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Collected Studies on Vaccinations

The following articles and links to articles represents a compilation
of information pertaining to vaccinology and health risks associated with vaccines.
They do not imply my opinion, nor do they replace veterinary care.

Vaccinosis: Do your Research Before You Vaccinate by Ed Frawley.
Ed has owned German Shepherds (GSD) for over 45 years. Since 1978 he has bred over 350 litters of German working bloodline GSDs. His dogs work in law enforcement, as SAR dogs, competition Schutzhund dogs, and as family companions and protectors. Visit Mr. Frawley's web site for more articles, books, and to purchase Shock To The System, by Catherine O'Driscoll. Mr. Frawley recommends this reading regarding vacination, pet foot and how to keep pets healthy.

Index to Articles:
Taking The Risk Out Of Puppy Shots, by DOGS NATURALLY

Titres: What Do They Mean?, by DOGS NATURALLY

Combination Shots for Dogs: Weapons of Over-Vaccination, by JAN RASMUSEN

Vaccine Damage In Dogs (part 1), by CATHERINE O'DRISCOLL

Vaccine Damage In Dogs (part 2), by DOGS NATURALLY


Taking The Risk Out Of Puppy Shots
by DOGS NATURALLY on JULY 12, 2011 link to original article

Pet owners are becoming increasingly aware of the long period of duration for vaccines and are vaccinating every three years, or not vaccinating their adult or senior dogs at all. Although it is becoming increasingly obvious that yearly boosters – or any boosters – are at best unnecessary and at worst harmful, the risks and benefits of puppy vaccination are much less clear. If you choose to vaccinate your puppy, you can limit (but not eliminate) the vaccine damage in your puppy by understanding a few things about vaccines and immunity.

As we know, puppies are given a series of several vaccinations, spaced two to four weeks apart. This practice might lead some people – and some vets – to believe that it takes more than one vaccination, or that vaccinations need to be boostered, for the puppy to be protected. This is simply not true: it takes only one vaccination for a puppy to be protected. So why are puppies vaccinated three or four times instead of just once?

Maternal Antibodies
When puppies are very young, they are protected from disease by ingesting their mother’s first milk, called colostrum. This rich milk contains maternal antibodies against disease which the mother passes down to her puppies. The puppy’s immune system is not fully mature, or active, until it is around six months of age, so the maternal antibodies provide passive immunity for each puppy.

When a puppy with a reasonable amount of maternal antibodies is vaccinated, the maternal antibodies will essentially inactivate the vaccine, just as it would a real virus. What they can not do however, is protect the puppy against the other toxins contained in vaccines such as the chemical adjuvants and preservatives which contain harmful chemicals including mercury, aluminum and formaldehyde. The adjuvants are designed to stimulate an exaggerated immune response, to make certain that the body responds to the small amount of virus contained in the vaccine. Unfortunately, this heightened reaction can also cause autoimmune disorders which are affecting an alarming number of dogs and can include allergies, cancer, thyroid disease, digestive diseases, joint disease and a rather long laundry list of common afflictions.

Vets and pet owners used to believe that ‘more is better’ when applying vaccines, but we now know that there are very real dangers associated with vaccination. So, when designing a puppy vaccination schedule, the goal is to catch the small window in time when the maternal antibodies are low enough that they will not block the vaccine, but the puppy is young enough that he is not put in unnecessary danger from exposure to viruses in the environment.

Maternal antibodies weaken over time but the rate of weakening differs between different dogs and even different breeds. The maternal antibodies for Distemper are fairly predictable and are usually low enough for vaccination to be effective at 8 or 9 weeks of age. The maternal antibodies for Parvo however, are much less predictable in their decline, and can last as long as 26 weeks in some dogs.

This lack of predictability is why puppies are vaccinated every two to four weeks until 16 weeks of age: vets are trying to catch the window in time when the maternal antibodies are low enough for the vaccine to be accepted. If you are concerned about the risks of vaccination – and you should be – then this vaccine schedule really doesn’t make much sense as vaccinations may be given too soon or after the puppy is already protected.

Intelligent Vaccination
Noted immunologist
Dr. Ronald Schultz has addressed this issue and recommends a minimal vaccine program that includes one vaccination for Parvo, Distemper and Adenovirus, given at 12 weeks of age. Twelve weeks is not an arbitrary number – it is the earliest age where a combination parvo/distemper vaccine will have the greatest chance of protecting puppies.

Pfizer performed an interesting field study in 1996. C. Hoare, P. DeBouck and A. Wiseman assessed vaccinated puppies and split them into two groups. Group A received a single vaccination at 12 weeks and Group B received a first vaccine between 8 to 10 weeks and a second at 12 weeks. When titers were measured, 100% of the puppies vaccinated once at 12 weeks seroconverted whereas only 94% of the puppies in Group B seroconverted – despite receiving two vaccines as opposed to one. It would appear that if the first vaccine is given too early it could, in some cases, block the the second vaccine. So vaccinating your puppy twice not only increases his risk for adverse reactions to the vaccine, it appears to make vaccination less effective overall.

Vanguard also tested the Parvovirus response in their combination vaccine. They vaccinated puppies at 6 weeks, 9 weeks and 12 weeks of age and then measured their response to the vaccine by measuring their titers to Parvovirus. At 6 weeks, only 52% of the puppies had seroconverted, meaning that the puppies vaccinated at 6 weeks of age would get all of the risk from the vaccine and none of the benefit because their maternal antibodies inactivated the vaccine. At 9 weeks, 88% of the puppies showed a response to the vaccine. At 12 weeks, 100% of the puppies were protected.

It appears that 12 weeks would be the magic number where vaccines have a nearly 100% chance of working, meaning that your puppy should only need one – for his entire life. Dr. Schultz has done similar research with the distemper vaccine.

In his study at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, designed to mimic an animal shelter environment, Dr. Schultz vaccinated with one dose of Distemper vaccine just four hours prior to the puppies being placed in a room with Distemper-infected/diseased dogs. All of the puppies (which were vaccinated at 12 weeks), were protected against distemper in this challenge study.

