Aug 26, 2016
Please let us know about any side effects you have witnessed after your pet's vaccination or booster shot. We'd like to know the name of the breed of your pet and also which vaccinations he or she received. Did your annual dog vaccinations include the rabies vaccine? Was it a combination vaccine addressing several potential dog ailments? Did you opt to give your pet cat vaccinations? All the details are important.
As we gather more information around this subject, we can better assess whether first-time vaccinations or follow-up booster shots are responsible for causing deadly complications in certain breeds of dogs and cats.
If your pet has experienced side effects from a medication like ketoconazole (for yeast skin infections), we have a new page on pet medication side effects here.
As of September 4, 2013 over 344 people have reported side effects and over 40 people have reported deaths from pet vaccinations. See their feedback in our table of contents menu entitled "Vaccination Reader Feedback".
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Remedies for Vaccination Side Effects
I have a 6 year old Rat Terrier. After recieving her yearly rabies vaccination booster she started having adverse reactions to it. It started with a lot of scratching, and with in a few days to a week a small bald spot appeared with a small lump under the skin, about the size of a quarter. I have had a few friends whose dogs have completely lost all of their hair and regularly have scabs or sores where they recieved their injection, so I knew right away what it was. I as soon as I noticed the missing hair and felt the lump, I took her into the bathroom and washed her from head to paws with a medicated shampoo to rid her skin of any bacteria, dirt, or possible allergins. To prevent her from scratching I spray the area with a cortizone several times during the day, (this is something you can buy at the local pet store) and stop her from messing with it anytime I notice. On days that the itching seems more severe I give her a 25mg benadryl tablet and it does what I need it to do. When I think about it, I gently roll the lump between my index finger and thumb, and I also "snap" the skin a few times by pulling the lump away from her body and allowing it to snap back. This increases blood flow to the area and helps the body deal with the issue. I do these things just a few times, so I dont aggravate her or the area. So far the lump hasnt gotten any bigger, and the hair loss is only localized to that one little spot. I am happy with the results I have seen in her, the lump still isnt completly gone, but its doing much better. Her hair hasnt started to grow back either, but I figure a quarter size bald spot is better than no hair at all. I still continue to bathe her several times a week, but now I am using a oatmeal based wash. It much easier on her skin than continually using a medicated shampoo, and it seems to help with the all over itching as well. I wish you all the best of luck if you run into the same issue. I'd reccomend taking you dog to the vet if the lump continues to get bigger, if your dog gets hives, a temerature, or starts losing hair all over. I have a friend who has a toy Chiuaua and he had a severe reaction. She waited too long and didnt treat him herself so now he has open sores regularly and is hairless. By the time she got him to the vet there wasnt much the vet could do for him. They gave him a cortizone shot and some benadryl... two things anyone can do at home. I hope this helps some one, and once again good luck!!
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Posted by Rosie (Greer, U.s.a) on 12/13/2011
I have had a total of four dogs in my lifetime, two of them had reactions to vaccinations. My first dog was a male pug and had skin allergies. After vaccines, large tumors came up on his skin and there was a very strong smell that never went away. He always smelled but this was alot stronger. I now know that this permanent smell was the liver being unable to detox the vaccines and not due to the lack of bathing. The dog had to be on pregnisone the entire time, without it he would scratch and scratch until there was blood everywhere. I stayed up many nights putting him in a bath of greenzone which helped but didnt cure. I now know that his liver needed some work. He died at the age of two, from a stroke. I cant say it was directly from the vaccines but I can say that he got alot of help from the vaccines and the pregnisone. My other dog was a German Shephard, I inherited him from the neighbor that severly neglected him, she did tell me that he had heartworms, but she didnt tell me about the seizures. I questioned her about his first seizure and she doged the question, but after having many seizures, she finally admitted that his first seizure took place after he was vaccinated and was given heartworm meds. Imagine that, giving a dog with heartworms vaccines. Well that would explain his second seizure that came after the second heartworm treatment. This was a grand mal seizure and I thought that was it, but the doctor gave him a shot of steriods and it revived him. It lasted maybe a week and a half, then I gave him oral steriods every other day and then He had another seizure, but it wasnt bad. Then he got a severe infestation of round worms. I dreaded getting the meds, because I knew what was coming. I had 3 seizures, one every day. By that time, I knew this dog could no longer take any meds at all, I also knew that he couldnt handle chemicals either. But I wasnt able to put it all together fast enough. He started to decline, took him to holistic vet, she gave him an eye exam and from the look on her face I knew that this was a brain tumor. We were able to stop seizures, but not the brain tumor, I had to put him down yesterday. I now know that holistic doctors can detox these vaccines out of their systems.
