Dog Owner Feedback From Cytopoint® Users

Ron Hines DVM PhD

 Back to Cytopoint article

Dog Owner Feedback From Apoquel® Users  

    Please let us know how Cytopoint® worked for your dog @:     

What is your dog’s name?
What breed is your dog?
Is your dog a male or a female ? Neutered or Intact?
How old is it ?
Where do you live (just the city)?
Your initials if you wish?
How long has your dog been receiving Cytopoint?
How often does she/he require a Cytopoint Injection?
Was it on Apoquel® before that ? Is it still?
If it had abnormal blood values on Apoquel, did they improve on Cytopoint ? If you stopped Apoquel, because of skin tumors, did they shrink?
More infections, less infections or the same # on Cytopoint vs Apoquel?
What improvements have you noticed in its skin?
Any changes or side effects other than improvement in the pet’s skin?
Anything else you want other readers to know?

As you read the letters below, remember that cause and effect are sometimes an illusion. When things occur, one shortly after the other, we call them cause and effect when we believe the first event caused the second event to happen. If we feel that the two incidents were not related, we call the second a mere coincidence. Cause and effect and mere coincidence can be very difficult for us humans to sort out. It is only when they occur repeatedly in pets receiving Cytopoint© that we can be relatively certain that we are not dealing with mere coincidence. RSH


October 19, 2020


My dog Axel is a mini schnauzer. He is 5 years old. He had the Cytopoint® injection 6 weeks ago and the vet thought he should have it again yesterday. He was not taking anything before that – except some Benadryl® once in a while. We are going through hell right now. Shortly after the shot, Axel became lethargic and began vomiting. He had horrible diarrhea. Axel keeps trying to defecate but there’s nothing left.  The vet keeps saying they are too full to see him. We just don’t know what to do for him. We live in a village in upstate New York.

P.A. Sent from Mail for Windows 10


October 2, 2020

My dog name is Penelope, pit bull mix and spayed.  She is 11 years old. She always had skin problems.  This past summer her scratching got worse. On her first visit she was prescribed Apoquel.  Unfortunately it didn’t help. Two weeks ago, Penelope got her first Cytopoint shot and the vet suspended the Apoquel, prescribed her antibiotics and prednisone.  Saw great improvement the first week. Now she is back to licking her paws and constantly scratching.  Her belly, chest and paws are red and bumpy. I also noticed dandruff. Not eating well and is somewhat lethargic. Not sure how to proceed at this point. 

J. G. , Maryland


September 21, 2020

Good Morning,

My dogs name is Payton Grace & she is a Yorkie Shih Tzu mix.  Payton is a 6 year old, neutered female. Payton has received 2 Cytopoint® injections since July of this year. The most recent being August 21st.  Last year during the spring & summer we gave her Apoquel® and that seemed to work with no apparent side effects. We were offered Cytopoint® this year & I thought that was great so we did not have to give her any more pills on a daily basis. Payton has other lower GI issues and was put on prescription canine hydrolyzed diet which she seemed to be reacting to very well. We have been giving her the dietary portion so she can drop a few pounds. We soon noticed she was gaining weight & my husband & I both blaming each other for giving her treats & table scraps & we were not. After reading all the feedback posts I was astonished to find so many answers to what was happening to my poor dog! Gaining weight – should not be as she is on a special diet. The smell – I could not figure out why she continued to smell like sweat even a day after she was groomed. Her ears stink – her ears have a weird odor to them  (no infections per the vet). Payton started humping her chiropractor & we were told she had a severe UTI infection along with bacteria. Dropping small amounts of poop balls – they just pop out of her butt like a gumball machine – a lot of times when she is very rested and stands up & shakes/ stretches. Drinking a lot more water. We will no longer let Payton take Apoquel® or get Cytopoint® injections after reading everyone’s posts. I thought I was imagining these things. Payton was always a happy go lucky dog & now her ears are always back and she just stares. I can’t wait for this Cytopoint® to wear off & I will look for other natural ways to help her with her itch.

Maureen O’. , Chicago Illinois


September 19, 2020

My German Shorthaired Pointer, Hector has been taking Cytopoint® for 4 years. He requires it monthly. Best treatment to hit the market. He was under care of a dermatologist for 2 years prior on CADI® [the old name for Cytopoint®]. However he does have a ton of masses & “warts”. I’ve been now seeing posts about effects that are scary & have some other questions. No infections since Cytopoint® for his skin. He’s had 1 ear and 2 anal gland infections since. His hair has grown back thicker and licking and itching is minimal & he gets to be a bird dog!  He let’s me know when he is due for injection & low & behold it is always at the 30-day mark. He was on Apoquel® prior. It lost its effectiveness- was still getting staph infections. No abnormal blood values on Apoquel®. Hector is currently having central vestibular issues [balance issues] (for 4 days) & blood work came back with his red blood cells being off the charts high. He had peripheral vestibular issues last year – this is different. Seeing a neurologist on Monday. Other concern is his nose is dry but always draining & has sores & mucous like boogers that he will sometimes sneeze out. Is this related to Cytopoint® or could it be a fungus like aspergillosis that then led to the central vestibular issue? I’m not ready to face the poor prognosis that’s been given. 