Although two and even 3 doses of vaccine were the original recommendations made in the AAHA 2003 Canine Vaccine Guideline, the research shows that the series of vaccinations is unnecessary. Puppies vaccinated once at 12 weeks of age with a high titer vaccine have a virtually 100% chance of being protected. If you feel you must vaccinate your puppy but want to reduce the risk as much as possible, vaccinating once at 12 weeks is a safe and effective approach. If you are not comfortable with just one vaccine, have your vet run a titer test three weeks after the vaccination. If there is circulating antibody (any amount will do), it is highly likely he has seroconverted and he will be protected for life. If you are not sure of this fact, you might want to read this article.

It is important to note that if you wait until 12 weeks of age to vaccinate your puppy, you should keep him away from areas where there is a lot of dog traffic. One such area is the vet’s office! If you must bring your puppy under 12 weeks to the vet, it is important to carry him in and out as this is likely the most likely place for him to pick up viruses. Your best bet is to get the first appointment of the day when you know the floors and tables will be at their cleanest. Despite the heavy vaccination schedules, 28% of vaccinated puppies still get Parvovirus. Part of the reason is that they are exposed to the vet’s office where it is highly likely that he will come into contact with Parvovirus or shed virus from vaccinated dogs on the property.

Vaccination has the very real risk of creating chronic, debilitating disease. Most vets and dog owners do not see the connection because it can take weeks, months or years after vaccination for these diseases to develop. Many holistic vets and dog owners avoid vaccinations completely. If you are not comfortable with this approach, the next best thing you can do to protect your puppy is to vaccinate intelligently. Needlessly stressing your puppy’s immune system with vaccinations every two to four weeks is no longer a safe option for many dog owners. Find a vet who agrees with this approach and you will reduce the risk of autoimmune disease in your puppy – now and in the future. ||    go to top of page

Titres: What Do They Mean?
by DOGS NATURALLY on DECEMBER 9, 2010 Link to article

Many vets and pet owners are fond of using titres to determine whether a dog requires re-vaccination with the understanding that a low titre equals low immunity. Wouldn’t it be nice if that were true, but unfortunately it is not. The ability of titres to accurately measure immunity is limited because it measures only a portion of the body’s immune function.

Viruses can not replicate on their own and must invade our bodies and hijack our cells and cellular machinery to replicate. This means that once a virus invades our body, it is in our own cells. The defense system against these viruses is twofold and can be divided into cellular immunity and humoral immunity.

As the name implies, cellular immunity works on a cellular level where T cells are able to detect which of our cells contain the unwanted virus and work to destroy it. When our T cells are activated against a virus, they file the information away for future use and this allows them to respond much quicker the next time the body is faced with the virus. These cells are always reproducing and they pass this memory on to their ‘children’ and this memory exists for life. This explains how we are immune to many viruses after getting them once.

Humoral immunity is like the front line troops that work outside the cellular fortress: it is the first line of defense. Humoral immunity occurs in the body fluids where B cells float around on sentry duty. When B cells come into contact with antigens (for example, proteins from a virus), they activate antibodies which identify and neutralize foreign proteins. Each antibody is responsible for a different antigen, so some might be responsible for distemper, some for parvovirus, etc. After an antibody is successful at neutralizing any antigens, it will float around the body for years, working as a sentry. Like T cells, B cells develop a memory which allows them to respond quicker and with more force the next time they come across the same virus.

A titre is capable of measuring only a small part of the active immune system: the circulating antibodies. If a titre is high, it is a good assumption that the immune system is perfectly capable of a successful response to the antigen in question. So if your dog has a high titre for parvo, it is extremely unlikely that he will suffer the disease, even if he is exposed to parvovirus. If there are parovovirus antibodies circulating in his system, then the immune system is fully armed and ready to protect him.

What if the circulating antibodies are low? Does that mean that immunity is low? Well, the answer is no. Immunity is an all or nothing thing: a dog is either immune or he is not. There is no grey area or sliding scale. According to Dr. Ronald Schultz, any amount of titre means your dog is protected.

If a titre is zero, it really has no predictive value. Memory cells exist for the life of the animal but circulating antibodies may or may not. Just because circulating antibodies are low (and therefore the titre is low), does not mean that your dog can not fight infection if exposed to parvovirus (or any other virus). There may not be circulating antibodies present, but the memory cells are there and waiting to launch a quick and powerful attack on parvovirus antigens, activating the antibodies and neutralizing any threat.

Based on this, what is the predictive value of a titre? Well, any amount of titre has a very good predictive value. If a there is any circulating antibody present, then your dog is either suffering from the disease or has successfully fought it in the past and can expected to do so in the future without further vaccination. If a titre is zero, then it is of little value as it comes down to guesswork.

In order to avoid the possibility of a negative titre, the best practice is to titre a puppy right after vaccination. If you were to vaccinate a puppy and run a titre about three weeks afterward, it would have wonderful predictive value. If there is any amount of titre, then there are circulating antibodies against the parvo or distemper virus. If this is the case, then it is extremely likely that memory cells will have been produced and your puppy is protected for life. There is no need for further titres and certainly no need for further vaccination. This would be the best use of a titre test as a negative titre would now have predictive value, meaning there was either vaccine failure or passive immunity (maternal antibodies) blocked the vaccine (which is possible for up to 26 weeks of age with parvovirus).

If more vets, breeders and puppy owners used titres in this manner, instead of simply vaccinating at three or four week intervals, trying to catch the period in time when passive immunity is low enough for the vaccine to work, most puppies would only need to be vaccinated once instead of multiple times. It would take a lot of the guesswork out of a vaccine schedule and eliminate the need for unnecessary and potentially dangerous vaccinations. ||    go to top of page

Combination Shots for Dogs: Weapons of Over-Vaccination
by JAN RASMUSEN on JULY 3, 2011 Link to Article

Whombo combos, mumbo jumbos: that’s what veterinarians who understand immunology call combination shots. Unlike a vaccine such as rabies, which contains a single virus, combination vaccines contain multiple “modified live” viruses mixed with various bacteria. Think of them as toxic soups, biochemical wolves in sheep’s clothing. When your vet sends out reminders to bring your dog “up to date on shots,” expect the whombo combo. Beware the wolf.

