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Discussion Starter #1
I know many on here have asked these same questions before. I have searched back on many threads and answers posted, as well as many articles, including Dr. Dodds! I think I have it all figured out, but I just want to double check one last time, so I am asking again.

Roxy is due for her 1st annual booster. The ONLY two vaccines I should have her vaccinated for (besides Rabies) is Canine Distemper and Parvovirus. Correct? When I call the vet to set up her appointment, do I need to tell them in advance that I only want her vaccinated for those two? (I don't know how shots work, so I'm not sure if that is something they need to know in advance or not...)

Should I have her titered for these instead of being vaccinated? I'm sure most of you will say it's just personal preference ... but what would YOU do, or what HAVE you done?


If my vet will do an exemption for the rabies vaccine, should I just have the titer done? Roxy can just have ONE blood test, and they can titer for everything, correct? Rabies + all of the others?
 

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If you are willing to titer for all 3, then by all means - yes! Do it! The rabies is one titer and the distemper/parvo is another titer. They can draw blood for both at the same time of course.

Boosters don't booster anything. You are either immune or you aren't. However, the memory cells have to be activated to show proper immunity. So before you have the titers drawn, walk her around a Petsmart or a park where other dogs have walked around for a few days before the test. This gets her immune system up and running so the titer will be accurate. If she's just been in your backyard and not exposed to other dogs at all, there's a chance the titer may come back unacceptably low - even though she DOES have immunity! (I hope that makes sense). This is one downfall of the titers. A dog could be successfully immune against parvo/distemper/rabies but it might not show on the titer test if the memory cells are dormant and haven't been activated. So hedge your bets and get her out and about before having the test done for the most accurate results.

After the titer tests are returned showing adequate immunity response, file them away and re-titer in 3 years.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks Tracy! I knew I could count on you to give me some feedback!

I called the vet on Thursday. The girl I talked to on the phone did not know that much information about titers. She also did not know if they did rabies exemptions either. She said she would have someone call me back. I am waiting to hear back from someone! If they do not call me by Sunday, then I will be calling them first thing Monday morning!

I made Roxy's appointment for Wednesday anyways, because I am assuming that once I talk to someone who knows what they are talking about, then they will tell me that they at least do titers!

I will keep you informed and I may have more questions then! :)
 

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I took Rio for her rabies this week. We live in PA so we have the 1 year Rabies first dose and then next year she would get a 3 year Rabies. At this time I spoke to the vet, who isn't my normal vet as the lady has expanded her practice and brought in an older man and a freshly graduated younger lady. The other day I had the newly graduated younger lady. When I asked her about Titer for rabies she was confused. She said even if I went through with the Titer because of Pennsylvania Law regarding Rabies, regardless the Titer results she would still have to give the rabies vac. I explained to her we had plenty of time to look into this, no disrespect, but I wanted to consult with the lady who started the practice before we gave the 3 year and get clarity on the titer, PA law and how it relates to our little one. She was fine with that but she said as she interprets it, she has a legal obligation to vaccinate regardless of titer results. I said as I understand it she is either protected from rabies and the titer shows that or she is not. If she is protected the titers shows that and there is no need to inject her again. She said the law says its mandatory. So I need to speak with Lori (owner) see what she says and also research on my own.

I am not put off by this. This lady has freshly graduated and is learning, no shame in that. I am learning too, but I want to make sure I have a firm understanding so when I go back I can discuss this intelligently. If anyone can help me with this I would appreciate it.
 

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Your vet is correct. Rabies is mandatory. She can not give an exemption for rabies based on titer results. The only exemption I am aware of is for a reaction or if the dog is ill. A titer will prove immunity. However, the law is the law. Many people are lobbying to get an acceptable rabies titer accepted instead of giving the vaccine. However, until your local and state ordinances allow that - rabies is a required vaccine.

Brody has an exemption from rabies because he had a reaction to the shot. I do titers to continue to prove immunity. He had one rabies vaccine when he was 6 months old. I will not vaccinate him again and I am compliant with the law.
 

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Thank you ~ I learn something every day. The lady who owns the practice is totally amazing ~ I am really confident the new vets she brought in to join her are great and/or on their way to amazing as well. I haven't met the older gentleman yet butit was very cool being in the room with the new younger gal, you could really tell she enjoyed what she does and wants to give everyone her best, not to mention she was very inspiring for my daughter.
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
Oh! I guess I was confused by a rabies titer too. So you can't get an exemption based on titer results. That is just to show immunity, but even if immune, the shot is still necessary! Got it now! Thank you for clarifying!
 

