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  • Writer's pictureDoodleDogsPNW

Core Vaccines vs. Non Core

Updated: Jun 15, 2019


First of all- the elephant in the room- vaccines are the bread and butter of vet clinics, OK. So, now that puppy parents are wise to the notion that over vaccinating is causing cancer and poor animal health they are not vaccinating as much. Vets are relegated to cold calling owners to “remind” and presure them into “healthy” vaccines to sustain business.

While vaccines may have their place in the dog world lets not forget that vaccines have RISK and can cause permanent damage & cancer. It’s not all songs and rainbows. We need to proceed carefully to avoid illness.

You are allowed to say no if your pup has had a past vaccine concern and you’d like to hold off. (You might not be allowed to board in a kennel though.)

You can choose which vaccines to administer or not, depending on your preference each state has their own laws also.


Core vaccines are considered:

PARVO VIRUS -(CPV2) Parvovirus causes enteritis (bloody stools), a virus that came about in the 1970’s and can live for several years in the soil.

DISTEMPER -(CDV) Canine coronavirus, sometimes called Corona, is a viral intestinal infection of dogs which is usually short in duration. The virus is very contagious. It causes mild transient diarrhea in dogs, however it can be fatal in puppies, however, most infections in dogs go completely unnoticed. In rare cases it causes permanent neurological issues.

RABIES - Only required core. Needed for kennel stays and travel. Wait till older for long term immunity @16+ weeks. Now recommenced once every 7 years- not annually (for most states)

You should titer after shot to prove lifetime immunity.

Use homeopathy (Lysin) to help avoid rabies injury, (thuja) to avoid other vax injuries. Don’t use flea treatment at the same time (or at all) and don’t get any other vaccines around the same time.

CAV1 /CAV2 (Adeno1 & 2) These two viruses are very similar, with CAV-1 the cause of infectious canine HEPATITIS and CAV-2 the cause of respiratory disease.

Many dog owners choose not to use the vaccine recommendations, due to concerns that over-vaccination may be harmful.

Your veterinarian may not agree with this.

Unless your veterinarian is truly holistic, she will probably at least follow the AAHA guidelines.

Your veterinarian may imply that the full core with repeat doses are required by law. But, except for rabies, they’re not.

Furthermore, if your dog isn't at risk for an non core illness due to circumstances such as geographical location or lifestyle needs, then there isn't much need to vaccinate him against that illness.

Remember, as well, that not all vaccines are effective. More and more are opting out of the Hepatitis (Adeno) & lepto & Lyme vaccines.

Non-core vaccines for dogs can put your dog at risk for developing the very illness they are intended to prevent.

Vaccines can also have side effects and some dogs have vaccination senstivities. Non-core vaccines can also be costly, so think carefully and study before deciding to administer vaccines to your dog.


Laws regarding the frequency of administering certain core vaccines for dogs, such as rabies, are now changing. Prominent veterinarians have expressed concern that yearly vaccinations may be harmful for dogs, and vaccine manufacturers are now developing vaccines that remain active within your dog's body for as long as three years.

In response to these developments, many localities are requiring less frequent boosters of core vaccines such as rabies. Laws regarding the frequency of administering certain core vaccines for dogs, such as rabies, are now changing.

Prominent veterinarians have expressed concern that yearly vaccinations may be harmful for dogs, and vaccine manufacturers are now developing vaccines that remain active within your dog's body for 3+ years. ( though there’s disagreement that immunity last MUCH longer... 7 to 15 years and even more likely a lifetime!)


The DHPP is a combination vaccine that prevents four different viruses: canine distemper, infectious hepatitis, parainfluenza, and parvovirus. It’s actually a series of vaccines that your puppy will receive 3 times between six and sixteen weeks old.

The DAPP is essentially just another name for DHPP. The A in DAPP stands for “adenovirus”, while the H in DHPP stands for “hepatitis”. Adenovirus is an infection that causes canine hepatitis.

The 3 doses is due to failure to acquire immunity. Usually puppies are being nursed around 6 weeks and the mother’s immunity from the milk doesn’t wear off till 9 weeks the earliest. The real immunity comes from the final shot at 16+ weeks. Only one really works... the other two can be causing injury.


KENNEL COUGH- Canine infectious tracheo bronchitis, more commonly known as kennel cough, is a highly contagious illness of a dog's respiratory tract. Basically it’s various COLDS & FLUS. It occurs where dogs are in close contact with each other - boarding kennels, rescue centres, shows, etc.

The most common cause of kennel cough is from the same family as Bordetella pertussis (whooping cough) found together with Bordetella bronchiseptica (Bb) & influenza ( CPi) present in mouth and nose secretions. CPi alone can cause a mild cough and runny nose. Homeopathy can help these type kennel cough colds.

Kennel Cough is a localized infection (meaning it is local to the respiratory tract)

CAV1 /CAV2 (Adeno1 & 2) These two viruses are very similar, with CAV-1 the cause of infectious canine HEPATITIS and CAV-2 the cause of respiratory disease.