You’ve probably seen combo shots listed on your vet bill as DHLPP, DHLPPC, DA2LPPC, 5-Way, 6-Way, 7-Way, 7 in 1 or the like. After you learn more about them, you won’t want to see them on a bill again.

Why would your vet use combination shots?

Profit and convenience are the big selling points. Vets in large corporate practices, even those who don’t like combo shots, may be under orders to use them.

I suspect some vets don’t realize (or want to believe) how dangerous these weapons of over-vaccination can be. Pharmaceutical reps, frequent visitors to veterinary clinics, promote the shot’s many benefits for the vets while minimizing potential risks for pets. Adverse reaction reporting is voluntary and rare. The 2007 World Small Animal Veterinary Association (WSAVA) Vaccine Guidelines reports (regarding all vaccines) there is: “gross under-reporting of vaccine-associated adverse events which impedes knowledge of the ongoing safety of these products.” Unless a vet is an avid veterinary journal reader, he/she may be stuck in the mindset of believing shots are safe and that if shots are good, more shots are better.

Proponents say that the combo saves Spot multiple needle pricks, and saves you and your vet time and money. True — but only if vaccinating against multiple diseases is really necessary … and only if expensive adverse reactions don’t occur.

Why should you avoid combination shots?

Immunity given by some vaccine components can last for years, even a lifetime, but other components may give immunity for less a year, yet they’re packaged together.

This is the pharmaceutical equivalent of packaging beef jerky and ice cream together. To keep immunity strong with short-duration vaccines, the long-duration vaccines have to be given again and again needlessly. This exposes your dog repeatedly, for no good reason, to adverse reactions which may include skin diseases, autoimmune disease, allergies and even death. Vets who still, for monetary reasons or ignorance, vaccinate annually find this practice quite convenient. Jab away. But vets who’ve switched to vaccinating every three years — which is still a misunderstanding of current guidelines recommending vaccinating “no more often” than every three years — aren’t using the short-duration vaccines often enough. Either they don’t believe the short-duration shots are really necessary (which is usually true) or they are being negligent and putting your dog at risk.

Some combo components are made from viruses, some are from bacteria, all delivered at once with a dangerous punch.

Dr. Patricia Jordan, author of Mark of the Beast, writes about one manufacturer’s combo shot: “… the absolutely worse adverse vaccine reactions have been noted with … the “mumbo jumbo” polyvalent with several modified live viruses, killed whole bacterins of Leptospirosis, killed corona virus (the vaccine looking for a disease), lots of adjuvant, mercury, aluminum, antibacterial like gentocin, antifungal and fungi stats, proprietary ingredients of whose true identity makes me shudder to even speculate.”

Author Catherine J.M. Diodati wrote about combination shots in her Vaccine Guide for Dogs & Cats: “The number of pathogens plus toxic and carcinogenic chemicals that the animals are exposed to all at once generate an enormous toll on the immune system. The results can be devastating.”

Small dogs and puppies suffer more adverse reactions when receiving multiple antigens at once.

Melissa Kennedy, DVM, PhD, DACVIM wrote in DVM360 on-line magazine: “The likelihood of adverse reactions in dogs has been found to correlate with the size of the dog and the number of inoculations given, with higher risk associated with small size and multiple inoculations.”

Renowned pet vaccination expert Dr. Jean Dodds has written about combo shots (she calls them combo whombos) that they: “can overwhelm the immunocompromised or even a healthy host…. The recently weaned young puppy or kitten being placed in a new environment may be at particular risk.”

This means: no combo shots for small dogs — or any other dog for that matter. And NEVER EVER GIVE ANY OTHER SHOT — ESPECIALLY A RABIES SHOT — WITHIN 3 WEEKS OF A COMBO. This also means no Bordetella given nasally. Giving rabies and Bordetella with a combo could mean as many as 9 shots in one day. Some dogs don’t survive this.

If your dog experiences a reaction to the combo shot, there is no way to determine which antigen caused the reaction and must be avoided in the future.

Determining which antigen caused the reaction is like trying to determine which ingredient is causing an allergic reaction to kibble. It can’t be done.

If all this isn’t bad enough, the components are unnecessary for most adult dogs, the great majority of which have lifetime immunity to the important shots or have no need for other ingredients.

So, exactly what’s in these combination shots?

The ingredients differ, but here are some in the most common combos.

Give me a D! Give me a P!

The D is for distemper and one P is for parvovirus. Your dog very likely has lifetime immunity to both if he has had even one shot for these diseases after 4 months of age. These are important shots, but they needn’t be given again and again. In fact, adult dogs rarely need revaccination for parvovirus and distemper and there is a simple blood test called a titer test that your vet can run to prove immunity.

H stands for hepatitis, a disease virtually nonexistent in North America. Sometimes this is expressed as A2, or adenovirus 2, which gives cross protection to hepatitis. According to the 2006 American Animal Hospital Association Canine Vaccine Task Force Report, it gives immunity for 7 or more years. To protect against the disease reemerging, renowned pet vaccination expert Dr. Ron Schultz recommends giving adenovirus-2 just once after a dog is 16 weeks old.

L is for leptospirosis, a highly-reactive “non-core” shot (says the AVMA, AAHA, AHVMA, and all North American vet schools). Non-core vaccines are to be given only in special cases, not to every dog who trots into the clinic. It often doesn’t even protect against the specific disease strains in your area. Jeffers Pet veterinary supply, a vaccine seller, warns: “Many vets do not recommend vaccinating small dogs or young pups with Lepto. The vaccine is not normally needed and can cause harsh and sometimes fatal reactions. House dogs do not need to be vaccinated for Lepto; adult outside dogs need to be vaccinated for Lepto only if there is a possibility of traveling in the same area as feral animals.”

The other P is for parainfluenza (giving immunity for at least 3 years). It is also a non-core shot and does not protect against the canine flu.

C is for coronavirus, a vaccine specifically “not recommended” by any major vet organization or school. Extremely rare, it’s called “a vaccine looking for a disease.” Diodati reports that the reactions from the shot are more dangerous than the disease itself.
Combination shots are part of the unethical practice of over-vaccination of pets. They should have no place in your dog’s health care regimen. And vets who use them should have no place in your dog’s life.

Did your vet inform you fully about this shot before giving it?

