No More Rabies Vaccinations

If you follow me on Instagram (itzlinz), then you know this past weekend didn’t start out too hot.  It all started on Thursday evening.  Our baby furniture was delivered (!!!), so my mom was over helping get everything organized.  She commented that Zoey didn’t look good, but Zoey was on a couple different medications for ongoing skin infections.  I attributed it to that.  However, Zoey was needing to go out to go potty more often than usual; that, too, could have been from the Prednisone she was taking.

When Jonny and I went to sleep that night, we both got up with Zoey several times throughout the night to let her out as she was whining.  This never happens.  Zoey usually sleeps through the night, no big deal.  Around 3:00 a.m., I noticed a dark spot on our bed and discovered Zoey had thrown up a pretty good amount.  Unfortunately, Zoey has gotten sick on our bed before and occasionally has tummy troubles, so I put the big blanket on the floor thinking I’d clean it up in the morning.  An hour later, I heard Zoey throw up on our bed again.  It was a lot and I knew I couldn’t just let it sit.  I took Zoey off our bed to let her out and discovered she had gotten sick and gone to the bathroom in several places in our house throughout the night.

Last time something like this happened was three years ago and it landed Zoey in the emergency animal intensive care unit for three days.  I called the emergency animal hospital and they said it was a judgement call if I wanted to bring her in immediately or wait until our vet opened.  Zoey was responsive, so Jonny and I decided to hold out a couple more hours to see our vet who is familiar with Zoey.


One of the last times I let Zoey out in our backyard, she laid down in the snow and wouldn’t come inside.  I was so worried because, as you can see, she is a small dog and can’t sustain the cold weather for very long.  I knew she was very, very sick. Our vet was also incredibly concerned.  When we brought her in, her heart rate was 180 (that’s VERY high).  Last time this happened was three years ago and it occurred about ten days after Zoey had her yearly shots.  Well would ya know that just a week ago Zoey had her annual vaccinations again?  I told this connection to the vet saying that it was too coincidental and that the shots had to be playing a role.  He explained that when animals react to vaccinations, itz within thirty minutes or twenty-four hours – not such a prolonged time after.  I refused to believe that the shots didn’t have anything to do with it.

The vet looked up Zoey’s files from three years ago to see which vaccinations she had: rabies and bordetella.  He explained that she gets bordetella every year, but rabies is just once every three years, so that was the common factor.  He also told us that he has never seen a dog have a reaction a week or ten days after, but there was no other explanation for Zoey’s extreme sickness.  Because of Zoey’s poor condition, the vet didn’t want to let Zoey go home, so he asked us to leave Zoey with him for the remainder of the day.  Since Jonny and I had to go to work, we felt comfortable leaving Zoey since we knew she’d be in good care, especially if things took a turn for the worse.

zoey vet

Things did take a turn, Jonny and I learned, as we called periodically throughout the day to check on her.  There was blood in her stool and she was continuing to throw up.  They ended up needing to hook her up to an IV to get some fluids in her because nothing else was working and she was extremely dehydrated. Several other medications were given: some to calm her gut and others to balance the protein in her blood, so she wouldn’t retain too much of the fluid they were giving her.  When I called after school at 4:30 expecting to be able to pick her up, the vet told me it’d be best to leave her there until six when they closed, so she could get the maximum amount of fluids before taking her home.

At six o’clock I headed to the vet to see my baby girl.  The vet was unsure if he wanted to release her to me for the night or have me take her to the emergency animal hospital.  (Leaving her at the vet overnight wasn’t an option since nobody would be there.) After checking her vitals, he decided to let me take her home, but reinforced the fact that we’d need to keep a very close eye on her.  He also kept the catheter in her arm in just in case we needed to take her to the emergency animal hospital in the middle of the night.  Our plan was to return to the vet in the morning if things went well throughout the night.

Zoey got sick a couple more times, but we still let her sleep in our bed. We knew she wasn’t feeling well and we wanted to make her the most comfortable, so we covered our bed in towels.  (After all, what’s a few more loads of laundry even if she did get sick again?) I can’t tell you how many times I woke up throughout the night to check on her.


When morning came and I let her out, I offered Zoey some canned wet food (as prescribed from the vet) and she finally took some!  She hadn’t eaten anything the day before, so I knew this was a good sign.  When I told the vet about how the night had gone, he seemed as happy as I was and gave me a high five!  He had called the night before around nine to check on her which was so nice and very much appreciated.  After taking her vitals and talking about next steps, he decided it was safe to take out her catheter.

