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rabies shot and vaccine induced fear/aggression

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Dr. Jean,

I almost cannot believe that you are the expert on this forum on the day I posted this below thread http://www.thecatsite.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=163646. I was just on your site 10 minutes before coming to this site to post my sad story and question. Thank you for coming here and I so much value any thoughts you can share with me in this area:

My thread is about a 18 month old foster cat who had always been a wonderful little boy and then suddenly and without warning bit a volunteer 14 times as she was returning him to his cage at an adoption center after his claw trim.

He had a rabies shot less than a week earlier and I was wondering if, in the absence of any other mitigating factors, he could have been experiencing aftereffects from the rabies shot.

Chazz has always been very laid back, on the shy and quiet side, but has always got along with other cats and people, never dominant, and eager to make friends after 10 minutes or so of quiet talking to him. He is a sensitive soul but has never lifted a paw or claw to anyone.

I know there are lots of things (smells, other animals, pain or fear of the claw trim) that could have been happening but we have been assured there was nothing out of the ordinary and the volunteer had a huge amount of experience.

So my question is 1) whether this could be shot-induced and 2) if so, are these sorts of behavior issues often permanent? Little Chazz is quarantined now and will be euthanized unless we find him a mercy home.
post #2 of 9
Poor little guy!

As you say, there are lots of stimuli that a cat could sense that the volunteer would never have noticed; cats are of course far more sensitive to odors and noises than us clunky humans! It's also possible that he had pain somewhere, be it the claws or elsewhere; and as the volunteer walked she inadvertently jostled or touched a sore spot--although that's an extreme reaction by any standard!

However, I wouldn't rule out the rabies vaccine. Dr. Richard Pitcairn has done a lot of work on the whole vaccinosis issue, and he attributes a lot of aggression cases to the rabies vaccine.

If due to the vaccine, the change would likely be permanent, unless treated. Homeopathy, flower essences, and EFT could all be helpful. Homeopathic Lyssin (as high a potency as you can lay your hands on) is the remedy for rabies vaccinosis; but even Thuja would probably be beneficial.

Unfortunately, there's no guarantee of positive results, which is what the shelter would need to place him. Hopefully he will get that "mercy" home with someone who's willing to work with him!
post #3 of 9
I believe that my cats aggression is from the rabies shots. His first shot as a KITTEN gave him a tumor like bump the vet said was a reaction to the shot.

I didn't even know the second checkup was going to be another shot, let alone a three yr. booster(even stronger), the vet never looked back to see if he had a reaction in the past. (That was wrong) and like with humans second reaction can be worse and more damaging(which I believe happened to Steeli)
I want to know if I can continue to give him an antihistamine?, it relieves him and he becomes more relaxed.


THis is what I posted about 5 days ago,
My just about 2 yr. cat Steeli. Steeli just had his second visit to vet where he has received his second Rabies shot.

The shot was a three yr. booster and the next day he started acting weird and aggravated. I called the vet and she said he was having a reaction to the shot.

I have read online about this problem and want to know if anyone else has this problem, and if it ever goes away. From what I have read, it can last for ever. I truly hope it won't.

I give Steeli a generic for Clairitin to help with his symptoms, but I'm worried about how long I can give Steeli these pills daily.

The symptoms are, he bites at his self like he has fleas
He will just jump up and chirp and let out a cry and take off running like he is trying to get away from the irritation. How ever it affects him.(I wish he could talk).
He twitches his skin and you see his body twitch.
He has also gotten more agressive and bites sometimes.
I know he does not mean too because then when I tell him no, he stoops his head and walks away slow and looks back at me.

My thoughts are he had a three yr. booster and it might take that long for the effects to ware off, I hope.

Can anybody help, and has anybody experienced this first hand and can offer some hope for a positive outcome?

Thank you in advance Dave
post #4 of 9
As I mentioned previously, there are a number of holistic treatments that can help. I would strongly recommend homeopathy in this case. There's a referral list at www.holisticvetlist.com where you can find someone in your area who does this.