If your dog was given a combo shot, and your vet didn’t explain exactly what was in it, why your dog needed it, why your dog may not have needed certain components, and what adverse reactions they may cause, change vets (and tell him/her why) and report that vet to your state veterinary board for using products not backed by science and not informing you properly. This is the only way things will change. Veterinarians have a legal obligation to obtain your informed consent before vaccinating by fully disclosing benefits and risks of the suggested shot — and alternatives. Of course, had they told you the truth about these shots, you’d probably wouldn’t have consented.

Alternatives to Combo Shots

To avoid the combination shot, you have to take action and be willing to stand up to your vet (or switch vets). Most are reluctant to give up their cash cow. Here’s what to do:

  1. Test titers for parvovirus and distemper. If titers are strong, don’t revaccinate. (If weak, read my article.) Forgo lepto, coronavirus, hepatitis and everything else unless your dog has an urgent, proven need because of the special circumstances of his lifestyle.
  2. Avoid clinics that subscribe to “one size fits all” vaccination even though all vet schools and organizations recommend otherwise.
  3. If you’re vaccinating a puppy, or a young dog with low antibody titers, ask your vet to use a monovalent vaccine (meaning the vial contains only one vaccine). Also, use vials with only one dose to avoid the extra chemicals preventing contamination in multi-dose vials. Three readily available vaccines include: Galaxy Pv (a shot containing only parvovirus, offering 7+ years of immunity) and Galaxy D (a shot containing only distemper, giving 5 or more years of immunity). If those aren’t available, use Intervet Progard Puppy DPV containing both parvovirus and distemper but nothing else.
  4. If your vet won’t purchase monovalent shots (protesting that his distributor doesn’t carry them), purchase them yourself and have your vet give them. Refrigerate until use. Better yet, have them sent to your vet by the reseller. You may not be able to purchase just one vial, but the extra cost is worth the savings from potential adverse reactions.
  5. Better still, find a holistic vet who’ll know how to vaccinate, or not vaccinate, without harming your dog and already use monovalent vaccines.

I asked holistic vet Tamara Hebbler what she thought about combo shots. She responded: “I won’t give them. Ever! You couldn’t pay me enough to use them. It’s like playing Russian Roulette with your dog’s health. The risks are just too great.” I couldn’t have said it better myself. ||    go to top of page

Vaccine Damage In Dogs
May/June 2010 Issue
Link to Article

Part 1
Running Canine Health Concern for the past sixteen years, I have been contacted by hundreds of dog owners who tell me that their dogs became ill within a few hours, days or weeks of a vaccine event. Indeed, I formed Canine Health Concern after three of my own young dogs died of illnesses that were, I believe, vaccine related. However, many official veterinary and government bodies maintain that vaccine reactions are very rare, although it is known in medical and veterinary fields that adverse events are vastly under-reported.

We in the UK are in the middle of a campaign to urge the British government to withdraw one-year vaccine licenses, since four-year vaccines are now available. In their lengthy response, we received a potted history of vaccination and a lot of waffle, but they didn’t actually address the reason for our letter, namely the withdrawal of redundant vaccinations! I suspect a desire to confound us with science and, after many years campaigning, I have no doubt that the British government is in the pockets of the pharmaceutical industry.

This makes it all the more important that every animal guardian understands what they do in the name of love on behalf of their friends. This article summarises but some of the scientific evidence to help you to make informed choices on behalf of your dogs.

Prove it!
The problem is that it’s rarely possible to prove that an individual animal is vaccine damaged, even though the science points towards probability. Scientists use the word ‘anecdotal’ to discount the illness or death of an individual animal and any suspected vaccine link. Further, veterinary vaccine manufacturers might pay veterinary costs associated with illnesses that arise post vaccination, but they frequently deny any culpability (it’s just a “goodwill gesture”), and they frequently make pet owners sign gagging orders before money is handed over – which of course means that they are no longer allowed to talk about their friend in relation to the potential cause of his death or illness.

It is clear to me that both inflammatory (anything with ‘itis’ in its name) and immune-mediated illnesses need to be assessed in relation to previous vaccine events if the full consequences of vaccines are to be understood. We must also consider longer-term effects of repeated vaccination. As you will see, there is much we do not know, but the known science does point the way towards caution – especially since we now know that, once immune, dogs are immune to viral disease for years or even life.

Vaccine datasheets state that they are for use in healthy animals only; this is a licensing requirement. Sick dogs should not be vaccinated – but they routinely are. Intervet’s datasheet for Nobivac DHPPi states: “Immunocompetence of the animal may be compromised by a variety of factors including poor health, nutritional status, genetic factors, concurrent drug therapy and stress.” This refers to some animals being unable to mount an immune response to the vaccine challenge, in which case they can develop diseases such as parvo or distemper from the vaccine. It may also explain why disease outbreaks occur in heavily vaccinated, stressed and malnourished dogs in rescue centres. But there is more to it.The Merck Manual (1) states: “Children with known or suspected immunodeficiency disease should not receive any live virus vaccines, since they could initiate a severe or fatal infection… Patients with either B or T cell immunodeficiencies should not be given live vaccines because of the risk of vaccine-induced illness.”

I wondered how we could tell if our dogs had B and/or T cell immunodeficiencies. Merck states: “Associated features of B cell deficiencies include respiratory or food allergies; features of T cell deficiencies include heart disease; and features of combined T and B cell deficiencies include dermatitis, neurological deterioration and eczema.”

Many vets believe that we should vaccinate animals who exhibit the sort of chronic illness listed above, as they may be more at risk from viral disease. However, it seems, individuals exhibiting features of B and T cell immunodeficiencies might be more at risk of vaccine-induced illness or fatality. Even if your dog ‘just’ has skin problems, a vaccine could kill him.

In December 1988, DVM magazine published a round table debate in which eminent pro-vaccine experts discussed the pros and cons of vaccine use.(2) Dr Ronald Schultz stated: “We have had the idea for years that vaccines, if they don’t do any good, won’t cause harm. I think that’s another concept the veterinarian has to get away from because whether it be modified live or non-infectious, there is the potential to cause harm.”