Zoey is on a strict wet canned food only diet for a few days, as well as some medication to heal her gut, but she’s expected to make a full recovery.  Since this was so similar to her situation three years ago, we decided we will not give our dog the rabies vaccination in the future.  Our vet agreed, saying that if it almost kills her each time, itz not worth it.

We are NOT saying don’t give your dog the rabies vaccination! This is the first case our (very experienced) vet had seen of a dog reacting like this. Itz not 100% confirmed that the rabies vaccination is what did this to Zoey, but we have enough evidence to not get her vaccinated for rabies in the future.

Zoey feeling better is certainly the most marvelous part of our weekend!

On Saturday after we knew Zoey was doing much better, I went to my prenatal yoga class at Urban Breath.  The rest of the day was low key as we both wanted to keep a close eye on Zoey.  Jonny and I ended up going out to dinner on Saturday night at a Greek restaurant we love. However, we didn’t make reservations and ended up having to wait over an hour!  Needless to say, we were both HANGRY by the time we were seated and devoured every morsel of food we ordered.  To round out the night, we decided a fro yo stop was in order.


Did you know sometime last week was National Frozen Yogurt Day?  As if we needed an excuse for fro yo!  As you know, I’m usually just a sprinkles toppings kind of girl, but on Saturday night I was feeling a bit more adventurous and added some mini peanut butter chips, bits of cheesecake, raspberry sauce, and sprinkles.  The verdict?  Flavor overload!  I think I’ll be sticking with mostly sprinkles from now on.  With too many flavors itz hard to distinguish between all of them because you eat a bunch of flavors at once. #froyoproblems haha

Sunday came and Jonny had to work, so I walked a couple of miles on our treadmill while the movie You’ve Got Mail was on.  Later, as I blogged and worked on report cards for school, Father of the Bride was on tv.  It was like a oldies but goodies movies day on tv!  Obviously, plenty of Olympics were watched, as well.  (Figure skating is my favorite!)  I met a good friend for lunch, did some laundry, and hung out the rest of the day, before Jonny and I headed to my parents’ for Sunday night dinner.

mom dad poppy

My parents always cook a fabulous dinner and last night was no different.  My grandpa Poppy joined us, as well, which is always a special treat.


Getting the littles to pose for a picture with Poppy is no easy feat!  Especially when he is famous for his “not too tight” hugs and the boys literally wrestle on top of him.  It took quite a bit to calm them all down, throw Audrey in, and snap a semi-calm picture.  Bribery may have been involved.

And ending the evening with some baby to baby snuggle time with Audrey Rose.

audrey belly

A way better ending to the weekend than how it started!

Has your pet ever gotten really sick? Did you celebrate National Fro Yo day? What’s your favorite Olympic sport to watch?

41 thoughts on “No More Rabies Vaccinations

  1. Awww..poor little thing! So scary. And I’ve never heard of that happening, but of course, it can be totally plausible. We had a kitten once get very sick and waste away…we were fully prepared to put him down but he somehow rallied and made it to the age of 15!

  2. Wow! It gave me chills reading about Zoey. Poor thing! I’m so happy she’s on the mend and doing much better. I would’ve been a complete wreck had something similiar happened to Roxy. Will continue to keep Zoey in my prayers <3

  3. At first when I read that, I thought it said “our baby was delivered”, I was like whoa! She really isnt making a big deal of the fact she had a baby over the weekend….it was only when I read about the prednisone….that it clicked what you were saying!

    Glad Zoey is feeling better, poor thing, looks like she is a tough one though! I love your frozen yogurt, that is pretty much identical to the ice cream I made myself last night; a little ice cream, a LOT of toppings! YUM! I wish I knew about National Fro-yo day, I would have had to celebrate!

    Thanks for sharing your Monday!

    • I’m totally not saying don’t vaccinate!! Just like people, all vaccinations don’t go over well with all dogs – especially small ones 🙂

  4. Wow! I’m so glad she is doing better. That has to be so scary, and crazy that it happened last time she got the vaccination, too! I definitely wouldn’t get it again either. Happy she is home and doing well with you guys!

