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Natural Canine Health Symposium

Taking The Risk Out Of Puppy Shots

vet puppyPet 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 to 16 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 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 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.


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99 Responses to Taking The Risk Out Of Puppy Shots

  1. angela

    HI i have had my 9 week old pup 1st vaccine done, second is due in a couple of weeks, i have a problem that i need to go away and take her with me for a few days, will this be ok and how can i keep her safe, i know she shouldnt meet other dogs , just need some advice please

  2. Sue

    I recently got a 10 week old puppy. He has not been vet checked or had any shots or deworming. He seems very active and is acting normally. I was planning on bringing him to the vet for a health check and deworming, but waiting until 16-18 wks. and getting him just one 3-in-1 shot and then rabies at about 22-24 wks. (only because it’s required by law where I live) and then neutering just after the 6 mth. mark. My main conundrum is that I’m going camping with my kids when he will be 13 weeks old. It’s a seasonal campground my mom has a trailer at and her dog is fully vaccinated and I don’t normally see doggy messes on the trails or walkways. I’m debating not bringing the dog to the vet at all, but I do think it might be good to be sure he’s healthy and to get him checked for worms. I can feel his ribs (Shih Tzu) under his fur, but he’s active and although not eating a whole lot, is eating daily and drinking plenty and seems to have plenty of puppy energy. My worry though is that bringing him to the vet will expose him to illnesses. Also, I’m debating whether to get him the shots at 12 weeks, take him camping, and then get shots again at 16-18 weeks, but the shots may suppress his immune system while we’re camping. Are there precautions I could take while camping so that I can feel more comfortable waiting until 16-18 weeks to give the DAP? Is there something I can give that is safe to deworm him if he does have worms, but not harmful to him if he doesn’t?

    • Dogs Naturally Magazine

      Sue, there are a lot of questions here and I think you’d be best talking to a holistic vet about your concerns. You can find a homeopath at theavh.org or holistic vet at ahvma.org. Many will do phone consults so they don’t have to be local! If you Google “Dogs Naturally Magazine + deworming” you’ll find several articles containing natural solutions.

  3. Valerie J

    I have 2 puppies one is about 4 months old the other is 5 months old, both pit mixes. I haven’t had the resources until now to get their shots and I’m afraid that if I take them to the vet they will only want to have me pay for unnecessary shots but I know in order to properly socialize them to people and other dogs that involves them being around the other dogs and they are at higher risk for getting things like parvo. What is your advice?

  4. Diane Ostrem

    One other question, have you ever done any article’s on the rattlesnake vaccine, I have alot of rattlers , killed 7 on property last summer and would love to learn more on this vaccine. (5 aussies and a mini-doxie)

  5. Diane Ostrem

    Question (hope this will still be seen/possibly answered)
    totally understand and support the protocol for puppy shots and done.
    Wish I had done the 1 your done,
    my breeders did neo-par at 4/6/8 weeks.

    I really wanted this puppy, everything fit except the past shots :( so I bought her anyway.
    She was instantly put on a raw diet and at 14 months she has never been sick and is doing wonderful.

    Since the breeder gave the 4/6/8 week shots which i felt probably hindered her natural immune system . Probably a wrong choice but i did give the 12/16 week shots.

    As far as I am concerned SHE IS DONE. (except rabies by law)

    because she had so many as a puppy,some say give 1 booster a year later, I say no.

    your thoughts ?

  6. Rebecca

    I am so glad to find this site. I have read through all comments and have learned so much! My situation is a bit different. I have a 7 wk old cockapoo that I brought home today. The puppy only has been bottle fed. She never nursed. Is it necessary to vaccine sooner than 12 weeks since their are no maternal antibodies? Like with my human babies I want to wait as long as possible before requiring so much from their little bodies.

    • Dogs Naturally Magazine

      Did the puppy nurse off the mother at all? It’s the first milk from the first day or two that passes most of the maternal antibodies. If this is the case, you should be able to wait easily. If not, you might still wait until 12 weeks but just be careful where puppy goes – don’t take her to places where a lot of other dogs go. Most importantly, the vet clinic is a very dangerous place, so make sure your appointment is the first one of the day and carry your puppy in and out – don’t place her down anywhere. Put her in the car first and then go back in to pay.

  7. Rick K.L Chong

    I have 4 puppies, rottweilers. They are 7 weeks old on 3/11/2013. one puppy i have brought to the vet to check her front left leg, elbow,area, its slightly swollen and infected. Has abscess coming out from a hole like. Must have poke something while playing, i guess. Anyway, She can still run & play like its not swollen. I met the vet on my way out and she ask how old is the Pup? So we started talking about vaccination.

    Thing is i want to vaccinate them today and started going over the web to search about puppies vaccination and risk. I have read yours and other sites. They differ. Yes, i believe in what i read about the article you posted. makes sense.I am also thinking twice to get them vaccinated so soon.

    Thing is, i brought my puppy to the vet office. The pup may have pick up some virus here & there. Now she is back home and mix with the other puppies and they to now may be exposed. But i guess they are still protected by her mum ‘maternal antibodies’. They still provide passive immunity for each puppy, right?. Should i wait till 12 weeks, i.e. on 8th Dec, to vaccinate them?

    Thank you,


    • Dogs Naturally Magazine

      Hi Rick
      That’s a tough decision. If the puppies were exposed to something in the vet’s clinic, then vaccinating them will suppress their immune system. If the vaccine takes, great, and if not, then the puppy has been exposed to the vet’s office twice and now has a suppressed immune system from the vaccine..and at 7 weeks of age, it’s about as likely to not work as it is to work. We can’t make that decision for you but we will tell you that the one vet who is actively researching vaccine efficacy vaccinates his own dogs with DAP once at 16 weeks of age, then never again. Good luck with your decision.

