caregiver to pay particular attention to the puppy's behavior and overall health after the second or subsequent boosters; and avoiding revaccination of individuals already experiencing a significant adverse event. Littermates of affected puppies should be closely monitored after receiving additional vaccines in a puppy series, as they too are at higher risk.
1. Dodds WJ. Immune-mediated diseases of the blood. Adv Vet Sci Comp Med 1983; 27:163-196.
2. Phillips TR, Jensen JL, Rubino MJ, Yang WC, Schultz RD. Effects on vaccines on the canine immune system. Can J Vet Res 1989; 53: 154-160.
3. Tizard I. Risks associated with use of live vaccines. J Am Vet Med Assoc 1990; 196:1851-1858. 4. Duval D, Giger U. Vaccine-associated immune-mediated hemolytic anemia in the dog. J Vet Int Med 1996;10: 290-295.
6. Schultz R. Current and future canine and feline vaccination programs. Vet Med 1998; 93:233-254.
7. Dodds WJ. More bumps on the vaccine road. Adv Vet Med 1999; 41: 715-732.
8. HogenEsch H, Azcona-Olivera J, Scott-Moncrieff C, Snyder PW, Glickman LT. Vaccine-induced autoimmunity in the dog. Adv Vet Med 1999; 41:733-744.
9. Dodds WJ. Vaccination protocols for dogs predisposed to vaccine reactions. J Am An Hosp Assoc 2001; 38: 1-4.
10. Scott-Moncrieff JC, Azcona-Olivera J, Glickman NW, Glickman LT, HogenEsch H. Evaluation of antithyroglobulin antibodies after routine vaccination in pet and research dogs. J Am Vet Med Assoc 2002; 221: 515-521.
11. Paul MA (chair) et al. Report of the AAHA Canine Vaccine Task Force: 2003 canine vaccine guidelines, recommendations, and supporting literature. AAHA, April 2003, 28 pp.
12. May C, Hammill J, Bennett, D. Chinese shar pei fever syndrome: A preliminary report. Vet Rec 1992;131: 586-587.
13. Scott-Moncrieff JC, Snyder PW, Glickman LT, Davis EL, Felsburg PJ. Systemic necrotizing vasculitis in nine young beagles. J Am Vet Med Assoc 1992; 201: 1553-1558.
14. Dodds WJ. Estimating disease prevalence with health surveys and genetic screening. Adv Vet Sci Comp Med 1995; 39: 29-96.
15. Wilbur LA, Evermann JF, Levings RL, Stoll LR, Starling DE, Spillers CA, Gustafson GA, McKeirnan AJ. Abortion and death in pregnant bitches associated with a canine vaccine contaminated with blue tongue virus. J Am Vet Med Assoc 1994; 204:1762-1765.
16. Day MJ, Penhale WJ. Immune-mediated disease in the old English sheepdog. Res Vet Sci 1992; 53: 87-92.
17. Dougherty SA, Center SA. Juvenile onset polyarthritis in Akitas. J Am Vet Med Assoc 1991; 198: 849-855.
18. Twark L, Dodds WJ. Clinical use of serum parvovirus and distemper virus antibody titers for determining revaccination strategies in healthy dogs. J Am Vet Med Assoc 2000; 217:1021-1024.
I would like to express my sincere gratitude to Peter and Kris Christine in allowing me to share this information with all visitors to my site.
RABIES SHOT REACTION EMERGENCY?
If your dog is breathing heavily, his face is swelling and eyes watering, and/or he's vomiting, having a seizure or collapsing, your dog is having a potentially life-threatening allergic reaction. CALL YOUR VET IMMEDIATELY! If possible, start for your vet's office, or an emergency facility, and call on the way while some else does the driving.
If your dog has developed any health problem within 45 days of the shot, it may be a reaction to the shot. Read the list of common reactions below. Your vet may not recognize it as a reaction and may not want to believe the shot he/she administered brought on this problem. It's up to you to bring up the subject and investigate the possibility.Important: Make sure your vet records the reaction in detail in your dog's file and get a copy of the file. Put it in a safe place. When the rabies shot is due again, ask your vet to apply for an exemption.
How long does a rabies shot last? How often do I have to get the shot?
The three-year vaccine is guaranteed by the manufacturer for 3 years, but the one year vaccine, which is usually just given as the first vaccine a puppy gets, is guaranteed for only one year -- although the vaccines are identical!
