A reader sent me the following email with permission to post on this blog.
She will be moving from Maryland to Tahlequah, Oklahoma, the center of the cherokee nation (see my 6/3/12 post for a story about Tahlequah).
Q 1. a. Neither Cozy (12/2/12) nor Dewey (11/12/12) are due for Rabies until later in the year. I do not want to vaccinate at all and yet if I do prior to our leaving Maryland it would be a 3 year where if I wait until later in Oklahoma, it would be a 1 year having to be repeated again the next in Tahlequah.
A 1. a. I went to the wonderful Kris Christine’s site with up to date information for all states and links to contribute to the Rabies Challenge Fund and much more – http://www.dogs4dogs.com/rabies-laws. She quotes Oklahoma state law: “The owner or custodian of a domestic dog, cat, or ferret shall cause the animal to be vaccinated against rabies by the time the animal is four months of age and at regular intervals thereafter according to the label directions of an approved rabies vaccine for use in that species, or as prescribed by ordinances or rules adopted by a municipality within whose jurisdiction the animal owner resides.” Even though that is the state law, there could be local laws that differ. The State Department of Agriculture Animal Health would be the place to check. I called a local vaccination clinic (nationwide franchise) and was assured it was 3 year until I pressed 3 times, then he researched it and said it was annual. I gave up after 5 calls and google searches. I called a local Tahlequah veterinary clinic and yes, it is good for 3 years in Oklahoma!!! It is worth the effort so vaccines are not given too frequently.
Q1. b. The only reason I would at all is if something should happen that one of them bites someone, they would be taken from us for that 10day period which would kill them. They never have even attempted biting, they just do not and yet that 10 day period scares the bajeebees out of me.
A 1. b . There are two separate concerns if a dog or cat is not current with Rabies vaccine. If they bite another person or animal there is a 10 day quarantine, but it is usually done at home. The reason is that an animal must be within 1o days of death in order to infect another. Usually, one the virus is at the infectious stage, the animal will show severe neurological (paralysis, aggression, lethargy, not eating, fever – really sick) within a few days. The second quarantine (usually in a cage with only one adult person in contact) is about 6 months (laws differ) because it can take from 2 months to 6 months or more for the virus to become infectious. This would take place if your dog or cat was bit by an unknown assailant. They would assume it was a rabid wild animal.
Q 2. When I look at the DHLPP, I can’t help but ask will my little Yorkie Babes really ever come in contact with; Distemper, Hepatitis, Leptospirosis (what), Parainfluenza (as in the flu) and/or Parvo-virus (isn’t that pups and boarders)? If so am I being less than conscious regarding their safty, protection and health by not vaccinating?
A 2. Please read my long article on vaccines on this site. In brief – Distemper and Parvo are viral diseases and one vaccine gives LIFETIME immunity, so you are being more conscious by NOT repeating vaccines since the vaccines can cause chronic disease. Any age dog can get Parvovirus. Some people, knowing the big risk of vaccines, will “titer” their dogs at 6 months and if the blood test shows antibodies – they are protected for life. The Leptospirosis (and Lyme, a separate vaccine) is a spirochete bacterial disease and the vaccine must be specific to the serotype causing the renal failure in the local area. There is no cross protection. Vaccines against bacterial diseases are poor, so to be effective need to be given every 4 to 6 months. Hepatitis and Parainfluenza are rare. For much more information and personal support, there is a wonderful list serve on vaccines, their harm and alternatives is at yahoo groups. To register, go to novaxk9s-subscribe@yahoogroups.