  8. I just adopted a Maltese Puppy. She’s about 3 1/2 months. I live on Long Island where there’s supposedly a Leptospirosis endemic. I go to a holistic vet who wants to give my dog half a dose of the vaccine with Thuja. Every Vet I’ve contacted strongly recommends this vaccine. I’m skeptical because I know how dangerous that particular vaccine can be, especially for small breeds. But I also know how dangerous the disease can be and I’m hearing a lot of dogs are contracting it here. I’m afraid to let her outside! What’s your opinion on that vaccine and administering half a dose with Thuja? I’m at a loss of what to do.

    • Dogs Naturally Magazine

      Our opinion on the lepto vaccine is simple: we wouldn’t do it for our own dogs, ever, under any circumstances. Keep your Maltese puppy out of standing water where lepto lurks – it’s easy to do and much safer than this very dangerous and often ineffective vaccine. What the vets don’t tell you is that the vaccine can cause lepto symptoms anyway and that it only protects against a few serovars, so vaccination doesn’t mean your pet is protected either. Unlike viral vaccines which likely last for the life of the animal, bacterial vaccines, such as lepto and bordetella, only last for a year at most. This means if you want to protect your dog from lepto, the trade off is a dozen or more vaccines in his lifetime, all of which are filled with aluminum and dangerous toxins that have the potential to create autoimmune disease including allergies, cancer, arthritis, digestive issues and more. Every vaccine creates more cumulative damage in your dog and can be the one that causes devastating and permanent damage.

    • Liz

      If you decide not to vaccinate you need to make sure your pup does not drink from any standing water, stays away from cattle and deer and does not eat or sniff dead things on the beach. All of those are potential sources of lepto. Also if you pup does get sick and you have to take it in to the emergency clinic make sure you tell them the pup has never had a lepto shot…that way they can match up symptoms just in case it is lepto they can treat it quickly.

  9. Heather

    I wish I read this earlier. We just got a bullmastiff puppy and she’s 9 weeks old now. They breeders vaccinated her at 6 weeks. I feel like after reading this that I need to do the next two shots. I’m not huge on shots and refused yearly vaccines for my adult animals a number of years ago. Now my vet vaccinates only every 3 years which is better.

    My though is if I as a human don’t need to be vaccinated yearly or even every three years why am I doing that to my dog or cat.

    Anyway, great article on vaccines. Thanks. I’m going to bring it up on Friday when I take her in for her next shots.

  10. Natalie


    I am looking into getting a puppy that has never been to the vet at all yet and she is about 8 weeks now. I am wondering if it is okay that she hasn’t and if so, when should I get her vaccinated and of what kinds?

    I am worried that since she has never been to the vet for even a physical checkup, that she may have something wrong with her that I don’t know about.

    Also, I am getting her from an owner, not a breeder.

    Please get back to me as soon as possible!!!

    • Natalie

      She is a tiny maltese with a little bit of yorkie in her.
      Fully grown she will be about 4 pounds

    • Dogs Naturally Magazine

      Hi Natalie. I don’t think we can add much more than what’s in the article!! Good luck with your puppy

  11. Quiona Lane

    Him I have a 5 month old Maltese Shih Tzu, Novi. He has had one vaccination. I have been researching and opted not to continue with vaccinations. But I see conflicting articles. I have read, if I don’t continue vaccines, my puppy can die of he’s bitten by mosquitoes, if he come in contact with other anomals etc. How much truth is in these articles?

  12. rich

    I just adopted a Chihuahua puppy from the humane society. They said he was 9 weeks old. They had already given him the standard parvo/distemper shots. My vet has now given him 2 more shots for the same plus a rabies shot inbetween. I already feel like this is way overboard but now my vet seems to think that he was younger then 9 weeks since he still hasnt lost all his baby teeth. They want me to give him another parvo/distemper in a couple weeks. If he was actually 9 he was just about 12 weeks when he got the last shot. I also asked them to do a titer instead and they said his mother immunity might still show up, but doesnt that mean he shouldnt be getting another shot anyway??? what should I do? Have I hurt his chances to get natural immunity with all these shots and am I forced to give him a FOURTH shot?

    • Dogs Naturally Magazine

      Rich, what makes you think you are forced to give your puppy a fourth shot? You always have choices and if you don’t like what this vet has to say, then it’s time to find another vet. Run the titer: small dogs are especially susceptible to vaccine damage.

    • Renee

      I have a twelve week old maltipoo. Her breeder gave her shots at 6 weeks and 8 weeks. Her vet then gave her another set at 10 1/2 weeks and wants her to come in for two more sets of shots at 14 weeks and 17 weeks. I told them that sounded like a lot. They assured me it wasn’t… sure wish I read this article sooner. So my question is- does she need anymore shots or maybe just one more set because she wasn’t 12 weeks by her last shot? What is the best thing to do at this point?

  13. Crystal Cook

    I have a American Bully puppy and he will be 9 weeks tomorrow ready for his next shot. But I would like to ask what would be the best. I bought his first 6 week shot at tractor supply called a 5 way. Now tractor supply has a 7 way for 9 weeks. Should I give it to him tomorrow? Also for 12 weeks do I get that shot at the vet or anothe r 7 way at 12 weeks

    • Dogs Naturally Magazine

      Crystal, vaccination at 6 weeks sets your puppy up for very little chance of protection and a very large risk of immune related disease and suppression. To be completely, honest, if you don’t know the answers to these questions, should you really be giving your puppy his vaccinations yourself? Vaccines are sensitive and storage temperature is important…as is the location and method of delivery. In our opinion however, no dog or puppy should receive a 7 way or even a 5 way ever. Either a DAP or a distemper/parvo combination shot would be sufficient and should only be given between 12 to 16 weeks of age, according to Dr Ronald Schultz.

