Dog vaccinations in most U.S. territories are similar. A rabies vaccine is required by law. If your dog bites someone, even playfully, and the person reports it, the dog has to be quarantined for 10-14 days and examined by a vet to prove they are free of the disease. That is even if they have a current vaccination. If they are not current with their rabies vaccine, they have to be quarantined at a veterinarian’s office or animal control center. This obviously causes major stress for both the dog and the owners. For this reason alone it is highly recommended that you keep your dog current on their rabies vaccine. In most states they allow the 3 year vaccine.
If your dog is older or sick you can usually avoid the rabies vaccine if you have a titer test done. This proves whether your dog has enough antibodies in his/her system to protect them against rabies or not. Be sure to check with your vet for local ordinances on this.
When you adopt a puppy, you will obviously need to go through a series of vaccinations to keep them free from common illnesses. Your vet will give you a list of suggested vaccines and a schedule for giving them.
You will hear about distemper shots, hepatitis, parvovirus, para influenza, leptospirosis, Lyme disease and corona virus vaccines in addition to the rabies vaccine. NEVER subject your pet to combo vaccines. This is when the inoculation covers 6 or 7 different diseases at once. Many people think that this is a good idea because the dog only gets one needle poke for several different things. This practice will blow your dog’s immune system to smithereens. DON’T ever do this.
It is much better to talk with your vet and decide which vaccines are actually necessary for your area and spread them out, one by one over a period of time. This gives your pup’s system a chance to recover.
After you have given all the recommended vaccinations, DON’T revaccinate each year. If you feel you need to, do a titer test each year for distemper, etc…If your dog had his/her initial vaccines, you may find that your they don’t ever need revaccinating.
Dr. Pedro Rivera claims vaccinosis is the reaction to chronic revaccinating. It may not show up for months or even a few years but it may still be festering inside your dog’s body. He says he has seen hypothyroidism, ear infections, immune-system diseases, joint problems and behavior issues develop as reactions to over-vaccinating.
In the last 15-20 years the increase in dogs being diagnosed with cancer has sky rocketed. Combo-dog vaccinations and repeat dog vaccinations have been blamed for a lot of the increase. The vaccines damage the dog’s immune system so severely; they are at a much greater risk of contracting chronic illnesses.