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Oh! I guess I was confused by a rabies titer too. So you can't get an exemption based on titer results. That is just to show immunity, but even if immune, the shot is still necessary! Got it now! Thank you for clarifying!
Yes. If, for example, you would get the rabies vaccine for Roxy and then later that evening she would break out in hives, that would qualify as a vaccine reaction. You would then tell your vet that she had a reaction that you treated with benadryl. That would be noted on her records. She would then be exempt from having to get the vaccine again. You could then titer to show continued immunity.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Can you get a titer done and the rabies shot done on the same day? Or would that be too much?
 

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The titer is just a blood test. If you are going to vaccinate for rabies anyway, then you don't need a titer.
 

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Ques. on vacc.

Hi. I'm Tina and I'm new to this forum and you seem so knowledgeable about vaccinations. I have a question. Lulu is 4 yrs old. and I have always used the same vet with her and just done as I was told because I believe him to be a good vet that many people in my area use. 6 months ago when my mom got her Maltese puppy, a very helpful breeder told me to beware of certain vaccination--I think it was the bordetello and lepto?? Anyway, when I asked my vet, he says he uses a 5 in 1 vaccine. Of course he told me all the reasons that is best, but is that wrong? And is Lulu getting too old for vaccination? She never leaves our house except to go to groomer. Thank you for your advice.
 

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I have a question about the rabies vaccine. I used to live in CA and I couldn't get a vaccine exemption for Venus. Our vet in CA told us that we shouldn't get Venus more rabies vaccines because she lost a spot of hair after she got the rabies vaccine, but he couldn't give her an exemption because of CA law. Maybe if her reaction was more than cosmetic he could have given me an exemption.

I now live in NV and dogs can get an exemption to the rabies vaccine. However, Venus's reaction may not qualify because it is considered cosmetic. I haven't had time to ask vets around here if they would give an exemption for Venus. I really don't want her getting another bald spot. It doesn't look good and she has such little fur anyway. The bald spot might fill in someday because it was a lot bigger. It has been nearly 2 years since she had the rabies vaccine that gave her the bald spot and the spot is not all the way filled in yet. I was told that it may or may not fill in completely.

I want to get Venus a license, but I won't if that means she has to keep getting a rabies vaccine.
 

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Hi. I'm Tina and I'm new to this forum and you seem so knowledgeable about vaccinations. I have a question. Lulu is 4 yrs old. and I have always used the same vet with her and just done as I was told because I believe him to be a good vet that many people in my area use. 6 months ago when my mom got her Maltese puppy, a very helpful breeder told me to beware of certain vaccination--I think it was the bordetello and lepto?? Anyway, when I asked my vet, he says he uses a 5 in 1 vaccine. Of course he told me all the reasons that is best, but is that wrong? And is Lulu getting too old for vaccination? She never leaves our house except to go to groomer. Thank you for your advice.
If Lulu were mine, I would draw a distemper/parvo titer and go from there. At 4 years old and having multiple vaccines, she is most certainly immune. She can't get MORE immune. You are either immune or you are not. Bordetella (kennel cough) and lepto are both known for having BAD vaccine reactions. I would NOT give lepto nor bordetella. Do a titer and it will show you adequate immunity and you can stop giving vaccines.

I have a question about the rabies vaccine. I used to live in CA and I couldn't get a vaccine exemption for Venus. Our vet in CA told us that we shouldn't get Venus more rabies vaccines because she lost a spot of hair after she got the rabies vaccine, but he couldn't give her an exemption because of CA law. Maybe if her reaction was more than cosmetic he could have given me an exemption.

I now live in NV and dogs can get an exemption to the rabies vaccine. However, Venus's reaction may not qualify because it is considered cosmetic. I haven't had time to ask vets around here if they would give an exemption for Venus. I really don't want her getting another bald spot. It doesn't look good and she has such little fur anyway. The bald spot might fill in someday because it was a lot bigger. It has been nearly 2 years since she had the rabies vaccine that gave her the bald spot and the spot is not all the way filled in yet. I was told that it may or may not fill in completely.