  14. kevin mendoza

    I have a pitbull she got her first parvo shot by the breeder around 6 weeks which my vet said was too early and gave her another at 9. Now shes due for another at 13weeks but im starting to question the procedure. Should i just stop or should i go for the parvo/distemper/adenovirus combo or just the distemper and adenovirus. Please help i want my dog to be healthy as possible

    • Dogs Naturally Magazine

      Your best bet would be to run a titer for parvo and distemper. Titers are quite useful when taken three weeks after vaccination. Any amount of titer is considered protective, there’s really no such thing as a “low titer” There is either antibody present or not, and if there is, your puppy will most likely be protected for life!

  15. ACLeary

    I recently picked up my puppy at 8 weeks old. He’s been given a clean bill of health, and I have made the vet appointments for upcoming shots. However, I got the puppy a bit sooner than I had anticipated, and a vacation was booked for the week of June 8-15. We are staying within the state, but the puppy will need to go into boarding while I’m on vacation (he’s coming with me). He’s had his first shots and has been wormed, but in speaking with the vet, they arranged the next two sets of shots for May 14 and May 28. My concern is that I keep seeing NO rabies shots until 6 months. I’m so confused. I want to bring him with me to the Cape, but I don’t want to jeopardize his health. Although I’m working with my vet on this issue, I’m still concerned and would like to hear others’ opinions and/or recommendations. I’d appreciate any information given! Thank you!

  16. Dogs Naturally Magazine

    You’re dealing with generations of ill dogs. Feed every dog in your home with fresh whole foods, limit their exposure to drugs and toxins and that immune health will be passed down through the generations. Feed diatomaceous earth (food grade) and this will also help. Herbal wormers are also available and are a better choice than neurotoxins.

    • Luke

      So you would rather have a small amount of worms in your dogs than give them wormer? Is that what you’re saying? And so by fresh whole foods, are u saying i should be feeding them foods like fruits and vegetables and whole grains and breads and stuff?? Cause i thought dogs are carnivores…

      • Dogs Naturally Magazine

        I would rather support their body to handle a parasite load rather than treat worms with a neuotoxic chemical, and have my dog suffer the effects from that (which normally means more worms down the road). It’s a truly vicious cycle. By fresh, whole foods I mean raw meat on the bone or at the very least, dehydrated meat with some vegetable matter added in (preferably not starches as dogs have a limited ability to digest them fully). Dogs certainly are carnivores. I think if you poke around our site more, you’ll learn much more about raising dogs naturally.

        • Luke

          I appreciate all your help so far, I just finished reading through the whole section on kibble on your website…(including all the comments) I am seriously considering switching to raw if kibble is as bad as it sounds (I’ve only ever known feeding dogs kibble, so this is a relatively new idea for me, but i think it’s worth a try) andif it’s not more expensive, cause i can’t afford that…right now I’m paying about a dollar a pound for kibble….how will the price of feeding raw compare with that? I’m also wondering how much raw meat i would need to feed per dog, I have two cocker spaniels that I raise cockapoos with…I only have about one litter a year with each of them, so when they’re not pregnant or nursing (which is most of the time) they each get about half a pound of kibble a day ….but from the time they’re about a month from their due date until the puppies are almost weaned, they get all the kibble they want, cause i want to make sure they get plenty of extra nutrition…. so i’m wondering how i would do it with raw…i also let the puppies eat all they want and start them on kibble around 4 weeks, so i was wondering how (or if i should) i would feed them raw or how much and how often…as u can see I am serious about switching, but i also want to make sure I know what I’m doing and that I’m doing it right….so I would appreciate any help…thank you!!

      • Emzy

        Dogs are natural omnivorous just like us, they would hunt, scavange and in the wild so they would eat a mix of meat bones, blood etc, but unlike cats they will also it intestines and also berries and fruit etc. I have been researching the Barf diet/raw diets bit they have to be done so carefully to get the correct nutrients in. Most dog food is basically all grain these days, something that dogs wouldn’t eat in the wild and many are allergic too along with the food colourings in many bright dog food! Most commercial brands of dog food in uk only contain meat derivitives which is like tiny amounts of hooves, hair and feathers….so very little meat!! And in America I have learnt that many dog foods contain euthinized cats and dogs so even the food is full of vet chemicals (worst part in my head is the cannibalism) and in the uk if horse meat is used it is generally filled with the bute, euthinasia, and other medications. ANYWAY!!! Dogs are just like us food wise and will eat anything, but also like us grains and lactose shouldn’t be in our diets just some of us humans and canines cope better than others!! And of course we have spent several thousands of years coping with digesting cooked food but dogs cant cook so still can cope with digesting it raw, which can cause worms. I personally would suggest a normal chemical wormer if your dog is suffering with them, and then routinely add the herbs etc after to make your dog less likely to get them again. I do think it is better not to pump animals full of chemicals but worms can cause serious problems just like fleas, ticks etc so it is safer to eradicate the problem and then use a holistic approach after x

        • Dogs Naturally Magazine

          Emzy, there are a few problems here we’d like to address.
          One, dogs aren’t omnivores, they are facultative carnivores. Think they’re just like us? Try eating some roadkill by the side of the road and see how you feel in a few hours. I guarantee your dog will feel fine and you will be in the hospital – dogs are very different from us.
          Two, dogs do not eat the intestinal contents of their prey, they shake it out (as do cats).
          Three, there are plenty of good and effective natural dewormers.
          Four, there is no room in a holistic approach for chemicals and pesticides. You can’t give these harmful drugs to your dog and expect to be able to mop up the mess with some herbs afterward – the damage is done. This is not the point of holistic medicine – the point is to make the animal healthy so he doesn’t get parasites in the first place.

