A non-drug approach to treating MVD
Pete the Vet writes an interesting article on The Telegraph website, Heart drug can extend dogs' lives, but careful breeding would extend them even further. The article talks about the new research on the heart drug pimobendan (Most in the UK will know it under the brand name of "Vetmedin") and if used at the right time with MVD is thought to on average extend the dogs life by around 15 months, some dogs though have also become very ill and died being given the drug before they are in heart failure. On the Cavalierhealth.org blog The EPIC Study they give a fuller picture of the study and many of it's short fallings. They also follow up with another warning blog about using pimobendan post heart failure Thai cardiologists recommend "ECG monitoring should be performed in dogs chronically administered with pimobendan."
Good to hear a vet talking about, why not spend more energy on breeding the dogs healthier in the first place, but there is a little problem with that, someones got a whole load of pimobendan to shift and that ain't going to happen if you start breeding healthier dogs. Dogs being bred healthier ain't going to make for happier shareholders.
If as much energy that went in to researching drugs to treat the symptoms of MVD, as trying to lessen or even eradicate it in the process of breeding dogs, we probably would have a lot more healthier dogs around. Unfortunately, as so often we see in medical research funded by big pharma, they just don't let the horse bolt from the open stable door before realizing they should of closed it. They often purposely shoo the beggar out. In big pharma terms, "A loose horse is worth more than two horses in their stables with their doors closed."
What's that you say Pete the Vet "A non-drug approach: prevent heart disease by careful breeding." Might catch on. You can but dream.
The logs that husband, David delivered home last Tuesday by tractor and trailer have been moved to the log store.
Just selfies with the pack
Received a lovely update for Sasha the beginning of last week, with photos and videos. Sash is from our last litter born July this year and her Mum is Primrose and her Dad is Henry.
We have had rain all day! It has been coming in waves. Every time i thought it has eased off, by the time we had got out the door it was heavy again!
Not good for puppy toilet training.
Sasha continues to sleep peacefully all night. She is developing in leaps and bounds. We have had lots of visitors. We have been going on lots of different walks, including to the beach where she and Toby spent more time eating mouldy seaweed than enjoying the water. Toby has been very tolerant. I am attaching some pictures and little films for you which show it all. (I am going send them in separate emails because the films tend to get stuck in my outbox.)
Thanks Stephanie. Hope all is back on track with the house training, as it has been better weather since you emailed me.
Spot the Poodle
One of the dogs in the photos below is 1/4 Poodle. Can you spot them?
Just been away
Wednesday my husband, David and I set off to pick up our oldest son, Bert from College up in Yorkshire to come home for a weeks holiday. We stayed over at a hotel half way and then picked Bert up, coming home around 10 oclock last night
It is the first time I have left the dogs for around 7 years, for anything more than a day. The children are easier than the dogs to leave, as they understand where you are going and that you will be back soon enough. Henry is very much my dog, as my old Smidge was and Wednesday night the children told me that they caught him a couple times sat by the window that looks out to our gate whimpering gently. Awaiting my arrival back. Apparently none of the dogs eat very well yesterday when being fed either. They were very keen for their food this morning though.
The first slideshow, shows Henry on my lap, just before I left on Wednesday afternoon. He does not normally rest on my lap like this in the day. He knew something was different on Wednesday.
The second slideshow is Henry (with his daughter, Bumble at my shoulder again) this morning after I got back last night. He has been my shadow for the best part of the morning.
Just an early morning cuddle
Just dogs photobombing
Thomas's Birthday cake photos
Just getting wood in for winter
Husband, David brought back the wood we did on Sunday. All that wood now has to be wheelbarrowed to the log store.
Bella update: Nearly 5 years old
Lovely update for Bella arrived in my email inbox a couple days ago.
"Dear Mummy Jane,
I am writing to you to remind you that on Saturday 29th October
I and all my siblings will be 5.
I am very happy, love life and keep my Mum and Dad, Margaret
and Steve, on their toes still.
Playing ball is my favourite sport especially with my fling it. Mum
and Dad often buy me new balls to find out my favourite. I have
about 30 which are kept in a piano stool. I don't understand why
but sometimes the humans put the seat back on the stool so I
cannot choose which ball I want them to throw (sometimes for
Love to Mummy Dolly and Daddy Reggie and to you and ALL
your family and the Poundlane Pack.
