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Rabies Vaccinations - How to Minimize Negative Effects on Dogs & Cats

by Lisa

Dear Dr Tillman,

I am about to move to the US for 3 years and I must get my dog and cats vaccinated against rabies before I go.

The cats are all indoor only and are 14 years old, 7 years old and 2 years old and the dog is a White Shepherd who is 1 year old.

The dog has been vaccinated as a puppy and as a 1 year old and reacted with a skin bump to his puppy vaccinations and was treated successfully with thuja.

The two younger cats have only been vaccinated as kittens and the older cat was vaccinated every year up until age 7 when he got sick after his boosters.

My questions is this: How can I minimize the risk of sarcoma or other reactions from the rabies vaccines?

I cannot avoid vaccinating them as they need it for travel to the US, but I wondered if I could use some Lyssin or Thuja after the vaccine to help them recover? Is this advisable or should I wait to see how they react?

I was hoping to find a non-adjuvant, killed, 1 year vaccination to minimize risk but would welcome your advice on any homeopathic remedies and other steps I can take to ensure they remain as healthy as possible.

Many thanks,


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Jun 16, 2013
My Online Vet Response for: Rabies Vaccinations-How to Minimize Negative Effects on Dogs & Cats
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

Hi Lisa,
You have posed a very difficult question. I do not have a good solution to your problem. The health certificates will require a rabies antibody titer to be done on all of your animals.

If the titers show a high antibody level, above the protective level, this will indicate that they have adequate protection against Rabies. Since the UK does not have Rabies, I do not know if the vaccinations they have had previously, have included Rabies. Therefore, they will NOT have adequate (or protective) antibody titers.

In which case, they will not only be required to have the one rabies vaccination, they will be required to have TWO vaccinations. One at the beginning, followed by a 'booster' 1 month later. Then two weeks after the booster another antibody test to measure if they now have mounted a protective Rabies antibody response.

You mentioned that your German Shepherd had a vaccination reaction (subcutaneous swelling under the skin) and responded well to Thuya.

is an excellent homeopathic remedy for 'vaccinosis' in general. It is not indicated for Rabies/or Rabies miasma.

Lyssin (or Hydrophobinium) is a homeopathic remedy that is derived from the saliva of a rabid dog. It is the specific remedy useful for adverse reactions to a rabies vaccination.

If all of your animals have had a Rabies vaccination in the past, and they DO have protective antibody levels, perhaps they could be 'exempted' from getting a vaccination. I would certainly hope that you could appeal to your veterinarian for this exemption status to AVOID a Rabies vaccination, especially since they have had problems in the past.

You could also seek the help of a holistic veterinarian who might be more sympathetic toward your problem of trying to avoid vaccinations, (given your pets' history of adverse reactions in the past). Most conventional veterinarians will only avoid a vaccination if the last vaccination caused an anaphylactic response requiring hospitalization and life support treatment.

Click here to find a holistic veterinarian in your area. Another resource for vets knowledgeable in homeopathy is

In a worse case scenario, if all of them are required to have a Rabies vaccination, you might consider giving them a dose of Lyssin 30C, the day before the vaccination, one dose on the day of the vaccination, and one dose the day after the vaccination. Monitor all of them for any adverse symptoms, and in the USA, seek the help of a holistic veterinarian for ongoing treatment based on the symptoms of the patient.

Please keep us posted by coming back to this page and clicking the 'click here to add your own comments' link below.

Take care,
Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

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DISCLAIMER: The above should never replace the advice of your local veterinarian, as they have the ability to evaluate your dog in person.

Related Pages:
- Dog Vaccination Schedule
- Ask a Vet Online Library - Dog Vaccinations Section

Jun 16, 2013
Thank you
by: Lisa

Hi Dr Tillman,

Thanks for the quick response. Just to add to the information, none of my pets has had a rabies vaccination before since we live in the UK.

I had been told that they can enter the US after having one rabies vaccination and a 30 day wait. No one has mentioned the titer yet, or a second vaccination.

I will definitely get some of the Lyssin for their vaccination to try to minimize the effects. They will need vaccinating soon as we are flying over in July so I will let you know how they get on.

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