D. M-J., Colorado Springs, CO


August 25, 2020

My dog’s name is Daryl. He is an almost 5 yr old neutered Staffy/AmBulldog cross. When I first got him in 2017, he had no allergies, but as our first summer together progressed, he started having small welts and would lick his paws and scratch at his face. He was put on Apoquel® the first summer. Apoquel® began losing its effectiveness towards summer’s end. I [tried] a partially raw diet. That seemed to reduce his outbreaks. I kept him on Apoquel® for a month or two during summers, but it stopped working entirely and I didn’t want to keep it up anyway given the warnings about Apoquel’s long-term use. August a year ago the licking and scratching returned full force. So we tried the Cytopoint® shot. Nine days later he had an upset stomach, was vomiting and unable to keep food down. I fasted him for a day then fed him a bland diet for a few days, with varying degrees of success. [ ] I can’t say if it was related to the shot or not since it happened so far from the date of the shot, but I couldn’t pinpoint anything else that would have caused it and he’s not had [that] issue before. For the most part, aside from that, the Cytopoint® shot helped with his itching, though he seemed to have more ear funk after the shot. The one shot got him through the season. Before the shot, he was hovering in weight around 78 lbs. Since the shot, nothing has changed as far as his diet, but he hovers around 83 lbs. I have been cutting down his food and increasing his exercise, but the only way he lost 2.5 lbs was when we were walking more than 14 miles every weekend. When that was not sustainable due to the hot summer, he quickly gained it back. He honestly doesn’t eat that much. I still can’t get his weight down. His blood work was fine when I last had it checked in 2019. His allergies are getting bad again and I’m trying to treat it holistically with baths and wipes and such because even though everyone says weight gain is not a side effect, I feel like it messed up his system somehow. I saw a couple other people mention weight gain here so maybe I’m not completely off base. 

Dawn., Chicago, Illinois


July 28, 2020

Chloe, my spayed Beagle/Boston terrier mix is prone to vaginitis. She’s a licker, and particularly likes to lick down there. This year she’s had four vaginitis flare-ups. We’ve been to the vet every month since January. At one point we tried Apoquel® but I didn’t like how she reacted on it and discontinued after only two doses. On June 30 she received her 1st Cytopoint® injection. The injection lasted barely 3 weeks & she’s back to licking. We went to the vet just yesterday and the vet wants to do another injection. I asked, “Are there any adverse effects to the shot?” She replied, “No”. So far so good. So here we are with the Cytopoint® and I’m pretty sure I’m going to discontinue its use. Just not worth it. The other suggestion my vet offered is surgery to remove the fold of skin, which is acting as a hood over her vulva. She’s 11 and the thought of putting her through surgery just doesn’t seem worth it. So that’s my story.

Jen******, Maynard, Massachusetts


June 30, 2010

My dog Kaiser is a 15 year old Bedlington Terrier. He was in general good health for his age, except for some elevated liver enzymes. We put him on a good diet for that, and his lab work reflected improvement. Kaiser was doing well, except for some skin issues. He has some dogie warts and licks a spot bald on one of his front legs. I took him to the Vet, and they recommended Cytopoint®. When I asked about side effects, they told me there were absolutely no side effects because it was just an “antihistamine”. I now have learned, that is false. Kaiser did leave his front leg alone after the injection and the hair started growing back.  However, I noticed that gradually, over the period of a month, he became more and more lame in his back legs. His back legs are so weak now that he sometimes cannot hold himself up while eating. He is extremely lethargic and just looks like he feels miserable, ears droopy and eyes droopy, very very sad. I took him to the Vet for blood work.  He is VERY anemic!   When they gave him the injection a few months ago, they also did blood work and he was perfectly normal then. Now the doctor is telling me that he must have some kind of massive internal bleeding. I am trying to make an appointment for x rays, but in my heart I cannot help but wonder if it was the injection that led to the anemia. If I knew then what I know now, there is no way I would have given him the shot. 

Amy W., Dallas, Texas


June 13, 2020

My dog Coco is an 8-year-old ~10lb Chihuahua/Terrier mix. She suffers from a terrible itching problem. We hesitated treating her with drugs since she periodically has to take meds due to her contracting Toxoplasmosis/ Menengitis.  When we heard about Apoquel® we took her to our vet and were advised that she should be on Apoquel®, but should also receive the Cytopoint® shot every four weeks.  The combination worked very well for the first month.  Immediately after getting the second shot (about two weeks ago) her personality changed dramatically. She used to spend her days with her brother looking out the front window and barking at anything that walked or flew by.  Now she hides in the tiniest and darkest places in our house and will not come out when called. If we turn a light on in the room where she is hiding she runs to a different darker room. We aren’t sure, but it seems she has become extremely light sensitive. Her appetite has increased dramatically, although, I have to find her to feed her.  We stopped the Apoquel® about ten days ago. We are hoping that after the Cytopoint® wears off she will return to her normal self.  If she still continues to hide after another two weeks we will take her in for blood tests.  I pray that I have not doomed my little girl by choosing to have her injected with the Cytopoint®. After reading other’s stories and knowing what I now know, I would caution anyone considering the drug to try anything and everything else first.

J.G. San Antonio, TX


June 7, 2020

My 9-year-old boxer, Lexi, had terrible allergies. I had tried everything from sublingual allergy medicine to Apoquel® to steroids, the whole gamut. My vet suggested Cytopoint® and it worked! She got her shot every 4 weeks. I was thrilled that her paws no longer had painful red swollen ulcers. Then one day she didn’t seem her silly happy self. I waited another day and she became more lethargic and wouldn’t eat. I took her to the vet and found her white blood cell count was through the roof and her red blood cell count in the toilet. I was told that her immune system had turned on her. We were given medications. I can’t remember what they were, but it was difficult to give them to her because she refused to eat anything or drink anything. We took her to an emergency vet and was told that they could do a blood transfusion $3000, but there was a 30% chance it would do nothing and a 30% chance it might help for a couple of days but just postponed the problem and probably less than 30% chance that would be successful. 2 days later Lexi passed away. I have read very similar experiences from other people in various forums.  I know there was only one clinical trial done before getting approval. I’m curious what post-marketing surveillance is showing. Because it is being touted as being safe for any dog and I don’t believe that it is. These were Lexi’s original bloodwork results, when I first took her in. She declined rapidly (4 days).