  17. Dogs Naturally Magazine

    I don’t doubt my puppies have worms. What they don’t have is worm infestations and there’s a big difference. Parasites prey on the sick. Dogs with a healthy immune system are able to handle a small parasite load and prevent a few worms from developing into an infestation. By a high quality food, I mean one that isn’t processed or doesn’t contain starches. This means 99.9% of all kibbles. Kibble is fast food and the toxins and synthetic ingredients suppress the immune system and a suppressed immune system is what allows a few worms to develop into an infestation. Feeding fresh, whole foods and avoiding toxins including wormers, flea and tick meds, vaccines, cleaning chemicals, pesticides and drugs is the best way to prevent worms because it supports proper immune function. I’ve travelled to dog shows in my van with breeder friends who vaccinate and feed kibble and we’ve come back from the show with their dogs covered in fleas or suffering kennel cough when my dogs are fine. Good health is supporting the body to do what it’s well equipped to do. You can’t give your dog toxins like wormers and expect it to create good health – it may kill the worms but it certainly doesn’t create a healthy dog.

    • Luke

      Ok so in the case of my puppy that i lost to what the vet said was worms, he was only a couple weeks old and they were too young to even be on solid food, so what else is there to do to ensure that that doesn’t happen again except to give wormer when they’re young? Like you keep saying to feed “high quality fresh whole foods (are you talking like human organic food?? I’m actually serious with this question cause I’m not sure what you’re saying) but if he was too young to even be eating solid food, what else is there to do besides worm them when they are young? Or are you saying that if my moms would be fed fresh whole foods instead of kibble, then they would have a better, healthier immune system and therefore pass that on to the puppies and that would make so the puppies could fight off the worms (and any other diseases) better…??

  18. Luke

    I have been breeding Cockapoo puppies for a few years now and have always been told the traditional advice about vaccinating at 8 weeks and then every 2 to 4 weeks after that until they have a total of three, and then also deworming them a couple times…. after reading all this new information, I’m quite confused…. if i would tell people i don’t vaccinate my puppies, i think they would think I’m a terrible, irresponsible breeder, etc.! And as for not using any wormer either?? When i do worm the puppies, i almost always find at least some worms in their stool at least the first time. I also lost a puppy a couple years ago to what the vet said was worms, so since then i have started worming them younger, starting soon after two weeks…the non vaccinating thing kind of makes sense i think, but I’m not sure what to think about the worming…(i was also told to give my moms wormer frequently, like maybe every 6-8 weeks and also right before i breed them and then a couple weeks before they deliver, although i never find worms in their stool…) i was also told that if you give the mom wormer well the puppies are nursing, they will get some through the milk…. so naturally i am worried and confused!!! Any help you could give me would be appreciated!!!

    • Dogs Naturally Magazine

      As a breeder, I haven’t wormed in 15 years and have never had a positive fecal in my puppies. Healthy dogs aren’t good hosts for parasites. I expect that if you fed a very high quality whole food and vaccinated puppies just once at 12 to 16 weeks, your dogs would also improve in health and you’d see there would be less of a reason to worm your puppies.

      • Luke

        Hmmm ok…but I’m still confused as to how that would make so my puppies don’t have worms, cause like i said, i don’t find worms in my moms’ stool when i worm them, so how will that make so i won’t need to worm my puppies? I’ve been told puppies are born with worms anyway…..and when u say very high quality whole food, what exactly are you talking about and how expensive would that be? And are you saying that the “better” food would eliminate having worms in the puppies??

        • Jae

          I know this was posted months ago, but I have to wonder if these puppies of yours are born outside or inside. If the parents are outside dogs or not. I’m a breeder, though my females have a litter every OTHER year, not every year like you’ve stated yours do. I’ve never ever seen worms in my puppies, or my adult parent dogs. My dogs are inside dogs. I have never had to worm my adult dogs, they always test negative for parasites. We don’t worm our puppies because they test negative…why treat something that’s not even there?! All I have to tell new puppy homes is that a fecal sample was taken and tested on each puppy and it was negative, thus no worming. Most people seem satisfied with that answer, if not…they can find a puppy from someone else. A good healthy diet is better for your dogs though, it’s worth the time to research. I have a catahoula leopard dog we adopted from the spca about 12yrs ago that will be 14 this coming Feb. Our vet comments all the time on how great he looks for his age, and the lifespan of a Catahoula is usually on average 12-13 yrs. This dog gets fed a great diet, never has had worms ever since we adopted him, and the only thing we vaccinate him for is rabies because it’s the law in our county. Not an ear infection, not a sniffle, not a single parasite in 12yrs. He runs around here and plays like a dog half his age. He goes on 5 mile walks daily w/my husband. Diet is the key to everything when it comes to longevity and health in any creature- human, dog, cat, whatever. I’ve witnessed countless people in the RAW diet community enjoy their pets for far beyond the typical lifespan of their dog’s breed. -sorry- bit of a ramble there. But the whole “we always have worms, our puppies have worms, when should we worm, lost a puppy *to* worms” thing just got my gears turning with the “but why?!” question.

  19. Brad

    I just want to get some clarification… I will be getting a puppy later this week… the breeder has done all the “usual” stuff leading up to the 8 week period. I don’t entirely know what that entails but was wondering what I should do for vaccinations then. Get a Distemper shot right away? and then wait a month and get the Parvo shot? Then just the rabies at 6 months?

    What would you recommend… great info by the way!

    • Dogs Naturally Magazine

      Run a titer on your puppy as soon as you get him (please carry him in and out of the vets and take him very first thing in the morning) and if he has a titer for anything (any amount of titer is protective, there’s no such thing as a low titer), then he will be protected for life. As for rabies, wait as long as you possibly can – no earlier than 6 months.

      • APScotland

        Do you know if there is equivalent research on kittens and vaccines? I’m finding it hard to track down an un-vaccinated kitten, since every breeder I’ve looked at so far insists on early vaccines, and so do the Cats Protection League. I lost one of my cats last year to vaccinate-associated sarcoma, and don’t want to expose my pets to that again!