I am sending you two photos, one taken recently on a very windy
beach and one taken today, as you will see I have had my hair
cut since being on the beach. Yes and I am a bit too fat, Mum
weighed me on Friday and I am now on a diet. I wouldn't eat my
food, so they made it nicer with things that have made me put
on weight. My trick worked for a time, but they have found me
love and woofs from
Thanks for keeping in touch over the last 5 years and letting me know how you are all getting on. Bella is from Dolly's litter of eight Cavapoo pups born back the end of 2011 Dolly amazes us again
Have a lovely 5th Birthday Bella and I hope all your siblings are well and also have a lovely time on their 5th Birthday. So that's a Big Happy 5th Birthday to Bella, Poppy, Betsy, Luna, Cyril, Alfie, Edward and Chilly for the 29th October.
Stop over vaccinating puppies
Well, here we go. The blog I hinted at doing yesterday on Harley's update, about challenging puppy vaccinating protocols. The protocol for vaccinating puppies has long been a thorn in my side as a puppy breeder. It ain't nothing to do with cost, which is something I find some may feel. Of course a puppy leaving me with no vaccinations, means lower cost for me, but please, if you think I would put that above the welfare of the pup. I would suggest you do some back reading of this blog. The thorn is that if I start the primary course for a pup and the vet used by the person who has the pup does not use the same brand vaccine as my vet. They will tell the puppy owner, that the pup will have to start it's primary course all over again. Which I'm hopefully going to prove is a load of old horse manure.
An easy cure to this thorn, would be to not vaccinate pups at all before leaving me. Not vaccinating pups at all before leaving me is all fine and dandy, if they all leave me exactly at 8 weeks old, but life is never that simple. The clock is ticking for pups, as from around 6 to 14 weeks is a crucial time to cram in as much socialization as possible. The longer time taken to get the primary course of vaccinations done, can be detrimental to this process, as it takes until around 7 days after their last vaccination of the primary course for Distemper, Hepatitis and Parvo (DHP) to be safe to take them out in public areas. I will focus on the DHP, as my vet does not do the DHHPI (the PI bit being parainfluenza), because he does not think the parainfluenza science is that solid for using it and as for leptospirosis (Which will either be Lepto2 or Lepto4 on a dogs vaccine card) I've yet to meet anyone who's had a dog ill with it, and 2 of the strains in the new Lepto4 vaccine was given a European licence on European data. The UK is an island and I've yet to find any data to support those 2 strains have ever been reported in the UK. Funny that my vet should choose not to use PI, as he feels the science not solid enough, but then swaps his vaccine protocol from the Lepto2 to the Lepto4, where there is no science suggesting the two more strains you are vaccinating for have ever been found in the UK. Although it did mean the potential to give two extra vaccines two weeks apart for all dogs on their books. I got the scary literature.
I found an interesting archived document about the relationship between large pharmaceutical companies and vets Veterinary Medicines - [ARCHIVED CONTENT] UK Government Website. A report on supply within the UK of prescription-only veterinary medicine it comes from 2003 and I would say from my dealings and others talking to me about their dealings with vets, this reports recommendations have not been taken up by much of the veterinary community. In fact I would say things have become even more monopolized by pharma and vets. How many UK vets offer the choice of getting prescription-only veterinary medicines (POMS) elsewhere, without the client asking? How many UK vets inform clients of the price of POMS prior to dispensing them, unless asked by the client? There are some I suspect, but so few, that they would have little or no influence.
A really interesting bit of the archived document is this bit, "The second complex monopoly situation arises from the failure of eight manufacturers (Fort Dodge Animal Health Ltd (Fort Dodge), Intervet UK Ltd (Intervet), Merial Animal Health Ltd (Merial), Novartis Animal Health UK Ltd (Novartis), Pfizer Ltd (Pfizer), Pharmacia Ltd (Pharmacia Animal Health) (Pharmacia), Schering-Plough Ltd (Schering-Plough Animal Health (UK)) (Schering-Plough) and Virbac Ltd (Virbac)) to enable pharmacies to obtain supplies of POMs on terms which would enable them to compete with veterinary surgeons." Interesting because one of those manufacturers is "Intervet", who interestingly have the manufacturing authorisations (MA) for Nobivac and also Canigen, two of the most common used brands for vaccinating dogs. I will later prove this fact and pretty much proves that the Novibac DHP and Canigen DHP come off the same production line and the only difference is the brand name. You know I have not had so much fun digging around on the internet, since I was taken to court for not filling in the census. Well, actually, not answering questions to a census officer, but I proved that I did answer his questions. Maybe not with the answers he wanted, but asked if I would fill in the census and telling him, "No" was an answer. I learnt then, that the world is pretty much a monopoly. You follow the paper trail far enough it makes for scary stuff.