D.A. , Watauga, Texas

Thank you for your email. Looking over Lexi’s blood work, I agree with your vet, Autoimmune hemolytic anemia is high on the list of possible causes, although an overwhelming infection cannot be ruled out. If that relates at all to Cytopoint® is something I do not know.


May 21, 2020

My pomchi, Rusty, was given a shot of Cytopoint® 4 days ago.  He’d been licking his paw so much it was maddening. I’d been giving him half a tablet of chlorpheniramine twice a day and it wasn’t helping much. I was excited when my vet said there was a shot I could get for him every 8 weeks that would take away his itch, with no side effects. Nothing happened that first day. The next day my dog was very lethargic and licking his paw only occasionally. The third day he was more alert and, unfortunately, licking more often. Today he is licking constantly…like he’d never been given the magic $47 shot. I have had a call in to my vet six hours ago to find out if it’s safe to put him back on the chlorpheniramine, but he’s not returned my call yet. Rusty is drinking water like a camel and that’s unusual for him.  
K. Y., Raleigh, NC , Sent from my iPad

Just an update.   Rusty stopped drinking so much water after two days. My vet’s assistant called me today,  to tell me I could could put Rusty back on the chlorpheniramine. He will, of course, get no more Cytopoint shots. Thank you for your kindness and interest.


May 10, 2020

My dog Grady is a 10 year old, neutered, Welch terrier. His allergies started around 7 years old.  At first it was just some itching and chewing. It’s grown into sores and self mutilation over the last 3 years. Our vet put him on Apoquel® when the allergies started. It worked at first but then stopped working. [Then] he starting getting “pussy” skin abscesses. I stopped [further injections]. I kept the allergies beaten back with diet, Benadryl and medicated baths. When he turned 10 he had a horrendous outbreak over his entire back. The vet gave him an antibacterial, an antifungal and his first Cytopoint® injection. It was a miracle – for about 2 months. The second shot lasted 5 weeks. He also developed some severe bruising in both groins a couple days [after the shot]. He developed severe, thick patchy areas over the old bruising in both groins over a 3-week period. Grady itched at it terribly. The vet said Grady needed another Cytopoint shot and gave him one. The shot didn’t help the groin itching at all. I had to beat it back with my old standbys. His itchy feet didn’t improve much with the third shot either. He did develop 1 big fatty nodule on his chest that bruised and several small ones on his legs that looked like plain fatty nodules. It’s been 5 weeks since his last shot. I’ve been a nurse for 30 years and Cytopoint is giving me a bad feeling. To many odd things have happened in the last 4 months to my dog. He did start eating like a horse after the first shot but I attributed this to feeling better. I had the vet check his thyroid soon after his first shot. It was elevated. The vet said it could be falsely elevated due to the infection. We checked it a month later along with a T3 and T4. Everything was back to normal. My dog has gained about 2 pounds over 4 months. I don’t foresee it going any higher. I am not going to rush to the vet to give him another Cytopoint shot unless his allergies are bad.


Lorie A., Missouri


April 17, 2020

My dog and best friend, Artie, started receiving Cytopoint injections several years ago. The second year after his first set of treatments, he began the injections again due to his atopic dermatitis. Within weeks after the first Cytopoint injection, I came home to find him standing in a dark bathroom, staring at the wall, drooling. He was diagnosed with sudden acquired retinal degeneration (SARDS) shortly thereafter. I went through severe depression watching him struggle with confusion as to why he completely lost his sight, literally overnight. He also started growing strange wart-like growths all over his body. Within four years since his initial treatment, he has had an aggressive fatty tumor removed from under his armpit, and has another that is slow growing, yet large, on his hindquarter. His entire body also has wart- like growths; approximately 35 of them.  One is on the very corner of his right eye, near where his tear duct is. I am furious that there is so little knowledge of SARDS, and if there is possibly a correlation between the devastating disease & Cytopoint Injections. Strangely, his Ophthalmologist says that his retinas are still intact, yet he is still completely blind. His Vet has seen the growths, and doesn’t seem concerned about them, but he scratches them and they bleed occasionally, and new ones seem to pop up every week or so.
Rebecca & Artie, Rhode Island     Sent from my iPhone

Dear Rebecca,
I am sorry to read about Artie’s struggles. Warts are often a sign that Cytopoint® has suppressed a dog’s natural defenses against the formation of these tumors. Most warts are viral-caused, and many dogs probably carry the dog papilloma virus just as we carry a lot of virus that don’t generally make us ill. Our immune systems keep them in check. But as for Artie’s sudden loss of vision, you are the first to write to me about that. It could be that his eye problems have nothing to do with the Cytopoint®. But Cytopoint is a monoclonal antibody (mAb) and eye problems have occurred with a number of those drugs given to people in the past.  Let me know if his vision improves now that he is not taking Cytopoint. Ron


March 28, 2020

[My dog’s name is Boo. He is a neutered male Lab/Shep/husky, almost 8 yrs old. He had been taking Cytopoint® injections every 5-6 months for the last 4 years. Cytopoint greatly improved his itching for the first 2 years]

