Only in Brooklyn

The headline tells it all, but click on the screenshot if you want more details. The sick thing is, besides the total absence of evidence that vaccines cause autism in humans, that there’s no evidence for autism in nonhuman animals.

From the Raw Story:

“We do see a higher number of clients who don’t want to vaccinate their animals,” Dr. Amy Ford of the Veterinarian Wellness Center in the Boerum Hill neighborhood told the Brooklyn Paper. “This may be stemming from the anti-vaccine movement, which people are now applying to their pets.”

Dr. Ford said that more and more people hailing from hip areas of Brooklyn are refusing to vaccinate their pets for rabies, distemper and hepatitis — all of which are required by law in New York.

“It’s actually much more common in the hipster-y areas,” Ford said. “I really don’t know what the reasoning is, they just feel that injecting chemicals into their pet is going to cause problems.”

I wonder what “chemicals” these Brooklyn hipters take into their own bodies. At any rate, they better not pull this crap with cats.

h/t: Barry



  1. mem_somerville
    Posted August 2, 2017 at 1:48 pm | Permalink

    I wish it was only in Brooklyn, but it’s not. I’ve been saying for years I wouldn’t even let my dog play with their dogs at the dog park.

    Recently @skeptvet took a look at the claims. There’s a good post about that here:

    BTW: team organic is also trying to get vaccines removed from organic production. That’s animal cruelty.

    • Lurker111
      Posted August 3, 2017 at 7:55 am | Permalink

      Q: How can you tell an autistic dog from a regular dog?

      A: Autistic dogs are smarter than their owners.

      • busterggi
        Posted August 3, 2017 at 8:12 pm | Permalink

        Autistic dogs are cats?

  2. dabertini
    Posted August 2, 2017 at 1:54 pm | Permalink

    The regressive left strikes again!

    • infiniteimprobabilit
      Posted August 2, 2017 at 4:11 pm | Permalink

      Not sure if I’d put that down to the Left. Has anyone done a survey of these idiots to see what side of the political spectrum they’re on? I would guess that vaccine-phobia tends to be correlate more with ‘alternative’ woo than any particular political grouping.


      • Posted August 2, 2017 at 5:30 pm | Permalink

        Anti-vaxx in humans is seen on both the right and the left, although the ones we hear about the most seem to be from the left.

  3. Posted August 2, 2017 at 2:00 pm | Permalink


    With a kitten in the household, vaccination is a timely topic of discussion. Vega’s already had two rounds of shots, with three more coming over the next few months.

    Dr. Bastek and I were discussing it. She’s definitely pro-vaccination, but I also got a feeling that she might be a little gunshy about talking with it with patients. She relaxed after I heartily agreed with her opening suggestion.

    Anyway, standard of care for some time has been to only vaccinate outdoor cats for certain diseases and to not vaccinate indoor-only cats for those diseases. That’s recently changed; now, the recommendation is to vaccinate all cats. (Baihu’s an indoor-only cat but has gotten the outdoor-cat vaccines…superficially because of the walks in the park on a leash, but mainly because it just plain makes sense.)



    • Randy schenck
      Posted August 2, 2017 at 4:19 pm | Permalink

      We just had our annual vet visit for both Emma and Bumper. The Leukemia, Rabies and FVRCP3 vaccines were on the menu. That last one is a 3 year vaccine. Also get a fecal analysis and physical.

    • Posted August 2, 2017 at 5:35 pm | Permalink

      On the other subject is the issue of when to get your pet ‘fixed’. I hear that at least some vets are open to not do it asap, but to wait until the pet is older since early fixing has some side effects.
      Sorry I am not apprised of more details than that.

      • Posted August 2, 2017 at 5:54 pm | Permalink

        I think it’s six months for kittens…but Vega has more appointments before then (all for vaccinations, if I remember right), so I’m not worrying about the timing. Basically, whenever Dr. Bastek says is the right time is when we’ll do it….



    • gravelinspector-Aidan
      Posted August 3, 2017 at 6:46 am | Permalink

      I still fail to get my head around the concept of an “indoor cat”. They’re obligate carnivores, and instinctive hunters – far more so than dogs. [Marvin voice, or maybe Eddie] “Does not compute! Does not compute!!”

