Spaniel Journal - your source for flushing spaniel training, hunt test, field trial & hunting information

| Bookstore | Bill Fawcett Reviews | Bookshelf | Advertise | Classifieds | Resources | Events | Archives | Spaniel Journal |
| Kris Christine | Maggie Lindsey | Chip Schleider | Anne Livingston | Lisa Sanborn | Michael Thompson | Loretta Baughan |

Canine Rabies Challenge Study Begins
by Kris L. Christine, Founder and Co-Trustee

Kris and Meadow

One of the most important vaccine research studies in veterinary medicine is underway at the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine in Madison. Dr. Ronald Schultz, a leading authority on veterinary vaccines and Chair of the Department of Pathobiological Sciences, has begun concurrent 5 and 7 year challenge studies to determine the long-term duration of immunity of the canine rabies vaccine, with the goal of extending the state-mandated interval for boosters. These will be the first long-term challenge studies on the canine rabies vaccine to be published in the United States.

This research is being financed by The Rabies Challenge Fund, a charitable trust founded by pet vaccine disclosure advocate Kris L. Christine of Maine, who serves as Co-Trustee with world-renowned veterinary research scientist and practicing clinician, Dr. W. Jean Dodds of Hemopet in California. The Rabies Challenge Fund recently met its goal of $177,000 to fund the studies' first year budget with contributions from dog owners, canine groups, trainers, veterinarians, and small businesses. Annual budget goals of $150,000 for the studies must be met in the future.

"This is the first time in my 43 years of involvement in veterinary issues that what started as a grass-roots effort to change an outmoded regulation affecting animals will be addressed scientifically by an acknowledged expert to benefit all canines in the future," says W. Jean Dodds, DVM.

Dr. Ronald Schultz, DVM comments on the news, "We are all very excited to start this study that will hopefully demonstrate that rabies vaccines can provide a minimum of seven years of immunity."

"Because the rabies vaccine is the most potent of the veterinary vaccines and associated with significant adverse reactions, it should not be given more often than is necessary to maintain immunity."

Scientific data published in 1992 by Michel Aubert and his research team demonstrated that dogs were immune to a rabies challenge 5 years after vaccination, while Dr. Schultz's serological studies documented antibody titer counts at levels known to confer immunity to rabies 7 years post-vaccination. This data strongly suggests that state laws requiring annual or triennial rabies boosters for dogs are redundant. Because the rabies vaccine is the most potent of the veterinary vaccines and associated with significant adverse reactions, it should not be given more often than is necessary to maintain immunity. Adverse reactions such autoimmune diseases affecting the thyroid, joints, blood, eyes, skin, kidney, liver, bowel and central nervous system, anaphylactic shock, aggression, seizures, epilepsy and fibrosarcomas at injection sites are linked to rabies vaccinations.

"Because the USDA does not require vaccine manufacturers to provide long-term duration of immunity studies documenting maximum effectiveness when licensing their products, concerned dog owners have contributed the money to fund this research themselves. We want to ensure that rabies immunization laws are based upon independent, long-term scientific data," says Kris Christine.

The following groups and clubs have generously donated to the Rabies Challenge Fund:

  • Akita Club of America
  • American Shih Tzu Club
  • Bernese Mountain Dog Club of Nashoba Valley
  • Bernese Mountain Club of SE Wisconsin
  • Capital City Cocker Club
  • Chesapeake, Virginia Dog Fanciers Association
  • Collie Club of Georgia
  • Dog Agility Racing Team of Chino
  • Great River Stockdog Club
  • Heart of Minnesota Great Dane Club
  • Kennel Club of Buffalo
  • Kerry Blue Terrier Foundation
  • Kishwaukee Kennel Club
  • Kuvasz Fanciers of America
  • Lehigh Valley Kennel Club
  • Miniature Schnauzer Club of Southern California
  • Northern Illinois Schutzhund Club
  • Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever Club of Canada
  • Pacific NW Jack Russell Terrier Rescue Network
  • Soft-Coated Wheaten Terrier Club
  • Staffordshire Terrier Club of America
  • Standard Schnauzer Club of Southern California
  • Wachusett Kennel Club
  • Evergreen Empire Manchester Terrier Fanciers
  • Chicagoland Old English Sheepdog Club
  • Great Plains Bearded Collie Club
  • Door County Scottie Rally
  • Great Dane Club of New England
  • Bernese Mountain Dog Club of the Greater Twin Cities
  • Star of the North Chinese Shar-Pei Club
  • Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier Club of America
  • Belleville and District Kennel Club
  • The Dachshund Club of America Health and Welfare Trust Fund
  • Antelope Valley Kennel Club
  • Norwegian Elkhound Association of Minnesota
  • The Saint Bernard Club of America
  • Kuvasz Club of America
  • Pacific Rim Golden Retriever Club
  • American Bulldog Association
  • Northeastern Indiana Kennel Club
  • The Alaskan Malamute Club
  • Saluki Club of Canada
  • Great Dane Club of America
  • Bernese Mountain Club of South Carolina
  • Lakeshore Pembroke Welsh Corgi Club
  • Iron Range Dog Training Club
  • Alaskan Malamute Club of America
  • Northeastern Indiana Kennel Club
  • Bernese Mountain Club of Northern California
  • Animal Farm Foundation
  • American Bullmastiff Association
  • Bichon Frise Club of America
  • Twin Cities Llasa Apso Club
  • Youngstown All-Breed Training Club
  • Valparaiso Kennel Club
  • Ochlockonee River Kennel Club of Florida
  • Bernese Mountain Dog Club of America
  • Paw Print Dog Club
  • Health and Rescue Foundation of PBGVCA
  • Akita Welfare League
  • Greater Pittsburgh Golden Retriever Club
  • Dog Agility Racing Team of Chino
  • Western Reserve Kennel Club
  • Onondaga Kennel Association
  • Parson Russell Terrier Association of America
  • Pembroke Welsh Corgi Clug of Southern California
  • Sporting Dog Fanciers of New Mexico
  • Lake Eustis Kennel Club
  • The American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association

More information and regular updates on The Rabies Challenge Fund and the concurrent five and seven year challenge studies it is financing can be found at the fund's website designed by volunteer Andrea Brin at

Rabies Challenge Fund

Spaniel Journal is a production of Autumnskye, LLC
Copyright © Spaniel Journal & Baughan Webdesign, 2002-2007, all rights reserved worldwide
Spaniel Journal - your source for flushing spaniel training, hunt test, field trial & hunting information