Wednesday, August 3, 2005
Protecting Your Pet: Vaccines
Starting in January a new rabies law takes effect in Florida. It will greatly benefit pets and their owners while still protecting the public from the disease. But the law is tricky. Health specialist Marilyn Mitzel tells us what we need to know in today's Protecting Your Pet.
WSVN--Hollywood Animal Hospital Dr. Larry Dee: "I need to see when she got it last."
It's the law. We must vaccinate against rabies.
Dr. Larry Lee: "8/5/04. You're a couple days early, but you'll need that."
Finally catching up with science starting in January the vaccine can be given every three years instead of annually.
Regency Vet Clinic Dr. Bruce Tannenbaum: "Evidence has demonstrated that the protection against these diseases from vaccinations last more than a year and most of the time at least three years."
But - here's the catch...Each County can still do what they want.
Dr. Bruce Tannenbaum: "This is Jack's rabies vaccine. It's a three year vaccine."
Palm Beach allows the three-year vaccine. But vets don't have to abide by it. Dade and Broward still require shots every year.
Dr. Bruce Tannenbaum: "There we go."
This despite mounting research that over-vaccinating increases the risk of health problems. Frustrating to pet owners.
Dog owner Mark Simpson: "It's just as dangerous as not having any vaccinations."
Dr. Larry Dee: "We do see some evidence that there are some risks with vaccination."
The biggest - allergic reactions, cancer and tumors. Especially at the injection site. To reduce the danger....
Dr. Larry Dee: "Vaccinate as infrequently as possible. Basically vaccinate for those things that the animal can be exposed to."
Like rabies - distemper, parvo and hepatitis. Avoid shots between the shoulder blades where tumors are hard to remove. Vary the injection site.
Dr. Larry Dee: "We recommend the hind leg."
Aluminum free vaccines are safer. And FYI a lot of older animals don't need more shots.
Dr. Bruce Tannenbaum: "An animal that is 10 - 11 or 13 I'm not real sure that it's that important to continue to vaccinate that animal."
The 3-year law could save pet owners and counties who must process those tags a lot of money. Just try to establish a good relationship with your vet to determine what's best.
Dr. Larry Dee: "So she'll be happy and healthy."
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Dr. Larry Dee
Hollywood Animal Hospital
2864 Hollywod Blvd.
Hollywood Florida 33020
3013 Yamato Road Suite B-6
Boca Raton FL 33434