As for heartworm, the meds are nasty but so is the disease. They provide heartworm nosodes that works for some animals but not all. I will spray my other two dogs with natural mosquito repellent instead of giving heartworm, which I have never done with my own dogs but after what happened to Obie, I am taking this disease far more serious. So what happened, I now know that obies liver could not detox and that all the toxins were routed to his brain which in his paticular case was the weakest organ. Toxins generally land on the weakest organs, then you have parasites, fungus, yeast, bacteria. Much like you would see with rotting garbage. Of course, I was not giving the whole truth about obies condition from the start. According to New York Times, one rabie shot should last a lifetime. My philosphy is after these experiences is one set of shots and one rabie, if you have an outdoor dog. MY new pug has hever had one, there are no racoons in my living room, at least I hope not. As for a large dog, that is more tricky, if they bite someone, and there not up to date on rabie, owner could be sued. If you want a healthy pet, stay away from the vet unless it is an emergency. Stay away from corn, diary, gluton and soy, no chemicals at all, supplements also have fillers and binders that dont set well. These expensive vet supplements have them too. There are supplements that are O, K. If you decide to vaccinate, call a holistic vet first, be ready in case you have a reaction to the shot. Most of all old dogs should die from old age, not from heartworm, tumors, seizures etc. Those were the excuses from the previous owner. Her excuse was, he was just an old dog, and she couldnt wait to put him down, as she had been trying for the past year. Each time we blocked it. It was just too inconvient and embarrassing for her. This is still too raw.sorry
Posted by Rheeson (Sebring, Fl) on 10/13/2009
We adopted a 6 week old chihuahua, Max(his mom is a rescued miniature chihuahua, father is not known). Max weighs about 2 pounds. His first vaccination was given between 6 and 7 weeks. A friend gave him the 7 in 1 vaccine. After about 4 hours, I noticed swelling on Max's whole neck, and it was very tender (no swelling around his throat). Called a friend who works with a vet, she said to give him children's Diphenhydramine, but wasn't sure of the dosage. I gave Max 1/2 ml of liquid Diphenhydramine, repeated the 1/2 ml dose 3 hours later. I gave him another 1/2 ml dose 4 hours after the 2nd dose. By this time the swelling had gone down some, he seemed to feel better, but I just wanted to be sure he was going to be ok. By morning, the swelling was gone, he still has a little bump where the injection was done, but other than that, he seems fine.
EC: Another name for Children's Diphenhydramine is Children's Benadryl.
Posted by Johnny (Cole Camp, Missouri, United States) on 03/07/2012
My girl is a 4 & 1/2yr old white german shepherd. She's had one puppy shot before I got her, and 3 rabies vaccinations because of City Ordinence, next one will be forced on us in April. For the last year and a half I've been giving her, 1Tbsp ACV, 1Tbsp Lemon Juice, and 1 Small Clove of Garlic, (cut into small slivers) mixed with 1 Cup of Beef or Chicken Broth, per day, 5 days out of 7. Her dog food is not top of the line, but rates 4 out of 5 stars on several trusted sites. She's a very Healthy Happy Girl, but I am very concerned about over vaccination issues. I've also read that adding a good organic Coconut Oil to her diet would also help pull the toxins of the shot out of her, and I figure it wouldn't hurt to make that a regular part of her diet any way. BTW I take the same mixture, minus the dog food of course. (LOL) Anyway any feedback on how to lessen the effects of the vaccine would be appreciated.
