Another contentious subject that we must consider as dog owners is whether or not vaccinate, and how often. As a dog care provider I’ve learned something that I didn’t know as a dog owner. That is that vaccination schedules vary by veterinarian! In fact, some veterinarians don’t even recommend some vaccines that others do. It actually makes a lot of sense, since some diseases are more prevalent in certain climates or environments. Some dogs don’t respond well to vaccinations, others have allergic reactions and some dog owners may worry about over vaccination. Titer testing determines the amount of antibodies left in your dog’s system and although more expensive, can help to prevent over vaccination. More veterinarian practices are now providing titer testing. Titer testing can be invaluable as it has shown that some dogs seem to retain their antibodies for many years after the initial vaccinations, while others do not. I’ve included three articles that I think are very relevant here. The first by doctor TJ Dunn about the importance of vaccinations from a veterinarian’s perspective, where he addresses the push from some holistic veterinarians not to vaccinate at all or to partially vaccinate. The second article from the American Veterinary Medical Association dives deep into titer testing so that you can have an informed discussion with your veterinarian if this is something you would like to do to ensure you’re not over vaccinating your dog. The last article by Dr. Becker talks about the administration of the monthly heartworm pill. It makes a lot of sense, but I read this after the passing of my dog, so I’ve never had this conversation with another veterinarian and I would recommend that you do so with your vet before following my advice or that of any other veterinarian.