The BAHVS position statement on vaccination

The Position of the Faculty of Homeopathy, which registers Medical professionals trained in the use of Homeopathy, with regards to immunisation and the use of nosodes for prophylaxis, can be found

The long- held position of the British Association of Homeopathic Veterinary Surgeons (BAHVS) is that where there is no medical contraindication, immunisation should be carried out in the normal way using the conventional tested and approved vaccines.

Where there is a medical contraindication and/or a patient would otherwise remain unprotected against a specific infectious disease, it may be appropriate to consider the use of the relevant homeopathic preparation applicable to that disease. This may, or may not, be a Nosode.

Different veterinary practices in the UK may offer different vaccination protocols. The BAHVS strongly advises that the World Small Animal Veterinary Association) Guidelines on Vaccination should be read and understood and that any vaccination or revaccination protocol should be agreed with the veterinary practice with full informed consent and with regard to an individual risk assessment.

The WSAVA defines core vaccines for dogs as those that protect against distemper, parvovirus and hepatitis and core vaccines for cats are those that protect against feline parvovirus, feline calicivirus and feline herpesvirus. There is a growing body of information about immunological memory that indicates immunity induced by vaccination can be extremely long lasting and the WSAVA guidelines state core vaccines ‘should not be given any more frequently than every three years after the 6‐ or 12‐month booster injection following the puppy/kitten series, because the duration of immunity (DOI) is many years and may be up to the lifetime of the pet.’

In the case of Leptospirosis the situation is less clear. Precise duration of immunity in response to Leptospirosis vaccination is not established, but vaccine licences have only been sought for 12 months. It is advisable to weigh risk of the disease in any particular animal’s lifestyle and situation before deciding whether to vaccinate against Leptospirosis and what protocol to adopt. There is also a choice of (L2) or (L4) vaccines available. Discussion should take place with a veterinary surgeon as to the relative risks associated with the different vaccines.

BAHVS Members have led the debate over the unnecessary annual re-vaccination of pet animals for many years and faced criticism for doing so. Their stance has been vindicated by the WSAVA Vaccination Guidelines.

The WSAVA guidelines support the use of simple in‐practice tests (known as titre tests) for determination of seroconversion to the core vaccine components following vaccination and also states ‘Vaccines should not be given needlessly’

Vaccination is a complex issue and it is strongly recommended that animal owners speak with a veterinary surgeon to discuss their individual situations. The nearest homeopathic vet can be found on the Find a Vet section of this website.

About Nosodes

Nosodes are medicines derived from diseases or disease material (e.g. discharges, tissues, secretions, excretions) and made by the homeopathic method of succussion and dilution. They are widely used in the complementary treatment of infectious diseases, yet many do have other established complementary therapeutic properties in their own right. Their use in the treatment of infectious disease is not usually applicable to home first-aid application nor can the BAHVS recommend usage by any other than a veterinary surgeon trained in their use.

They have also been used as an aid to prevention of infectious diseases, although there is, as yet, no absolute proof of efficacy in this application. There are nosodes for most infectious diseases of animals, including many for which no conventional vaccination is available.

The BAHVS does not give advice on the use of nosodes for disease prevention, except to state that their use should be restricted to prescription by a veterinary surgeon trained in their application. Individual BAHVS members will each offer clients advice based upon their own experience and understanding.

The advice over approved vaccinations notwithstanding, the BAHVS cannot support leaving animals with no form of prophylactic cover against the major, potentially lethal infectious diseases.

The Law

The Veterinary Surgeons Act 1966 forbids the treatment of animals (other than your own) by anyone other than a fully qualified vet.