Below is a copy of the letter I faxed to Kay Johnson. It appears that a vaccine revolution in Kansas has been triggered by the Wichita Eagle article http://www.kansas.com/news/story/344780.html . There is a rare opportunity to get the various Kansas rabies laws changed to the national standard, and NOW is the time to take action to help! Dog owners in Alabama, Tennessee, Arkansas, and Georgia have contacted me about initiating efforts to change the laws in their states, based on the recent developments in Maine and Kansas. It's important to remember that as dog owners, we all have a stake in the rabies immunization laws across the country as they tend to spill over state borders; so even if you do not live in Kansas, the rabies immunization laws there could impact you in the future.
What You Can Do to Help: Please contact Kay Johnson, the Wichita City Council, Kansas Legislators, the Governor, and the Attorney General. Contact information is below--it's simple to make a phone call or two or copy and paste e-mail addresses to send e-mail messages. The full e-mail list of Kansas senators and representatives is at the bottom of this message. Pass this message along to everyone you know and ask them to do the same. Simple actions multiplied hundreds of times over move mountains!
A reliable source has informed me that Kay Johnson told them she doesn't want dog owners contacting her!!! Kay Johnson is a public official, and she needs to be reminded that her salary is paid by the public she is supposed to serve -- as her department's mission states: http://www.wichita.gov/CityOffices/Environmental/ "Service: We must serve the public as a whole, our customers who seek a product or service from us, and future generations, whose interests are affected by today's actions."
Kay Johnson at KJohnson@wichita.gov Phone (316) 268-8351 Fax: (316) 268-8356 Environmental Services1900 E. 9th St. N. Wichita, KS 67214. Kansas Legislators can be contacted by clicking on the link below or by copying and pasting the e-mails at the bottom of this post.
Kansas Legislature -- find your legislator http://www.kslegislature.org/legsrv-legisportal/redistricting.do Full e-mail list of all Kansas Legislators is at the bottom of this message.
Wichita City Council http://www.wichita.gov/Government/CityCouncil/ City Hall, 1st Floor, MS 1-13, 455 N. Main, Wichita, KS 67202 Phone (316) 268-4331 Fax: (316) 858-7743 E-Mails: CBrewer@wichita.gov; LKWilliams@wichita.gov; SSchlapp@wichita.gov; JSkelton@wichita.gov; PGray@wichita.gov; JLongwell@wichita.gov; SFearey@wichita.gov; LPorter@wichita.gov; ASherfield@wichita.gov; JCJohnson@wichita.gov; PHouston@wichita.gov; KGlassman@wichita.gov; MBuckmaster@wichita.gov; TDozal@wichita.gov
Kansas Governor Kathleen Sebelius: Office of the Governor, Capitol, 300 SW 10th Ave., Ste. 212S, Topeka, KS 66612-1590 Phone: (1-877-579-6757) Fax 785-368-8788; Lt. Governor Mark Parkinson: Toll-Free 1-800-748-4408 Local 785-296-2213 Fax 785-296-5669;
Kansas Attorney General's Office: Kansas Attorney General Stephen N. Six Memorial Hall, 2nd Floor; 120 SW 10th Street; Topeka, KS 66612 Phone: (785) 296-2215; 1-888-428-8436 fax: (785) 296-6296 e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; Consumer Protection Division Phone: (785) 296-3751 (800) 432-2310 Consumer Fax: (785) 291-3699
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March 19, 2008
Ms. Kay Johnson, Director
1900 East 9th Street N.
Wichita, KS 67214
RE: Wichita’s Annual Rabies Immunization Protocol for Dogs
Greetings Ms. Johnson:
It is unconscionable, unprofessional, and reckless for you, as the Director of Environmental Services, to rigidly adhere to a medically unsound annual rabies immunization protocol based on your desire to address a non-compliance issue among irresponsible dog owners. In effect, your policy punishes law-abiding citizens by requiring them to pay for medically unnecessary annual boosters. The rabies vaccine is the most potent of the veterinary vaccines and associated with significant adverse reactions -- it should not be given more often than is necessary to maintain immunity. Adverse reactions such as autoimmune diseases affecting the thyroid, joints, blood, eyes, skin, kidney, liver, bowel and central nervous system; anaphylactic shock; aggression; seizures; epilepsy; and fibrosarcomas at injection sites are linked to rabies vaccinations.
The National Association of State Public Health Veterinarians’ Compendium of Animal Rabies Prevention and Control, 2007 (http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/pdf/rr/rr5603.pdf ) states that: “No laboratory or epidemiologic data exist to support the annual or biennial administration of 3- or 4-year vaccines following the initial series.”
Many, if not most or all, annual rabies vaccines are the 3 year vaccine relabeled for annual use -- Colorado State University's Small Animal Vaccination Protocol for its veterinary teaching hospital states: “Even with rabies vaccines, the label may be misleading in that a three year duration of immunity product may also be labeled and sold as a one year duration of immunity product.”
It is my personal opinion that you have set a rabies immunization policy which violates consumer protection laws by requiring pet owners (pet owners are consumers of veterinary services) to pay for annual rabies boosters which their dogs derive no benefit from, and which have the potential to cause harm.
Under Article 8 “Unprofessional Conduct” of the Kansas Administrative Regulations, K.A.R. 70-8-1, one of the acts of unprofessional conduct listed by the Kansas Board of Veterinary Examiners (2A) is administering drugs “when the drugs are not necessary or required for the medical care of animals..” It appears that your annual rabies vaccination policy forces veterinarians into the uncomfortable position of violating their professional code of conduct by obliging them to overvaccinate dogs against rabies in order for their owners to comply with the law.
The first entry under Appendix 2 of the 2003 American Animal Hospital Association’s Canine Vaccine Guidelines “Important Vaccination ‘Do’s and Don’ts” is “Do Not Vaccinate Needlessly – Don’t revaccinate more often than is needed….” They also caution: “Do Not Assume that Vaccines Cannot Harm a Patient – Vaccines are potent medically active agents and have the very real potential of producing adverse events.”
The American Veterinary Medical Association's 2001 Principles of Vaccination states that “Unnecessary stimulation of the immune system does not result in enhanced disease resistance, and may increase the risk of adverse post-vaccination events.” They elaborate by reporting that: “Possible adverse events include failure to immunize, anaphylaxis, immunosuppression, autoimmune disorders, transient infections, and/or long-term infected carrier states."
In the Mission Statement for the department of which you are the Director (http://www.wichita.gov/CityOffices/Environmental/), it lists as one of the core values, principles and operating philosophy by which you are supposed to be guided: “Integrity: We are committed to truth, accuracy, and fairness.” Your annual rabies immunization protocol fails to meet this standard of integrity.
I strongly urge you to immediately revise Wichita’s misguided annual rabies immunization policy and adopt the national triennial standard.
Kris L. Christine
THE RABIES CHALLENGE FUND
cc: Diane McCartney, Wichita Eagle
Attorney General Stephen N. Six
Consumer Protection Division, Attorney General’s Office
More information and regular updates on The Rabies Challenge Fund and the concurrent 5 and 7 year challenge studies it is financing can be found at the fund’s website designed by volunteer Andrea Brin at:
The information contained on this site is in no way intended to replace that of proper veterinary advice, diagnosis or treatment.
It is meant to provide resource, so that we can better understand canine health related issues.