Echo's reaction to the rabies vaccine
by Jackie Wadding
(Townsend, MA , USA)
Echo is a real energetic Mini Rat Terrier with a beautiful face and personality. She's on a very good diet, no fillers or grains. Shortly after her rabies booster, approximately 2 weeks, she started to get a rash in her ears. A visit to the vet and I was told she had allergies and that it could come from the environment or her food. We slowly made a food transition and she was put on antihistamines. After a few weeks, and no change, it was back to the vet. They then did some skin scrapings to see if she had a fungal or ear mite problem. These tests showed negative. Meanwhile her ears were getting pretty bad. Now scabbing, and when the scabs came off so did her fur. It was sloughing off in clumps, leaving her ears with patches of baldness. I then started doing some research of my own and came across numerous cases of Ear Vasculitis. I took this information to my vet. He consulted with other vets and even a dermatologist vet. They all concurred that my finding were correct. Echo had had a reaction to the rabies vaccine, causing Ear Vasculitis. She is now on prednisone for the inflammation and Pentoxifilline to help thin her blood so that the blood flow can be restored to the ear tips. It seems to be clearing a little , very slowly, and now she is on an ointment of tacroliumus in Aquaphor to replace the Pentoxifilline. Now there is no guarantee that these meds will cure her. She may have to remain on them, on and off, for ever! The underlying condition that it has caused is with her immune system. Never again to receive the rabies vaccine! I now have my other rat terrier titered for shots. He, too, had a small reaction to the rabies vaccine, leaving him a bald spot at the point of injection. Echo will, however, never receive any vaccines because of the immune condition. I only hope that people are strong enough to fight when they don't want their pets over-immunized. By the way, I did have our other rat terrier, Zeak, titered this year for parvo and distemper and he tested high. His last vaccines for these two were 3 years ago. This shows me that he would have been over-immunized if I hadn't come across the information that I did. I'm proud that I know what I know now, and I will continue to titer. I hope this helps anyone out there who is going through this. It saddens me that my 2 year old rat terrier is going through this so young.