Boo’s first vet suggested Cytopoint in 2016 for severe itching on his groin, tummy, and anus areas. We had tried allergy diets for years and nothing seemed to work! Cytopoint magically made it go away and we were thrilled! Spring forward to December 2019 when we gave him another Cytopoint shot. In January of 2020 we noticed Boo was limping, panting, and whining a lot, so we took him to the vet. They said it was a flu and arthritis and gave us meds. 1 week later we noticed a lump at the injection site of the Cytopoint. They did a test to see if it was a cancerous tumor (extracted cells) and said it looked clear and thought it was just fatty tissue. His lump got worse and his pain level was pretty high. In Late February, I went to a highly reviewed vet and they did x-rays and found that he had developed bone cancer in his hip near the injection site. He was put on meds to manage his pain but by March 7, after days of not eating and days of extreme pain with nights being the worst, I had my beloved Boo put down to end his suffering. The official diagnosis was listed as bone cancer but I feel in my heart that it was Cytopoint as it was at or near the injection site of his most recent Cytopoint shot. I feel his immunity was harmed over time and this last shot was a catalyst. I miss him terribly and I feel guilty for getting him the shots. 

SA in Kenai, Alaska     Sent from my iPhone

March 24, 2020

My 11 yr old Shih Tzu is a spayed female puppy mill survivor. Miley has the sweetest disposition and is so happy with her life outside a cage. I adopted Miley 3 yrs ago and tried everything to relieve her constant itching. After extensive research and a diagnosis of excessive epithelial cells from her vet, Miley had her 1st Cytopoint injection in December 2018. It was a miracle, her scratching stopped immediately. Miley continues to get an injection every 7-8 weeks with NO side affects. I continue to follow updates and stories. 



March 24, 2020


Our pit bull rescue [ ], Ryder, is a 6-year-old neutered male. As he aged, he started scratching a lot and we could see that his skin was irritated. We had him on Apoquel for maybe 2 years and in November 2019 we decided to get the Cytopoint shot. We didn’t feel like the Apoquel was working as well as we wanted. I believe we [could have] increased the dosage, but we decided to go w/ Cytopoint.

His first shot was in Nov. 2019, and it worked immediately! Come February 2020, he got his 2nd shot (8 weeks) and again, seemed fine. About a week after, we noticed he was having some soft stool (w/ a little red in it), some vomiting and stomach noises. His mood seemed fairly normal- maybe not 100% but 85%ish. He was also eating pretty normally.  I was ready to do the bland diet and as I walked passed him one day, he looked up at me and he had a red swollen right eye, and redness on the right side of his snout. We went to the ER vet immediately. They did bloodwork and it was normal. They gave him a Benadryl shot and suggested we continue it, along with an antibiotic for his tummy. The eye returned to normal within a day or two, but then he started getting bumps on his skin. He’s always had little surface ones, but now they were raised a bit. We visited our regular vet the next day and they suggested a steroid (prednisone) shot with an anti nausea medication. He was now on 4 medications (benadryl, antibiotic, steroid and anti nausea). After a few days of the bland diet and meds, he seemed a bit constipated, but eventually it returned to normal- consistency and regularity.  Move forward to March 17th when he gets his 3rd shot. About 5 to 6 days later, he starts getting softer stool and vomiting. By day 7, it looked like it did the previous time- thin and soft with some red/blood in it. He also had the stomach noises and seems lethargic.   So, noticing this patter has convinced us that it’s the Cytopoint shot. 

Sent from Mail for Windows 10


February 25, 2020

My vet told me Cytopoint® had no bad effects. So I tried it for my older 50 lb pit bull two weeks ago. She acted like she was dying after the Cytopoint injection. She just laid there and if I came up to her she looked at me very sadly. Her gums looked OK she just felt bad. Now she has this rash. Cytopoint seemed to help her allergies and itching but she became lethargic and seemed like she didn’t feel right. Tonight she has a rash that is red and scaly in one spot and bumps on her stomach area. I’ve given her quercetin and cortisone cream which has helped and its back to the vet. There is no way I will ever give this to her again. Her mild itching could have likely been controlled with the quercetin. Just because there are commercials about them to normalize them should not make anyone think they are safe. Then I took her to the ER and they ran blood work. [Her blood was very fatty] and the vet said she likely has pancreatitis. She did not have this two weeks earlier prior to the Cytopoint injection. The ER vet said she could not get liver values due to the fat and gave her hydroxyzine for the allergy with a follow up with my vet. The next day my vet gave her fluids and a shot for the pancreatitis which helped her greatly. She is pretty much back to her normal personality and on a low fat diet. They felt her allergy was a contact allergy. I’m not so sure. Im so glad I took her in that night. She just didn’t seem right. I think the injection was hard for her.   

Marji L.,   Georgia


February 8, 2020

My dog’s name: ​Gunner. Breed: Black Lab/Springer Spaniel. Sex: neutered male. Age: 7 yrs.
Gunner has been receiving Cytopoint since her July 2019 first shot.