In the same debate, Dr Ian Tizard stated: “In making a modified live vaccine you make it for an animal that you assume is immunologically normal… There will be a proportion of any popu lation that is not immunologically 100 percent. This can immediately tilt an animal towards disease susceptibility. In addition, a vaccine may not cause frank disease itself. It may cause mild immunosuppression.”

But what are the implications of immunosuppression? The first, of course, is that individuals are more open to infection. One study, for example, showed chicks with a decreased resistance to E coli infection post-vaccination.(3) Another involved a fatal outbreak of salmonellosis in a breeding cattery post- vaccination, and concluded that MLV vaccines may cause transient immunosuppression and should be used with caution because of the possibility of activating sub-clinical opportunist infection. (4)

Vaccines and Cancer
Cancer is another potential sequel to immunosuppression. One paper illustrated how a dog developed mammary cancer when immunosuppressed. (5) Another paper showed how the rubella vaccine in humans can cause immunosuppression for at least one month after vaccination. It also described defective lymphocyte responses post-vaccination. (6) Yet another study concluded that , “when canine distemper virus was combined with canine adenovirus type 1 or canine adenovirus type 2, significant suppression in lymphocyte responsiveness to mitogen occurred. The results indicate that interactions between canine distemper virus and canine adenovirus type 1 or canine adenovirus type 2 are responsible for the polyvalent vaccine induced suppression of lymphocyte responsiveness”. (7)

The implication is cancer, since lymphocytes attack infected and cancerous cells, and vaccines are shown to disable lymphocytes.

It is of course accepted that cats develop vaccine-site sarcomas. Dr Dennis W Macy, stated, “I estimate there are about 22,000 cases of [feline] vaccine- associated tumours per year… it is likely that the more vaccines given in a particular site, and the more vaccines given over time, the higher the chance of sarcoma development.” (8) An Italian study has shown that vaccine-site sarcomas also occur in dogs. (9) But more on cancer later.

Autoantibody Production
The Vaccine Research Group at Purdue University School of Veterinary Medicine conducted several critically important studies to determine if vaccines cause changes in the immune system of dogs that might lead to immune mediated diseases. Their paper was presented to the International Veterinary Vaccines and Diagnostics Conference, July, 1997. Other papers on vaccine- induced autoimmunity are referenced below. (10, 11)

In the Purdue study, a group of Beagles was routinely vaccinated and closely followed for three years with blood and other tests at regular intervals. The blood of all the vaccinated dogs was seen to contain significantly elevated concentrations of antibodies directed against proteins that are present in commercial vaccines as contaminants of the production process. None of the unvaccinated control dogs had similar increases in these antibodies. The contaminated proteins were typically of cow origin, since fetal calf serum is used as a component in the growth media used to grow viruses for vaccine production.

Dog and cow protein are very similar in structure, and the Purdue team felt that antibodies produced by the vaccinated dogs might have cross-reacted with the dogs’ own tissue proteins in a process similar to autoimmunity. The team added that experiments in other animal species suggested that the antibodies might eventually cause disease in the vaccinated animals.

The biochemicals seen to be under attack in this study included fibronectin, laminin, DNA, albumin, Cytochrome C, cardiolipin and collagen. I wondered what the significance of these autoanti- bodies might be.

Fibronectin is a molecule involved in tissue repair, the formation and growth of embryos, blood clotting and cell migration/adhesion. Laminin surrounds muscles, nerves and fat, and is involved in may cellular activities, including the adhesion, spreading, differentiation, polarisation, proliferation and movement of cells. As a layperson, this seems to indicate that the vaccine process scrambles the innate intelligence of cells and threatens tissues and organs.

Albumin is a protein manufactured by the liver which enables fluid to remain in the bloodstream rather than leak into tissues. If albumin gets low, fluid builds up and inflammation can occur in the body. Importantly, fatty acids are carried with the aid of albumin to cells in the body. Fatty acids are the building blocks for lipids, which form all of the membranes around and inside cells. Fatty acids are essential for life, and albumin is essential for their distribution.

Antibodies against Cardiolipin were also found in the Purdue study. Anti-Cardiolipin autoantibodies (ACA) are frequently found in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). They are also found in patients with other autoimmune diseases, as well as in some with no apparent underlying disease. Elevated levels of ACA have been reported to be significantly associated with thrombosis, thrombocytopenia, and recurrent fetal loss, as well as neurological conditions.

Autoantibodies to Cytochrome C contribute to Cytochrome C Oxidase Deficiency, so far thought to be an inherited metabolic disorder. Deficiency of Cytochrone C Oxidase may be limited to the tissues of the skeletal muscles or may affect several tissues, such as the heart, kidney, liver, brain, and/or connective tissue; in other cases it may be systemic. The disorder may be characterised by a generalised weakness of skeletal muscles, abnormalities of the heart and kidneys, and/or abnormally high levels of lactic acid in the blood.

Other forms of Cytochrome C Oxidase deficiency are characterised by progressive degeneration of the brain and dysfunction of other organs of the body, including the heart, kidneys, muscles and liver. Symptoms may include loss of previously acquired motor skills, loss of appetite, vomiting, irritability, and/or seizures.

The Purdue study also found that vaccinated dogs were developing autoantibodies to collagen. About one quarter of all the protein in the body is collagen. It is a major structural protein, forming molecular cables that strengthen the tendons and resilient sheets that support the skin and internal organs. Bones and teeth are made by adding mineral crystals to collagen.

Vaccine Contaminants
Bet Hargreaves is a long-time Cavalier King Charles Spaniel breeder who has noted a correlation between vaccination and the onset of heart disease in her breed. She wrote to Dr Larry Glickman who, with his colleagues, conducted the Purdue study. In his reply he stated: “Our ongoing studies of dogs shows that following routine vaccination, there is a significant rise in the level of antibodies dogs produce against their own tissues. Some of these antibodies have been shown to target the thyroid gland, connective tissue such as that found in the valves of the heart, red blood cells, DNA, etc. I do believe that the heart conditions in Cavalier King Charles Spaniels could be the end result of repeated immunisations by vaccines containing tissue culture contaminants that cause a progressive immune response directed at connective tissue in the heart valves. The clinical manifestations would be more pronounced in dogs that have a genetic predisposition [although] the findings should be generally applicable to all dogs regardless of their breed.”