        • Dogs Naturally Magazine

          It’s the same for every species. Did you know that human children are unable to acquire immunity from vaccines in their first year? They know this but they want parents to get in the habit of visiting the pediatrician and they use vaccines as the magnet.

  20. Jerry

    Great Info !!….I have been breeding pure bred dogs for over 50yrs.I show dogs prof….I have always given 1 shot {live virus..5 way }Never given
    Booster shots…Never had any disease..or lost a puppy !Three yrs. ago a co-breeder brought 3 young pups{vaccininated}..into my motor home
    for my partner to see. Two weeks later she lost allpuppies with PARVO..
    About 6 mo. or so I had a male puppy ..with symptioms of PARVO..Vet confirmed..isolated him and gave him 3 bottles of fluid..he was over it it 2
    days……I had a litter of pups{6}..1yr later..showed signs of ???…tested neg,..2 wks. later all 6 had raging PARVO..they had shots..never put their
    feet on dirt..exercised on steralized carpet…Lost 4..{autopsy confermed PARVO }I saved 2..and all 6 of the other litter{no shots}one mo.yonger.Lot
    fluid{sub.cu.serveal sub.cc inj.Antib. etc.}…around the clock for 2 mo…lots of $ .
    Now i have a litter SHOTS..NO SHOTS…Prevention??{1 mo. old }

  21. Chyenne

    My grandpa has never givin any of his dogs shots and his poodle ended up living to be 19. They would also feed her orange peels, and other fresh fruits and vegetables they grew in their garden. I think if dogs were able to survive this long without shots they shouldnt need them.

  22. Kaitlyn S.

    Hi! Thanks so much for the info! I have a kind of special case. I have a 4/5 week old rescue puppy. Since he was taken from his mother too early and so isn’t getting his mother’s milk (and antibodies), at what point should he get vaccinated? I want to be especially careful because I’m living in a small farm town in the Dominican Republic with tons of street dogs, and would be surprised if they or any of the dogs with owners are vaccinated. He’s a medium sized mutt who’s mother, also a mutt, looked somewhat like an english shepherd.
    Also, any advice on what to feed the little guy? I’m working with super limited options since everyone pretty much feeds their dogs table scraps here. After taking a bus an hour to the nearest city I was able to find some puppy chow and have been soaking that in cow’s milk. It doesn’t seem to be causing diarrhea. Neither puppy formula nor goat’s milk are accessible.
    Lastly (thank you again for your time!) The agrovet gave him an oral anti worm and sold me a flea shampoo (when i got him he was more fleas than dog) is there anything else I need to keep him healthy? My parents are coming to visit when he’s 7/8 weeks and could potentially bring things from the US.

    • Dogs Naturally Magazine

      Colostrum (the antibody rich milk) is passed from the mother to the puppy in the first few days. If he was on his mother for the first few days, he will be protected. So stay the course and keep him safe until 12 to 16 weeks and vaccinate him then. The dogs fed table scraps will be better off than your puppy if he is eating kibble. Try reading our raw feeding primer for tips on what to feed him.
      For everything else, keep reading our pages and use our search bar in the side bar to research the topics you want more information on. Good luck with your puppy.

      • Kaitlyn S.

        Thanks for the vaccine advice! I unfortunately am going to have to keep on with the kibble. I’m a peace corps volunteer and a raw food diet for a dog is a luxury i can’t afford. The average person in my community couldn’t afford to eat as well as I’m sure your dogs do.

  23. My snauzer in hospital with parvo virus – she is 14 weeks did not have any vaccinations yet – now she buikding up anti bodies so should she still get the vaccination and if so – when?

    • Dogs Naturally Magazine

      Just like children getting chicken pox, once a dog gets parvovirus, they will build immunity to it and won’t get it again. There would be no need to vaccinate for parvo.

  24. Rachel

    Thank you so much for this informative webpage. As a vet tech trained in 1999, I was trained in the “3 vaccines” approach. I’ve never agreed with it even when in school as it always seemed contradictory to what I was learning and also unnecessary. I’ve been met with frustration from my own vet who doesn’t agree with me. He’s a great vet, however and usually we’re in total agreement with treatments.
    It will be nice to direct him to some studies that back me up and hopefully will help him open up a little to this fairly new way of thinking.
    Thanks again!

  25. Amanda

    I want to make sure I’m getting this right! Our dog was born last May and I have yet to take him to get any vaccinations. He’s 7months old and it is best to not get any shots? He’s been on a few walks around the neighborhood and around two other dogs. I’m confused as to what we should do! :-/

    • Dogs Naturally Magazine

      Why don’t you try running a titer on him? If he has any amount of titer, he will be protected for life. Having said that, a low titer does not equate to low immunity so don’t feel that you have to vaccinated based on a low titer result. They are quite limited in what they can detect and immunity is much more complicated than merely titers.

  26. Cody

    My puppy was given his second vaccinations at 26 weeks that consisted of a 6 in combo along with his rabies shot as required by my state. They also gave me they dewormer to adminster myself, unfortunately during the process i was unsuccessful in adminstering the dewormer, but here’s the catch i was able to give him a med called trifesis which protects against fleas, ticks, heartwoms and intestinal worms. My question would be am i safe in assuming that my puppy is protected against any worm related disease.

    • Dogs Naturally Magazine

      You would not be safe in assuming this. First, did you know that it says right on the label of the rabies vaccine that it is not to be administered at the same time as other vaccinations? Your puppy is fighting SEVEN different diseases at once and this, along with the foreign protein and chemical spill that goes along with vaccines, will suppress his immune system severely. Healthy dogs are simply not good hosts for parasites. I’ve fed raw and refrained from vaccinations not required by law for fifteen years and don’t use any flea tick or heartworm products or wormers because they are pesticides and only add to the chemical onslaught and depressed immune function in dogs. In my fifteen years as a breeder, I’ve never had a dog or puppy with worms. Good health is about supporting the immune system so it can function the way it is meant to – you cannot achieve good health with vaccines, chemicals and pesticides.
      As for the Trifexis – there are reports of severe reactions to it and it is not a med I would personally feel comfortable with.