Play therapy can also be very helpful for kitties in this state. It channels their hunter/aggressive energy into an acceptable outlet. It takes commitment on your part, but it is so much fun, that's not a hard deal to make!
http://www.littlebigcat.com/index.ph...therapyforcats

BTW, Claritin does not work all that well in most people, let alone animals. I hope you are not using a full human dose; the cat max is 5 mg per 24 hours (1/2 of a regular Claritin). Benadryl is a better choice; the dose is 1 mg per pound of body weight (about 1/4 tablet for an average cat). That is a lot, but cats (and dogs) metabolize it very fast. You shouldn't have to use it for more than 2 weeks or so.

This cat should not receive any vaccines in the future. If he must have the rabies shot because of local laws, your vet will pre-treat with benadryl or other antihistamine. Hopefully the vet can just write you an exemption based on health reasons. At this point, immunologically, he is fully protected against rabies for life--but the laws don't recognize this.
post #5 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrJean View Post
As I mentioned previously, there are a number of holistic treatments that can help. I would strongly recommend homeopathy in this case. There's a referral list at www.holisticvetlist.com where you can find someone in your area who does this.

Play therapy can also be very helpful for kitties in this state. It channels their hunter/aggressive energy into an acceptable outlet. It takes commitment on your part, but it is so much fun, that's not a hard deal to make!
http://www.littlebigcat.com/index.ph...therapyforcats

BTW, Claritin does not work all that well in most people, let alone animals. I hope you are not using a full human dose; the cat max is 5 mg per 24 hours (1/2 of a regular Claritin). Benadryl is a better choice; the dose is 1 mg per pound of body weight (about 1/4 tablet for an average cat). That is a lot, but cats (and dogs) metabolize it very fast. You shouldn't have to use it for more than 2 weeks or so.

This cat should not receive any vaccines in the future. If he must have the rabies shot because of local laws, your vet will pre-treat with benadryl or other antihistamine. Hopefully the vet can just write you an exemption based on health reasons. At this point, immunologically, he is fully protected against rabies for life--but the laws don't recognize this.


Thank you so much for your reply, that means so much to me.
Right now I am not giving him anything, he is doing ok, and thats just ok, not good.
He get so afraid of the littlest things,and if you touch him unexpectedly he really over reacts and usually just runs away. It is so strange how he acts and I wish I knew what he was feeling.

Well' I will never give him up, I still love him so much, and probably more because I feel so much empathy for him and his condition.

I just hope it goes away some day, but I feel it is a life time issue with Steeli.

Thanks again and I will check out the holistic site you mentioned.

Dave
post #6 of 9
Thanks for the extra details...that gives me an idea!! For Steeli I would strongly recommend flower essences. SpiritEssence has 2 essence remedies that could be helpful: Scaredy Cat (for the hyper-sensitive, nervous behavior you're describing) and Vaccine Detox.

Fortunately, fear is one of the easiest things to treat with essences! I'd start with Scaredy Cat. I think it will help a lot with his fear issues and may resolve them completely. It's certainly a lot cheaper than a consult with a holistic vet!! You can use Vaccine Detox any time, but next time he's due for vaccines (if you decide to get him any) give it then and for about 2 weeks post-vaccine.

Among Play Therapy's many benefits is increased confidence. I do think it would benefit him!
post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks for your info about Chazz too.

Are there sites that show where people can get these sorts of remedies (powerful Lyssin and Thuja), with advice on how much, what form is best, and that sort of thing?

I tend to get overwhelmed when something is available in 10 different ways but I guess I will feel lucky to just find the things I will need for little Chazz.
post #8 of 9
I'd have to recommend working with a homeopathic vet who can monitor the case and make sure things are going well. You can buy homeopathic remedies on the internet, but this is a pretty major case and needs careful handling. Many holistic vets do long-distance phone consultations. See www.holisticvetlist.com to find a practitioner. For homeopathy, I personally recommend Don Hamilton, Susan Beal, Glen Dupree, and Charlie Loops.
post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks, that is good help.

I don't know if sweet little Chazz will survive the incident b/c the shelter will only sign him over to our shelter head, and she does not want the responsibility.

I wish the person holding him had just let him go when he began to freak. I have experienced this situation before (terrified cat who thinks they are in a life and death situation). So I know it is not easy and some big bites can come out of it. But I have wonderful pictures of those same kitties in their forever homes.

I will keep you posted; his time runs out on Tuesday.
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