  5. Poor Zoey!!!! I am so sorry you went through this!!! I hope she keeps getting better and better. I hate when animals are sick- my heart just aches for them!! You are such a good mama to her 🙂 Oh, and You’ve Got Mail is my favorite movie ever!! xoxo

  6. Poor Zoey! I have an 8lb cockapoo and we actually just went through something similar with her. She had her 1 year rabies vaccine and about a month later got very skin and actually lost a patch of hair on her hip. Turns out she had a reaction to the vaccine too. She is now on medication and is healing well but will always have the patch of hair missing. Her shot is good for 3 years but after that I won’t be able to vaccinate her again. My vet said it can be fairly common in smaller dogs to have a reaction. So sorry to hear you had to go through all of this but glad Zoey is on the mend 🙂

    • Really?! So interesting!! Yeah we’re good for three years and then not sure what we’ll do in terms of getting her groomed because they require a rabies vaccination – but I figure itz three years away and will deal with it when the time comes haha

  7. Oh my gosh, poor Zoey! When pets get sick, it’s so scary, especially when they can’t tell you what’s wrong. I’ve definitely experienced things like this with the cats I’ve had over the years. It’s so hard because they’re like family. Well, it sounds like Zoey’s on the mend. So glad to hear that!

  8. Oh my goodness, so glad your little Zo is feeling better, that’d be so scary!
    PS. That last picture of “baby to baby” snuggles is precious! 🙂

  9. SO happy she’s okay!! How scary! I’m not a big fan of vaccinations (whether for people or animals). Through working for my chiro, I’ve seen the damage/reactions some people can have from them and it’s definitely important to do your research and decide what’s right for you.

  10. I’m curious where you live because I thought that rabies was one of the required vaccinations most everywhere. I’ve always done annual rabies vaccines. I wonder if the 3 yr version is the issue. You will need to keep a very close eye on her and not let her get any exposure to wildlife or stray animals, since giving her rabies would be a possibility.

    I’m sorry you are in such a tough situation. I wouldn’t want to take a chance with my Milo either…but not giving the shots is a hard way to go too.

    • That is interesting, Karen, and I should inquire about the yearly vs 3 year, but itz also like do we even risk it again?? She’s already been through it twice and the vet literally said it nearly killed her…

  11. Oh wow. I had no idea! I am so sorry! I am glad you all have made connections though. I seriously think some shots for babies & animals can be too intense–esp for small dogs or people! Yes I believe in vaccinations, but each person is individual, so recognizing those things is key to good health.

  12. Poor Zoey!! I’m glad to hear she is doing better. That is so scary! You should really look into the effects of human vaccination, since you are preggo and all 🙂 some children have regressed and developed autism after the shots.. it’s scary stuff. I’m not saying don’t vaccinate, I’m just suggesting you look into it 🙂 best of luck!

  13. I’m so thankful little Zoey is okay! How awful. Our little Mary almost didn’t make it when she got into some chocolate covered bacon that I politely took from an instructor at our gym after a spin class a few years ago (it was offered and even though I didn’t plan to eat it, I wrapped it up and took it home). An hour later I realized Mary had rummaged through my purse and eaten it. I spent all day at the emergency vet before they sent her home, hoping the medicine would continue to lower her heart rate. They actually wanted to keep her overnight, but my husband felt like the stress of being in a strange environment was making things worse for her because she was so stressed out (she’s a small dog, too–such nervous little things!). We took her home and sure enough her heart rate continued to slow over the next several hours. Such a nightmare. We don’t have children, and Mary’s our little girl. It was an awful experience, but super thankful it turned out okay. So glad Zoey is on the mend!

  14. Our dog Riley also struggles with allergies. She is on a daily dose of prednisone and has had terrible reactions to her shots. She now has to get a shot of Benadryl when we first arrive and then we wait 30 minutes. Then it is shot time and we have to wait 30 minutes after the shots to make sure she doesn’t react. It is not a fun experience for her or is. Glad Zoe is doing better!

  15. You must have been so scared. Poor Zoey ! I was nervous reading, can’t imagine what you guys must have been feeling. So glad she’s home and on the road to recovery. Sending you guys tons of love and prayers.

  16. Oh how sad! Our dog almost had water poisoning once because he is obsessed with biting (and eating) moving water. We were at the lake and he was attacking the waves for a long time. He’s a little dog, so his belly was so full that when he went to the bathroom it literally shrunk! He was pretty sick for the rest of the day but luckily we was okay 🙂 He still tries to eat the water though!

  17. Glad your pup is doing better.
    We had some very scary situations with our old pal Tucker and Kostas had major surgery in September…I was a wreck worrying about him!

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