Lyme Disease Vaccine For Dogs (7 Pros And Cons)

Lyme Disease Vaccine For Dogs (7 Pros And Cons)

Vaccinations are a part of the healthcare package that aims to prevent some diseases in our pets. Recommendations for vaccination schedule and its protection are made based on the manufacturer’s directives and your pet’s veterinarian.

Your pet’s veterinarian can infer the adequate vaccination schedule to suit your pet’s needs. Lyme vaccination protection can be recommended by your pet’s veterinarian adequately determined by the endemic level of your locality concerning the exposure of ticks.

The good news for dog lovers is that reports show that only about 5% of dogs testing positive for Lyme disease develop the symptoms.

This article provides good knowledge about the pros and cons of the Lyme disease vaccine in dogs.

What is Lyme Disease?

For instance, when considering taking your dog for a walk, it is also essential to view the route. This is due to a particular species of tick called the deer tick or the black-legged tick, which might lie in wait to attach to your pet when the opportunity comes.

They crawl onto the edges of grass or the end of the bushes of low-lying leaves and quest for your pet to scrape past them. The tick creeps around the body to find an excellent spot to hide, bite and feed.

A tick carrying the bacteria responsible for Lyme disease when attached to the body of your pet introduces this bacteria into the bloodstream of your pet during its feeding activity.

Lyme disease can most commonly affect the joints making your pets limp and have swollen joints; and kidneys. Though, Lyme disease can spread to other parts of the body causing loss of appetite, fever, and sluggishness.

For a dog to be infected, it takes the bacteria-carrying tick between 24-48 hours after attachment.

Is Lyme Disease Vaccine Necessary For Dogs?

Lyme vaccine is generally regarded as a non-core vaccine. Invariably, this implies that it is not required for all dogs. The determinant of whether to vaccinate your pet or not for Lyme disease is the basis of your personal risk assessment.

Your pet may benefit from Lyme vaccination when they are at risk of Lyme disease which may include; living in high-risk exposure zones, traveling to high-risk exposure zones and frequently being exposed to ticks through hiking, camping, and so on.

If you stay in high-risk zones, the rationale for vaccine recommendation will depend on your dog’s lifestyle. For instance, if your pet is a lap dog and rarely or never goes outdoors, then the need for vaccination is not recommended.

Also, if you stay in a low-risk zone and your pet frequently goes outdoors for walks, hiking, hunting e.t.c., then your pet may benefit from Lyme vaccination.

small dog fence
Source: Camping World

Pros And Cons Of Lyme Vaccine In Dogs

With this section of the article, you will be able to have the luxury of making a choice on whether or not you should vaccinate your pet with the Lyme vaccine. By knowing about the Lyme vaccine for dogs, you will feel satisfied with whatever choice you make for your pet.

The Pros Of Lyme Disease In Dogs

Lyme disease vaccine was manufactured due to a few reasons, which may include;

1. Prevents Lyme disease

The vaccine works to prevent the transmission of bacteria from the tick to the dog during a tick bite. the vaccine has utility in neutralizing infected ticks which could help curb the spread of Lyme disease.

Lyme disease can be treated but it can also be life-threatening. The vaccine has a good success rate.

2. It Is Safe

In conjunction with proper tick removal and effective tick control, Lyme vaccines are very safe. Even if your pet is sensitive to the vaccine, your pet will respond well to it.

3. Prevents Other Infections

Apart from the Lyme disease bacterial infection, it prevents, the Lyme vaccine also stimulates an immune response to prevent future infections with the same microbe. This implies that if your pet encounters the microbe again within its period of vaccine protection, your pet is well-safe and covered.

The Cons Of Lyme Vaccine In Dogs

It is quite concerning to know the cons of the Lyme vaccine. This is why it is vital to know these cons before making a choice for your pet.

1. The Vaccine May Have Low Efficacy

The effects are not really consistent as it may cause Lyme disease symptoms in some dogs. Also, the duration of immunity is short and requires annual vaccination.

2. Chemicals And Metals

The vaccine has formaldehyde, aluminum, and mercury which can cause some hypersensitivity reactions like allergies, cancer e.t.c. These are important to give considerations.

3. Kidney Failure

This is an adverse effect that can occur after receiving the Lyme vaccine. this can be life-threatening.

4. Risk Of Suffering From Arthritis

A few percent of dogs may suffer from arthritis after receiving the Lyme vaccine.

Now, after reading through this section, I hope you now have a clearer picture of whether or not you should vaccinate your pet.

Lyme Vaccination Schedule For Dogs

Your pet can be administered an initial Lyme vaccine as early as 8-9 weeks of life.

After this, a booster dose must be given in the next 3-4 weeks. Your pet is thought to be covered and protected against Lyme disease one month after being administered the second dose of Lyme vaccination.

To achieve long-term protection and coverage, the Lyme vaccine must be administered once yearly for the rest of your pet’s life. If your pet is long overdue for its yearly booster dose, you may have to consider restarting the initial two-vaccine program.

How To Prevent Lyme Disease In Dogs

After a regular walk with your pet through areas with thick underbrush or long grass where ticks may be hiding and questing, it is a good practice to thoroughly comb and check through the body of your pet for ticks.

When you spot any ticks, carefully remove them. The best prevention is the avoidance of ticks.

When it comes to your pet, ticks enjoy hiding at the base of the tail, in between the paws, and around the ears. Also, ensure you adhere to the vaccination schedule.


As always, it is essential to have an understanding of how the Lyme vaccine works, the pros, and cons as well as other related health procedures in order to enable and guide you to make an informed decision for you and your pet.

Depending on your risk assessment, it is important to know and understand the degree of the risk factors your pet is exposed to in your locality, this will make you engage in activities that work to protect your pets and also properly follow the vaccination schedule if need be.

Home Safety Checklist for Cat and Dog Owners

Unlock the Ultimate Home Safety Guide for Your Pets!

From the living room to the great outdoors, learn the ins and outs of pet-proofing every corner of your home. Get the free Ebook.

Leave a Reply
Related Posts