Dodd and her colleagues have studied core vaccines and determined they stay inside dogs' bodies for seven to nine years. She said it begs the question as to why veterinarians administer vaccine boosters every one to three years.
"When the vaccine industry is promoting vaccination, it's their job afterall, how do you get them (veterinarians) to embrace the change?" asked Dodds.
Fankhauser said new research has given veterinarians more insight into the length that vaccines stay inside dogs' bodies. However, he said it still isn't very clear so it's best to keep up with recommended vaccinations to lower the risk of illnesses like canine parvovirus or canine distemper.
"There are documented cases of severe vaccine complications. However, from my experience and understanding, they are extremely rare. And the risks of not vaccinating your pet for sure outweigh the risks of vaccinating them," said Fankhauser.
"Traditionally, part of the reason vaccines were done every year was because it was the only reason people brought their pets in, you know? Times have changed. People are very proactive on the health of their pets," said Hines.
Pet owners who are concerned about vaccines can run a titer test. It is a blood test that measures the antibodies in a pet's system and whether they are sufficient to fight off specific diseases. Titer tests are typically more expensive than vaccinations.
Hines and Fankhauser said the best step that pet owners can take is to engage in an open dialogue with their vet. Pet owners and veterinarians can decide the best course of action for the animal.
"Does that mean that nobody should vaccinate their pets? No. I think it means you have to have a reasonable conversation with your veterinarian," said Hines.
As for Molly, she has changed because of IMHA. The drugs she is on to fight the illness have made her heavier. Olkowski has spent thousands of dollars on Molly's stay in the animal hospital and her medicine. When it comes to IMHA, Molly isn't out of the woods yet. However, her family is happy to have her home.
Click on the video posted under "Related Content" to watch the first part of KRDO NewsChannel 13's Special Report.