Vaccinations are an important preventative element for overall puppy health. Vaccines can protect both dogs and humans from illness, disease, and death. While they are administered for the well being of dogs and humans, they are also often controversial and have been a debated subject matter in the world of dogs.
There are two categories often used to describe vaccines – core and non-core. Core vaccines are considered vital to all pets. They are based on the severity of the disease, the risk of exposure, and/or the likelihood of the disease being passed on to humans. Non-core vaccines are for diseases and conditions which may have lesser severity or are specific to lifestyle or geographic risk factors, therefore, they are not always recommended for every dog.
Core Vaccines: Rabies, Parvovirus, Distemper, and Adenovirus (Canine Hepatitis)
Non-Core Vaccines: Bordetella, Lyme Disease, Leptospirosis 4-way, Canine Influenza, Parainfluenza, Adenovirus Intranasal
I am not a medical expert or a veterinarian but I have formed some opinions on which vaccines are most important for my dogs and when and how often they should be administered. I have read several studies and articles and I have spoken to several different vets and I will tell you there are many opinions out there on the topic of vaccines.
In my opinion, some vaccines pose more of a risk than benefit for my own dogs and our lifestyle, therefore, I do not vaccinate for the non-core vaccines. I try to follow a more natural and holistic approach with my own dogs. You will need to come to your own conclusions and make decisions that you feel are best for your dog and your family. Lifestyle and risk factors relative to your dog’s daily life should help determine your vaccine schedule. It is helpful if you are able to find a vet who is open and honest and will take your feelings and concerns into consideration.
I have included several links to helpful articles and charts from Dogs Naturally below as well as a link to the protocol recommended by both Dr. Jean Dodd, Dr. Judy Morgan and Dr. Karen Shaw Becker. Dr. Dodd, Dr. Morgan and Dr. Becker are wonderful resources for pet owners who want to take a more holistic and natural approach in all aspects of raising their pets.