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Rabies Vaccination Waiver for Cancer Dogs and Cats

Holistic-minded veterinarians and oncologists usually recommend minimal exposure to chemicals, toxins and vaccinations when a dog or cat is fighting cancer and the immune system needs and extra boost. If your Tripawd’s annual vaccines are due, make time to talk to your vet about whether or not they are absolutely necessary.

When a pet has cancer, it’s especially important to carefully consider the risk of exposure to environmental dangers like wild animal bites, ticks, etc., and weigh the risks and benefits of each vaccine before proceeding.

You may be surprised to learn that the chance of contracting certain diseases is exceptionally low in your part of the world, especially if your dog or cat spends most of the day indoors.

How to Waive a Rabies Vaccine Requirement

Should you decide to eliminate vaccines altogether, you’ll encounter a few obstacles, especially when it comes to boarding or licensing your pet. The rabies vaccine is the only vaccine mandated by every state in the U.S. because of the risk this disease poses to both humans and animals. However, if you and your veterinarian both believe that your pet can be harmed by the vaccine, you might have a way to avoid the rabies vaccine requirement.

The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) recently announced that while it does support the National Association of State Public Health Veterinarians’ (NASPHV) recommendation that all dogs, cats, and ferrets should be vaccinated to protect against rabies infection, the AVMA now recognizes some animals might require a waiver from rabies vaccination when it poses an unacceptably high risk to the health of an animal.

If adequate steps can be taken to minimize the chance of exposure to rabies virus, the AVMA recommends that such animals be granted a waiver from mandatory rabies vaccination, upon recommendation of a licensed veterinarian and with the concurrence of the appropriate public health authorities.

The AVMA goes on to state on this recent policy announcement that the vaccine waiver “should be based upon clinical evidence that the animal would be at considerable risk of being harmed by the vaccine because of a diagnosed medical condition . . . and the appropriate public health authorities concur that the waiver should be issued.”

If you want to be at the forefront of the movement to avoid rabies vaccines in dogs and cats with cancer, you may have your work cut out for you, but the AVMA’s downloadable rabies waiver is a great place for you and your vet to start.

Download AVMA Annual Rabies Vaccination Waiver Form

Many thanks to Tripawds Friend Gina Snow, a Licensed Veterinary Technician in Maine, who told us about this new waiver.

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11 thoughts on “Rabies Vaccination Waiver for Cancer Dogs and Cats”

  1. My dog just passed away due to a hemangiosarcoma of the heart. He received a rabies vaccine a year ago after already having a rabies vaccine years prior. He was also neutered too early by the rescue agency we got him from. Makes me wonder if these things in combination could have caused this tumour. Regardless, my heart is broken and I can only hope people see these studies and don’t over vaccinate their animals.

    • We are so sorry for your lost Malissa. You did the best you could with the information you had at the time. We hope you find comfort in the good times and knowing you were a great dog mom to him.

  2. My 11 year old bishon Bolognese, Enana was diagnosed with hemangiosarcoma. The cancer was metastasized. Right after the diagnosis I started to give her (mushrooms) immune boosters, detox formulas, and cbd and she is doing well. She was supposed to get radiography and X-rays but she she refused to get touched by the vet technicians, she almost bite them.

    Now we received a call that her rabies and distemper vaccines, which she has it every 3 years, are due this month. Now, Reading this and many other news, I will no have my baby get the vaccine.

    I’ve read that distemper is very contagious between dogs and other mammals. How can I protect my baby Enana from this contagios illness?

  3. I realize this post is several years old, but recent events with my dog lead me here.

    Sometime in 2017, my previous dog received his rabies vaccine. He passed away rather unexpectedly a week later. He was 14 years old.

    Halloween of THIS YEAR (2020) my other dog (age 8 years) received her annual rabies vaccine. Since then, she’s had breathing difficulties, nasal and eye discharge, and ongoing sneezing and “reverse sneezing. It was discovered via X-ray there is a growth inside her nasal passage. Ergo, i hypothesize that the rabies vaccine ACCELERATES tumor growth in older dogs.

    I refuse to allow my dogs to suffer. Ergo, I requested my vet to put my dog on steroids. She was Rx’d prednisolone (sp?) and is doing much better, albeit the nasal growth. Going forward, I am denying the “mandated” rabies vaccination. It is turning out that my dog will die ANYWAY, rabies vaccination or not.

    Given my PERSONAL experience with TWO different dogs w recent rabies vaccinations, I no longer think this is just “a coincidence.” Pish posh. The rabies vaccine in my state is REQUIRED by law. Just because something is “law” doesn’t mean the reasons FOR the law is logical. Please feel free to share this sentiment and my hypothesis with your colleagues.

    I’m starting to think the anti-vaxxers may have a point.

    • JL, I’m so sorry for the heartache you’ve experienced with your two dogs. Thank you for sharing your experience and thoughts with our community. We send tons of pawsitivity to you and your current pup for more happy days ahead.


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