In Michigan it is legal to give your dog all vaccines except rabies. I never give my dog any of her shots because I am afraid that I wouldn't do it right or that the serum would not be stored at the right temperature during shipping, I just don't feel at all qualified. I know some people do and they save a ton of money, it is just not right for me.
I am really shocked by that, here you have to get vaccinations and booster done at the vets, even kennel cough (which is just drops in the nose). There is no requirement to have your dog vaccinated, but as far as I know most people do.
The only one that is required is Rabies, the others are encouraged by vets but not required by law. You cannot get your dog a license in Michigan without a Rabies certificate. For the other shots, you may opt to take a blood test to see if they even need them. Some vets still stay always vaccinate while others are saying that there are risks involved in giving your dog vaccines that they don't really need every year. What I have read about it interests me and confuses me at the same time. lol
I have only given her the kennel cough one when she was going to kennels (because it was required). It goes into the nosteril but it makes her sneeze so I probably had as much protection from kennel cough as she did!
I'm in South Africa and here it's not the norm to get insurance. Don't know why, because it is not that expensive and more and more medical aids offer cover for your pets aswell. We just adopted a dog from the SPCA and we are definitely looking into getting medical aid for him.
Pet Doctors (UK) have a Healthy Pets Club that is supposed to save you some money - don't know how it works though. Also, although I think you would still have to give the cat or dog the rabies vaccination before going abroad, you won't have to pay for the serology test from next year, which should save about £50 or thereabouts. I used to have my cats insured with Sainsbury's and that included something toward the cost of advertising if they got lost! They usually have a discount for more than one. I think it would be very expensive to insure some dogs that are special breeds as they are prone to certain conditions that the insurance companies know they would certainly have to start paying out for at some point in that pet's life!