I've rather gone on a bit, so lets get back on track and why now have I decided to write about this, as it has for sometime been a pain. Sarah, that's why, someone who questioned her vets decision to start her pup, Harley's primary course of vaccinations again after I had given him his first vaccinations. Harley is from our most recent litter, born back in July and she could not pick him up until 9 weeks old, so I agreed to get the first vaccinations done at 8 weeks old, so not to delay Harley being able to get out in public. I gave Sarah the details of the vaccinations they would receive and the brands my vet uses, so she could check that her vet would be okay to follow on the primary course, without the usual, "I'm afraid we don't use that brand. So that will mean your pup will need to start the primary course all over again." Her vet told her surprisingly, "That although they used different brands, it would not be a problem." Unfortunately, if a vet tells you something, best get it in writing, because Sarah turned up at surgery with Harley at 10 weeks old for his second DHP and the vet changed their tune. Telling Sarah that different branded vaccines cannot be used together for the primary course. Sarah left the vets upset, the vet had given Harley the second DHP he was due, but had also given another Lepto4. So Harley had already received two Lepto4 vaccinations at only 10 weeks old. My vet told me that the protocol for Lepto4, was that a second dose of Lepto4 should not be administrated before a puppy is at least 12 weeks old, but here's a vet happily giving two doses of it by 10 weeks old, because she seems to think that a different brand name on the bottle makes it okay. Who is right? I'm not University educated, but even if the vaccine was not made by the same manufacturer. I've always been of the logical opinion that if a vaccine covers the same viruses or bacteria, it must be okay to use in conjunction with other brands. As you will see from the vaccination book in the photo below. Our Henry had different brands used in his primary course, because when I got him, he had the first jabs done. I just laughed, when the vet tried to give me the spiel about different brands and said, "I'm prepared to take the risk." If the vet is young and a bit worried, I will tell them, "If they want me to sign some sort of waiver. I'm happy to do so." Normally gets the ball rolling.
So Sarah on leaving the vets upset, decided to do some research and found the issue discussed on forums
and this link http://www.ema.europa.eu/docs/en_GB/document_library/EPAR_-_Summary_for_the_public/veterinary/004079/WC500191126.pdf which expresses that the primary course of Canigen Lepto4 like Nobivac Lepto4 should be given 4 weeks apart and her vet had been happy to jab two weeks apart, because she thinks being a different brand name on the bottle makes it okay.
Sarah armed with this information and the fact that she works in the NHS and knows a bit about the dealings with pharmaceutical companies wrote to Virbac (who although distribute Canigen, do not hold the MA for it),
I hope you will be able to help. I found your contact details online at petforums.co.uk.
I have a 10wk old puppy who came home a week ago. His breeder had him vaccinated at her vet with Canigen DHP & Canigen L4 aged 8wks, with a suggestion of a repeat DHP in 2wks (ie. today) and a repeat L4 in 4wks.
I visited my vet today for the second DHP vaccine, but was told that as they use Nobivac rather than Canigen, I would have to start the whole course again. So, today pup was given both Nobivac DHP & L4. I've been advised that further Nobivac injections will be needed to make sure he is immune.
I was quite upset by this as following phone calls to the vet, I had been led to believe that there shouldn't be a problem just giving a second dose, despite them being aware that he had been vaccinated with a different brand. I'm already finding it difficult to carry pup around very far and I'm very worried that having to wait another 2-4wks before he can go out properly will have a huge impact on his socialisation.
Looking at the labels the vet put in my puppy's vaccination record today, I thought the typeface on the batch numbers of Canigen & Nobivac looked almost identical. I did a quick internet search and have found on a couple of forums & websites that Canigen & Nobivac are exactly the same drug, just branded differently. I'd be really grateful if you could confirm that this is the case and if so, confirm that therefore my puppy is now covered and can soon go out in the big wide world? However, if the drugs are exactly the same, I'm now quite worried that the L4 has been given 2weeks early. It'd be so helpful if you would be able to reply so that I can have a discussion with my vet armed with some solid evidence.
