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Symptoms of Rabies Vaccinosis

I originally had the information that follows embedded in another post (here, on rescue dogs and vaccinations), but decided to post it separately because I think it is so important to highlight.  I realize that what I am presenting is based on “anecdotal evidence”, but I find the argument both logical and compelling…


“Rabies vaccinosis” – this is a term that is becoming increasingly common, but what exactly does it mean?  Few people know what I am talking about when I mention this term, even though I now see its impact clearly in many (ok, most) of the dogs that I meet.  So I’ll see if I can explain it here.

Let me start with an example of rabies vaccinosis in dogs: water obsession.  Many dogs like to attack water coming out of the hose and most people think it’s a fun game to play with their dog.  But fear and obsession are closely linked and water obsession is an extension of hydrophobia.  And hydrophobia is the common name for rabies.

Take a peak at the little blurb in that link on how rabies presents itself in horses.  I found it to be quite interesting.  Here’s what it says about the onset of rabies:  Once the animal starts to experience symptoms, it become “susceptible to moving objects; excessive light, noises, the entrance of an attendant, or any other disturbance will cause the patient to be on the defensive.  It apparently sees imaginary objects; the slightest noise is exaggexated into threatening violence; the approach of an attendant or another animal, especially a dog, is interpreted as an assault and the horse will strike and bite.”

In short symptoms of rabies include reactivity to light, noise sensitivity, seeing imaginary objects and interpreting approaching people or animals – especially dogs – as an assault.  Does this sound at all familiar?  It sure does to me.  All of these are symptoms we see very commonly in dogs today, and especially in border collies: light and shadow obsessions and chasing, thunderphobia and other noise sensitivities, reactivity to motion, alarm barking seemingly at nothing, fear aggression towards approaching people and especially towards other dogs, and so on and so forth.

The article continues as follows:  The horse “will rear and attempt to break its halter and fastenings; it will bite at the woodwork and surrounding objects in the stable.” How many dogs do you know who panic to the point of damaging themselves trying to escape from crates or even a house?  Either due to thunderphobia, or separation anxiety or some other irrational fear or panic at being contained in general.  “If the animal lives long enough it shows paralytic symptoms and falls to the ground, unable to use two or more of its extremities.”  I have already written twice on the paralytic danger of rabies vaccines, so ’nuff said there.  “But in the majority of cases, in its excesses of violence, it does physical injury to itself.”  I know one dog who died trying to escape from her kennel during a thunderstorm.  Broke her back trying to get through the bars.

And more symptoms: “At times throughout the course of the disease there is an excessive sensibility of the skin which, if irritated by the touch, will bring on attacks of violence.”  How many dogs have you met who hate being touched?  My old Jake was one.  By the time he was 10, you could not touch him anywhere except on the top of his head. Anywhere else and he’d bite you.  Most dogs are not that severe and just hate having the feet touched, or their ears inspected and so on. I also know many dogs who can’t stand to have their hind ends touched, the location of many of the problems this disease causes.

And finally, getting back to our water discussion, “The animal may have appetite and desire water throughout the course of the disease, but on attempt to swallow has a spasm of the throat, which renders the act impossible.  This latter condition, which is common in all rabid animals, has given the disease the name of hydrophobia (fear of water).”  As I mentioned earlier, many dogs have an obsession with water: biting at hoses, snapping at water surfaces, playing obsessively in their water dishes, diving into every puddle and river they can find, even breaking through ice to do so and so on.  This also presents as a fear of water and I know many dogs who refuse to swim and some who are even afraid of rain.  Furthermore, I would consider dogs who have trouble eating or drinking (ever met a dog who has a really hard time taking a treat, or who dribbles food and water everywhere as they eat?) as suffering from a mild version of this mouth and tongue paralysis.

In sum, symptoms of rabies vaccinosis include the following:

Obsession with water, especially running water
Fear of water (including fear of going out in the rain)
Reactivity to light or reflective surfaces
Light and shadow obsessions and chasing
Noise sensitivity
Seeing imaginary objects
Irrational fear of objects that are harmless, as if seeing a ghost or monster
Interpreting approaching people or animals – especially dogs – as an assault
Thunderphobia and other noise sensitivities
Reactivity to movement
Alarm barking seemingly at nothing, especially in the dark
Fear aggression towards approaching people and especially towards other dogs
Separation anxiety
Panic at being contained (i.e. excessive desire to escape their crate, house etc.)
Seizure activity
Hind end weakness or paralysis
A dislike of being touched (feet, ears, and especially hind end)
Trouble eating or drinking, as if tongue is partially paralyzed

Of note, the above symptoms are all neurological, not surprising as the central nervous system is the site of attack of the rabies virus.  There can, of course, be other causes, including exposure to other toxins (pesticides, herbicides, food preservatives, flea, tick and heartworm chemicals, household cleaners and so on), other vaccines (distemper, for example), trauma and so on.  If your dog is experiencing any of the above symptoms it is important to look at its complete history to determine any and all potential triggers and do your best to eliminate them.  Neurological and – in particular – mental symptoms are an indication of chronic disease at its deepest and most dangerous, and should not be overlooked or ignored.

