The Truth About… Dog Vaccinations


This is reposted information and not necessarily the opinion of Dreamydoodles.

Dreamydoodles follows the current recommended vaccine protocol of a 5 way vaccine at 8 weeks old containing the core vaccines a couple days before our puppies go home and then we leave it up to our families and their Vets to decide on how they want to proceed with their dogs vaccinations.

THE CORE VACCINES: Canine Parvovirus, Distemper Virus, and Adenovirus-2 Vaccines and Rabies

We highly recommend you educate yourself and read up on the subject.

This article was written by Dr. Larry Siegler

Puppy to Adult picture

12 weeks to 1 year pictures – Kona – The mini Aussiedoodle

‘The Truth About… Dog Vaccinations’

by Dr. Larry Siegler

Many veterinarians agree that vaccination is one of the most harmful things we do to our animals because of the severity of potential reactions, both short and long term, many of which are fatal but we also can not argue they are necessary. Which vaccines do we agree too give our puppies and dogs and how often is the topic of this post.

Vets and pet owners used to believe that ‘more is better’ when applying vaccines, but now we 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.

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.

It appears that 12 to 16 weeks is 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.

IMG_0181 (2)Although two and even three 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 to 16 weeks of age with a high titer vaccine, according to research done by Dr Schultz, 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 16 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 16 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.

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.



YOU must take charge of your dog’s vaccination schedule

First, consider finding a veterinarian who is practices holistic, alternative, or integrative medicine. Most of these vets will not over-vaccinate your dog, and they’ll help with other health-promoting changes in how you care for your dog. If you do need to work with a conventional vet who is recommending annual boosters for adult dogs, and/or a full regimen of shots for puppies, you need to learn more about vaccinations so you can speak up clearly and tell the vet what you want and don’t want.

READ: Taking The Risk Out Of Puppy Shots

Minimum Duration of Immunity for Canine Vaccines


Vaccine / Minimum Duration of Immunity / Methods Used to Determine Immunity

Canine Distemper Virus (CDV)

Rockborn Strain 7 years/15 years challenge/serology
Onderstepoort Strain 5 years/9 years challenge/serology

Canine Adenovirus-2 (CAV-2) 7 years/9 years challenge-CAV-1/serology

Canine Parvovirus-2 (CPV-2) 7 years challenge/serology

Canine Rabies 3 years/7 years challenge/serology


Canine parainfluenza 3 yrs. serology
Bordetella bronchiseptica 9 months challenge
Leptospira interrogans ser. canicola ?
Leptospira icterohaemorrhagiac ?
Borrelia burgdorfen 1 yr. challenge

The Current Vaccine Protocol and what we use here:

Core vaccines are recommended for all puppies and dogs with an unknown vaccination history. The diseases involved have significant morbidity and mortality and are widely distributed, and in general, vaccination results in relatively good protection from disease. These include vaccines for canine parvovirus (CPV), canine distemper virus (CDV), canine adenovirus (CAV), and rabies.

Canine Parvovirus, Distemper Virus, and Adenovirus-2 Vaccines

For initial puppy vaccination, one dose of vaccine containing modified live virus (MLV) CPV, CDV, and CAV-2 is recommended every 3-4 weeks from 6-8 weeks of age, with the final booster being given no sooner than 16 weeks of age.

For dogs older than 16 weeks of age, two doses of vaccine containing modified live virus (MLV) CPV, CDV, and CAV-2 given 3-4 weeks apart are recommended.

After a booster at one year, revaccination is recommended every 3 years thereafter, ideally using a product approved for 3-year administration, unless there are special circumstances that warrant more or less frequent revaccination. Note that recommendations for killed parvovirus vaccines and recombinant CDV vaccines are different from the above. These vaccines are not currently stocked by our pharmacy or routinely used at the VMTH. We do not recommend vaccination with CAV-1 vaccines, since vaccination with CAV-2 results in immunity to CAV-1, and the use of CAV-2 vaccines results in less frequent adverse events.