I work in the NHS and am very aware that identical drugs are packaged into numerous different branded boxes & quite often patients will receive a different brand of medication each month. From what I found out online today, I assume that it is therefore the same with veterinary medicines?
Many thanks for your time and thanks in advance for your help.
She received a reply,
Thank you for contacting us with your query. To complete a primary course, 2 vaccines of the same brand need to be used in accordance with the license and the licensing authorities guidelines. This is to ensure your puppy develops the best immunity possible to the vaccinal diseases. Any use outside of these guidelines is considered 'off label' as the use has not been written into the licence, not necessarily because the use would cause harm. The use of a product 'off label' is at the discretion of a vets professional judgement and can only be discussed between vets. My contact details are below, please pass them to your vet so we can discuss this further.
Blaise Scott-Morris BVSc MRCVS
Veterinary Technical Advisor
And then all was well in the world. Yes, after her vet spoke with Virbac, she backed down and Harley is not going to be pumped full of more vaccine as a puppy. Let's take a little look at Virbac's reply though. Exactly, what are the guidelines based on. They don't point you to the science bit, because there ain't none to back the guidelines or should I say myth, and really if it is so important to use the same brand as a puppy, surely this should follow for the lifetime of the dog, but as another vaccination card of one of our dogs shows, boosters don't have to be the same brand. When my vet changed brand, I was told boosters are okay not to be the same brand. Most vets change brands every few years. Not usually because it is a better product or cheaper for you, most probably due to a better profit line for them and rather defuncts the same brand enables the dog to develop the best immunity myth. It also is not at the vets discretion how they treat your dog, it is for them to discuss all options with you "on label" or "off" and it is at your discretion how you proceed.
The close relationship with pharmaceutical companies and vets has become very cosy, we also see this with pharmaceutical companies and doctors as well. A little story from when my children were very young and one had been very ill with viral pneumonia. Thankfully he made a full recovery and has since never had any problems with his lungs. Four other children in his play group also ended up in hospital with the same infection. I was leaving hospital with my child and a doctor came to sign him off. He asked, "Did I need any Calpol?" I replied, "You mean paracetamol?" He asked again, "You have Calpol?" "No" I replied, "Why would I buy such an expensive brand of paracetamol?" I then asked him, "Why do you not call it paracetamol?" He explained, "Most parents don't understand what you mean if you tell them to give their child paracetamol." I asked if he had ever thought to explain the fact that "Calpol" is just a brand name and the actual medicine they are giving their child is paracetamol, because the brand "Calpol" is often double or more in price than buying a generic paracetamol. He laughed and said, "He had never thought of it like that."
So time to wind up and draw things together. Sarah sent me links to forums, which light an interest in finding out, who exactly manufactures the vaccines. The forums don't really give any concrete evidence. So I thought let's see if I can find a place the Canigen and Novibac vaccines cross over. It took a few searches and I then found gold in them there ole cyber space hills. I found the Product Information Database - Veterinary Medicines Directorate, which gave me the place where two becomes one. The Veterinary Medicine Directorate has the MA holder for Canigen and Nivobac vaccines as no other than Intervet, remember then at the beginning of the blog. Pretty much concludes along with the lack of denial by Virbac that these vaccines roll off the same production line. that they are exactly the same vaccines with just a different brand label stuck on them.
So if you are planning to get a pup or are having the same problems as Sarah had with her vet, don't roll over, if faced with this issue. Do the research and don't over vaccinate your puppy, because it is not only ups the risk of a reaction when injected, but you need to also look at it long term for your puppy, as a vet explains in this article Vets On Vaccines “Vaccines are produced using animal tissue or serum; so antibodies are formed not just to the pathogen, but also to the proteins too small to be filtered out of the vaccine. These antibodies can and do cross-react with the dog’s or cat’s own tissues, causing chronic low-grade inflammation throughout the body. Every booster causes more of these antibodies to be created, thus setting the stage for autoimmune disease and immune system dysfunction." - Dr Jean Hofve
I rest my case aka I need to make supper.
