Preventing a Leptospirosis Infection in Your Own Pet

There is a vaccine for leptospirosis, but I don’t recommend it and I don’t give it to my patients. It’s a relatively weak bacterial vaccine that is short acting and can’t protect against all serovars of Leptospira.

This particular vaccine is a bacterin, which is made from killed bacteria. This type of vaccine by itself won’t prompt an immune response to make antibodies, so a powerful adjuvant is added that elicits a strong immune system response. Because of this, the vaccine also carries a significantly greater risk for adverse reactions. We also now suspect that the vaccine can actually trigger the disease in dogs, and it has also been linked to early kidney failure in older animals. For more information about why this vaccine is not recommended, download Dr. Patricia Jordan’s article.

Should You Vaccinate Against Leptospirosis?

There is a vaccine for leptospirosis, but I absolutely don't recommend it and I don't offer it at my clinic. It's a relatively weak bacterial vaccine that is short acting and can't protect against all 20 serovars of the Leptospira bacteria. 

Unfortunately, many vets are still promoting repeated vaccinations for all pets, despite the significant risks. As I mentioned earlier, a leptospirosis infection is entirely treatable. So, my question is, why vaccinate for something that's one hundred percent treatable? I've handled about a dozen cases of lepto in my career and have never had a dog experience any lingering problems from the infection. I recommend you skip the leptospirosis vaccine. 

If you live in an endemic area like I do, make sure your dog's immune system is strong, and you can certainly go the extra mile by taking precautions to insure your pet doesn't have an opportunity to be exposed to the lepto bacteria.

Leptospirosis Vaccine Protection And Dogs: What You Need To Know


The Leptospirosis Vaccine: Why It Doesn’t Work

The Lepto Vaccine: Why Vets Give It Yearly 

Why the Lepto 4 vaccine may be causing problems

Dr.Schultz resides in a Leptospira endemic area of the country and
not only does he not recommend the vaccine for others, he does not vaccinate his own dogs for

Dogs suffering allergic reactions and death after being injected with popular Merck vaccine



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