The 1st Cytopoint® injection lasted 5 months. The 2nd shot Jan. 22, 2020 [did not produce] as quick of an improvement as first time when he pretty much stopped all itching the same day. It is Feb 6 and he’s still licking his feet, groin, biting nails at times every day but not constantly. He was on Apoquel before that . From what info we have he was on Apoquel for 2 years with “some” improvement. We adopted him from rescue July 1st 2019. He was not on any medications.  At the time he had severe allergies….. ears, licking, biting etc. bare spots, super oily smelly skin. Also air licking. Vet records said he also had severe anxiety.  He has had no infections since we’ve had him on Cytopoint. It seems Cytopoint is the better of the two [medications] so far. ​Bare spots on his skin have filled in, coat look healthy, bare spots filled in, it is shiny but the skin is dry and flaky maybe from all the bathing. We were bathing him daily at first……now 2x week. Holistic vet said use head/shoulders. We also use a mild pet oatmeal/almond shampoo (Pure Pet Pure Car​e Herbal Shampoo) each time after the H&S. Less anxiety but still air licking. The vet also said to change his diet to fresh human grade, use a homeopathic Histaminum Hydrochloricum for allergies 30C…dose, a few pellets daily dissolved in water. Also Querectin Bromelain with Stinging Nettle blend…half human dose. Aveeno spray (buy powder..mix up) If left sitting out  it starts to stink pretty quickly so refrigerate or only make up what you need. 

J.W., Northern Minnesota


January 24, 2020

Hi Ron, I would like to add/update my email of Nov 12, 2018. Mr. Muffy has been on Cytopoint® now for 14 months with absolutely no side effects and is a very very happy boy, going on 14 this year. Best thing ever. Thank you. R.K. & Muffy. Adelaide, Au


November 18, 2019

My bichon was very sick after her second dose of Cytopoint®, not herself for weeks.

D. M. ********
Sent from my iPad


October 20, 2019

Dear Mr. Hines

My beautiful 14 yr old lurcher, Archie, had one injection of Cytopoint® and within hours of having it, changed into a lethargic totally different dog.  He kept keeling over, his breathing was most peculiar, he went off his food and a week after I had him put to sleep. Months before I had changed Archie’s food having found just one kind that stopped him being itchy.   I felt he was getting bored of it – leaving some of it when I had added the other things that he could eat like rice with gravy or such like.  So I tried different hypoallergenic dog foods – and he started scratching again – not horrendously, but I thought I ought to give him something that would ease him while I waited for his old food to be delivered.  How I so regret that.  The vet gave me only one alternative to Cytopoint – as expensive too.  I have heard since that there are plenty of other as effective and cheaper drugs was in June this year – 2019. The vets were keen to do all sorts of tests and also discouraged me from looking on the internet. Having read about other dogs who had received this injection, I discovered all Archie’s symptoms were similar to the others. They all had bad endings – some after numerous, and months of tests.   He was suffering, though at times briefly, he would be back to a bit more normality.   I wondered whether his lack of eating was because it was dry.  He took some in his mouth and then just let it drop out.   I could not bear to see him like this and knew that he hated going to the vets.   Having seen that there was not a single dog who had had an adverse effect to Cytopoint, who came through it I decided I did not want him to suffer any longer.   I’m afraid I couldn’t take it seeing his beautiful eyes looking at me saying   –   “What is happening?”  “I know you can help me”.  He trusted me and yet I let him have that injection. 

I so miss him and feel so guilty.

Yours sincerely,

A., Devon, England


October 10, 2019

My Scottie dog, Molly is 14. When I got Molly in 2018 she had almost no fur left. I immediately got some chlorhexidine shampoo and ear cleaner, bathed her 3 times for the 9 hour car ride home. Her skin was still pink all over, and the smell was horrid. We drove straight to my vet. Molly was kept to do blood work, groom, administer antibiotics, etc..Her blood  work values were all normal. The vet gave her an antibiotic injection and sent her home with antibiotics & Apoquel®. Molly has struggled with bad ears and itchy skin, but kept under control with Apoquel® and weekly baths in Duoxo™ (green bottle).
Another vet recommended the Cytopoint® injection last September. Molly seemed to get relief the first several days. Thereafter, her skin has become worse than ever. Eruptions emerged, ears became infected and she smells horrible. All this despite increasing bath frequency,  ear cleaning and checking for any sign of fleas, sanitizing all bedding. It’s like her immune system has gone into overdrive against itself. The vet dismissed my report and concern. I was hopeful, because given Molly’s age & the efficacy with the Cytopoint®. However, this is miserable! we’ve lost so much ground in one month it’s astounding. I was wondering if anyone else has experienced their pet having any problems of this sort?
Thank you for your time,

H.D. New Orleans, LA 


September 26, 2019

My Lucy was (sadly) a 13.5 yo spayed Westie.  I am H.O. and we live in Los Angeles.  She, like many Westies, she had a long time struggle with itchy skin.  We managed it with various treatments – Apoquel worked some of the time but she was most comfortable on Prednisone.   Because of the damaging side effects of Prednisone, we were always ‘trying to get her off it. One week ago (Wed 9/18) she had her yearly comprehensive exam… bloodwork looked great.  Her kidney numbers hadn’t changed much since her last reading (either 6 mo or 1 yr ago) and we were hopeful a Cytopoint would finally do the trick.  She got the injection – One day and a half later she had no appetite and was lethargic – this was very unusual for her. She spent the day at the vet under observation, they concluded she was withdrawing from the Prednisone (5mg/day) and they gave her 1/2 a dose.   The next 2 days, more of the same… no appetite and lethargy.  I gave her another 1/2 dose of the Prednisone to help wean her.  Sunday 9/22, she spent most of the day at the vets office…  with 3 injections and many fluids, the vet was hopeful she’d perk up that evening –  NO such luck. Monday 9/23 she was ‘gone’, practically catatonic.  We had a traveling vet come to our house an euthanize her.  I’m confused, my girl was fine until she received the Cytopoint shot, I understand that there are no side effects but death is the ultimate and worst side effect of all.

