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Suspend Canine Lepto 4 vaccines, and improve use/control of dog vaccines! Alfie's petition

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A survey on Lepto vaccine reactions was ran at the same time as this petition. The survey is now closed. The results have been compiled and are at

To the European Medicines Agency, the European Commission the European Parliament and UK Veterinary Medicines Directorate.

Currently in the UK we are seeing cases of vets remove the vaccine from the fridge and inject it into our animals before the vaccine has had time to reach room temperature, and more importantly injecting before discussing and reaching an agreed vaccine regime with the pet owner. Further, vets are vaccinating dogs over the age of 9, have a significant heart murmur, and various other existing health issues.

On the various Facebook canine vaccine groups we are seeing numerous adverse reactions and even death to our dogs following the dog receiving L4 and to a lesser extent L2 vaccines by a number of makes. We are frequently hearing of vets refusing to acknowledge any link between administered vaccine and a new medical condition that presents after vaccination. And we are hearing of UK vets having treated fatal cases of Lepto over the last 12 months, but no evidence of which strains of Lepto the dogs had and therefore no clinical need for L4.

Whilst HM Gov’s Veterinary Medicines Directorate records Adverse Event Reactions to Canine Lepto 4 vaccines as “Rare” at 7 in 10,000 injections, if 6 million dogs are vaccinated then at 7:10,000 – that is approximately 4,000 dogs having adverse reaction, life changing illnesses or death. We know that many vets are not reporting adverse reactions and we feel that these Adverse Reaction Events are unacceptable.

We are aware of dog owners in other Western European Countries whose dogs have also had AER or died following L4 vaccination.


My Alfie had received Lepto 2 vaccines for 8 years without incident or reaction. In February 2016 my vet advised that they had the Versican Plus L4 vaccine by Zoetis, and unlike the Nobivac L4 vaccine, this vaccine is not shed by the dog.
As I had heard bad stories about the Nobivac/Canigen L4 vaccines, and this was a different brand then I decided to let my two dogs have it.
Alfie was a grade 3 of 5 heart murmur on the day of vaccination, and had been that grade for a couple of years prior to that.
I was unable to groom or touch either of my dogs for 2 days after they received the Versican Plus L4 vaccine. Alfie’s breathing had changed within 48 hours of being vaccinated, and he collapsed a week after vaccination. On the day of his collapse Alfie was classed as grade 5 of 5 murmur, which means that you can’t hear the heart beat for the blood swooshing
Three vets were adamant that it was not the vaccine. So at the 4 week point he had the second L4 vaccination. His chest was clear of fluid but a grade 5 of 5 heart murmur on the day of the second vaccination. Within 2 days his abdomen and chest filled with fluid. Three vets continued to deny any link to the L4 vaccine. Despite diuretics, Alfie drowned in his own fluids.
Autopsy by Pathologist at RVC claimed that as Alfie was a Cavalier King Charles spaniel then heart failure should be expected.


So, we the undersigned ask the European Medicines Agency (EMA), the European Commission, the European Parliament and UK Veterinary Medicines Directorate to;

1.    To suspend authorisation of all Canine Lepto 4 vaccines from all manufacturers until such time as further research is done on the products. Specifically, to identify if the range of Adverse Event reactions is due to the additional Lepto strains or due to the liquid that the vaccines are suspended in, or both.

2.    For the volume of all vaccines to be reduced to 0.5 ml. 
Carrying half the excipients and therefore injecting only half the amount of excipient in to the dog, 0.5 ml vaccines have been available in America for a couple of years now.

3.    For pharmaceutical companies to carry out laboratory trials to see just how long Duration Of Immunity lasts, compared to the current process of proving minimum immunity period.

4.    For pharmaceuticals to give guidelines on what is a healthy animal, or what is not healthy enough to receive vaccines

5.    For pharmaceuticals to give guidelines on what age dogs and cats should stop receiving vaccines.

6.    For vets to acknowledge and proactively report to EMA illnesses/conditions that occur after vaccination. There is currently an attitude of instantly dismissing any link to the vaccine and blaming underlying issues but by administering the vaccine they have deemed the animal fit enough to receive it.

7.    To encourage all European vets to follow the World Small Animal Veterinary Association 2015 guidelines on the Vaccination of Individual Dogs. E.g. Titre before vaccination, Lepto 2 if there is a high risk.

8.    For vets to discuss openly and honestly the local disease issues with the animal owner and agree a course of action.

9.    For vets to prove where they claim that the additional Lepto strains exist in their area.

10. To encourage vets to use L2 by default instead of the current trend of injecting L4 by default, which sometimes happens without client knowledge or agreement.

11. To encourage the use of Lepto vaccine only if there is a genuine high risk in the area, and for that vaccine to be L2 unless there is proven scientific evidence of other Lepto strains in the area.

12. To encourage vets and all places of vet education to adopt the attitude of “To titre test and only vaccinate core and non-core vaccines when necessary after the initial puppy/14 week injections”, compared to the current attitude of “Better to vaccinate every year with core and non-core to protect the dog”.

13. After initial puppy/14 week vaccinations, for all vets to discuss and offer titre testing for core vaccines before contemplating revaccinating with core vaccines.

14. For EMA to have figures of adverse reactions to each canine vaccine type readily available and displayed in reports and available on the EMA website.

15. For EMA to encourage all European vets to report to EMA of disease infected dogs, and in the case of Lepto, of which strains infected the dog, and when and where.

16. To encourage vets to show clients this data of infected dogs on EMA’s website when discussing vaccination regimes.

17. For dogs infected with Lepto, if the dog was vaccinated prior to infection then for EMA to encourage all European vets to report to EMA which strains the dog had been vaccinated with prior to it becoming infected with Lepto.


Mark Ellis

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