Dr Glickman, it should be noted, is a strong pro-vaccinator who now works for Fort Dodge. The study dogs were re-homed and no follow-up studies were conducted.

Many species are used in vaccine manufacture, including monkeys, dogs, cats, hamsters, and avian embryos. Bovine serum, used as a carrier in vaccines, was a concern during the BSE outbreak due to potential cross-species infection; foreign serum and animal protein also threaten inflammation and autoimmunity.

Adjuvants such as mercury and aluminium salts are also added to vaccines to increase the immune response. Mercury and aluminium are neurotoxins. In her book, ‘Mark of the Beast’ (12) veterinarian Dr Patricia Jordan discusses the link between the effects of aluminium on the P-53 oncogene and cancer. She says: “The adjuvant aluminum in vaccines is one culprit in mutating the genome and specifically the P53 oncogene, thereby ruining the individual’s ability to stop tumor genesis.” (13)

Cancer Revisited
Having seen an article in which I quote the Purdue study, Andrew Maniotis, Ph.D., Visiting Associate Professor of Bioengineering: Program of tumour mechanics and tissue regeneration, University of Illinois at Chicago, contacted me. He wrote: “I don’t think it is coincidental that two of the molecules that the vets find (especially the tissue-controlling two molecules laminin and fibronectin) that are deregulated in vaccine-induced, cancer-harboring animals, are the same ones we have found reverse, kill, or promote tumours.

“It is logical that these two tissue constructing molecules in the correct or incorrect amounts induce tumor dormancy or killing as we have found, and at different amounts (as when a vaccine disturbs a tissue and fibronectin is produced in abundance while laminin is suppressed) they can, when not in proper amounts, induce tumor growth and metastasis.”

Gary Smith, another cancer researcher, explains in a peer review journal how the inflammatory process (which can be vaccine-induced) can be intimately involved in cancer production and also how it is an essential process in malignancy. (14)

He comments: “Cancer has been described as the wound that never heals. All successful cancers are surrounded by inflammation. Commonly, this is thought to be the body’s reaction to try to fight the cancer, but this is not the case. Infections such as the common cold, the flu, and herpes also cause inflammation, as do vaccines. This type of inflammation is not the body trying to fight the infection. It is the pathogen deliberately causing inflammation in order to hide from the immune system.”

The hypersensitivity or inflammatory reactions commonly associated with vaccination can, therefore, be the beginning of cancer and many other conditions – and not just at injection site. According to Kennel Club research in the UK, one in four pedigree dogs now dies of cancer. ||   go to top of page