      • Posted August 3, 2017 at 10:47 am | Permalink

        Well, their diets are commercially-packaged versions of what they’d be catching for themselves…and Vega, as I type, is busy eviscerating a toy mouse — but now she’s stalking my feet…and back to the mouse.

        Outdoors, they don’t last long. Vega, in particular, was pretty badly dehydrated and somewhat malnourished. This is in Tempe, Arizona, where we go the entire summer without daytime highs below 100°F / 38°C, where typical highs are 105°F / 40°C, where 110°F / 43°C is unremarkable, and at least a few days of 117°F+ / 47*C+ are expected. And where it rarely gets much below 90°F / 32°C even in the wee hours of the morning.

        Aside from the heat, there’s the cars, the d*gs, even coyotes and hawks near the parks.

        Basically, the life of an outdoor cat here is nasty, brutish, and short…but an indoor cat well cared for can have decades of playful luxury.

        Not to mention…when the heat finally subsides, there’s (leashed) walks in the desert. Vega’s new to everything, so we’ll see how she takes to it…but I’m expecting her to be out there right next to her big brother in a month or two.




        • gravelinspector-Aidan
          Posted August 3, 2017 at 11:37 am | Permalink

          While you and your cats have obviously accommodated to the lifestyle well, in more temperate climes (soaked twice today – once by a cloudburst, then an hour later by bloody “white van man” and a puddle!) I still just can’t envisage a cat not wanting to “Me out! Proowwwwl now!”
          Sure, they get some rough times – our Jackie got a dislocated hip from a car one year, and still made it beck to the back doorstep for morning, including at least 1 6ft brick wall, and once she’d recovered from that got seven colours of fluid kicked, bitten and scratched out of her by a rat which had taken up residence under the compost heap during her enforced indoorness in a plaster cast. Which was rough. But on the other hand, the look of “Gotcha!” on her face when she presented us with the same rat several weeks later!
          When she stopped demanding out at night to patrol her territory and keep the rest of the neighbourhood cats in their places, that was when we knew she was going downhill. Cancer.
          I just can’t get my head around a cat that doesn’t “want out”. Sure they want a den too, and attentive staff. But it’s an intrinsic part of being a cat, IMO.

          • Laurance
            Posted August 3, 2017 at 12:35 pm | Permalink

            Cuddles was always an indoor cat. Occasionally she’d break jail, but she’d never go more than a few feet from the door.

            Jinx, OTOH, had been a stray cat and he was only too glad to be indoors and never ever tried to go back out.

            These cats had to be indoor cats. My house is right by a busy street. Much too dangerous.

            • gravelinspector-Aidan
              Posted August 3, 2017 at 7:21 pm | Permalink

              My house is right by a busy street. Much too dangerous.

              Ours likewise, in the days of me (and the cat) living there. Definitely dangerous. Life is dangerous – my sister got hit by a car (broken leg, internal injuries) on the same road.

          • Posted August 3, 2017 at 10:16 pm | Permalink

            Well, if you want a real reason to keep your cat indoors, think of the poor birds. Cats are a major issue for our feathered friends and kill billions every year. No kidding, they are a major source of song bird loss every year. One study said between 1.4 and 3.57 a year. They also kill billions of mice, shrews, rabbits, squirrels and voles. They are probably the number one killer of small animals in the country, upwards of 15 billion.

            My two cats are brothers and act like it. They kill each other in fights occasionally if they need some aggressive exercise but it’s never serious and they get excellent care from their staff.

      • Posted September 12, 2017 at 11:42 am | Permalink

        I helped my friend trap a mother cat and two kittens who had been living under her deck for months. Now the mother cat is happily inside and doesn’t even bother to look out the windows. She is happily an indoor cat who has no intention of ever living on the streets again.

  4. Laurance
    Posted August 2, 2017 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

    A leash-walking cat! I would love to have such a cat as my animal friend! Did this cat learn this as a kitten, or were you able to leash-train an older cat?

    In any event, this anti-vax stuff has to be really getting crazy when people won’t get a rabies vaccine for their dog.