O. Household ,  *******  Sent from my iPad : )

Los Angeles, CA 


September 17, 2019

Our dog’s name is Marigold, She is a spayed female

American Staffordshire Terrier (Pit) approximately 5 years old. Marigold was a stray. She was emaciated, had demodectic mange, worms, skin infections, lacerations in her paws and chain wounds around her neck. She has a slightly prolapsed birth canal, which we believe explains the 3 c-section incisions in her belly. Since we have had her (9 months), she has had 3 skin infections that always seem to be preceded by an allergic response. Her diet is limited to raw rabbit and whitefish/cod due to food allergies to more common proteins. The minute she is left alone she will tear into herself until stopped. Sometimes a bloody mess.  Marigold received her 1st Cytopoint injection 5 days ago. 40% relief within 2 hours. 80% relief within 24 hours. 95% relief within 3 days. Completely different dog than the one we adopted. Sleeps more soundly, plays more often, personality on display. My hope is that relief will allow immune system to heal by reducing constant level of cortisol/stress that may be inhibiting proper expression of immune system. No negative side effects to date.

CBL, Haddon Heights, N.J.


September 13, 2019

Hi –  I have a rescue Chihuahua who we think is about 12 years old.  She has had many issues with allergies, i.e., itching scratching, coughing, etc. She has also been diagnosed with chronic bronchitis for chronic coughing and is currently on a regime of hydrocodone.  She was at one time on Theophylline and also Cerena®, but they both stopped working for her bouts of chronic coughing.  She gets Cytopoint® injections for itching about every 4-5 weeks over the last year.  The last two injections I have noticed that she seems to start cough more after getting the Cytopoint® injection. Hydrocodone is working pretty well to keep her chronic cough at bay but after the injection, she coughs and has now started wheezing. [ ] Two days ago she got a Cytopoint® injection, [ ] started wheezing and has been wheezing pretty bad the last two days and last night I noticed her ear had crust on it, almost as if it had a coating of sticky hairspray or something on it and I could barely touch it.  [ ] vet this morning gave her a shot of steroids and [ ] script for antibiotics.  He said it looks like a hot spot and possibly something bit her.  He said the inner ear looks okay, just the outside of the ear. I asked if it could be related to the Cytopoint® injection and he didn’t think so because of her having had injections for over a year now. [ ] Just has me wondering if the Cytopoint® is now causing adverse reactions in her after all this time.  I do not think I am going to get her any more Cytopoint injections [ ] Thank you. 

S. M.,  Severn, MD


September 12, 2019
I have a rescue Belgian Malinois now 4 years old.  Besides the normal itching, she did come down with severe itching October, 2018. Vet prescribed Apoquel which worked almost immediately. Then I read about the adverse long-time effects it can have on canines. Had her on it for maybe a total of 2 months. On March 13, 2019 she received her first Cytopoint shot. It also stopped the itching almost immediately. Added the Now brand Allergy Pill (Quercetin with Bromelain – 4 pills a day) and we did well for 5 months.  But her itching flared up again in mid-August, 2019. Had another dose of Cytopoint administered on August 21, 2019.  I live in Tucson, AZ and the Vet indicated that allergy season was again in full swing. Hope we can survive another almost half a year on this last dose.

U.K [email protected]


Aug 15, 2019


Piper is a 2-year-old spayed female cockapoo.  She has had some itching this time of year for two summers.  This year her itching was terrible, and I brought her to the vet after trying some home remedies.  She had the Cytopoint shot on Tuesday.  That night she slept better and wasn’t itching.  Wednesday she ate and was her regular self overall.  Today is Thursday and she has some itching.  I used the spray gel they prescribed today a bit.  Tonight she still has not eaten her food I put out at 12:00 noon.  She eats it by 8:00 pm usually.  We went for a long walk, and she seemed fine (returned at 7:00).  It is now 11:00 and she just vomited blood without eating anything today.  (She does eat grass and weeds in the yard on occasion).   

M.B. , Mountain Iron, MN


June 3, 2019

We adopted a rescue, [chihuahua] from the Humane Society. Champ Bailey was just 1.3 pounds and about 6 weeks when we got him just before Thanksgiving. They told my daughter not to name him because he probably wouldn’t make it. He had worms, of course, and coccidia but she kept him alive by holding him on her chest with a heating pad and spoon-feeding him chicken baby food. [ ]. The vet noticed a little raw skin on his “elbows.” We began moving him first to fresh pet then homemade chicken & rice. The chewing, itching and raw skin got worse. A skin scrape determined no mites but bacteria and he was started on antibiotics, special shampoo baths, Apoquel & prescription food trials. The itching has calmed a little but the food trials were a disaster. He is now a 6.6 pound mostly Chihuahua but possibly some mix, otherwise healthy guy. [ ]He won’t eat the prescription food and ends up going into hypoglycemic shock. The vet wants us try to Cytopoint but I’m nervous because of our experience with Bella [our previous chihuahua who died subsequent to a Cytopoint injection]. At the same time if we can’t control the itchy skin he will develop other problems. After reading I’ve learned Apoquel is only supposed to be for dogs that are 12+ months so I’m concerned that we shouldn’t be giving him that. Is the Cytopoint worth a try when we aren’t even sure the cause of his itching?

T.J.M. ,  Sent from my iPhone
Has Champ been test-treated for sarcoptic mange, is anyone else in the household itching, has a single flea been found, has a good skin staph antibiotic been used? RSH


May 26, 2019

My dog has IBD (6 year old golden doodle, diagnosed at 4 years old). I gave her Cytopoint to treat black leathery itchy skin on her inner back thighs, and had great results – her skin issue cleared and she was very happy and energetic. Her IBD was non existant – it was a magical ten weeks. Our first injection was good for 5 weeks, the second one also. The third injection did not work – her body stopped responding – her IBD returned (diarrhea) as well as the itchy black skin. 

