The Well Dog Place

Dr. Ken Tudor Holistic Veterinarian

Dogs can have their blood tested for antibodies through a titer test. If the test shows they are not protected, then it is time to vaccinate.

Dog Vaccine Primer 09 | What is a Blood Titer Test?

Here at The Well Dog Place we are always talking about doing blood titer tests for Distemper virus and Parvovirus rather than over vaccinating. But many of our dog parents don’t really know what a titer test means. By definition, a blood titer is the largest dilution of blood that still has evidence of antibodies to a particular virus. But what does that mean?

How Titer Tests Work

  1. A sample of blood from a dog is serially diluted with special chemicals as follows:
  2. Full strength, 1:2, 1:4, 1:8, 1:16, 1:32, 1:64, 1:128, etc.
  3. The higher the dilution, the less of the dog’s blood is in the solution
  4. The dilutions are then exposed to the virus we wish to identify
  5. The chemical reaction of blood with the virus is linked to a dye that can be read by the naked eye or special machines
  6. The highest dilution where the dye is still visible to the eye or machine is the dog’s titer to that virus

Research has verified the titer dilution necessary to protect dogs from distemper or parvo. If your dog’s titer is lower than those recognized as protective, your dog needs a vaccination. If her titer is equal to or greater than the protective levels, vaccination is not necessary at the time.

It is recommended to repeat blood titers yearly for these infectious disease to find out when protection from them has ended and your dog needs a protective vaccination.

Ken Tudor DVM
Dr. Ken Tudor, Holistic Veterinarian

Dr. Ken Tudor is a recognized expert and leader in the field of pet nutrition and fitness. He has developed a pet weight management program and served on the American Animal Hospital Association task force to develop their Weight Management Guidelines for Dogs and Cats. He is also a frequent guest on the Pet World Insider radio show and a popular guest on the televised Pet Ex Talks-Pet Experts Empowering Pet Parents show.

Dog Vaccine Primer 09 | What is a Blood Titer Test?

Dog Vaccine Primer

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