ASK THE VET


Q: Are Lyme vaccinations for dog’s safe and what are the side effects?

Original Question: "Hello, one week ago today my dog received the Lyme vaccine. 24 hours later he had difficulty moving. It is quite difficult for him to get off the floor and he walks with an arched back. He is also very lethargic. Normally he is a very healthy active dog. What are the side effects of the vaccine and how long would you expect them to last? Do you recommend this vaccine to your clients?" - Amy


Vet Certified Answer | Answered: November 29, 2017

Hi Amy,

Hi there, I am sorry to hear your dog is not well. Commercially available vaccines for canine Lyme disease are very safe, well-researched and are a commonly used method to prevent infection with the bacteria that causes Lyme disease (Borrelia burgdorferi). Your veterinarian may recommend this vaccination based on geographic and lifestyle factors that may make your dog at a high risk of infection.

As with all vaccines, occasional adverse events can occur. Most often, these are mild and include localized soreness, lethargy and fever. These typically resolve within 2-3 days after the vaccination is given. Other more serious events are possible but are very rare. I cannot comment whether this is the case with your dog. There are many possible causes of the signs you described here. The best thing you can do in this situation is to seek out care with your veterinarian.

I hope this helps!

Dr. Kim Hester


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