Ten things you never knew about your dog’s immune system
- The immune system is actually composed of two subsystems that work in tandem to provide protection against infection and disease: The Innate & Adaptive immune systems. The brain is the only organ that is not considered to be part of the immune system.
- The brain is the only organ that is not considered to be part of the immune system.
- Feet are the only part of the body that do not contain lymph nodes. Lymph nodes are small oval shaped organs that are found throughout the body and act as a filter to trap foreign particles.
- Allergies occur when the immune system reacts to otherwise harmless substances such as dust, pollen and food proteins.
- Red blood cell. The spleen is the largest lymphoid structure. It is where red blood cells are filtered and old blood cells are destroyed.
- White blood cell. Monocytes are a type of white blood cell that protect the body by ingesting harmful foreign particles, bacteria and dead or dying cells.
- The Adaptive immune system has the ability to "remember" past exposure to specific pathogens.
- The Innate immune system is composed of the skin, cells lining the respiratory and GI tract and certain white blood cells.
- Puppies require multiple boosters because they still have protection from maternal antibodies which interfere with the body's ability to recognize and react to the vaccine.
- Contrary to popular belief, it is often the proteins in the diet that dogs are allergic to (ie, chicken, pork, lamb). Corn and wheat allergies do occur but are less common.