My heart goes out to everyone who has lost a beloved pet to Corporate Greed. My last white GSD died at 1&1/2 yrs from uncontrollable seizures. I believed the lie and thought I was protecting her from all those horrible health problems. Before that my once in a lifetime greatest dog ever, black & tan GSD died at 10yrs of throat cancer. Thank You in advance for any feedback.
Johnny & Hope in Missouri
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Cole Camp, Missouri, United States
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Posted by Tracey (Elizabeth, Colorado) on 10/24/2007
We had back to back horrible experiences with vaccinations. First we had a six year old yellow lab. Long story short, she went in for a series of shots including bordatella administered through her nose. She wasn't in a daycare or kennel yet caught kennel cough shortly after getting the vaccine. She never got better. We took her to specialists who kept telling us that there wasn't anything seriously wrong with her even when she was bleeding out of the same nostril the vaccine was administered. She died within two months. We contacted the maker of the vaccine and they sent us a check for $300 and made us sign a waiver. Two months after she died we got a German Shepherd puppy. At his three month visit he was given three vaccines at once. This was on a Friday. By Monday he was in intensive care from having multiple seizures. They ran every test in the book on him. They couldn't find anything wrong with him. They wanted to perform two final tests: an MRI on his brain and a spinal tap. I had had enough. I took him out of there and started researching on my own. They told me he would be on seizure meds for the rest of his life and that I would have to have his liver tested every six months for the rest of his life. I refused to listen to their advice. This all happened in September. Within six months he was completely fine and off the seizure meds. Here is what I did: I switched to a raw meat homemade diet, gave him immune boosting supplements and some herbal remedies. I gradually took him off the seizure meds. I didn't do it cold turkey. I will no longer give my dogs vaccinations and will never trust another vet 100% again. My Shepherd does have some allergies but they are mild. Listen to your instincts and don't take any vets word as the gospel. Most of them just want to take your money.
Posted by Kaye (Courtland, Ontario) on 05/18/2011
One of the following homeopathic medicines for companion who has a reaction to vaccination.
Works well with animals who have had seizures after vaccination may also respond to Aconite.
Is usually the first choice for vaccine-induced breathing problems.
This is the remedy may successfully treat seizures that occur after a vaccinations.
30c Homeopathic remedy rules:
Don't touch the pellets with hands use spoon, crush them up and use and folded paper like and funnel etc. To put them directly into the mouth. One dose of each is usually enough, but if you see any improvement then it worked. If not give one more dose.
Posted by Carol (Pittsburgh, Pa.) on 12/01/2009
15 years ago and before I thought I was being the good pet owner and getting my dog, a mix Golden X,vaccinations whenever they were needed. Long story short, my dog acquired mast cell cancer from vaccinosis and it developed at the injection site. I did enlist a holistic vet after his vet said he only had 3 months to live. Going totally holistic with treatments, my dog lived a good quality life for 2.5 years thereafter.
I now have 2 Old English Sheepdogs who are naturally reared. They are 9 & 10 currently and have had no chemicals in or on them, are fed a raw diet and have only been to a vet once. They had their puppy shots and that was it until my one dog was diagnosed with a hernia. He had to have an operation and they wouldn't do it until he had a rabies shot. This would be his second in his lifetime. I was reluctant but knew he needed a repair of his hernia. 2 months after that shot, he developed cysts all around his neck area. Sheepdogs are extremely sensitive to shots of any kind and he did puff up at the injection site. I was told by an herbalist to take a slice of lemon and rub it on the site and the puffiness went away. I then began using Colloidal Silver in drops 2x a day on the cysts and in a matter of a week, they burst and were gone and have never returned. They will never get a rabies shot for the life of them. My dogs have never had medications either of any kind. I treat them homeopathically and herbally and they are thriving.
