Vaccination Side Effects in Pets

Combination Vaccines

379 User Reviews
1 star (2) 

Posted by Britney (Bluffton, SC) on 12/06/2008
0 out of 5 stars

My 14 month old shihtzu was in for her annual3 days ago. Without looking at her file, the new vet gave her rabies, dhlpp, and bordatella all at once. within 5 minutes in the office she immediately began vomiting and losing control of her bowels. The vet took her to the back, and gave her some fluids under her skin and something for nausea. He told me she would be woozy for a few hours when i got her home, and when he handed her to me she was like a barely breathing puppy corpse. When we got home, she was extremely lethargic and her gums were tacky, and she started to have bright red bloody diarrhea. I called the emergency line for the vet and met him at the clinic, where he gave her more fluids under her skin because he was unable to find a vein bc her blood pressure was so low, and he also gave her some benadryl. We took her home again, hoping she would feel better in the morning. When we woke up, the bathroom was covered in blood from her stool, so we rushed her back to the vet where they admitted her. She has now been there nearly 48 hours, and all the vet can say is that I should not bring her home because she might not make it without her IV> ...anyone else had issues like this? I am devastated!

Combination Vaccines
Posted by Jan (Nottinghamshire, England) on 11/30/2008
0 out of 5 stars

we took our very fit 11 yr old cocker spaniel fo his yearly booster,after he seemed very sleepy & 3 days later he was very sick ,has lost his appetite, been very lethargic & has had conjunctivitus.We took him back to the vets & they gave him an antibiotic injection & some medicine to settle his stomach.We are now 10 days further on and still there is no improvement.

Combination Vaccines
Posted by Anika (Auckland, New Zealand) on 11/24/2008

Hi guys, I am sure that you are all caring pet owners who want what is best for your animals. I am shocked to see so many generalisations on this website. It is true that a very very low minority of animals develop some kind of vaccine related reaction. However, millions of pets are vaccinated for the core vaccines (distemper, parvo, canine adenovirus) on a yearly basis with no side effects (less than 0.001%). These are meant to ensure that the majority of animals are protected against diseases that are widespread, extremely virulent and highly infectious. These vaccines are safe & efficious and provide a high risk/benefit ratio to warrant their use.

In the past few years, a reduced overall prevalence of infectious disease has led to a decreased awareness and perception of risk, this is, for a great part, due to the great success of canine vaccines!!

Mass media in the UK and US have put pressure on vets and "freaked out" pet owners whilst overlooking the benefits of vaccination.

I am not saying there are no problems or never side effects. Just remember there are two sides to every argument and diseases like parvo & distemper are on the rise again and are a painful and miserable way to die!

Replied by Monika
(Frankfurt, Germany)

Frequency of side effects

Anika from Auckland wrote that side effects are less frequent than 0.001%. I wonder where she got that number from. Veterinarians hardly ever report the side effects they see in their clinics.

George Moore and co-workers give quite a different picture in their study "Adverse events diagnosed within three days of vaccine administration in dogs", JAVMA 2005. The incidence is as high as 0.38%. Risk factors: young age, small breed, number of vaccines that are given simultaneously. A similar study on side effects in cats showed an incidence of 0.48% (Moore et al, JAVMA 2007). I think that these studies do not reveal the full extent of side effects, due to their limited time frames and limited set of diagnoses.

But incidences and percentages are really moot if your own cat dies from a vaccine-caused sarcoma (as one of our cats did). Cause of death: unnecessary revaccinations.

There is no immunological justification for annual (or triennial) revaccinations with modified-live viral vaccines (canine distemper, canine parvo, canine hepatitis, canine parainfluenzavirus; feline parvovirus, feline herpesvirus, feline calicivirus). Period.

With deepest sympathy to all those who lost their cat or dog because of over-vaccination,

(My apologies for my poor English.)

Replied by Linda

Well said! Thank you Monica.


Combination Vaccines
Posted by Kathy (Chicago, Illinois) on 11/23/2008
0 out of 5 stars

My Boston Terrier had his annual rabies and distemper/parvo cocktail shots yesterday at the Animal Welfare League where I adopted him a year ago. He has been inactive and shaky since. He has eaten regularly and is going out on his own as usual.

Today, though, he started whining/yelping when he is picked up. He's not his high-energy self. I'm watching him closely. I know where the emergency vet is although now I think I want to seek out a holistic vet.

