Time to talk about something different (you know, all coronavirus, all the time) like a potential Lyme disease vaccine. A new vaccine for this terrible disease has just completed phase 2 clinical trials, and the results look promising.
As opposed to the mad rush to get a COVID-19 vaccine, this new Lyme disease vaccine has taken several years just to get to this point. But the news is good, so there’s that.
Even though dogs have access to a Lyme disease vaccine, there has not been a vaccine available for humans for 18 years. But that’s about to change, considering how much the tick responsible for the disease has spread.
Just to be clear, vaccine manufacturers do not value dogs more than humans for a Lyme disease vaccine. In reality, the blame for why there isn’t a Lyme disease vaccine can be placed right where some of you expect it to be – loud-mouthed, misinformed anti-vaccine zealots who lacked any scientific evidence supporting their claims.
Of course, the issues with the original Lyme disease vaccine happened in the mid-1990s, and the internet was in its infancy (hello AltaVista). But there were people pushing the same narrative that we hear about the cancer-preventing HPV vaccine – they claimed, without any scientific evidence, that the Lyme disease vaccine was actually worse than the disease itself.
That certainly sounds familiar!
But a new Lyme disease vaccine might be on its way fairly soon. That means adults and children can run in the grass, go hiking, and generally enjoy the outdoors without worrying about this debilitating disease.
Despite this lack of scientific, medical and clinical evidence, a whole cottage industry has arisen to promote the myth of chronic Lyme disease along with selling expensive treatments that have shown little or no clinical efficacy. Furthermore, a whole activist movement that argues that CLD is a real disease, and they can be a vociferous and radical as your every day anti-vaccine activist. In fact, a lot of the arguments are similar between the CLD and anti-vaccine groups – over-reliance on anecdotes, cherry-picking scientific articles, and claims of some sort of conspiracy.
If you go to your veterinarian to get the Lyme disease vaccine for dogs, just make an appointment and your family pooch will be vaccinated against this serious disease. If you go to your pediatrician to get the Lyme disease vaccine for your children, give up now. It’s simply not available.
Is it because Lyme disease is more serious to your dog than your children? Nope. Is it because Big Pharma makes more money from dogs than humans? No. Is it because the Lyme disease vaccine is safer for a dog than in a human? Again, no.
Enough with the guessing game!
The blame for why there is a Lyme disease vaccine for dogs but not one for children can be placed right where some of you expect it to be – anti-vaccine activists. This was in the mid-1990s, and the internet was barely usable without Google to help us, but there were people pushing the same narrative that we hear about the cancer preventing HPV vaccine – the Lyme vaccine was worse than the disease. Let’s take time to look at this story.
I do try to ignore him, like I ignore that Australian expatriate, Ken Ham, who is wasting American taxpayer money to build a temple to that biblical myth that has all of the scientific basis of, well Wakefield’s claims. But sometimes Wakefield just keeps coming, without muzzling his mouth.
The latest is the photo below that’s hitting the interwebs. The picture includes a sad looking dog, possibly a German Shepherd (but I am not a dog expert – I’m a cat person), sitting next to Mr. Wakefield.
Wakefield is holding a couple of hand written signs that say, ” My name is Tex. I was injured by vaccines.”
Now he’s trying to do the same for our pets? Dogs are protected from some serious diseases because of vaccines and other preventative medicines. Rabies. Distemper. Parvovirus. Bordetella. Hepatitis. Lyme disease. And many more.
Not only are these diseases dangerous to our dogs, they can be passed to us. Rabies is a horrible disease, and if a dog contracts it, they may have to be euthanized. And if that rabid dog bites a child, they have to endure a very painful series of vaccines.
No, rabies cannot be prevented by a gluten free, organic diet for your dog. They are bitten by some rabid animal because, well, dogs are curious, and can be bitten by a bat, raccoon, wild cat, and who knows what else – and once bitten, the disease transfers to them.
And, we can only conclude that Wakefield also fails on the “how he treats dogs” category.
If dogs could talk, I wonder what the dog comments on Andrew Wakefield would be. Here’s a poll of what I believe the dog thinks about Andrew Wakefield. Choose your favorite. Or reply in the comments with a better one. I love that!
Here we go again. Anti-Gardasil activists and other vaccine deniers are attempting, once again, to make specious claims about the HPV anti-cancer vaccine. This time claiming that Gardasil DNA and aluminum somehow interacted to kill a young child.
From this rather straightforward disease, a whole cottage industry has arisen around the chronic Lyme disease myth – it claims that the Lyme disease is never really killed and it persists for months or years.