Mum, Smudge and Dad, Henry cuddle up with their two daughters, Bumble and Blottie.
Received this lovely update for Harley this morning from Sarah. Harley is from Primrose's Brittany/cavalier litter born this July.
I hope you and your family are all well? I just wanted to send you a fewmore photos of Harley and a quick update how he's doing.
Things are going really well now. We've got ourselves into a proper routine and he seems very settled. I went back to work last week (which was very hard after 4 weeks off!) and as Harley can't go to his day care until he is 16 weeks old, Mum came to stay and looked after him - they both had a super time by all accounts! Harley sleeps for a couple of hours after his morning walk and Mum said he tended to wake around 9am, which will be perfect for when his day care pick him up. He didn't seem to be too bothered when I left for work either....I can't decide if I'm happy about that or not! It's been great to have a lovely doggy greeting when I get back home though and the house seemed quite empty when I got back on Friday and Mum & Harley were out.
He's loving his walks and is learning to walk nicely on the lead quite quickly. He also loves his runs off lead and I've attached a photo of him out with a friend's cocker spaniel, Toby. They're very happy to run around together, but Harley is still a little unsure when Toby tries to play with him. Harley's getting more confident with every week though, so hopefully
tomorrow they will have a good play together.
The trainer at puppy class thinks I have a different dog from the first couple of classes! Harley spent his first classes hidden under my chair (which surprised me as he'd been so confident at home & when I was taking him new places), but the last couple of weeks have been a different story. He's been super keen to get involved and hasn't been running away from all the other pups. It's so lovely to see his confidence grow.
He's growing fast (I can't believe how much he's changed in 5 weeks) and is a super little dog - everyone we meet comments on how lovely he is. I'm hoping he'll enjoy day care when he goes; we're visiting every week so he gets used to it and the lady running it thinks he'll fit in fine. (Strangely, one of the other girls that works there has a Brittany so it's nice that they'll understand about the breed.)
I sorted out the vaccination issue with the vet. I gave her copies of what I'd found online and the email I had from the manufacturer and she phoned them up. They confirmed that the Nobivac & Canigan were identical so she agreed that Harley didn't need a third dose. I'm very glad I made a fuss! She did say that what I'd found out was useful information for them too, so who knows, that might mean future owners won't be persuaded to over
vaccinate their pup....?"
Thanks Sarah for the update on Harley. Good to hear all seems to be falling in to place. Sarah took Harley at 9 weeks old and we gave him his first vaccinations. She had contacted her vet about this and I gave her the names of the brands my vet uses. They used different brands, but felt it was not a problem, but on taking him for his second primary jabs with her vet, it turned out to be a problem then, and as so often we hear, the vet tells the pup's owner that, "The pup will need to start it's primary course of vaccines all over again." Which I feel is not at all in the puppies interest, it is over vaccinating a very young animal and is why we have been trying to go for doing none of the vaccines or the pup stays with us for the full course at no extra cost.
Sarah though very bravely challenged what the vet told her and did her research, which has now lead to the vet backing down and Harley not receiving any further vaccinations for his primary course and has given me some fuel for a blog about challenging vaccination protocols with puppies. So there is a blog to follow, which will include Sarah's research and some interesting information I have unearthed, which pretty much concludes that Canigen and Nobivac vaccines come off the same production line. The only difference is the brand sticker on the bottle of vaccine.
Just some photos of the Poundlane pack
enjoying the Autumnal sunshine
Just Oscar and Pip
Collecting wood for the winter today from one of the farms we work for. David let Molly have his phone and she took some photos of Tilly and herself with two of the farm dogs, Oscar the Springer spaniel and Pip the Jack Russell terrier.
Just two old girls
Nothing like a dog greeting
after being gone for at least an hour.
Hanging on his every spoonful
The Poundlane pack watch David eat his supper
Just cuddled up
Henry cuddles up with Ernest (3/4 Cavalier, 1/4 poodle) in the armchair, whilst Henry's Brittany/Cavalier daughter, Bumble looks on.
husband, David and Bertha
“The greatest pleasure of a dog is that you may make a fool of yourself with him, and not only will he not scold you,but he will make a fool of himself, too.”
― Samuel Butler
Me (Jane) with Puddin' and Teagol, waiting patiently to flush a patch of kale, December 2019
Hello, I am Jane!