Seriously? Yes! Evidence is mounting that the common FVRCP (feline viral rhinotracheitis, calicivirus and paneleukopenia) vaccine may cause long-term damage to cats’ kidneys that increases with every booster. Here’s the report from Colorado State University:
The Center for Companion Animal Studies at Colorado State University has shown that cats vaccinated with FVRCP vaccines grown on Crandell-Rees Feline Kidney (CRFK) cell lines can develop antibodies to renal proteins, and that cats hypersensitized to CRFK cell lysates can develop interstitial nephritis…Cats administered FVRCP vaccines parenterally (by injection) have higher levels of circulating antibodies to these antigens than do cats who were administered a FVRCP vaccine for intranasal administration.
Similar antibodies have been implicated in the development of renal disease in humans, and there is every reason to suspect that they do the same in cats. Chronic renal failure (CRF), also called chronic kidney disease (CKD) in cats is known to be caused by chronic interstitial nephritis, or inflammation of kidney tissue–the very thing that these vaccines cause.
Fortunately, the distemper vaccine is extremely effective and long-lasting. A kitten that receives its initial vaccine series, or any kitten or cat vaccinated just once after 16 weeks of age, is protected for life. There is no benefit, and substantial risk, to repeated distemper vaccines in adult cats.
Note: two questions were asked by a reader. Please see Dr. Hofve’s response below:
How do you know that one injection won’t cause lifelong increased antibodies to renal proteins? That would be my assumption. If one shot can immunize for life, couldn’t one shot cause CRF over time? Are any distemper vaccines grown on cells that are not cat cells or similiar?
Holistic veterinarian and author Dr. Jean has 18 years’ experience in conventional and alternative veterinary medicine. She has a passion for feline health and nutrition is the former Editor-in-Chief of The American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association Journal. For more information, please visit the library at Dr. Jean’s website, www.littlebigcat.com.