Immunity: If your dog has had 2 shots (a shot at about 4 months and another a year later), which he/she probably has if your dog got puppy shots, your dog should have immunity for 5-7 years or longer -- according to experts -- although not according to the law. The Rabies Challenge Fund is working to prove to the USDA that the shot gives 5 years, then 7 years, of immunity.
Possible rabies Vaccine side effects
The rabies vaccine is the only legally-required vaccine for companion animals in the United States. It’s administered primarily to protect humans from their pets should those pets be bitten by rabid bats, coyotes, raccoons, foxes or other animals. This is all well and good EXCEPT that the vaccine is known to cause serious side effects in cats and dogs, many of which are listed below:
Immediately or up to 3 days after the shot:
Vomiting Facial swelling Fever or lethargy Circulatory shock Loss of consciousness Death
Days, weeks or months after the shot:
Fibrosarcoma (cancer) at the injection site (See Zsazsa, right) Seizures and Epilepsy Allergies Autoimmune diseases, including organ disease, allergies and skin problems Chronic digestive problems Muscle weakness, especially lack of hind end coordination Chronic digestive disorders Skin diseases like Ischemic Dermatopathy / Cutaneous vasculitis Behavior problems: aggression, destructive behaviors, separation anxiety and odd obsessive behaviors (like tail chasing and paw licking). Dr. Michael Dym (Peaches' vet, see below) sayschronic symptoms of a reaction to the rabies vaccine sometimes mimic noninfectioussymptoms of rabies and "include restlessness; viciousness; avoidance of company; unusual affection; desire to travel; inability to be restrained; self biting; strange cries and howls; inability to swallow resulting in gagging while eating/drinking; staring eyes; swallowing wood, stones, inedibles; destruction of blankets, clothing; convulsive seizures; throat spasms; increased sexual desires; disturbed heart function; excited and jerky breathing.
HOW TO MAKE RABIES VACCINATION SAFER FOR YOUR DOG
Thimersol (mercury) in vaccines has been linked to adverse reactions. Look for the TF on the label. Want to avoid thimersol? Merial now makes a one- and three-year thimersol-free rabies vaccine: IMRAB® 1 TF and IMRAB® 3 TF. Make sure you see the "TF" in the brand name.
Manufacturers and the USDA recommend against vaccinating sick or stressed pets. If your dog is not healthy, delay vaccination until your dog is well.Do not allow matters of convenience (yours or the vet's) to alter your decision. Do not let your vet persuade you otherwise without compelling need. Let your vet, and your dog's health, guide you to a safe time to vaccinate. Dogs with allergies, infections and skin problems, as well as dogs stressed by travel or change, are not completely healthy. Read this to learn more:
If your dog is chronically ill or immune compromised,he or she may be able to receive an exemption to rabies vaccination. You will likely still have to pay license fees, but your dog may avoid the shot either for the licensing period or the life of the dog, depending on the situation. Your veterinarian will have to apply for exemption giving reasons and providing documentation. Some vets don't like doing this, I'm told, but if at first you don't succeed... Note: some locales do not allow exemptions.
If your dog is due for a rabies shot, consult a vet trained in homeopathy if possible.
Do not give a rabies shot within 2 weeks of other shots -- at least.
Remain in the area for at least 30 minutes after your dog gets a rabies shot so that you can get medical help immediately in case of a reaction.
Do not give heartworm or flea meds, and do not worm, without proof of need and never within two weeks of any vaccination.
If you suspect your dog is suffering a non-emergency adverse reaction from a rabies vaccine,I recommend consulting a holistic vet. Among other things, they may recommend a homeopathic remedy to help clear the vaccine from your dog's system. If you continue to treat your dog's symptoms without treating the cause, you'll likely be treating increasingly bad symptoms for the rest of your dog's life. Know that repeatedvaccination does not make an immune dog MORE immune.Renowned vaccination expert Dr. Jean Dodds compares immunity to pregnancy: you’re either immune or you’re not. Furthermore, if you're immune to a virus, you're also immune to the virus in the vaccine!
Have your vet document all reactions to all vaccines
in case you ever need to apply for an exemption in the future. Make sure reactions are recorded in the dog's file, make sure your vet signs the entry and GET A COPY. Don't be embarrassed to ask. This is important. You need to protect your dog.
If your dog is at high risk for rabies, know that the only way to guarantee a dog's immunity is to have his or her rabies vaccine antibody titers tested.
Your veterinarian can perform this simple (not cheap) blood test. An animal may be repeatedly vaccinated and yet never develop immunity if his/her immune system is malfunctioning.