EC: Thank you, Carol! Your feedback has been cross-posted to the Side Effects section on the same page.
Posted by Val (San Carlos, Sonora, Mexico) on 12/01/2009
My 21 mo old 6 lb Female Papillon developed allergy symptoms, gastric problems, and some nervous, paranoid and insecure behavior soon after receiving a SQ rabies vaccine in her right shoulder. Symptoms were mild to begin with but worsened over the next several weeks. We initially treated with Children's Benadryl 12 mg orally TID. 5 weeks after being vaccinated, at the vaccine site she developed a large area of alopecia (2" wide by 3" long and appears to still be increasing in size) which is quite large for such a small dog. We started treating with Temeril-P 1 Tab BID and decreasing dose. She's near completion with her with the Temeril-P and has just started Pentoxifylline therapy o.25 ml BID (120 mg/ml). My Vet had it compounded into a liquid, due to the fact that it only comes in a non dividable time released coated caplet at the pharmacies. The gastric upset and itching has improved, though she is still foot licking and face rubbing. This is an extremely beautiful, well bred show dog, and beloved friend. I'm concerned about long term effects, and of the alopecia increasing in area and possibly affecting her beautiful ears and face. Anything more I can do to help insure she recovers completely?
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Posted by Catroina (Astoria, NY) on 03/05/2008
For those with epileptic dogs,we have found,thank God that going by your dog's weight,melatonin(natural supplement)WORKS esp. IF your pet is prone to night time,early AM seizures--there is a website out here but unfortunately I can't remember their name,had a forum for epople to post questions/responses/their stories etc--what works..
one thing finally dawned on us here--we had 2 wonderful dobies that lived healthy lives till 14-16 years---a VERY loooong lifespan for this breed. They were NOT vaccinated for all these diseases and only received a rabies the year nyc mandated it.
for testimonies both human and pet.
Also,try to purchase the BEST natural /holistic food u can as it definitely makes a differencein your pets' lives....or prepare your own.
Posted by Zuzana (Tweed Coast, NSW, Australia) on 06/16/2009
Allergic Skin reaction as a result of C4 vaccine in dogs :
I have recently got a puppy at 8 weeks old, wo had his first combination vaccine at age 7 weeks, distemper, parvo and hepatitis. As someone who didn't want to expose my puppy to unneccesary vaccines, I chose to only give 1 more vaccine at 12 weeks. 10 days later my puppy broke out in a rash with his hair sticking up causing little bumps all over his back. He is on a fully natural raw diet, has had no contact to any new plants or allergens that I can think of, and I believe the vaccine has caused his immune system to weaken. I gave him a remedy of Thuja, as well as Apis to relieve the itching, which seemed to help. The following day I also gave an activated charcoal tablet and sprayed ACV on his skin. Within 5 days I saw a noticable improvement. I continued the same diet, also adding in ACV, flaxseed oil, garlic and kelp. 2 weeks later he had another itchy rash come up, this time starting on his belly and sides, seemingly effecting the parts of his skin where it had previously not been. I have succesfully treated the very red raw rash on his belly with the same treatments as above, but am still battling the remaining parts on his sides which he keeps itching. I am convinced this is a result of the vaccine and I hope to build his immune system to overcome these reactions and never vaccinate him again. Just in case this may help anyone with similar problems.
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Posted by Emily (Goodyear, AZ) on 02/06/2009
Pet & Human Vaccinations: I was doing research for alternatives to vaccinating my son and found many vets using Nosodes instead of traditional vaccinations. Here is a quickie Wikipedia explanation of Nosodes:
"Nosodes are homeopathic remedies that are made from the specific products of a particular disease. This can be tissue containing the actual disease agents or tissue affected by those agents. Sometimes nosodes are made from vaccines containing the organisms. The nosodes are prepared in a diluted and potentized form just like all other homeopathic medicine. There is no potential for an animal to become infected with a given disease agent from a nosode because of the pharmaceutical process that occurs which dilutes and inactivates any viable organisms."