  27. Martha

    I have a question I am so confused and a little worried. My 11 week old puppy had his first Parvovirus vaccine when he was 7 weeks old. I know he is due for the second Parvovirus vaccine and he will get it in 3 days. But today he threw up 5 times in a 12 hour period I called a emergency vet and she stated that it could very possibly be the parvovirus. I want to know if this is could be true?

    • Dogs Naturally Magazine

      It could definitely be true. Vaccinating a 7 weeks puppy is like playing roulette – he is at an age where his maternal antibodies are still fairly strong so the vaccine has a very good chance of not working. The difficult part is he has been exposed to a location where he is most likely to be exposed to parvovirus – the vet’s office! You can take a stool sample at home and have the vet run a snap test to see if he has antigen for parvo. I would do this sooner as opposed to later. Ambertech makes a great product called Parvaid and they will ship it overnight or help you find a distributor in your area. A homeopathic vet can also help by giving your puppy the parvo nosode. You might also want to read this article: http://www.dogsnaturallymagazine.com/parvovirus-part-iii/

  28. sandra

    My 12 week old papillon was vaccinated at 8 weeks by her breeder before i bought her. Does she need any more shots? If so, at what age?

  29. J Ross

    We adopted a great dane/english mastiff mix that receieve her first shot from the breeder at 10 weeks. Had to argue with the vet about whether or not she did get her shot and they wanted to give her another – the vet did not want to believe that I physically saw the breeder give the shot – yes, needless to say, we switched vets. The bigger question is, she would technically be due for another shot at 13 weeks and the new vet wants to do the distemper/parvo/corona shot along with the rabies. I would love to know what you would recommned. We live in an area that currently is a high parvo area so I am terrified in taking her anywhere because of this. Help please.

  30. i want to know at what age can i give my chihuahua puppies collidal silver. whats they chances they wont get parvo? i heard at two weeks two sprays per day. but they are a very small breed.

    • Dogs Naturally Magazine

      Colloidal silver will not prevent your puppies from getting parvo. It may help if your puppy already has it however.

  31. Nikki

    I have a 11 week old puppy that he has yet to receive any of his shots, I have a scheduled appointment this Saturday for him to get his first shots because I’ve been feeling pressured by everyone telling me that I cannot take him on any walks or places where other dogs may have been because of the risk of getting Parvo. I feel like it’s time to introduce him to walks since he is already used to a collar and leash but now a bit stumped can I take him after he has gotten his first shots? Should he get all 3 sets are they really necessary? Please help I want the best for my little baby.

    • Dogs Naturally
      Dogs Naturally

      Hi Nikki
      The funny thing is, if you vaccinate him, his immune system will be suppressed for at least two weeks. The adenovirus component particularly causes immune suppression which is why Dr. Jean Dodds no longer recommends it. The second thought is that if you are nervous about taking your puppy out on the streets, then you should be VERY frightened of taking him to the vet clinic – the most likely place to be exposed to parvovirus, perhaps outside of a shelter.
      I have two, 11 week old puppies here. They have been going to the trails with me for a couple of weeks now and I take them into town for short walks and socialization. They are unvaccinated and I’ve raised all my puppies this way. I can’t give you any answers as to what you should do, but this is what I do and it works for me. If you vaccinate, I would be very careful for two weeks and if you don’t vaccinate, I would start taking him out now. Start with places where there is a small amount of traffic and wait until he is 6 months or older before taking him to places like dog parks or other areas of heavy, dirty dog traffic. You might also want to read this article: http://www.dogsnaturallymagazine.com/taking-the-risk-out-of-puppy-shots/

  32. Jennifer

    ok i am glad i came across this site.I just got a new puppy she was about 8week old when she came home with me. She has never had any shots she is now 13 weeks old born jan 13 2012… i am wondering when i should get her shots done and what ones to give her?We live in vegas there is lots of dogs around where i live. one shot i know for sure i want is the pervo.

    she is a pit bull and rott mix any advice would help thanks <3

  33. asha

    My pomeranian mix is 14 weeks old. he got vaccines from the breeder when he was 10 weeks. Do you think that he is protected? how often should I expose him to other dogs (on walks ect.) to help expose him safely to dogs? If he does not have immunities how at risk is he just going on a walk? Rabies is required by law in my state, so do you think it is safe to give it to him now?

  34. BJ MEEKS

    I have a new Jack Russell puppy coming into my house in about 4 weeks!! The last JR I had died two years ago in my house from super parvo!! What can I do to ensure that my new pup is safe and healthy ??

    Thank you for you time and info,

    BJ MEEKS!!!~

  35. Crystal

    Im so confused and I would love it if someone could give me some advice. I adopted my 8 week old pup on 11-23-11 from NSALA, his papers say he received DA2PP on 10-14, 11-4 and 11-23, it says he is due for it on 12-14. It also says he received Lepto on 10-14 and 11-23 or just 10-14, he is due for Lepto on 12-14. Says he received Dewormer on 10-14(pan), 11-4(pan), 11-19(dro), and 11-23, he is due on 12-14. It also says Bordetella in 11-19 and due 5-20. His rabies is due at 4 months of course. I haven’t gotten his 12-14 shots yet. Will getting it late affect him? I read on here that I shouldn’t get them all together, that was my plan, those “packages”, I was going to wait till his rabies were due to give him all of his shots, now I’m wondering if waiting is wrong, I’m a new pet owner. Any advice or information on any shots would be greatly appreciated, thanks!

