Allergic Reaction

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Allergic Reaction

Postby manu » Wed Jan 11, 2012 7:20 pm

Had a bad experience lately, i took my pup in for his 1 year vaccination booster for kennel cough and parvo.

In the examination before the vet gave the shot, she thought that he may have had a slight atopic allergy to something based on dry skin. OK that was cool, we'll just add some Omega3/6 to his feed and wash with the oatmeal shampoo. She then gave the shot and she took him in the back to get some help from the assistants to have a better look and all of a sudden she thinks the allergy is more prominent "under the better light". OK, so far seems reasonable.

We went home and all was well until the next morning when i wake up to find the poor dog's face all swollen and puffy, especially his eyes, lips and around his nose, he is itching like crazy and obviously uncomfortable with bumps and rash over his torso. This being a Sunday meant that everything was closed and while the dog was uncomfortable he was not in any real danger (i used Dr. Google). That night was hellish as the poor guys was really uncomfortable but was still breathing OK and not getting worse. Next morning i take him back to the vet and they are unsure that it was the shot that caused the reaction but in any case they administer an antihistamine and a shot of cortosone.

He slowly improved over the course of the day and by next morning he was almost back to normal except his lips are still quite swollen and puffy, not as bad as when the allergy hit but still significantly larger than normal. In my opinion it was definitely the vaccinations that caused the allergy, he has never had a reaction like this and nothing has changed in his diet or environment that i can think of, i think when she took him to the back for a better look the reaction from the shot had started hence her confidence that he had an atopic allergy.

So, to say im not pleased is an understatement, can anyone provide any advice here please? Specifically:
1. Should he still have the swollen lips or should they well and truly be back to normal by now (4 days later)?
2. Does his reaction make him more susceptible to other allergens now hence the swollen lips?
3. Does anyone else have an allergic dog and do you just treat it with benadryl whenever it flares up?

He is going back to the vet this afternoon for another check but to be honest i wasn't too impressed with this particular vet that we saw on the weekend, i dont blame her for the allergy obviously but i dont think there should be any doubt that the reaction was from the shots. Incidentally the other vets in this practice are great so im just going to specify that i dont want to see this particular one from now on.
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Re: Allergic Reaction

Postby orhunter » Thu Jan 12, 2012 1:09 am

Wow, this is pretty serious.

Part of the allergy may be traced to the manufacturing process for the vaccine. Switch to a different brand and it may not occurr again. In the meantime, I would have some sensetivity tests done to identify exactly what caused the reaction.

Better keep some Benadryl handy at all times as there may be environmental triggers that you're not aware of and your dog will certainly be more sensetive in the future. You were very lucky the first time.

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Re: Allergic Reaction

Postby manu » Tue Jan 17, 2012 12:11 am

Thanks Or,

Thankfully, Jerry is doing much better now. It took quite a few days for his lips to settle back to their normal size. I will definitely be holding some benadryl in the kit bag now just in case but touch wood that a different brand vaccine will do the trick in the future.

It is a pretty scary experience and is definitely testament to the need to monitor your dogs after giving medication.
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Re: Allergic Reaction

Postby huntnvet » Wed Feb 08, 2012 6:35 pm

Sorry to hear your dog had a vaccine reaction, not very common in the medium to large breeds.

1. Four days post reaction, but only 3 days post reaction-treatment so not too abnormal to have mild swelling around the eyes and lips.
2. This reaction means that your pup has a greater probability than non-reactive dogs, of reacting to the vaccine adjuvant. This does not necessarily mean (no strong supporting research) your dog will have allergies to other factors. However, since hypersensitivity reactions are a product of the immune system, my personal theory is that yes, dogs which have these sorts of reactions are more likely to have reactions to other well-known allergens….just my theory.
3. If you are sure that the pup is having an allergic reaction, yes Benadryl will help.

A few other notes, your pup should always have a Benadryl injection prior to any vaccinations in the future. In addition, and this is my own opinion and will probably get some kickback from breeders, I would contact the breeder to let them know of this. This is not the breeders fault in any way, but some breeders will want to follow-up with the other pups as they might find a trend. I do not believe dogs exhibiting a trend for hypersensitivity reactions to various things should be bred, perhaps the breeder feels that way as well.
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Re: Allergic Reaction

Postby suDDs » Sun Feb 12, 2012 8:03 pm

We had a similar problem with one of our EPs after she received a rattlesnake vaccine. We had 2 dogs vaccinated at the same time, and she was the only one that had a reaction. It was the same as your dog, swollen lips, and a rash. Her rash was gnarly huge hives all over. I gave her a benadryl, as it was a weekend and we couldn't get in touch with the vet, and that helped quite a bit. By the time we were able to get in, her injection site had festered and burst, and the hives and swelling were nearly gone. The vet gave her a cortisone injection and ointment for her injection site sore.

I don't know why she had the reaction, and the vet couldn't specify a reason either. It was her 4th rattlesnake injection over a 3 year period, using the same vaccine brand, and she's never had a problem since. Bizarre.
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