    • Desnes Diev
      Posted August 2, 2017 at 3:49 pm | Permalink

      Our then 6-year old cat accepted without problem the harness-and-leash the first time we put it on. We adopted her from a shelter where she had spent most of her life (inside). She’s an indoor cat and the leash is compulsory for a short walk or a long rest in the garden.

    • G Wilson
      Posted August 2, 2017 at 5:14 pm | Permalink

      We’ve recently started putting our second-oldest cat on a harness. He’s been an outdoor cat since we took him in as a stray – but having recently lost an eye, he’s reluctant to wander, and we’re reluctant to let him out.

      So we tried him with a harness and lead, and he’s OK with it. Trots alongside like a dog, happily stopping and investigating something every few yards.

      I’m really surprised he’s been so adaptable, because in the past he wouldn’t even wear a collar.

  5. Ken Pidcock
    Posted August 2, 2017 at 2:32 pm | Permalink

    It’s possible that people would find autistic dogs charming. More catlike, perhaps.

  6. Randy schenck
    Posted August 2, 2017 at 2:45 pm | Permalink

    People so stupid should not be allowed to have pets. Oh that’s right…we have no standards, this is a liberty loving country where you are allowed to be as stupid as you like.

    • Harrison
      Posted August 2, 2017 at 3:04 pm | Permalink

      There are plenty of laws governing pet ownership at both the state and federal level. It would be perfectly reasonable to agitate for stricter laws on pet vaccination.

      • Randy schenck
        Posted August 2, 2017 at 3:34 pm | Permalink

        Yes, well you can create laws on this all you want but who enforces these laws. Most cats are purely indoor cats and thousands of others are feral, and that just brings up another flaw in the human.

        • BJ
          Posted August 2, 2017 at 3:41 pm | Permalink

          So who will decide who is smart enough to own pets and who is not? Will there be a Stupid Council?

          Harrison is right: there are laws governing such things. There is nothing more you can do. You cannot decide who gets to own a pet and who doesn’t based on what you believe is the intelligence of others. Liberty does actually demand that people get to do certain things until they break the laws governing them.

          • Randy schenck
            Posted August 2, 2017 at 4:01 pm | Permalink

            I was being facetious. It is similar to giving a test before a couple is allowed to have a child. Ha Ha

            But your laws on vaccination are no more enforceable than laws on pet ownership.

          • gravelinspector-Aidan
            Posted August 3, 2017 at 6:56 am | Permalink

            There is nothing more you can do.

            Hmmm, I suspect it’s more a lack of political will than of what can or cannot be done.
            Example : it’s perfectly reasonable to have registration and licensing of pet breeders (list of reasonable arguments). If you have such regulations in place, along with penalties for people selling pets without such a license, then you have a position where you can also require licensed sellers to comply with a regulation such as “before selling a pet, buyer must present proof of payment for neutering, and [list of vaccinations] as well as injury insurance for coming year.”
            Perfectly do-able, if you can find politicians willing to introduce it piecemeal.
            Non-legislative regulations are a powerful tool for implementing change, and far easier to get changed by rational argument.

          • greenpoisonfrog
            Posted August 3, 2017 at 11:02 pm | Permalink

            No sir, you are in the wrong office. This is the Death Panel office. The Stupid Office is down the hall and to your left.

            My cats never leave the house. If I wanted it so, they should never be subject to vaccinations or licensing or anything. However, vets here at least won’t board your cats should you be going on a trip without the proper vaccinations and licensing. Also, if your cat needs care for illness, etc., they won’t keep them unless they are up to date everything. So the enforcement is more on the vet end of things than on the cops at the door.

            I imagine that the penalties are greater when your pet injures someone. A d*g who bites someone and is unlicensed and non-vaccinated will surely get their owner in some civil court trouble if nothing else.

  7. mrclaw69
    Posted August 2, 2017 at 3:12 pm | Permalink

    I think they mean pawtism….

    • Posted August 2, 2017 at 3:22 pm | Permalink


    • Posted August 2, 2017 at 9:55 pm | Permalink

      Sadly, I can only give you one like. This deserves all the likes.

    • greenpoisonfrog
      Posted August 3, 2017 at 11:03 pm | Permalink

      We have a thread winner I think.