    • Bob

      Crystal: This is very confusing, you need to find a vet that will work with you. If I were you, I’d wait until 2/1/2012 and have your vet due a teters test(blood test) for the levels of the vaccine in the little guy’s system already. He may not need any more vaccines. If you have access to a Homepathic vet they are usually easier to work with. Do not give the Rabies at the same time and stay away from PetSmart vets and the like.

  36. Jennifer

    PS I give him Thuja after his shots because that is what my holistic vet does. He is very far away so I have not had him doing puppy shots.

    • Dogs Naturally
      Dogs Naturally

      Giving Thuja after a vaccine is pointless in most cases. There are many homeopathic remedies that are available for ‘never well since’, of which thuja is just one. Homeopathy delivered in this manner will almost never work. The principle of homeopathy is to treat like with like, so your vet should select a remedy based on your dog’s symptoms: unlike traditional medicine, homeopathy is not a one-size-fits-all approach. Many vets who practice homeopathy have only taken a weekend course and are able to treat simple, acute issues but are not prepared to deal with deeper issues including chronic disease caused by vaccine damage.

  37. Jennifer

    My puppy has been given 3 sets of her combo shot. The last was given at 13 weeks. The vet is recommending one more round. Should he be given the last round?

    • Dogs Naturally
      Dogs Naturally

      Three sets of a combination vaccine before 13 weeks of age is a pretty aggressive schedule. If you want to know if your puppy needs the final round, run a titer test three weeks after the last vaccination. A positive titer means your puppy will be protected for life and won’t require any more core vaccines. Also, make sure the rabies is given separately from any other vaccines – at least four weeks away.

  38. Melissa


    I only do two vaccines – Parvo (1 shot every 4 weeks) staggered with Distemper (1 shot every 4 weeks other week i.e. 1 shot every 2 weeks alternating)

  39. Melissa

    If we are now doing a single vaccination (I only do two anyway and will be changing protocol now – TYVM!) are we doing a combo vaccination? I only do two vaccines – Parvo (1 shot every 4 weeks) staggered with Distemper (1 shot every other week)

    Which do we do first? If it takes 2 weeks, and we do stagger these, are we keeping the puppies until 16 weeks to give them the 2 weeks post vaccination window?

    Also, Sharon, as a dane “hobby” (I hate that term) breeder you should know that Danes are HIGHLY vaccine reactive and NEVER should be givin combo shots NOR ever get LEPTO and that after initial vaccinations you do not need “boosters”

    I encourage you to join your local club and to obtain a mentor.

    • Dogs Naturally
      Dogs Naturally

      Excellent question. It is always best to give shots individually. The more shots given at once, the greater the risk of vaccine reaction and/or vaccine failure.
      The maternal antibodies for distemper are much more predictable in their decline – they are pretty much gone at 9 weeks for most puppies whereas maternal antibodies for parvovirus can be present at 26 weeks, depending on the puppy and the breed. For that reason, it might be best to vaccinate for distemper first then parvovirus three or four weeks later.

      Great Danes are very susceptible to vaccines and diseases such as HOD. No breed of dog should be given the lepto vaccine, or the rabies vaccine, at the time of other vaccines. The 2011 AAHA guidelines recommend rabies at the same time as core vaccines in its minimal schedule but this is a dangerous practice and should not be done.

  40. I have 11 danes, and i hobby breed/show some of my dogs, but they are all my big babies and are pets first. I have been worrying for a long time about this subject, especially when i mate one of my girls and there booster is due around the same time. The age of the puppy for its 1st inoculation is always changing…………..i never know where i am, and what to do for the best! some of my dogs have gone past the due date and i am about to start the whole process over again, i thought that like babies, puppies only needed there infant inoculation, as babies don’t have there’s done every year, i told my vet how i felt and she said that for sure they needed the Leptospirosis vac, she told me horror stories that scared the life out of me!! she said if one of my dogs caught this virus, i would lose all of my dogs and that humans can catch it too! since hearing this i decided to just have the combination vac with everything in, after reading this i just don’t know what to do!
    I only want what is best for my dogs and puppies.

    • Sharon,

      Lepto is a disease most commonly caught from wild animals from contaminated water. Unless you live in a raccoon infested area and your dogs share the water with them your dogs will not likely come into contact with the virus and it is treatable with antibiotics if they were to become infected. I do not give the lepto vaccine to my Shibas. I advise my puppy buyers not to get it as well.

  41. Sadly, even ONE puppy vaccination sets up the puppy for disease as it compromises the immune system. I have been a NR breeder for over 20 years and have not vaccinated my dogs or their pupppies at all. I take my puppies out to dog shows, dog parks and other places to intentionally expose them to the viruses being shed by vaccinate dogs so they can build up a natural immunity. When I sell a puppy, they are asked not to vaccinate them but if they and/or their veterinarian want to see for themselves that they do not need to vaccinated to do a titer test. I have not yet had a puppy’s titer test come back with no titers showing. (even for rabies) I do of course feed and make sure my puppy buyers fed a raw species appropriate diet and do not use any chemicals in, on, or around the puppy. Vaccines do NOT protect, no matter what the veterinary and pharmacutical companies want you to believe. I have seem many vaccinated puppies contract parvo and most of them die. The very, rare few puppies that have not been vaccinated and contracted parvo recovered extremely quickly and well (did not die). The only way to take the risk out of vaccinating is to not vaccinate at all.

  42. J. R. Burnam

    I am a dog breeder and groomer and am so glad you are writing about the vaccines. When parvo was so bad in the 80′s, I had my females titered when they delivered, used the result and divided by 2 every nine days. This would tell me when the pups titer was low enough to accept the vaccine. After I did that, I never lost pups to parvo.