Anyhow, I continued my search to see if they can be used on people as well and found a local doctor who prepared all of the vaccinations my son needs. If you are looking for an alternative for your pet or baby, check out Nosodes.
EC: More information about Nosodes here: http://www.shirleys-wellness-cafe.com/nosodes.htm
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Posted by Sjanczak (Windsor, Ct) on 07/22/2012
I volunteer in cat rescue and have seen a few reactions to vaccines. I learned (from a homeopathic vet) that the homeopathic remedy thuja can counteract a distemper vaccine reaction in kittens. I do not know if it will work for other vaccine reactions or if a different remedy is better for dogs. I have seen kittens with rapid breathing, lethargy, and shakes return to normal behavior almost immediately or within 24 hours of taking thuja. If you are going to vaccinate your pet, it may be worthwhile to research this and have on hand the most appropriate remedy.
Posted by Marianne (Berlin, Germany) on 03/08/2012
Here is one advice that I find in many books written by homoeopathic doctors for avoiding damages of vaccinations (better would be to not vaccinate at all): Give your dog 5 globuli of Thuja D30 (or C30 whatever your druggist has) 1 hour before and after vaccination. Maybe you can even find a homoeopathic vet in your area. You should also ask your vet on 3 yearly rabies shots because they are available. Go to Dr. Mercolas website. I remember he had an interview with a Dr. Schulz who is a pretty well-known American vet and says that all mandatory shots will last a lifetime. But the only good shots are the ones not given.
Good luck, Marianne
Posted by Vickie (Lansing, Mi/usa) on 10/29/2011
I have a 5 month old kitten that is eating & acting fine but is having bad diarrhea. He had only one vaccine about 6wks ago. I have read many of the very sad stories abt pets and vaccines. My sincerest sympathy to any who have had very ill pets or lost a precious one to vaccines. I wanted to add, that, I understand that you can give any animal having any adverse type reaction to a vaccine or if you think an illness or tumor or cancer is vaccine related; you can treat them with homeopathic med "thuja" 30c is what is best from my natural med book on cats and dogs. I have read different dosing, tho one is to give one dose, but for 3 days. You could check the internet for other recommendations. But it could possibly save a pet's life. Also you can give even if there is no bad reaction, but I am not sure how long after the vaccine was given, this would be recommended. Hope this helps someone.
Posted by Carolyn Guzzi (Tampa, Florida) on 04/19/2014
My cat has a death sentence today because of a cancer caused by vaccinations called fibroscarcoma...i have had this cat when he was a kitten 1 month and had him for 9 years this month...he was limping and had a lump on his shoulder..it went a way but then it came back with a force. It was small and not it is as big as the palm of my hand...he cant walk he eats very little...and I am devastated by this mess...and somebody needs to be responsible for doing this to this cat...getting all these shots for nothing rabies/FIV/FLiv/ and kitten shots fine but not every single month even my new vet doctor said u dont need every year shots especially if he is a indooor cat...every 3 years most if any does he need any shots especially if he is an indoor cat...! The pet food is crap with all the dead animals in the food when these shelters kill animals...with all the additives that will kill these pets and addition heartworm medicine such as revelution medication for fleas/ticks/heartworm med...hum if you get heartworm they are done. There is no cure!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! As well having the shots for your cat and heartworm medication revelutions together is a deadly for any animals dog/puppy or cat/kitten....do your homework, it is vital DO NOT GIVE SHOTS ALL AT ONCE TO YOUR PET DOG OR CAT...ONE AT A TIME IF THEY NEED IT...DOG & CATS ARE VERY DIFFERENT! Do your homework...do not rely on what they tell you; they are all in it for the money!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!