  8. Ken Kukec
    Posted August 2, 2017 at 3:19 pm | Permalink

    Shame the good people of Brooklyn couldn’t inoculate their borough against hipster vermin. 🙂

    • BJ
      Posted August 2, 2017 at 3:44 pm | Permalink

      There actually is a hipsterism vaccine, but the problem is that hipsters won’t vaccinate themselves. We all must start vaccinating at birth, or we risk an outbreak of hipsters. Nobody wants that, not even hipsters, because it wouldn’t be cool to be a hipster anymore if too many people were hipsters.

      • barn owl
        Posted August 2, 2017 at 4:01 pm | Permalink

        LOL, yes, like the Portlandia “OVER” sketch:

  9. BJ
    Posted August 2, 2017 at 3:41 pm | Permalink

    At first I let out a laugh when I saw the headline.

    And then I felt sad.

  10. Mark R.
    Posted August 2, 2017 at 4:18 pm | Permalink

    Wow, this is freakin’ nuts. I’m going to ask my vet next time I’m there if they’ve experienced this foolishness.

  11. W.Benson
    Posted August 2, 2017 at 4:29 pm | Permalink

    Only in Brooklyn? I feel sure LA will not be far behind.

  12. alexandra Moffat
    Posted August 2, 2017 at 4:38 pm | Permalink

    It’s not just the medical, disease dangers, but the anti science “mentality” that seems so way too prevalent .

  13. Hempenstein
    Posted August 2, 2017 at 4:58 pm | Permalink

    They’ll rail about chemicals while they’re tatted to the hild. Or up the sleeve, anyway.

    • Hempenstein
      Posted August 2, 2017 at 5:01 pm | Permalink


    • infiniteimprobabilit
      Posted August 2, 2017 at 5:03 pm | Permalink

      “To a chemist, everything is a chemical”.

      (Submission made by an industrial chemist on a proposed regulation barring ‘chemicals’ from being tipped in a landfill).


      • Posted August 3, 2017 at 5:11 am | Permalink


      • gravelinspector-Aidan
        Posted August 3, 2017 at 6:59 am | Permalink

        Oblig warning on the pernicious and ubiquitous DHMO.

        • infiniteimprobabilit
          Posted August 3, 2017 at 7:14 am | Permalink

          Oh that is a classic.


      • Filippo
        Posted August 3, 2017 at 11:57 am | Permalink

        I should think the statement would just as if not more likely be made by the chemist’s non-STEM MBA/JD profit maximization-obsessed CEO boss.

        • infiniteimprobabilit
          Posted August 3, 2017 at 6:31 pm | Permalink

          Well, the chemist’s point (which was IMO entirely valid) was that the regulation as written was unenforceable, since technically it would prohibit everything. In other words, he was on the ‘right’ side.

          More practically, would it prohibit paint? Plastic? Battery acid? Vitamin C pills? Old dry cell batteries? Plutonium? Water?


  14. busterggi
    Posted August 2, 2017 at 6:23 pm | Permalink

    So sad watching autistic dogs trying to make friends – offering their paws instead of properly sniffing butts.

    As a supposedly highly functioning autie I know how they feel.

  15. JonLynnHarvey
    Posted August 2, 2017 at 7:13 pm | Permalink

    There is an Onion-like site all on articles on pseudo-science called The Science Post, and they have a terrific parody article on this.

    • Posted August 3, 2017 at 5:14 am | Permalink

      Brilliant! From that link:

      The anti-vaccine dog movement is based on a fraudulent study linking the rabies vaccine to pawtism by former veterinarian Andrew Wagfield


    • Chris Swart
      Posted August 3, 2017 at 3:29 pm | Permalink

      Thank you!

  16. Mike
    Posted August 3, 2017 at 7:19 am | Permalink

    They’ll find their answers no doubt at that fount of all knowledge, the Gloop website..

  17. Posted August 9, 2017 at 2:08 pm | Permalink

    One of my cats is “on the autism spectrum.” Were he human, he would be diagnosed with Asberger’s Syndrome.

  18. Posted September 6, 2017 at 5:02 pm | Permalink

    There are actually some mouse models of autism. Moreover, high-functioning autistic people generally prefer cats to d*gs as pets and some of them say that cats in general are autistic.

  19. Posted September 12, 2017 at 10:24 am | Permalink


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