From a homeopathic perspective the way vaccines work is to give the individual a low-level chronic version of the disease, which prevents the acute, full-blown version from being able to set in.  This is very different from the conventional understanding of how vaccines work, but given the number of dogs that I have owned, fostered or know who exhibit the aforementioned symptoms of rabies, the homeopathic perspective sure explains a lot.  That is, all these symptoms we are seeing in dogs today are in fact low level chronic rabies caused by not only the vaccines they have received themselves, but by the ones their parents and grandparents have had too.  (I will write more on the collection of symptoms linked to other vaccines – distemper, parvo etc. – in a later post).  In humans this can be seen in, for example, Polio vaccinosis: chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia – two ‘mystery’ symptoms that exist in nearing epidemic proportions in our society – are low level chronic symptoms of Polio, also found in people who have survived the actual disease.  Why are so many people developing symptoms of polio without ever having the full-blown disease?  I’ll let you connect the dots…

7 Responses

  1. I’m afraid your theory does not hold water.

    There is no rabies in Australia, so dogs are not given rabies vaccination unless they are travelling overseas. Yet I have seen most of those symptoms in all of my dogs at one time or other (even the hind end weakness). Most of the symptoms are explained as part of natural dog behaviour and/or poor socialisation during puppyhood.

    Don’t forget dogs are a completely different species to us with better sight, hearing and smell in many case and their understanding of the world is different to ours.

  2. Hi Jay,
    Thanks for your input. You raise some really important points. Before responding to them, I want to clarify that this post is not “my” theory – I am merely summarizing information that I have collected elsewhere (looking at the post I should probably have included more links and will work to fix that when I have a moment)

    I do agree that there are other causes for these problems, however I do not believe that these problems are “natural” in the numbers that we are now seeing.

    You are not the first person I’ve heard from who pointed out that dogs with no rabies vaccines in their history still present these behavioursOne explanation is that other assaults on the immune system can produce the same end results, such as other vaccines (you do vaccinate for things like distemper, parvo etc, right?), kibble (probably one of the biggest causes of health problems in dogs), poor breeding practices, stress and so on. That still doesn’t satisfactorily explain what’s going on, however, and I think more thought and research is needed. I have some ideas and if I can flesh them out in more detail, I will post a follow-up article. The discrepancy you point out indeed leaves much room for contemplation.

    It is possible that these behaviours do indeed develop in nature, as you suggest. But consider – if wolves displayed these behaviours, they would quickly become extinct. Perhaps such wolves do exist yet die, while our own dogs are carried along through our care.

    Still, if that is the case, these very destructive behaviours (when extreme) should not be present in the numbers we are now seeing. Something is definitely making them much, much worse. I do believe that the rabies vaccine is at least one major cause. I have seen many – if not most – of the symptoms listed above onset after a rabies vaccine. One dog in particular, who had received no vaccines at all and was only raw fed until 6 months of age changed from a sweet, gentle dog to an extremely fear-aggressive one within 2 weeks of receiving a single rabies vaccine. Two years later this dog is still unsafe around strangers or in public.

    So while the rabies vaccine cannot explain everything, and may not be the cause of these problems in all cases, I do strongly believe that it is at the base of many behavioural and health issues in dogs. If this weren’t the case, why would the Rabies Challenge be working so hard to prove that additional rabies vaccines are not necessary? This large-scale research project at the University of Wisconsin is the result of the observation of many vets over many years. You can read more at: http://www.rabieschallengefund.org

  3. Hi,
    Has there been any progress with officials looking into the problems caused with the Rabies vaccine in dogs?
    I have a rescued puppy, 7 months old, lab mix, that is having some hind in weakness, having her checked at the Vet hopefully this week. I have her sister also, and she is fine. I have had them since we caught them, they were extremely emaciated, and it took a long time to get them “healthy” I have had them vaccinated, but we did wait on Rabies, and Lepto for them to gain more weight and muscle mass. They were literally skin and bones when we finally were able to catch them.
    People are heartless dumping animals.
    I wish I had read this article before. I was not even aware of problems with the vaccine when it has to be given to humans.
    We have been watching this in this puppy, the Vet even had me put them on large breed puppy right away when he noticed a little leg bone lenght discrepancy in the other puppy. She is not having hind end weakness.
    I would appreciate your reply.
    Thanks for taking so much time to consolidate information.
    I have 7 rescue dogs, and it really helps when you come upon articles such as you have compiled.


  4. […] are usually all about WAY over vaccinating. Here are a few articles. Look up Rabies Vaccinosis. Symptoms of Rabies Vaccinosis | Shaping Chaos Vaccine induced aggression and dog attacks – National American Pit Bull | Examiner.com Vaccinosis […]

  5. Agree with you about the rabies vaccine, and I do many that vaccines in general cause many issues. I rescued 751 dogs through the years, and there was a definite correlation between seizures, auto-immune diseases, cancer and vaccines. After “interviewing” literally thousands of dog owners, there is no doubt that pets with the shortest lives are vaccinated the most (yearly). With some dogs, their first rabies vaccine caused an auto-immune disease or seizures (generally from liver inflammation). As Dr. Martin Goldstein wrote, “Vaccines are the biggest threat to the health of our pets.” When attacked by an aggressive skunk, I had my two horses vaccinated for rabies. One went totally nuts within 24 hours. He was spinning, rearing, kicking and extremely dangerous to handle. Thuja brought him back from the edge. However, he now has DSLD, and I can’t help but wonder if the rabies vaccine triggered it. Another horse arrived after being vaccinated for rabies (against my instructions), and was insane. She ran through 11 fences and gates, did 6+ flips and injured herself severely. After asking forum members if they had ever known of such behavior, the only horse who had exhibited the same type of behavior had been heavily vaccinated recently. Both horses ended up having to be euthanized. So tragic. Keep up the good fight!

  6. […] Vaccinosis is essentially a form of adverse reaction to a vaccine. Find out about rabies vaccinosis https://shapingchaos.wordpress.com/2008/06/08/symptoms-of-rabies-vaccinosis/ and more about […]

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