Back to   Index Page

Dr. Jean Dodds, Kris Christine & Friends -- on important Vaccination Legislation


NY Pet Vax Bills S02164/A14253

From: Peter & Kris Christine [mailto:LedgeSpring at lincoln.midcoast dot com]
Sent: Wednesday, May 10, 2006
Subject: Dodds & Schultz NO on NY Pet Vax Bills S02164/A14253


Greetings again!


    The world's 2 leading authorities on veterinary vaccines -- Dr. W. Jean Dodds of Hemopet and Dr. Ronald Schultz of the University of Wisconsin's School of Veterinary Medicine -- have contacted New York's legislators urging them to VOTE NO on Senate Bill S02164 and Assembly Bill A04253 (see e-mails below sent with permission) which would require boarding kennels and groomers to obtain proof of vaccination within the previous year (annual vaccination) with vaccines which have been scientifically proven durations of immunity of more than 7 years to provide services to New York's cats and dogs.  To require pet owners (consumers) to pay for redundant vaccinations from which their animals derive no benefit runs contrary to consumer protection laws.  These bills appear to promote veterinary medical malpractice by putting veterinarians in the untenable position of having to give animals drug overdoses (vaccines are biologic drugs) in order for their owners to be able to board or groom them.


   Passage of unresearched, non-scientifically supported legislation like this will have a profound impact on the health of companion animals and their owner's finances.  Please do not allow these bills to pass through inaction.  Your pets need you to fight this for them, and these legislators need more than a whimper from pet owners, they need a resounding roar to vote AGAINST these bills ( insert S02164 in the box at the top after "Bill No.", click "2006" and check the "text" box to read the text of the bill).  To contact the appropriate New York legislators, even if you're not a New York resident, copy and past the e-mail addresses below.


    PERMISSION TO POST and CROSS-POST this message.



Kris L. Christine

Co-Trustee, Co-Founder -- The Rabies Challenge Fund Charitable Trust;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;


Sent: Monday, May 08, 2006 11:33 AM

Subject: NO on Pet Vax Bills S02164/A04253


Dear Senators and Assembly Members:


I echo the concerns of my esteemed colleague Professor Ronald Schultz and Ms. Kris Christine about Senate Bill S02164 and Assembly Bill A04253. I urge you to vote NO on this bill, as it will set back the recent progress made in changing protocols for pet vaccinations so that dogs and cats will not be unduly vaccinated with the inherent risk of adverse reactions, let alone the costs involved. 

The change in our understanding of the appropriate need for pet vaccination and avoidance of overvaccination began in the late 1980s.  At that time I had spent 27 years in comparative hematology and immunology research at the New York State Department of Health in Albany, working closely with colleagues at the NY State College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University. Today, the collective body of published research has culminated in a new approach to pet vaccinations. I implore the legislature of New York State to adopt the current technology and recommendations of our national veterinary professional bodies [AVMA, AAHA] and other experts like Professor Schultz and vote NO on this bill



W. Jean Dodds, DVM

President, Hemopet

938 Stanford Street

Santa Monica, CA 90403

310-828-4804; FAX 310-828-8251

...[hemopet at hotmail dot com]



Sent: Monday, May 08, 2006 8:21 AM

Subject: NO! Pet Vax Bills S02164/A14253

Dear Senators and Assembly Members,


You recently received an email urging you to vote NO on Senate Bill S02164 and Assembly Bill A04253, from Kris Christine.  I would also urge you on behalf of the health and well-being of the dogs and cats in New York not to vote for this bill.  All the reasons stated in Kris' email are correct and clearly define the reasons why this bill is scientifically unacceptable to anyone that understands the basis of vaccine immunity and prevention of canine and feline diseases.  This legislation is at least 20 years outdated on the basis of our current knowledge in veterinary vaccinology.  I hope that it is not supported by anyone at the N.Y. State College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University.  I was a faculty member at that fine institution when I began my research on duration of immunity for canine vaccines in the mid-1970's and where Dr. Fred Scott did his research in the 1980's on duration of immunity for feline vaccines. Our research showed very long term immunity (e.g. >7 years for the vaccines required by all dogs and cats! 


If you have any questions please contact me. 




