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The Canine Vaccine Protocol
ACVIM 2008
Richard B. Ford, DVM, MS, DACVIM, DACVPM (Hon)
Raleigh, NC, USA
 

18286511
In the fall of 2005, both the AAHA Canine Vaccine Task Force and the AAFP Advisory Panel on Feline Vaccination re-convened to address updates on existing vaccines and to review available data on new vaccines that entered the marketplace since publication of the previous Recommendations (Feline Vaccination Guidelines-December 2000 and the Canine Vaccine Guidelines-April 2003). The revised AAHA Canine Guidelines were published in March 2006. 

It is well acknowledged by the Canine Vaccine Task Force, as well as the AVMA's Council on Biologic and Therapeutic Agents (COBTA), that veterinarians do have discretion in the selection and use of vaccines. The Canine Vaccine Guidelines are intended to facilitate development of a rational vaccination protocol in companion animal practice. What makes this important is the fact that, in the United States alone, there are currently 26 types of canine vaccines representing approximately 80 proprietary products. The recommendations on vaccination that are contained within the Guidelines are based on the best interpretation of the available science.

Readers of the Guidelines will be most interested in Table 1 and Table 2, a detailed assessment of Core and Non-Core vaccines with recommendations on initial puppy vaccination, initial adult vaccination (dogs > 16 weeks of age at the time the first vaccines are administered), revaccination (booster) recommendations and associated comments. Obviously, it is the choice of the individual practice/practitioner whether or not to implement part or all of the 2006 Guidelines. However, it is this author's recommendation that every companion animal practitioner should at least review the 2006 Canine Vaccine Guidelines. The large number of canine vaccines along with the numerous controversial issues surrounding many of the products on the market today, emphasize the fact that vaccination is, indeed, a medical procedure that requires sound professional judgment when electing to administer any vaccine to a patient.

Core and Non-Core Vaccines

It is quite inappropriate to assume that every dog (and every cat) should receive every type of vaccine every year. Therefore the terms "core" and "non-core" are again incorporated into the latest iteration of the Canine Vaccine Guidelines. Core vaccines (Table 1) are those deemed most important to patient health based on factors related to exposure risk (parvovirus), severity of disease (distemper), and transmissibility to humans (rabies). The Task Force has designated canine distemper, parvovirus, adenovirus-2 (for its ability to protect against canine hepatitis [canine adenovirus-1]), and rabies vaccines as core. Modified-live virus and recombinant (canine distemper) vaccines are recommended. (There are no killed canine distemper vaccines on the market.) Killed rabies vaccine is the only vaccine type available for administration to dogs within the US and most other countries.

Non-Core vaccines (Table 2) are those that the veterinarians will elect to give based on a reasonable assessment of exposure risk in the individual patient. For example, despite the availability of vaccine against canine Lyme borreliosis, it is unreasonable to assume that all dogs share equal risk of exposure and therefore should be vaccinated.

Note

It is important to reiterate that the Core vs. Non-Core vaccine recommendations published in the 2006 Canine Vaccine Guidelines are, in fact, recommendations. Indeed, some veterinarians regard all patients seen to be at significant risk for exposure to Bordetella bronchiseptica and/or parainfluenza virus (canine infectious tracheobronchitis). Therefore, individual practices may decide to incorporate these additional vaccines as Core vaccines within the practice. In the northeastern US, a dog's risk of exposure to Lyme borreliosis may be deemed sufficiently high to justify incorporating Lyme vaccine as Core.

Several canine vaccines have been listed in the category of "Not Recommended": killed parvovirus, killed and topical adenovirus-2, adenovirus-1, Coronavirus, and Giardia. Available data on vaccine safety and/or efficacy does not justify routine use in clinical practice. NOTE: despite categorizing these vaccines as not recommended, veterinarians may still use these products as they are licensed by the USDA for administration to dogs in the US.

Table 1. CORE canine vaccines and recommendations for administration.

(based on the 2006 Report of the AAHA Canine Vaccine Task Force)

CORE
vaccines

Primary puppy series
(< 16 weeks)

Primary adult series
(> 16 weeks)

Booster interval

Distemper
--Recombinant, or
--Modified-Live

Parvovirus
--Modified-Live

Adenovirus-2
--Modified-Live
(SQ injection)

Administer 1 dose at 6-8 weeks of age, then,
Every 3 to 4 weeks until 15-16 weeks of age.