Tippy and her 4 wk old puppies nursing
Mama and her puppies

The Truth About… Dog Vaccinations

by Dr. Larry Siegler

Most Dog guardians have never been told the truth about vaccinations. On the contrary, you are likely to get annual notices from your veterinarian that your companion is “due for their annual booster shots”. The evidence against vaccinating, however, is overwhelming. Most veterinarians just choose to ignore the research because they don’t want to lose the income from giving booster shots to all those animals each year.

Vaccinations represent a major stress to the immune system. They can not only cause side-effects and allergic reactions, they also contribute significantly to long-term chronic disease. Chronic health problems frequently appear following vaccination including skin allergies, arthritis, leukemia, upper respiratory infections, irritable bowel syndromes, neurological conditions including aggressive behavior and epilepsy, auto-immune diseases and cancer.

Dr. Siegler

I have been practicing veterinary medicine for over 20 years and I see sicker animals at a younger age now than when I began. It is more and more common to see cancer in dogs and cats under 5 years of age. Autoimmune diseases are on the rise as well. Our companions are suffering from generations of over-vaccination, which combined with inadequate nutrition, poor breeding practices and environmental stresses are leaving each generation more susceptible to congenital disorders and chronic disease.

Vaccinations do help prevent serious illnesses, but they should be used with restraint. Before vaccinating, consider the risk. If your cat is indoor only and will never be exposed to unvaccinated animals, the risk of infection is low. The decision about vaccinations is very individual and should be guided by your own research on the subject before you go to the veterinarian.

Puppies and kittens should not be vaccinated until at least 12 weeks of age. Their developing immune systems are especially vulnerable to the stress of vaccines. Request individual vaccines and vaccinate at least three weeks apart if possible. Until 12 weeks of age keep your companion safe by avoiding exposure to public areas such as parks and pet stores. Keep them close to home and only expose them to animals you know are healthy. For puppies consider parvovirus and distemper at 12-15 weeks, and not until after 6 months of age for rabies. For kittens – consider one Panleukopenia combination (FRCP). Again, if available, give the vaccine components separately spaced three to four weeks apart. Feline leukemia and FIP vaccines may not be necessary for your cat. Consider it’s lifestyle and environment. IF your cats go outside and you have rabies in your area, give a rabies vaccine at six months of age. (Legal requirements vary from state to state.)

Vaccinations do not need “boosting”

Dreamydoodles - Baby

Studies have shown that a single vaccination for parvovirus, distemper and panleukopenia results in long-term protection from disease. Simple blood tests can determine if your companion’s antibody levels for parvovirus and distemper remain high enough to resist infection. Next time your veterinarian suggests a booster shot, request the blood test first. (Rabies may be required by law every three years. Check the regulations in your state.)

I do not recommend vaccinations for Bordetella, corona virus, leptospirosis or Lyme vaccines unless these diseases are endemic locally or at a specific kennel.

The currently licensed leptospira bacterins do not contain the serovars causing the majority of clinical leptospirosis today, so it is generally not a useful vaccine.

Homeopathic Nosodes are an alternative some guardians are using when choosing not to vaccinate. They can also be used before three months of age if an animal is at risk. Many guardians use these homeopathic medicines to help protect their companions against Parvovirus, Distemper, Kennel Cough, Panleukopenia and FIP.  Some nosodes seem to work more effectively than others. Homeopathic nosodes are not vaccinations. They do not produce titers against these diseases like a vaccination. They do seem to offer some protection by reducing the severity of illness if the animal is exposed, even if they don’t prevent it.

Never vaccinate a sick or weakened animal. If your puppy or kitten is showing signs of allergies or skin problems, WAIT. Vaccinating an already compromised immune system is almost sure to compound the problem!

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.

Educate yourself. Your veterinarian cannot make this decision for you, nor should they or us. You are your companion’s guardian. It is your responsibility to give them the best care you can by researching and carefully weighing your decisions about their healthcare.

Want to read more “opinions” on this subject? Read Vaccinosis by


My husband holding Teddy the Aussiedoodle

My husband holding Teddy the Aussiedoodle

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