Ronald D. Schultz, Professor and Chair
Department of Pathobiological Sciences
School of Veterinary Medicine
University of Wisconsin-Madison
2015 Linden Drive West
Madison, WI  53706
Tel. (608) 263 9888  FAX (608) 262 1739

... [manning at svm.vetmed.wisc dot edu]


 cc:  Dr. Jean Dodds



May 5, 2006


Greetings Senators and Assemblypersons:


            I am writing to strongly urge you to vote NO on Senate Bill S02164 and Assembly Bill A04253 which would legally mandate that New York boarding kennels and grooming facilities require proof of vaccination “against distemper, hepatitis, para influenza, leptospirosis, parvo and bordetella during the previous year”  for dogs and “against feline viral rhinotracheitis, feline calicivirus,or feline panleuopenia within the past year” for cats engaging their services.


Requiring proof of annual vaccination with vaccines with much longer proven durations of immunity is ill-advised and reckless – it would put companion animals at needless risk of adverse reactions without boosting their immunity and incur unnecessary expense to their owners.  Veterinary medical schools do not recommend annual booster vaccinations for distemper, hepatitis, parvovirus, and feline panleukopenia, so why would the New York Legislature introduce bills that do?  It would be akin to requiring New York residents to be vaccinated annually against polio and/or tetanus.


The core canine distemper, hepatitis, and parvo vaccines (see Duration of Immunity to Canine Vaccines by Dr. Ronald Schultz have demonstrated durations of immunity beyond 7 years.  The American Animal Hospital Association’s (AAHA) 2003 Canine Vaccine Guidelines ( states on Page 18 that:  We now know that booster injections are of no value in dogs already immune, and immunity from distemper infection and vaccination lasts for a minimum of 7 years based on challenge studies and up to 15 years (a lifetime) based on antibody titer.”  They further state that hepatitis and parvovirus vaccines have been proven to protect for a minimum of 7 years by challenge and up to 9 and 10 years based on antibody count. 


The first entry under Appendix 2 of the AAHA Guidelines ( “Important Vaccination ‘Do’s and Don’ts” is “Do Not Vaccinate Needlessly – Don’t revaccinate more often than is needed and only with the vaccines that prevent diseases for which that animal is at risk.”  They also caution veterinarians: “Do Not Assume that Vaccines Cannot Harm a Patient – Vaccines are potent medically active agents and have the very real potential of producing adverse events.”


            The American Veterinary Medical Association’s (AVMA’s) Principles of Vaccination ( states that “Unnecessary stimulation of the immune system does not result in enhanced disease resistance, and may increase the risk of adverse post-vaccination events.” (page 2)  They elaborate by reporting that: “Possible adverse events include failure to immunize, anaphylaxis, immunosuppression, autoimmune disorders, transient infections, and/or long-term infected carrier states.  In addition, a causal association in cats between injection sites and the subsequent development of a malignant tumor is the subject of ongoing research.”


            Perhaps New York’s Legislators have been confused by vaccine manufacturer’s labels.  According to AVMA’s Principles of Vaccination (, “..revaccination frequency recommendations found on many vaccine labels is based on historical precedent, not on scientific data [and] does not resolve the question about average or maximum duration of immunity [Page 2] and..may fail to adequately inform practitioners about optimal use of the product…[Page 4] .”   As the Colorado State University Veterinary Teaching Hospital states it:  “…booster vaccine recommendations for vaccines other than rabies virus have been determined arbitrarily by manufacturers.”


            In an April 3, 2006 Newsday article by Denise Flaim entitled

Annual Vaccinations May Harm Your Pet (,0,3250447.column?coll=ny-rightrail-columnist, one of the world’s leading experts on veterinary vaccines, Dr. Ronald Schultz, is quoted as follows regarding vaccine labels:  "The label means nothing," Schultz says simply, noting that vaccines licensed for one year and three years are often the same product. "The label has an arbitrary and capricious annual revaccination requirement, and it takes an act of Congress to take it off" - literally. Schultz says the Department of Agriculture has applied to remove the language, a legislative process that he estimates will take seven years.


On Page 5 of the 2000 Report of the American Association of Feline Practitioners ( (click on “Feline Vaccination Guidelines”), they state under Feline Panleukopeniathat “Both serologic and challenge exposure data indicate that a parenteral FPV vaccine induces immunity that is sustained for at least 7 years.  Therefore, following the initial series of vaccinations and revaccination 1 year later, cats should be vaccinated no more frequently than once every 3 years.” 


            Again, I urge you all to VOTE NO on SB02164 and A04253.  If you have any questions or would like me to e-mail you a full copy of the AAHA Guidelines, please e-mail me.


Respectfully submitted,

Kris L. Christine

Alna, ME  04535


cc:  Dr. W. Jean Dodds

       Dr. Ronald Schultz

ă Copyright 1995-2008 Helen L. McKinnon All Rights Reserved

Your comments, questions, suggestions are welcomed:

Back to   Index Page