H. M. , Sent from my iPhone


March 23, 2019

Hi Ron,

My pet is 7 years old mini-schnauzer bitch, called Daisy. She is with me since 3 years. She came almost bald, after being recovered from demodectic mange and mycosis (probably Malassezia). [Daisy is also atopic]] After a quite bad itching last year (actually the whole year) we tried Apoquel first. It helped, but not 100%. And my vet was in doubts about longer application because of potential long-term side effects. We started with Cytopoint on 19th December 2018. Itching disappeared after [a few] hours. It was big deal, because [it was the first time] I was able to heal the destroyed skin parts (all over the dog). No more itching, no extra infections. The first dose lasted about 8 before some itching could be observed. Not so bad as before the injection but we decided to not wait longer and on 19th of February this year she got the next injection, so it’s now 32 days. No itching so far. There are still some skin problems, but they can be held under control using appropriate shampoos, Octenisept. After the first injection Staph infections were more frequent but it is still easier to control than it was before Cytopoint.
I can hardly imagine living now without Cytopoint.  [Her] comfort (for Daisy and for me) is incomparably better than before. I have still also some Apoquel (just in case), but have not used since we started Cytopoint.
Best regards

W. J., Rzeczyca, Poland

March 28, 2019 Update on Daisy:

Not many new facts but some rethinking by me and my vet. A few weeks ago Daisy had an external ear inflammation. It looked quite bad but with Octenisept, Sollux and Recicort we came quite fast through this. One week [has gone b now] and we now [have it in] the other ear. Just treating it with Posatex – looks like it [will] heal [just as] fast .Just recalled some weeks ago she had her first an eye conjunctiva inflammation. It [ ] recovered with Vigamox, then the same in the other eye. Before Cytopoint, we had general skin problems, partially [or] on the whole body, but no inflammations like above. Shortly before [beginning] Cytopoint, Daisy had a disaster of the skin of her underbelly including her anus and the surface surrounding it. The difference: before the Cytopoint – the affected skin surface was almost the whole dog. [ ] Now local infections are more frequent, but are easier to heal, because [there is] no itching involved. My vet thinks it may be a kind of side effect. If it continues like that, I would have no doubt [that that is true]. We will stay with Cytopoint as long nothing worse develops. Best, W. J.


February 10, 2019

My dog Wilkie is a neutered, 6 year-old Pug/Shih Tzu mix who was very healthy, aside from many allergies that affect his skin. We live in Lockport, NY. Our vet suggested [a Cytopoint] injection. First he was just lethargic; within a few weeks, he was ravenously hungry/thirsty ALL the time. Gained a LOT of weight.  [ ] I took him to the vet to explore these symptoms. He was diagnosed with hypothyroidism and placed on Thyro-tabs .03 mg, BID. A few weeks later, I noticed he wasn’t tracking treats, and seemed reluctant to go on walks, and would walk behind me when he would go. Back to the vet, vision exam, sent to veterinary ophthalmologist…diagnosed with probable SARDS (sudden acute retinal degeneration syndrome). He is now almost totally blind, and on steroids and antibiotics. I am terrified to find out if this is just the beginning and other symptoms will occur. He had ONE Cytopoint injection. I feel responsible for his condition. We are devastated.

J. S., Lockport, New York


January 12, 2019

Dr. Hines,

I would like to tell you our story about our 10-year-old puggle who has been suffering from allergies. [ ] The last vet [  ] placed her on Apoquel.  Within a few weeks she developed a severe bladder infection [  ] Our new vet suggested we put her on cyclosporine. It helped her ear infections but unfortunately it began causing severe bladder infections as the Apoquel did. Our vet then spoke to a friend of his who was a dermatologist who highly suggested Cytopoint. She had her first injection in May of 2018. She received another injection in June of 2018 and again in July of 2018.  At the beginning of August I noticed that it appeared that she seemed to be losing weight. When we brought her in on August 24, 2018 for another injection she had lost 10 lbs. [  ] our vet [  ] ordered a complete SuperChem, CBC.  To our shock, she had a glucose of 597!!!  Full blown diabetes which now she has to receive two insulin injections a day and the diabetes has yet been stabilized.  Two days after Christmas, she went blind from the cataracts.  [ ] All of us have pretty much agreed that we all felt that the Cytopoint injections have been the cause of the diabetes since all her blood work was completely normal until the Cytopoint injections began. 
Perhaps you will not agree with all of this and feel that the Cytopoint drug is safe.  [ ]
Thank you.

A. K.


November 1, 2018

My boy had his first Cytopoint injection 3 weeks ago, and it was like a tiny miracle!   I had used Apoquel for a short time, but the side effects were such that I stopped it.  
I will admit I was very fearful of Cytopoint [ ] Once the Australian summer started, I knew it was more important for him to have a good life right now..  not later.  He still has a little toe nibble now and then, but that is getting less as well.  I put socks on his front feet at night and then he doesn’t bother with his feet.  The fact that it [ ] only targets IL-31 helped me make the decision, but I am still aware that he may develop ADAs, and there may be other issues, such as it may stop working.  For now, I will take whatever I can and this has [positively] changed his life and ours.  His hair is now growing back on his belly and he is so happy and energetic most of the time.  Sometimes he seems a little lethargic, but that could be the summer heat, the antihistamine, or just that he is ageing.  He still has lot of zest for a 12 year old. I thought it was worth trying an antihistamine.  I chose Zyrtec to start with, and with a teeny dose of this, his eyes have stopped watering.  We are lucky his is one of the 20% or so of dogs that respond to antihistamine.  Thank you so much for your incredible information on Cytopoint.  I would not have made the decision to go with it, had I not come to your page.

