minimal vaccine lacysA vaccine can be a great thing. But vaccination can also do a lot of damage. So how do you decide how and when to vaccinate your Lacy Dog? By reading and educating yourself. There is a ton of info on the internet which supports vaccinations as well as going vaccine free. Hopefully my info will help readers make their own decision.

“After more than twenty years of practicing veterinary medicine, I am observing chronic diseases that begin much earlier than before,” writes Charles Loops, DVM. “A normal dog or cat living to twelve years of age will receive at least twenty and possibly thirty vaccinations during their lifetime. Fifteen or so of these shots will have four to seven disease fractions present in each vaccination. In all of this, balance in nature has been lost to the pharmaceutical-medical complex’s philosophy, propelled in great part by monetary factors, leading us to believe that all vaccinations are beneficial.”

Vaccines have become much more than they were ever intended to be. They were originally developed to help people or animals have a better chance at living through a disease that is usually fatal. Now vaccines are being given for things that are rarely lethal.

Vaccines are supposed to booster the immune system. However, it is becoming more and more evident that vaccines can actually damage the immune system. One of the reasons for this is the way that vaccines are administered. “The process of injecting numerous viruses at one time into the body does not mimic in any way what we would see in the natural world,” affirms Dee Blanco, DVM. “There would never be such an enormous exposure to that many microorganisms at one time.”

Natural immunity comes from being exposed to the germ that is usually taken in through the mucous membranes. When you inject these germs into the body through a needle, the body sees a whole different situation and reacts unnaturally to it. There are some vaccines, such as bordetella, that can be given through the nose, which is a more natural approach.

When administered too frequently and unnaturally, vaccines wear the immune system down. What the vaccine actually does is cause the body to be in attack mode at all times. Just think about it. You are injecting a germ into the body. The body sees this as something that it must fight. And fight it does. Forever. Then it begins to open the host up to many different auto-immune diseases or just plain illness.

Jean Dodds, DVM, outlines the various reactions dogs can develop after receiving vaccines:

“Typical signs of adverse immune reactions include fever, stiffness, sore joints and abdominal tenderness, susceptibility to infections, central and peripheral nervous system disorders or inflammation, collapse with auto-agglutinated red blood cells and jaundice, or generalized pinpoint hemorrhages or bruises. Liver enzymes may be markedly elevated, and liver or kidney failure may accompany bone marrow suppression. Furthermore, recent vaccination of genetically susceptible breeds has been associated with transient seizures in puppies and adult dogs, as well as a variety of autoimmune diseases including those affecting the blood, endocrine organs, joints, skin and mucosa, central nervous system, eyes, muscles, liver, kidneys, and bowel.”

Dr. Dodds goes on to say that over-vaccination significantly increases the risk of adverse reactions. “When an adequate immune memory has already been established, there is little reason to introduce unnecessary antigen, adjuvant, and preservatives by administering booster vaccines,” she confirms. Tittering annually to see whether or not a dog actually needs a booster is a far safer approach. Most vaccines will last for years, if not a lifetime, and boosters are only needed if animal’s immune response falls below acceptable levels.

So before you get another round of shots for your Lacy, do some research, and think of Dr. Loops’ advice on logically vaccinating your dog:

“Risk of exposure should be the main guideline for consideration of whether to vaccinate and what to vaccinate against. If your cats are indoor only, or if your dogs’ outside activities are on a leash or within a fenced area under supervision, there is little risk. The other considerations for a vaccine’s use are its proven safety, its effectiveness, and whether the disease so serious or life-threatening that vaccinating is necessary. Remember, VACCINES ARE NOT HARMLESS. Only vaccinate if the threat is real.”

This article was written by Betty Leek, a member of the National Lacy Dog Association Board of Directors, proprietor of the National Lacy Dog Registry and champion of holistic dog care.