Vaccine Damage In Dogs
by DOGS NATURALLY on MAY 30, 2011
May/June 2010 Issue
Linke to Article
Part 2
Genetic Damage?
Perhaps most worryingly, the Purdue study found that the vaccinated dogs were developing autoantibodies to their own DNA, which indicates that we are injecting inheritable damage into animals. According to Cambridge Life Sciences, antibodies directed against native DNA were first detected in the serum of patients with SLE in the 1950s. The presence of anti-DNA autoantibodies is one of the four highly specific serological markers included in the 1982 American College of Rheumatology criteria for the classification of SLE. The more of these antibodies an individual has, the higher the disease activity. Long term risks include renal and central nervous system involvement.
SLE is an autoimmune disease characterised by inflammation and destruction of a variety of tissues. Clinical presentation is varied, but a common feature is the presence of a number of autoantibodies. Canine autoimmune haemolytic anaemia, which also occurs in isolation, can form part of the SLE syndrome. The other common manifestations of SLE are platelet deficiency and inflammation in blood vessels, joints, skin, peripheral nervous system, meninges (which protect the brain and spinal chord) and the thyroid.
A paper entitled ‘Vaccine Associated Immune Mediated Haemolytic Anaemia (IMHA) in the Dog’ (15) states, “This study provides the first clinical evidence for a temporal relationship of vaccine- associated IMHA in the dog.” However, the Merck Manual had made this association earlier.
The study remarked that there was a marked difference in frequency of IMHA between the first month after vaccination and subsequent months which was not seen in the control group. The authors concluded that, because not all cases are reported (none of the cases in their study had been reported), the prevalence of vaccine-associated IMHA is likely to be under estimated.
The seventh edition of the Merck Veterinary Manual states: “Bone marrow suppression with transient (21 day) or chronic/latent erythroid dysplasia, in the presence or absence of thrombocytopenia and neutropenia, Combs’ positive haemolytic anaemia, and immune-mediated thrombocytopenia have been associated with (i.e., may prove to be caused by) both retroviral and parvoviral infection in man and other species. Also, modified live parvovirus vaccines in dogs, and killed feline leukaemia virus vaccine are suspects as causes (in genetically susceptible animals) of such haematological diseases.”
Dr Jean W Dodds, writing in US Dog World, March, 1995, (16) states: “Immune–suppressant viruses of the retrovirus and parvovirus classes have recently been implicated as causes of bone marrow failure, immune-mediated blood diseases, haematologic malignancies (lymphoma and leukemia), dysregulation of humoral and cell-mediated immunity, organ failure (liver, kidney) and autoimmune endocrine disorders – especially of the thyroid gland (thyroiditis), adrenal gland (Addison’s disease) and pancreas (diabetes). Viral disease and recent vaccination with single or combination modified live virus vaccines, especially those containing distemper, adenovirus 1 or 2 and parvovirus, are increasingly recognised contributors to immune-mediated blood diseases, bone marrow failure and organ dysfunction.”
Dr Dodds also stated: “The T-cell leukaemias of human and animals are ex amples of those associated with retroviral infections. The same class of viruses has been associated with the production of autoimmunity and immuno-deficiency diseases. The recent isolation of a retrovirus from a German Shepherd with B-cell leukaemia exemplifies the role of these agents in producing leukaemia and lymphomas in the dog.”
Dr Patricia Jordan has uncovered a very recent scientific paper (Journal of Virology, April 2010, p. 3690-3694, Vol. 84, No. 7) which describes the testing of veterinary vaccines for dogs and cats from both the UK and Japan. Several routinely used vaccines were shown to contain retrovirus contaminants. This study shows that the methods currently employed to screen veterinary vaccines for retroviruses should be re-evaluated. From a pet owner’s perspective, it doesn’t go far enough to alert us to the potential consequences of manufacturing failures.
Vaccine Shedding
I believe that we should also concern ourselves with vaccine shedding. In the DVM round table discussion mentioned earlier, Dr Rude asked whether the shedding of modified live virus vaccine viruses from vaccinated animals have the potential to cause disease in non-vaccinated contact animals of the same species and/or different species. The conclusion was ‘yes’.
The 1988 Concise Oxford Veterinary Dictionary postulates that parvovirus “originated from an attenuated feline enteritis vaccine strain”. (17) The question is whether this was from shed feline vaccine, or injected canine vaccine grown on cats’ kidneys.
It’s also possible that symptoms of viral disease, such as arthritis from parvovirus, might arise from the vaccine process, from shed vaccine, as well as from field infection. (18)
More On Inflammation
A review article in In Practice, Vol 20 No 2, Feb 1998, by Michael Day, senior lecturer in Veterinary Pathology at the University of Bristol (19) states that environmental influences are crucial to the expression of immune mediated disease and that the most important of these is likely to be exposure to microbial antigens following natural infection or vaccination. Mr. Day divides immune mediated disease into four main groups – hypersensitivity diseases, autoimmune diseases, immune system neoplasia (the formation of tumors) and immunodeficiency diseases.
In a letter to Veterinary Times during July 1999, veterinarian Lyn Thomson responded, “This would indicate that veterinarians must consider and report the whole range of immune mediated diseases post vaccination, including flea allergy, atopic dermatitis, dietary hypersensitivity, contact hypersensitivity, asthma, autoimmune diseases, lymphoma, lymphoid leukaemia, multiple myeloma, plasmcytoma, hisiiocytoma, thymoma, and immunodeficiency disease.”
A paper appearing in the British Veterinary Journal states that dogs with rheumatoid arthritis showed higher anti-heat shock protein antibody levels in their sera and synovial fluids compared to control dogs. There was a significant correlation between anti HSP65 and antibodies to canine distemper virus, and the paper discussed the relevance of the presence of canine distemper virus within the joints. Since vaccines inject modified live distemper virus into the dog, this research should be of concern. Shed attenuated live vaccine might also be considered in this regard. And it’s worth noting that the high antibody titers to distemper that we are so pleased with might also play a role in our dogs’ decreasing mobility. (20) Rheumatoid arthritis is, of course an autoimmune condition in which there is inflammation of joints and progressive erosion of cartilage and bone, which reflects the autoantibodies to collagen found in the Purdue study.
In 2000, research showed that poly-arthritis and other diseases like amyloidosis in dogs were linked to combined MLV vaccines. (21) Dr Ronald Schultz is quoted in Vet Med Today: “Immune-mediated disease has developed in human beings following vaccination, as was seen with cases of Guillain-Barre syndrome following swine flu vaccinations, and rheumatoid arthritis following influenza vaccination”. (22)
In the 1996 Canine Health Concern vaccine survey, we found that a high per centage of dogs with arthritis in the survey were diagnosed with the condition in a cluster nine months after a vaccine event.
Dermatitis, another inflammatory disease, has also been linked to vaccination. A study conducted by Frick and Brooks in 1983 showed that dogs predisposed to develop atopic dermatitis didn’t develop this hereditary condition when exposed to an allergen and later vaccinated. But a second group who were vaccinated before being exposed to the allergen did develop the condition, indicating that vaccines can play a role in skin disease. The trial group also developed conjunctivitis.
Merck also tells us that serum (which is used in vaccines) can cause Type III hypersensitivity reactions, including an inflammatory skin condition involving painful local lesions leading to tissue necrosis (tissue death), as well as wide- spread vascular injury.
Although rare, I have come across three cases of dogs whose skin began to split post-vaccination. One case involved a Golden Retriever called Spangler. Some of Spangler’s dead and dying skin was sent by his vet to an independent laboratory, which could neither confirm nor deny that his death was related to vaccination. Very early reports of vaccine adverse effects incidently, talk widely of leprosy developing in those who were vaccinated.
Neurological Damage