A sidenote, when I was a kid we had 3 dogs that saw the vet once when they were puppies, never took heartworm meds or any kind meds. They all lived to be 13+ years old so are vaccines really necessary if you are a mindful pet parent? Meaning you watch them when they go out, check for parasites, feed them good food, give them exercise, etc.

Last year, I had to put down my 13 y.o. lab mix after a pancreatitus attack that I'm convinced was caused by the "treats" of smoked pig ears. My vet said they are very fatty and older dogs shouldn't eat them. Why aren't there warnings on the bags?

Well, I guess I'm on sick pup watch for the day!

Combination Vaccines
Posted by Nicola (Lakewood, Ohio) on 11/20/2008
0 out of 5 stars

I took my Jack Russel Terrier (English/Irish) for her shots. She had the DHLPP and the Rabies shots in her thigh. That evening and the following day she was lethargic then she got a really high fever and her back was in pain. She would not get up, walk or go up and down the stairs. She has had these shots before but I never expected this and I am worried for the next time that the reaction may kill her. The vet gave her a shot and some medicine but could not really say what caused the illness. I feel it is to much of a coincidence for it not to be the vaccinations I just do not know which one!

Combination Vaccines
Posted by Taryn (Lansing, Michigan) on 11/16/2008
0 out of 5 stars

I can't find help for our Pug. He is 1yr. 3months. He had Rabies and Canine Boosters (Dis. Lep. Par. Parvo Adeno.2) He is sick and I can't get him any help on Sunday.

Combination Vaccines
Posted by Gail (Gastonia, NC) on 11/15/2008
0 out of 5 stars

I have a 5 month-old daschund/chihuahua/shih-tzu/terrier mix named Joshua. He went to the vet at 4 months old to receive his first round of shots- which had already been given by the breeder, but which the vet would not recognize! SO...puppy had double shots! Our county requires an annual rabies vaccine, and the puppy MUST have all of these other shots BEFORE they will give him the rabies! UGH!!

They gave him DHLPP shots, and a rabies vaccine at the same time. He weighed 9 pounds at that time. 45 minutes later he became violently ill- throwing up all over the place. I immediately called the vet, who told me that it was from the car ride home! (This puppy rides in the car a lot, and had never thorwn up before.)

He limped for a couple of days, and was lethargic- just layed around doing nothing. (And this is a VERY active puppy.)

3 weeks later, the vet had me bring the puppy back in- at which time he gave him a DHLPP booster shot, and neutered him.

Joshua was so sick- he peed on himself for a whole day, and didn't move much at all for a few days.

I DO NOT want to get him this vaccine next year, but am not sure what to do, as it's the law here. Very frustrating!

Combination Vaccines
Posted by Libby (Pisgah Forest, NC) on 11/12/2008
0 out of 5 stars

I took my Italian Greyhound, Pucci in for her annual DA2PP vaccine yesterday, and she had side effects from it.....lethargy, a bump on the vaccination site, and also would not eat or drink, except for her treats. She is getting peppier now, and is starting to eat as of this evening. The same thing happened last year. She still has the bump, so hopefully that will subside as well. I look forward to next year, when they will start separating the vaccines and give each individual vaccines every three years. Maybe that will alleviate the side effects??? I hope so!! Pucci had her 3 yr. rabies shot two weeks ago and there were no side effects. From what I have read, lethargy for a couple of days, lack of appetite and the bump are common side effects.

Combination Vaccines
Posted by Faye (Long Valley, NJ, USA) on 11/10/2008
0 out of 5 stars

Our 12 week old black lab mix had his second distemper/parvo shot with a lyme disease vaccination. The following day, he could not stand or walk on his own. Our vet contacted the manufacturer's of the vaccine. They acknowledged other dogs having this reaction but the cases were so few that they do not place warnings on their bottles. Our vet treated him with predizone and I began Benadryl 3x daily. Within the first couple of days our pup was back on his feet and playing. We have reduced the predizone and the results have been a gradual improvement. I have discussed this problem with a knowledgeable rescue for animals and they always give a dose of Benadryl (1/2 cc) before every puppy gets their first vaccine to avoid this reaction.

Combination Vaccines
Posted by Sandy (Vineland, NJ) on 11/06/2008
0 out of 5 stars

My 11 month old recently adopted female Golden Retriever just got her first Lyme vaccine. Within 12 hours she has diarrhea and its been two days. I believe this is a direct result of the vaccine because nothing else has changed and her stools were find up unto the vaccine.

