Sunday, December 9, 2012

Vaccine wankery from well-meaning people

In case my comment gets removed (and so no one need suffer by missing a piece of wisdom from yours truly). Last week I spent a bit of my time on a comment in response to this blog post .

Here it is. Enjoy:

I don't disagree that an indoor-only pet may not need a rabies vaccine - rabies isn't like panleuk or upper respiratory infections that can be tracked in on your shoes, for example. But the risks from vaccines in general are very small. Why such the freak out? The links you provided just go to highly biased and non-scientific "opinion" websites. Not very convincing.

And there are not "countless" studies that say that vaccines are "damaging". That's false, or at least dishonest. There *are* well-documented and well-known risks from vaccinating, but serious reactions or development of soft-tissue sarcomas are very, very rare; Statistics we have aren't great, but indicate less than 1 in 100,000 risk. You put your cat in more risk by driving him to the clinic in a motor vehicle.

It's unfair to say that the woman's response meant she "didn't care about the health of animals" and it was "just to make money".

It's standard to vaccinate dogs and cats for rabies between ages 3-4 months based on the recommendations of multiple scientific organizations using current health data. And it's very reasonable for a humane society clinic to insist on vaccinating upon intake for spay/neuter surgery - from their perspective, they're dealing with a lot of animals who may never see a vet again in their life. It's in their best interest, and the best interest of the community as a whole,  to help maintain good herd immunity in the community they're serving.

Here are some less-biased links:

http://www.vet.cornell.edu/FHC/resources/brochure/vaccbr.html

https://www.avma.org/About/AlliedOrganizations/Pages/ownbroch.aspx

http://www.vmd.defra.gov.uk/pdf/ati/Catvaccinesinjsitesarcomas.pdf

2 comments:

K-Koira said...

I believe in a low vaccine schedule for my dogs. One has had vaccine reactions in the past, and the other is allergic to metal (including the metal of the needles used for vaccines), in addition to me believing that we tend to over vaccinate most animals. However, I do have rabies vaccines done every three years. It is the law, and rabies is a super nasty disease with no cure. If I needed any motivation to keep up on these vaccines, having my dog bit by a coyote while out walking would certainly have provided it!

CyborgSuzy said...

Don't get me wrong. I get annoyed at vets who still insist on a yearly vaccine schedule despite current science and industry recommendations. And rare is the vet who will admit that the core vaccines may last for life in many animals without any boostering.