The Merck Manual describes encephalitis as “an acute inflammatory disease of the brain due to direct viral invasion or to hypersensitivity initiated by a virus or other foreign protein. Secondary encephalitis, usually a complication of viral infection, is considered to have an immunologic mechanism. Examples are the encephalitides following measles, chickenpox, rubella, smallpox vaccination, vaccinia, and many other less well defined viral infections.”
Encephalitis (inflammation of the brain which can include lesions throughout the brain and central nervous system) has been shown to appear in dogs after vaccination. (23) Another paper in Veterinary Record states: “Post-vaccinal encephalitis is a recognised complication of the administration of certain strains of live attenuated canine distemper vaccine. (24)
According to Braund’s Clinical Neurology in Small Animals: Localisation, Diagnosis and Treatment, “post vaccinal canine distemper encephalitis occurs in young animals, especially those less than six months of age. It has been recognised as a disease entity for a number of years, and is believed to be association with vaccination using live virus.” (25)
Merck states: “Symptoms of encephalitis may be associated with cerebral dysfunction (alteration in consciousness, personality change, seizures, paresis) and cranial nerve abnormalities.”
Think of all the epileptic dogs, and all of the dogs showing aggression, and start asking questions about the onset of these problems in relation to vaccine events. If you are going to vaccinate, keep detailed, dated, records of your dog – his mental and physical health, and veterinary interventions.
Epilepsy is listed by Merck as a symptom of encephalitis, and we know that encephalitis can be vaccine-induced. Merck states: “noninfectious causes of encephalitis include … vaccine reactions: many”. It adds that epilepsy can be caused by “CNS infections (meningitis, Aids, encephalitis) and also by a foreign serum or drug allergy, or by convulsive or toxic agents”. See also Ballerini, Rico B et al., Neurological Complications of Vaccination With Special Reference to Epileptic Syndrome (Review Neurol, Jul-Aug 1973; 43: 254-258).
According to the Society for Companion Animal Studies, “epilepsy is the commonest neurological disorder seen in dogs and constitutes a major health problem. (26) “It is probable that between 30,000 and 366,000 of the 6.1 million dogs in the UK suffer from epilepsy.”
Many dog owners have noted personality changes in their dogs shortly after vaccination, including nervous, worrying disposition; short attention span; and aggression. The Canine Health Concern survey found that high percentages of these conditions, where they existed in survey dogs, were reported to have started within three months of vaccination. The study is detailed in What Vets Don’t Tell You About Vaccines, Catherine O’Driscoll. (27)
Scientists other than the politically, but not morally or scientifically, discredited Dr Andrew Wakefield have discovered a vaccine-autism (neurological) link. For example, the Department of Paediatrics, Tokyo Medical University, Japan, found the measles virus in patients with inflammatory bowel disease and autism. (28) The sequences obtained from the patients with ulcerative colitis and children with autism were consistent with vaccine strains.
In another paper, researchers found a correlation between the Hepatitis B triple series vaccine and developmental disability in US children aged 1-9 years. (29) The myelin sheath may also be pertinent in relation to vaccine damage. Merck states: “Many congenital metabolic disorders affect the developing myelin sheath. Unless the innate biochemical defect can be corrected or compensated for, permanent, often widespread, neurological deficits results.”
But vaccines can also play their part. Merck adds: “In acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (post infectious encephalitis), demyelination can occur spontaneously, but usually follows a viral infection or inoculation (or very rarely a bacterial vaccine), suggesting an immunologic cause.”
I find it interesting that on the one hand, demyelination is deemed a congenital problem, but on the other it is clearly laid at the vaccine table. This makes me ask whether dog breeders are responsible for many so-called genetic problems in dogs, or whether it’s because we vaccinate puppies before their true personalities and health status can be assessed.
Paresis is another potential sequel to encephalitis; Merck describes paresis as: “Muscular weakness of neural origin. It is usually regarded as a state of partial or incomplete paralysis, resulting in a deficit of voluntary movement. Paresis may result from lesions at any level of the descending motor innervation pathway from the brain.” In addition to my own four-year-old Golden Retriever, Oliver, presenting with paresis of both hind limbs before dying suddenly, I have been presented with many other anecdotal reports of dogs suffering paresis shortly after vaccination where the vets suspected no link to their vaccines, and no adverse event reports were filed.
Cumulative Damage
“There is a real concern that vaccines may predispose certain genetically susceptible individuals to immune-mediated disease,” says Dr. Ronald Schultz. “The more antigens we administer, the higher the potential for hypersensitiv- ity. Type I is IgE mediated; type 2, cy- totoxic antibody mediated; type 3, im- mune-complex mediated; and type 4 cellular mediated. All of these hyper- sensitivities are natural parts of the immune response, but they cause a certain amount of tissue damage. That damage may occur in the kidney, liver, or as was the case with canine adenovi- rus 1, in the eye. In many cases it is impossible to show a direct connection between the damage and a vaccine, since it is the accumulation of many antigens over many years that results in clinically evident disease.” (30)
The World Small Animal Veterinary Association Vaccination Guidelines Group states: “We should aim to vaccinate every animal, and to vaccinate each individual less frequently.” (31)
My own view is that we should take on board Dr Schultz’s statements made as a result of his duration of immunity studies, namely that, “Once an animal is immune to viral disease, he is immune for years or life”. Dr Schultz was motivated to conduct his studies when he reflected that children didn’t need vaccinating every year, so why do dogs? It is also worth noting that no science has ever been put forward to justify annual vaccination, or three-yearly vaccination for that matter.
With regard to the controversial leptospirosis vaccine and its known ability to stimulate anaphylaxis and encephalitis, its poor record of efficacy, and the fact that leptospirosis is a relatively rare disease, I go along with Dr Schultz’s own views that this vaccine comes with more risks than benefits, and that its use is questionable. In view of the risks of any vaccine, informed guardian consent would seem sensible.
And finally, I am happy to state publicly that I do not vaccinate any of the dogs in my care. My own researched belief is that vaccines cause more death and suffering than the diseases we vaccinate against. I do, however, hold firm to the principles of free choice and informed guardian consent. Without the information to base choices upon, no one is giving their informed consent. They are merely relying upon the knowledge, training, and financial needs of the person whose advice they follow.
The Merck Manual of Diagnostics and Therapy, sixteenth edition.
DVM vaccine roundtable, Safety, efficacy heart of vaccine use; experts discuss pros and cons. DVM magazine, December 1988.
Marek’s disease vaccines cause temporary U- lymphocyte dysfunction and reduced resis- tance to infection in chicks” Avian Pathology, Vol 21, issue 4, Dec 1992, pages 621-631.)
JAVMA Vol 214, No 1, January 1 1999. fatal outbreak of salmonellosis in a breeding cat- tery following the use of a high titre modified live panleucopaenia virus vaccine
Cancer Research 30, October 1970, ‘Spontaneous Development of Mammary Adenocarcinoma following Prolonged Immu- nosuppression in the Dog’.
(Cytokine profile after rubella vaccine inocula- tion: evidence of the immunosuppressive effect of vaccination, Mediators of Inflammation, 12(4), 203-207 (August 2003)).
Effects of Vaccines on the Canine Immune System”, (Tom R. Phillips, Jean L. Jensen, Michael J. Rubino, Wen C. Yang and Ronald D. Schultz, Can J Vet Res 1989; 53: 154-160)
JAVMA, Vol 207, No 4, August 15, 1995 – Current Concepts, are we vaccinating too much?
JFM Series A, August 2003, vol 50, no 6, pp 286-291
Negina IuP, Comparative study of auto- antibody formation following immunization with different types of vaccines. ZH Mikrobiol Epidemiol Immunobiol 1980 May; (5): 69-72.
Romanov, UA et al, Role of auto-immune proc- esses in the pathogenesis of post vaccinal lesions of the nervous system. ZH Mikrobiol Epidemiol Immunobiol 1977 Oct; 10: 80-93.
Mark of the Beast, Dr Patricia Monahan Jordan

Vets On Vaccines
Written by Dogs Naturally Magazine on April 25, 2012. Posted in Featured Articles
By Catherine O’Driscoll - March/April 2012 Issue