(Initial series includes 3 to 4 doses depending on age at the time of first vaccine)

Administer 2 doses 3 to 4 weeks apart.

Administer 1 dose one year following completion of the initial series; then
Every 3 years thereafter.

Rabies
--Killed--1 Year
--Killed--3 Year
(SQ injection)

Administer 1 dose at 12 to 16 weeks of age.

Administer 1 dose

Administer 1 dose one year following administration of the first dose, then
Every 3 years thereafter.

Note: Requirements for canine rabies vaccination are established by State and/or local statutes and may differ from the recommendations listed above.

Table 2. NON-CORE canine vaccines and recommendations for administration.

(based on the Report of the 2006 AAHA Canine Vaccine Task Force)

NON-CORE
(optional) vaccines

Primary puppy series
(< 16 weeks)

Primary adult series
(> 16 weeks)

Booster interval

Bordetella bronchiseptica + Parainfluenza
--Avirulent-Live
(intranasal administration only)

A single dose is recommended by the manufacturers and may be given as early as 3-4 weeks of age.
2 doses, 2 to 4 weeks apart are recommended.
May be given as early as 3 to 4 weeks of age.

A single dose.

Annually; animals in a high risk/exposure environment may benefit from a booster if longer than 6 months since the previous dose.

Bordetella bronchiseptica
--Antigen extract
(SQ administration)

Administer 2 doses, 2 to 4 weeks apart beginning as early as 8 weeks of age.

Administer 2 doses, 2 to 4 weeks apart.

Annually; animals in a high risk/exposure environment may benefit from a booster if longer than 6 months since the previous dose.

Leptospirosis (serovars: grippotyphosa, pomona, canicola, icterohemmorhagiae)
Various 2-way and 4-way combinations are available.
--Killed bacterin
(SQ administration)

Administer 2 doses, 2 to 4 weeks apart beginning as early as 12 weeks of age.

(Vaccination of dogs less than 12 weeks of age is generally not recommended)

Administer 2 doses, 2 to 4 weeks apart.

Annual booster is recommended for dogs with a defined risk of exposure. Vaccination is not recommended for all dogs. Exposure risk should be considered prior to recommending.

Lyme borreliosis
--Recombinant, or
--Killed bacterin
(SQ administration)

Administer 2 doses, 2 to 4 weeks apart beginning as early as 12 weeks of age.

Administer 2 doses, 2 to 4 weeks apart.

Annual booster is recommended for dogs with a defined risk of exposure. Vaccination is not recommended for all dogs.

Crotalus atrox (Western Diamondback Rattlesnake vaccine)
--Toxoid
(SQ administration)

Recommendations vary depending on size of the dog and risk of exposure.
See manufacturer's recommendations.

Recommendations vary depending on size of the dog and risk of exposure.
See manufacturer's recommendations.

Not stipulated.
Duration of immunity studies have not been conducted.

Porpyhromonas spp.
--Killed bacterin
(SQ administration)

Administer 2 doses, 3 weeks apart beginning as early as 7 weeks of age (manufacturer recommendation)

Administer 2 doses, 3 weeks apart.

Not stipulated.
Duration of immunity studies have not been conducted.

Note: Although vaccines licensed by the USDA are currently available in the United States, routine vaccination of dogs against coronavirus and Giardia lamblia is NOT recommended.

References

1.  Mouzin DE, et al. J Am Vet Med Assoc, 2004;224:55.

2.  Carmichael LE. In Schultz RD, ed. Advances Vet Med 41; San Diego: Academic Press, 1999:289.

3.  Pardo MC, et al. Am J Vet Res, 1997;58:833.

4.  Pastoret PP. CR Acad Sci, 1999;322:967.

5.  Böhm M, et al. Vet Rec, 2004;154:457.

6.  Greene CE, Schultz RD. In, Greene CE, ed. Infectious Diseases of the Dog and Cat, 3rd ed. Saunders-Elsevier, St. Louis. 2006, pp. 1068.



Follow this link for the newly recommended canine vaccine guidelines:
http://www.healthypet.com/library_view.aspx?ID=196&sid=1