CANINE PARA INFLUENZA (CPi) yep, a flu shot


Similar to herpes simplex (cold sores), CHV only infects canine species. Pups can be infected in the womb, or immediately after birth from the dam. In latent carriers the virus may be re-activated after stress. In puppies less than two weeks of age, it presents as ‘fading puppy syndrome’.

Over two weeks of age and in adults, symptoms are usually mild respiratory signs of nasal discharge and coughing.


In some cases, dogs develop Lyme disease despite the vaccine, or maybe “because” of the vaccine. Research dogs develop all the symptoms of Lyme disease up to six weeks after receiving the shot, while tests for the Lyme disease bacteria show up as negative. I’d avoid.

LEPTOSPIROSIS spread by rat urine, usually in watery areas. Rare for most areas. Homeopathy helped clear a country wide epidemic after major flooding in Cuba. This vaccine has a huge failure rate. I’d avoid.

These Non-core vaccines can be used when an animal’s particular lifestyle puts it at greatly increased risk. These vaccines can either be administered prior to the risk period (in much the same way as humans have jabs when travelling to certain countries); or early on, in those animals whose lifestyle puts them permanently at risk.

Space out.

This carved up approach is likely to be extended in future as new vaccines become available. It’s not a one size fits all.

Personally, I avoid non core and use homeopathy to treat illness and nosodes to proactively treat potential threats. Yep, homeopathy, it’s a “thing“ and it’s VERY SAFE AND EFFECTIVE! So study for yourself and decide what’s right or your pup.


My opinion and that of many long term dog owners and breeders is NO. It’s a money maker and it’s been proven that the vaccines DO last longer than the 1-3 years being quoted.


Dogs have a far better chance of lifetime immunity after ONE dose if their their vaccines are given around 16+ weeks.... 22 weeks is OPTIMAL.

This is because they are protected with the immunity from mamas milk. This immunity will also block any vaccine antibodies anyway, so there’s no point vaccinating early. Best to wait till their body is ready and avoid a needless jab & potential injury.

I have homeopathy on hand in case my young pups get sick.

See what this article says about when to give a vaccine.

Heres what they have to say:

If you do decide to vaccinate your dog, holistic veterinarians generally recommend the following:

Use single vaccines instead of complex vaccines. To avoid the hassle, discomfort and cost of several injections, it is common practice to combine vaccinations into a single shot such as DHLP-P (Distemper, Hepatitis, Leptospirosis, Parainfluenza and Parvovirus).

Holistic vets recommend administering each vaccine one at a time.  Single vaccines may or may not be available in your area, so reach out to a holistic veterinarian if necessary.

Only use “inactivated” or “killed” vaccines instead of “modified live.”  They are usually safer since they are certain not to grow inside your dog’s body And the live vaccines can shed, even to humans, Up to 6 weeks.

If you own a puppy, use a reduced vaccination schedule  Immunized puppies may be good to go for several years or even their entire lives. Utilize titer testing.

Do not vaccinate before 16 weeks of age.

Avoid annual boosters.  While this is a common practice, there is no scientific evidence that it is necessary.  And don’t be surprised if your conventional vet disagrees – reach out to a holistic vet for verification as this is the latest official veterinarian opinion from the experts in the field of veterinary immunology.

One wholistic breeder recommended natural immunity building from 6 weeks on Using short 5 min exposures once a week. This helped prevent parvo and distemper in all their trial experiments.

In-House Titer Testing

There are two in-house titer tests that are now available to vets. This means the test is done right in your vet’s clinic and you get quick results. TiterCHEK and Vaccicheck are the two simple tests your vet can do right in his clinic, for about the same amount of money as a vaccine.

You can TITER TEST, for peace of mind, to verify so you’re not over vaccinating. Avoid the grief and INJURY of cancer, vet bills and sick pups later on.

Even just the smallest uptick in a titer test means the body responded and the immunity will be there when needed.

If your veterinarian presses you to over-vaccinate your dog with core vaccines, you can draw her attention to Dr Schultz’s research.

Dr Schultz’s studies show the minimum duration of immunity that likely protects your dog for life once he’s had his core vaccines as a puppy or adult.

If your vet needs more convincing, you can ask for titers to confirm your dog’s protected. Some vets charge an exorbitant amount for titers (perhaps because they really don’t want to do them) and some may even refuse.

If that’s the case, you can ask your vet to draw the blood for you (usually about a $15 to $20 charge) and then send it yourself to Hemopet for testing.

You can submit your titer request on Hemopet’s website. A distemper and parvo titer costs only $52 and you can ship the vial of blood for about $6 via a US Postal Service Small Flat Rate Box.

DoodledogsPNW highly recommends waiting till your puppy is older to vaccinate (16+ wks) and only one set of just the basic necessary ones, then titer test, no boosters. You’re Done!

Thanks to DogsNaturally for all their wonderful research. Grab your vaccine info pamphlet here!

Print this vaccine chart to help you in your decisions at the vets office.

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