And the many facets of medical BS
We are back in Canada, and since we’ve arrived, I have asked myself why the quarantine rules differ from country to country and why so often they do not make any sense from the medical point of view.
When leaving Maui for Canada, we had to give out all our personal info, such as our phone number, despite us departing from a place with no new COVID-19 cases for a while. They even rang our phone to make sure it was a real number, which is way too far from comfort knowing the past history of government surveillance in the US.
Upon our arrival in Canada, we had to fill out the federal COVID-19 form and do the same at the provincial (state equivalent) counter, being told that if we leave the house, we may go to prison.
It does make sense not to see others for two weeks after traveling by plane, but is there any risk of infecting another person by getting some outdoor exercise in order to stay healthy and not become depressed in quarantine?
The paradox is that if there are other people living in our house during quarantine, they are free to roam as they please which makes zero sense. Isn’t there a risk of further disease transmission?
Our European friends who are currently trying to get back home will not be subjected to a quarantine, if they test negative for COVID-19 prior to their travel. Isn’t there a risk of contracting the disease on the way?
To summarize, I came to realize there is no rhyme or medical reason to some COVID-19 rules. I can’t help but feel like I am back behind the Iron Curtain, just as I was 30 years ago.
Back then, in my home country, they were “protecting us from imperialism” and now they are protecting us from COVID-19, slowly stripping our freedoms and instilling more control and surveillance over our lives which is worrisome.
I also can't help but see the analogy between the COVID-19 guidelines and the common vaccination protocols for dogs.
Why the current dog vaccine protocols make no sense
The recommendation is to give three sets of boosters starting at eight weeks of age and repeat two more times at 12 and 16 weeks which makes no sense for the following reasons:
1. Eight-week-old puppies are protected by maternal antibodies and their immune system is not mature enough to produce antibodies. Also giving a vaccine to an 8 week-old puppy will effectively bind and neutralize maternal antibodies which makes a puppy less protected.
2. A 12-week vaccine may or may not be necessary depending on the presence of antibodies. If they are present, socialization with other dogs is safe and helps to increase immunity while puppies are protected with maternal antibodies. I suggest giving a vaccine only in cases where an antibody test is negative.
3. A 16-week vaccine is usually unnecessary if the12-week vaccine was given because in most dogs, antibodies from just one vaccine last for years if not a lifetime. If an antibody blood test is negative that is the only time vaccine is indicated.
My recommendation is to focus on limiting vaccines to a minimum while keeping pups protected.
1. The number one priority is antibody testing.
2. Vaccinate only if antibodies are negative.
3. Give the rabies vaccine around 6 months only if you live in an area with a rabies risk.
Here is your complete guide to a safer vaccination protocol for adult dogs and puppies.
Learning to live with medical ignorance
Medical ignorance is not a new phenomenon. It has been here way before mercury purging and well after the invention of Thalidomide, steroids and other harmful drugs.
It is our duty to inform each other and not let even possibly well meaning regulators inundate our lives with nonsense. There is a very fine line between sensible protection and a totalitarian regime and there are people among us, who pathologically seek political power and control over others, just as there are drug companies who are willing to do anything to boost their profits.
They are masters at hiding their ulterior motives under the cover of protecting us and creating an artificially inflated perception of the danger. Our task is to recognize an attempt to abuse power from a sensible precaution and stand up to "BS".
Let's stay safe but also be on guard for our freedom and democracy.
PS: If you’d like to know how I keep Pax and myself safe and healthy, check out this article on How to Make You and Your Dog’s Immune System “Bad Ass” or take a peek at these Infographics if you prefer visuals.
© Dr. Peter Dobias, DVM