Combination Vaccines
Posted by Cyndi (Abbotsford, B.C. Canada) on 11/04/2008
0 out of 5 stars

My two year old Maltese/Shitzhu went for his annual vaccine/booster & rabies shots. When he got it done this time he wouldn't stop yelping and when I picked him up from the table he lost control of his bowels. He instantly had pooped all over me and continued to yelp. The vet said this was normal when they got a rabies shot. (This was his first rabies shot) I took him home and he was very lethargic and did not want to be touched on his back. The next couple of days were the same.

Five days later I noticed that he had a bump on his shoulder and a patch of hair was gone. I rushed him to the vet and was told that he had an infection, probably from a bee sting which caused this. I asked if it could be from his shots and was told that it wasn't. They put him on antibiotics and within a week the bump was gone.

After a month I took him back to the vet because the area was still red (no swelling), and still had no new hair growth. The vet then told me that he probably had allergies and put him on a new dog food. (Something he does not want to eat)

It is now a year later and he still has a bald spot on his shoulder. We have since then switched vets but I am very reluctant to give him or my other dog their boosters or rabies shots because of this.

Combination Vaccines
Posted by Darleen (Milford, CT) on 11/01/2008
0 out of 5 stars

My dog has IVD, which was diagnosed on his 9th Birthday, after a severe symptom outbreak, shortly after receiving the combo vaccination of Bortadella/Parvo/Leptosporosis. After an MRI, steroids & ongoing weekly acupuncture, he had his mobility back until the annual vaccination was again due. To be conservative, I asked that the vaccination be separated. Therefore, he had Bortadella, Parvo & Leptosporosis vaccinations separately, 2 plus weeks apart. That is why it was easy to determine that 24 hours after the Leptosporosis vaccination, he had back disc/pain/ambulatory problems as severe as the year before. He was on steroids for a month until he could resume acupuncture weekly again. His chart was marked "No Lepto." However, he continued to have intermittent setbacks until the most severe one 5 weeks ago. He was again treated with steroids which helped but did not get him fully functional. Yesterday, I had bloodwork done for the neurosurgical consult. Today, I was informed that he now has hepatitus/advanced liver enzymes which could be caused by steroids but is also caused by Leptosporosis. You requested feedback for negative reactions to vaccinations so I hope this will be useful.

Combination Vaccines
Posted by Barbara Oberle (Kingston, RI) on 10/29/2008
0 out of 5 stars

My 4 year old neutered male cat had booster shots for rabies and distemper yesterday. Since then he has been lethargic and not eating.

Combination Vaccines
Posted by Nancy (Flushing , Michigan, USA) on 10/24/2008

I have a 11 month old bloodhound. When she was 6 months old, she was spayed. About a week later, she became lethargic. I took her back to the vet, fearing an infection. He treated her with ampicillan. A few days after that, she started developing neurological symptoms, i.e. walking on the top of her right, front paw. I immediately took her back to the vet, He placed her on a steroid and Bactrin, She improved, but her symptoms worsened when weaned from the steroid. She was falling, lost the sight in her right eye, was walking on her paw, and seemed to have generalized right sided weakness. He referred her to a neurologist, who did a spinal tap, which showed a virus.-unspecified. The treatment changed to high doses of Batril, Ammoxocillan and steroid. Her condition has improved somewhat, but not a great deal. She is no longer faling or walking on her paw, and has regained some sight, but since being weaned from the Bactrin, is now rounding. This has been going on two weeks now. We have raised the steroid to 40 mgs twice a day. With very little improvement. We have considered more Batril,,

The original vet has now found another dog that developed similiar symptoms, and who was in the hosptial at the same time.

Any ideas? suggestions? She is only a baby, could these side effects be from the vaccine?

EC: Nancy, when were her vaccinations administered? Also, which ones?

Combination Vaccines
Posted by Cody (Hobe Sound, FL) on 10/24/2008
0 out of 5 stars

Lymes Booster Side Effects

Our 3 y/o Chihuaua had a Lymes booster shot when she was about 2 y/o. They apparently give the same dose no matter what size they are. She weighed appr. 6 lbs at the time. She was really sick for two days with flu like S/S. She recovered, but now she has been getting front and back leg tremors. It started with just one side, but I noticed it has gone to the other side as well. We didn't realize until after the shot that this condition has been reported. We are sick to death about it and and know her quality of life is now affected and quite possibly her length of life also. We have not found any remedy :-(