  43. octaviameister

    My dog received her vaccines when she was a puppy from the breeder. This was prior to me waking up and learning about vaccines and their toxic side effects. She has not had any vaccines since then, and she has been on an organic diet (100%) and I also put a little Colloidal silver in her water daily. She has never been sick, not in 6+ years, very healthy both physically and mentally.

    The Colloidal Silver also seems to counteract the effects of the vaccines. I take it as well.

  44. maryann loebs

    I am getting a puppy on Thursday. I feel bad after reading this article today because they of course already have given the first vaccines just the other day at 8 weeks. Now I
    don’t know what to do? Should I give her one more at 12 weeks? Or just leave it at the one which may be too early?

    • Dogs Naturally
      Dogs Naturally

      I don’t normally advocate titers but in your case, they will be a great use of money. If you run the titers for parvo and distemper when your puppy is 11 weeks old, there will be circulating antibody from the vaccination. This is the best time to use titers – any amount of circulating antibody, no matter how small, means that your puppy seroconverted from his first vaccination. This is highly likely for distemper and you’ve got about a 50/50 chance for parvo. Adenovirus and Hepatitis are not really that common and Coronavirus doesn’t affect puppies older than 6 or 8 weeks of age so I would not worry about doing titers for them. So if there is any measurable amount of antibody for parvo and distemper, your puppy is protected for life. If he has responded to distemper, but not parvo, then I would vaccinate for parvo only – if at all – and would wait until 12 weeks. This would be the safest way to do it.
      Best of luck with your puppy.

      • Have you looked at Homeopathic treatment. I breed boxers and all my puppies were given homeopathic nosodes some owners have given the puppies other forms of vaccines but 5 puppies have only been treated homeopathicly , My little girl Leah has never had chemicals, she has only been treated homeopathicly , and with herbal treatments , Leah just had her first birthday and is as healthy as any of the other dogs she plays with.
        Herbal wormer, homeopatic heartworm, homeopathic vaccinations.

  45. Marrin

    Don’t you think if your puppy has natural immunities from Mom then being exposed to other “doggie” areas could boost those immunities as well by being exposed by shed virus? IMO the more protective you are of your pup the less likely he/she will be able to assimilate into normal dog society. Clearly I would not take him/her to a vets office anyway. But maybe a puppy class?

    • Dogs Naturally
      Dogs Naturally

      Every time your puppy leaves the house, his immune system is being primed and readied. The idea is to not over-challenge the immune system by taking your young puppy to areas with heavy dog traffic while his immune system is still immature. This applies to both vaccinated and unvaccinated puppies really because we can’t rely on the vaccines being effective until 12 weeks – or longer with some vaccines.
      I have serious reservations about puppy classes but that is from a trainer’s point of view, not a safety point of view. Most puppy classes are poorly designed and the puppies are over stimulated and only learn to become hooligans. Play times shouldn’t be much more than a minute or so at a time in a well designed puppy class…most of them are just free-for-alls where puppies can easily develop fears or learn to become too rowdy because they are all too riled up, either from anxiety or excitement. Dog training is an unregulated profession and there are far, far too many trainers who don’t have a good grasp on dog behavior and learning. Choose your puppy class carefully, just like your vet!

      • Sorry but we can not ever rely on any vaccine to be effective at any age.
        http://www.naturalhealthysupplements.net/2010/12/05/vaccines-are-not-effective-and-vaccines-are-destructive-to-a-human-mind/ This article is just one of many out on the world wide web and it is about human vaccines. If they are not effective but destructive to humans what makes us think they are any better for our animals?

      • Jane Burkey

        I TOTALLY agree with your statements – in particular the “training – puppy class”. ALMOST all the “puppy classes” I’ve seen are, as you say, “Free-for-alls”, and there is almost always a puppy or two who are overwhelmed by the action, and are “bullied” by other puppies – with no control what-so-ever by the “trainer”…

  46. Mary Marlowe

    In the studies, it would have been nice if they had also looked at a control group that had NOT been vaccinated at all. Natural immunity exists, and should not be over looked. As more breeders and owners choose not to vaccinate, perhaps researchers will take this natural immunity into consideration.

    • Dogs Naturally
      Dogs Naturally

      Our official stance is definitely in favor of natural immunity. I believe that even in the field, the unvaccinated control puppies would have a fairly high risk of infection as it does take some time for the immune system to fully mature – about six months. Having said that, immunity via vaccination turns the immune system ‘inside out’ and forces an unnatural humeral bias. IF you must vaccinate your puppy for whatever reason, here is the safest way to do it in our opinion. We agree 100% that natural immunity is safest in the long run, both for the dog and for the animal population as a whole.

  47. I just have a quick question regarding the time to vaccinate. I was watching an interview on youtube of Dr. Becker and Dr. Schultz. They were discussing the vaccines and the best time to vaccinate. I believe he discussed vaccinating between 9-10wks, then again at 15-16wks then two weeks later to titer test. Your article states research shows now just 12 wks vaccinate once then titer? when did this research come out? Here is the link to the interview: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xC–bGthNN8&feature=player_embedded . I’m very happy to hear more research is being done. With this new information you’ve provided I will have to look further into this and reconsider my vaccination recommendations for my puppy buyers and myself! thanks for always keeping us informed.

  48. Christine Lee

    I have a puppy who has had his first set of vaccines around 8 weeks old. After that, we planned on getting him vaccined again around 12 weeks and 16 weeks old but we haven’t gotten around to it yet. But after reading this article, I’m thinking twice about getting him vaccined again, because once is enough? I just want whats best for him, and I don’t want to take any unnecessary measures.

  49. Dogs Naturally Magazine
    Dogs Naturally Magazine

    Angela, Dr Schultz has always advocated a minimal vaccine program to be one combination shot of distemper, parvo and adenovirus at 12 weeks because puppies have a 95% chance of success with this. I think you will find more information here: http://www.dogsnaturallymagazine.com/taking-the-risk-out-of-puppy-shots/


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