Your kennel, groomer or doggy day care facility may require proof of rabies, butmore and more establishments will accept titer testing.If they require vaccination more frequently than the law requires, endeavor to educate them or find another establishment. Their ignorance is a threat to your dog's health.
Note: The "one-year" shot is no safer than the "three-year" shot. In fact, as it has to given much more often, it is more likely to damage health. Worse yet, experts say that the "one-year" shot is often a "three-year" shot that has merely been relabeled. Don't give a rabies shot yourself.Although you can legally buy the vaccine and give the shot yourself, you'll likely have to have a licensed veterinarian give it again because most states will not recognize your vaccination as valid as they can't prove it happened. Also, you will not be equipped to handle a medical emergency should your dog experience an adverse reaction to the vaccine. Watch the vet give the shot.Do not allow them to take the dog into a back room. You need to see where the shot was injected. Was it subcutaneous? That is, injected just under the loose skin between the shoulder blades? Or was it intramuscular? That is, injected directly into the muscle (usually the big muscles of a dog's thigh)? Was it the right leg or left leg? Exactly where? If a lump forms, and especially if it develops into a tumor, you'll want to see if it's at the injection site. Also, ask the vet to note the injection site in your dog's file. Watch him/her record it.
If you notice a lump where your dog was vaccinated, write down its exact location and palpate (feel) it often to make sure that the lump isn't growing. If it grows, or doesn't disappear, contact your vet.
I asked vaccination expert Dr. Jean Dodds on what part of the dog she, as a rabies vaccine expert, prefers the shot to be given. She wrote: "There's no standard, but most of us prefer the hind leg muscle mass in the gluteal area."
Thanks for permission to post :*** Jan Rasmusen is the award-winning author of Scared Poopless: The Straight Scoop on Dog Care. Learn more about her book and sign up for her free newsletter at www.Dogs4Dogs.com
THIS PROVISION IS IN EFFECT HERE IN FLORIDA, PLEASE READ
PERMISSION IS GRANTED TO CROSS-POST
June 29, 2010
Dr. Craig E. Shultz
Department of Agriculture
2301 N. Cameron Street, Room 410
RE:Medical Exemption Clause for Pennsylvania’s Rabies Prevention and Control Code
Greetings Dr. Shultz:
On behalf of The Rabies Challenge Fund and the Pennsylvania pet owners who have contacted us requesting assistance, we respectfully request that you, in your capacity as State Veterinarian, initiate medical exemption legislation waiving the rabies immunization requirement in Chapter 16, Subchapter C., §16.43 of the Pennsylvania Code for the small number of animals whose veterinarians have determined their medical conditions preclude vaccination.
The states of Alabama, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Vermont, Virginia, and Wisconsin all have medical exemption clauses for sick animals in their rabies immunization laws, and a bill is currently pending in the California legislature to include a waiver in their statutes.
The labels on rabies vaccines state that they are for “the vaccination of healthy cats, dogs…,” and there are medical conditions for which vaccination can jeopardize the life or well-being of an animal.A medical exemption clausewould allow Pennsylvania veterinarians to write waivers for animals whose medical conditions (such as those with cancer, kidney/liver failure, hemolytic anemia, thrombocytopenia, grand mal seizures, and chronic autoimmune disorders) would be exacerbated by rabies vaccination.The State of Maine inserted such an exemption into their 3 year rabies protocol, 7 M.R.S.A., Sec. 3922(3), which became effective in April 2005 -- not one rabid dog has been reported in the more than 5 years since that date.Colorado’s data reflect the same -- there have been no rabid dogs reported in the state since passage of their medical exemption clause in July 2008.
Maine’s exemption language is as follows:
A.A letter of exemption from vaccination may be submitted for licensure, if a medical reason exists that precludes the vaccination of the dog.Qualifying letters must be in the form of a written statement, signed by a licensed veterinarian, that includes a description of the dog, and the medical reason that precludes vaccination.If the medical reason is temporary, the letter shall indicate a time of expiration of the exemption.
B.A dog exempted under the provisions of paragraph 5 A, above, shall be considered unvaccinated, for the purposes of 10-144 C.M.R. Ch.251, Section 7(B)(1), (Rules Governing Rabies Management) in the case of said dog’s exposure to a confirmed or suspect rabid animal.
The Rabies Challenge Fund strongly urges you to request legislation be submitted on behalf of the Department of Agriculture amending Chapter 16, Subchapter C., §16.43 of the Pennsylvania Code to include medical exemption language for unhealthy animals for which rabies vaccination would compromise their well-being.