After listening to a lot of experienced dog fanciers, I have heard a lot of problems with over vaccinating of our dogs. I feel this is of great importance for us to look at and evaluate within our own dogs and breeding program. Please read and go to the following website: for additional information. ‑Ginny Maese 



Reprinted from Giant Steps © Nov.-Dec. 2000 

Note: This schedule is the one I recommend and should not be interpreted to mean that other protocols recommended by a veterinarian would be less satisfactory.  It's a matter of professional judgment and choice. 

For all breeds or families of dogs susceptible to or affected with immune dysfunction, immune‑mediated disease immune‑reactions associated with vaccinations, or autoimmune endocrine disease (e.g., thyroiditis, Addison, or Cushing's disease, diabetes, etc.), and all other breeds, the following protocol is recommended: 

Age of pups ‑ Vaccine type (No DHLPP Vaccines!)

6 weeks (range could be 5 and a half to 6 and a half weeks but not earlier

  • Distemper + measles (without hepatitis)

8 weeks, and 10 weeks for pups not receiving measles earlier

  • Distemper plus hepatitis, plus or minus parainfluenza for pups not receiving the distemper/measles earlier

7‑8 weeks and 10‑11 weeks, same schedule and product each time

  • Killed canine parvovirus* given 3‑4 weeks apart

12 weeks

  • Distemper + hepatitis + parainfluenza plus or minus leptospirosis (without parvovirus)*

14 weeks and 18‑20 weeks, same schedule and product each time**

  • Distemper + hepatitis + parainfluenza plus or minus leptospirosis + killed canine parvovirus*

16‑36 weeks

  • Killed rabies vaccine (note, from Lyn Richards: we do NOT give Great Danes Rabies Vaccines before the age of 6 months, due to the immune suppressed state of many Breed lines. Please discuss this at length with your vet before making a decision, but be aware that many of the coat, bone and skin problems the breed is experiencing are a direct result of early rabies vaccination.)

• During parvovirus epidemics or for highly susceptible breeds such as Rottweilers and Harlequin Great Danes newer modified‑live virus (MLV) vaccines that override maternal immunity may he advisable.

• An Annual booster using distemper + hepatitis + parainfluenza plus or minus leprospirosis + killed canine or MLV parvovirus is given at one year of age. Thereafter, boosters are given every 3 years until old age. 

Beyond 10 years of age, booster vaccinations are generally not needed, and may be unwise if aging or other diseases are present. For animals at high exposure risk to parvovirus disease, an additional parvovirus vaccination can be given at the 6‑month point. 

• I use only killed 3‑year rabies vaccine for adults and give it separated from other vaccines by at least 2 and preferably 3‑4 weeks.

• I do not use Bordetella or corona virus or Lyme vaccines unless these diseases are endemic in the local area or specific kennel.

• I do not recommend vaccinating bitches during estrus, pregnancy or lactation.

• I recommend that distemper or distemper‑measles vaccine be given without hepatitis between 6‑8 weeks, because of the reported suppression of lymphocyte responsiveness induced by polyvalent canine distemper and adenovirus vaccines. (Phillips et al., Can J Vet Res 1989; 53:154‑160.)

• For animals previously experiencing adverse vaccine reactions or, breeds at higher risk for such reactions (e.g. Weimaraners, Akitas) alternatives to booster vaccinations should be considered. These include avoiding boosters except rabies vaccine as required by law; annually measuring serum antibody tiers against specific canine infectious agents, such as distemper and parvovirus and homeopathic nosodes. [This last option is considered an unconventional treatment that has not been scientifically proven to be efficacious. However, data from Europe and clinical experience in North America support its use, and controlled studies are underway to test the method under challenge conditions. If veterinarians choose to use homeopathic nosodes, their clients should be provided with an appropriate disclaimer and written informed consent should be obtained.]" 


I use titers instead of annual vaccinations, to keep track of the immunity my dog have to normal communicable diseases, such as Hepatitis, Distemper, Parvo, etc. Be aware that while there are approximately 25 known strains of Parvo (and new ones mutating regularly), there are only about 10 Strains of parvo for which there are vaccines. I use the supplements to help maintain my dogs immune system strength. 

I recommend that a bitch should be tested before breeding and it should be done on a yearly basis. 

Pages on this website links to Articles and Protocol areas that contain important Information. Please do NOT accept the information you read on my page or ANY other page on this or any website as GOSPEL. Instead, read, learn, study some more, then form your own conclusion after consulting with your own Veterinarian. 

W. Jean Dodds, DVM‑HEMOPET
11561 Salinaz Avenue Garden Grove, CA 92843
(714) 891-2022

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