I want to get Venus a license, but I won't if that means she has to keep getting a rabies vaccine.
I don't consider loss of hair that never grows back as a minor cosmetic problem. That would be a significant rabies reaction. I would get a rabies titer and then ask for an exemption. It's pretty hard to argue with evidence that the dog is already immune, especially since she has had a reaction severe enough to stop the growth of hair.
 

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If Lulu were mine, I would draw a distemper/parvo titer and go from there. At 4 years old and having multiple vaccines, she is most certainly immune. She can't get MORE immune. You are either immune or you are not. Bordetella (kennel cough) and lepto are both known for having BAD vaccine reactions. I would NOT give lepto nor bordetella. Do a titer and it will show you adequate immunity and you can stop giving vaccines.
Thank you so much. I had never even heard of a titer before joining this forum, and I had never questioned why NOT to vaccinate annually as my vet had been doing before talking with that breeder. Frankly, what you have said makes --I have a lot of research to do.
 

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If Lulu were mine, I would draw a distemper/parvo titer and go from there. At 4 years old and having multiple vaccines, she is most certainly immune. She can't get MORE immune. You are either immune or you are not. Bordetella (kennel cough) and lepto are both known for having BAD vaccine reactions. I would NOT give lepto nor bordetella. Do a titer and it will show you adequate immunity and you can stop giving vaccines.



I don't consider loss of hair that never grows back as a minor cosmetic problem. That would be a significant rabies reaction. I would get a rabies titer and then ask for an exemption. It's pretty hard to argue with evidence that the dog is already immune, especially since she has had a reaction severe enough to stop the growth of hair.

I thought it was a serious reaction too, but I've had two vets tell me that it's cosmetic. I haven't asked any vets here in NV because I keep forgetting to ask for an exemption, and I haven't been here too long. I may have to do a lot of phone calls to different vets to see which ones will do an exemption for hairloss. The only thing is that the vet here may not believe that it was a rabies vaccine that caused the bald spot. The bald spot showed up 2-3 months after Venus got the vaccine, but the vet who gave it to Venus said that it was the rabies vaccine that caused the bald spot. I don't know if he noted it in her records or not.

I thought that if Venus had hairloss once, then she could react to another rabies vaccine in a different way that is even worse. I told the CA vet that she even got a bump at the vaccine administration shot, but he said that is common. He is the one who advised me not to get her anymore rabies vaccines because the likelihood that she would get rabies is extremely small.

Is a titer always needed before getting an exemption?
 

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Thank you so much. I had never even heard of a titer before joining this forum, and I had never questioned why NOT to vaccinate annually as my vet had been doing before talking with that breeder. Frankly, what you have said makes --I have a lot of research to do.
I encourage everyone to do their research! :) Here's a good place to start ....

Are We Over Vaccinating Our Pets? by Loretta Baughan

Lifelong Immunity – Why Vets Are Pushing Back | Dogs Naturally Magazine

Duration of Immunity

PET VACCINATION  An Institutionalised Crime by Catherine O'Driscoll

Science of Vaccine Damage
 

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Is a titer always needed before getting an exemption?
No. Some vets will give you an exemption based on her reaction to the previous series. A titer just "proves" immunity if you wanted a piece of paper that showed her immune status.
 

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I encourage everyone to do their research! :) Here's a good place to start ....
I appreciate the info. I also just changed vets to the same one the breeder who gave me that info uses. I had to see him for the first time day before yesterday because Lulu had an anal gland problem and was running fever, but since we are no where near vaccination time I didn't bring it up--had too much on my mind with her illness of the moment. Please don't think I'm a terrible Chi-momma though--I had her bathed and her glands expressed one week before her symptoms that caused me to take her to vet and this forum helped me to know what was wrong with her for the vet trip. I LOVE this website.
 

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No. Some vets will give you an exemption based on her reaction to the previous series. A titer just "proves" immunity if you wanted a piece of paper that showed her immune status.
Thank you so much. I want to know what I'm going to be facing when I start asking questions about titers and exemptions.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
The titer is just a blood test. If you are going to vaccinate for rabies anyway, then you don't need a titer.
Sorry, I meant is it too much to get a titter (for distemper and parvo) and the rabies vaccine on the same day? But like you said, a filter is just a blood test, so it should be fine doing both.
 
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