Thursday, October 17, 2013
Editor in canine, canine infectious respiratory disease, dogs, family pets, haemorrhagic pneumonia, immune system, immunodeficiency, immunosuppression, kennel cough, stress, vaccination, vaccine damage

Haemorrhagic pneumonia in sled dogs caused by Streptococcus equi subsp. zooepidemicus - one fatality and two full recoveries: a case report

Gry Jaeger 1, Hege Kippenes Skogmo 1, Øyvor Kolbjørnsen 2, Hans Jørgen Søiland Larsen 4, Bjarne Bergsjø 3 and Henning Sørum 4

1 Norwegian School of Veterinary Science, Department of Companion Animal Clinical Sciences, PO Box 8146 Dep, N-0033 Oslo, Norway

2 Norwegian Veterinary Institute, Department of pathology, Sentrum, PO Box 750, N-0106, Oslo, Norway

3 Norwegian Veterinary Institute, Department of Bacteriology – Animals and Fish, Sentrum, PO Box 750, N-0106, Oslo, Norway

4 Norwegian School of Veterinary Science, Department of food safety and infection biology, Section for microbiology, immunology and parasitology, PO Box 8146 Dep, N-0033 Oslo, Norway


In spite of yearly vaccination, outbreaks of canine infectious respiratory disease are periodically seen amongst domestic dogs. These infections compromise host defense mechanisms, and, when combined withSled dog team ~ CREDIT: Imma other stressful events, allow opportunistic pathogens like Streptococcus equi subsp. zooepidemicus to create serious disease. Early recognition and treatment are tremendously important for a successful outcome in these cases. A polyvalent vaccine was given to 22 racing dogs three days after a competition, followed by two days of rest, and then the dogs were returned to regular training. Coughing was noticed among the dogs four days after immunisation. Three days after this outbreak one of the dogs was unusually silent and was found dead the next morning. Simultaneously two other dogs developed haemorrhagic expectorate, depression and dyspnea and were brought in to the veterinary hospital. Streptococcus equi subsp. zooepidemicus was isolated in pure culture from all three cases. They were treated and rehabilitated successfully, and won a sledge race three months later. This paper discusses the necropsy results, treatment regime, rehabilitation and the chronology of vaccination, stressful events and disease.

CITATION: Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica 2013, 55:67 doi:10.1186/1751-0147-55-67. Published: 11 September 2013 

© 2013 Jaeger et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.


SOURCE: This is an Open Access article courtesy of BioMed Central - Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 License

PLEASE NOTE: This article cleary demonstrates when vaccination is not only ineffective but harmful. Prior to the race all dogs were described as healthy, in good physical shape and free of signs of infection or disease. Only four days post-vaccination most of the 22 dog pack displayed symptoms of CIRD.

From the full article note the following excerpts:

“In a study of experimental parvovirus infection in dogs, Potgieter and others [13] observed that dogs vaccinated with modified live CDV and CAV-1 five days before challenge with virulent canine parvovirus resulted in disease caused by canine parvovirus whereas unvaccinated dogs remained healthy. This may indicate that these animals had reduced immunity associated with recent vaccination.”

13. Potgieter LN, Jones JB, Patton CS, Webb-Martin TA: Experimental parvovirus infection in dogs. Can J Comp Med 1981, 45:212-216.

“We may speculate that the environmental stress related to the transportation, high-end competition, time of vaccination and too early exercise all contributed to the immunosuppression and consequently the susceptibility to virus- and/or bacterial infection, and where potentially more aggressive and opportunistic bacteria like S. equi subsp. zooepidemicus can progress quickly. It may also be advisable to choose a later moment for vaccination than close up to a challenging physical competition, and to avoid any strenuous exercise for at least ten to 14 days after immunisation.”

“Environmental stress associated with intense exercise, competition and prolonged transportation combined with canine vaccination may suppress the innate immune response to viral infections and subsequent S. equi subsp. zooepidemicus infection that only rarely cause pathology in dogs.”

From a holistic perspective, polyvalent (or multivalent) vaccines are considered a far greater onslaught to the immune system than singular disease (monovalent) vaccines. Giving a live attenuated virus combination vaccine (containing 6 disease components) only three days after the stress of training, prolonged transportation and competing in an international level race had further compromised the immune system before the dogs had sufficient time to fully recover from their event. The ability of the dogs to return to full vitality and regain suitable natural defense mechanisms was reduced by what is coined as ‘vaccine damage’! The administration of this vaccine lead to immunosuppression thereby allowing the pathogen to enter the weakened systems of most of the 22 dogs eventuating with haemorrhagic pneumonia in 3 of the weakest dogs, one of which died.

Article originally appeared on HATO - Holistic Animal Therapy Organisation (
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