Kind Regards, R.K. & Muffy , Adelaide, Australia


September 29, 2018

Oscar is my 7-year-old American Bulldog/bull mastiff mix. He is 108 lbs and has suffered from itching and skin infections for years. He’s been on Cytopoint for almost two years. No diagnostic blood work was done previously. I just adopted him 5 weeks ago and had a geriatric profile and urinalysis done. Here are his results: Here are the abnormal values: Total protein 8.3 High, Globulin 5.4 High, ALB/Glob Ratio 0.5 low, ALT 17 Low, MCH 21.8 Low.

C.P. , Sent from my iPhone


September 12, 2018

Cytopoint has completely changed my wire haired visla’s life. He is a 5-year old neutered male. Within 24 hours of first injection his constant scratching and licking had reduced by 80%. Within 4 days, itching and scratching was gone altogether. The infections and hotspots on his skin healed. They had all been caused by his constant scratching. Red has been on Cytopoint now for 6 months. The summer months in the last few years have been awful for him. He preferred to stay in the house than venture outside and at times looked quite depressed. He has sailed through the summer constantly playing outside intense itching a thing of the past. Apoquel, which he had been on for 3 years, never stopped the constant scratching and gave him little relief. This is a dog that has 48 allergies and would visit the dermatologist every month he had creams lotions tablets washes and Apoquel and I felt we were fighting a loosing battle. Now he gets 1 injection a month with no side effects. His hair has grown back. The only thing he still gets is ear infections. My vet plucks as much hair from them as possible, but his whole ear canal is a mass of hairs. I wouldn’t use anything but Cytopoint now.


July 26, 2018

Every summer my dog gets a shot of Cytopoint because she is allergic to flea saliva.  Every year it worked like a miracle and will last 2-3 months.  Perfect for summer. This year, it did not work at all. The vet is baffled as to its ineffectiveness. (She said she will call me tomorrow with her thoughts). She wanted to give her steroids and other injections. I am a little hesitant.  We can simply avoid the dog park and such areas to keep her comfortable through summer. I wonder if she has grown immunity to Cytopoint although the vet will call me tomorrow with her thoughts.



July 16, 2018

I have a 7-year-old male neutered  Bernese Mountain Dog/Lab cross. He has had skin issues since he was 3. Worst in hot weather. Over the years we have tried a number of treatments for skin infections and itching, including elimination diets, raw food, fish oil supplements, hypoallergenic food, antibiotics, topical creams, medicated shampoos etc. He has had very few steroid based treatments, but a couple of topical creams, ear drops, one short course of pills very early on when his allergies were thought to be a temporary reaction to fleas. He is also hypothyroid and takes meds for that.
He had been on Apoquel for well over a year, and it was working reasonably well, but he seemed to need a higher and higher dose for relief, and would start itching immediately if I tried to lower the dose. As he is over 110lbs at his lowest weight, it was also very expensive.  I read about Cytopoint. My vet said it was worth a try since it was supposed to have fewer side effects. This is also very expensive for us, as he needs 3 vials. He had finished his Apoquel the day before he had the shot. The day after the shot he started drooling, panting, and his skin became very itchy, wet and stinky. His eyes and face puffed up and were itchy and swollen. He was lethargic and would eat – only if hand fed his raw food. He was quite thirsty all the time. The vet put him on antibiotics. My vet is concerned about the Cytopoint ‘s effect on his immune system. We are at the point of considering steroid treatment as a last resort, but will give this a few days to see if he improves. I wonder if the Cytopoint is suppressing his immune system, and slowing down his reaction to the antibiotics.

Thank you.
R.S. , West coast of Canada


May 25, 2018

My Bingo just turned 11. Started suffering with hot spots summer 3 years ago. Had weepy, icky eyes and yeast infected ears for many past years. Stayed on steroids and topical and antibiotics with brief, if any, relief. Got first cytopoint injection end of February, 2018, and today, May 25, received second shot with grooming. It’s been an actual miracle. He stays outdoors with me all day (we made him stay in past two summers for his own comfort, but he is my constant companion and was sad), hasn’t had the slightest itch, NO runny/irritated eyes or ears. Amazing. Although he hadn’t become symptomatic at all, after making sure Vet felt it was safe, we went ahead and re medicated today, full three months after first treatment. I’ve recommended it. Has made a huge, wonderful difference in mine and Bingo’s lives. Really all of our family. Grand kids have played with him since their births.

Thanks. T. M., Central Louisiana.
Sent from my iPhone


May 24, 2018

My 7 yr old Border Collie, Taite, raw fed from 8 weeks to current, suddenly started itching like mad last spring.  She was scratching her elbow area raw and parts of her stomach as well.  I have never had a dog with allergies. Discussed allergy shots with the vet and she got 1 shot of Cytopoint last year. Vet said there have been no side effects to date.  Was sent home with the pamphlet to chart when she stopped itching.  She stopped itching COMPLETELY the very next day. She has not needed another shot at this time, and has not started itching at all yet this year.
I recommended it for a friends dog that was beside itself itching, it took a few days more for that dog to stop, but it finally did too.

Br. M. and The Not So Itchy Taite


March 18, 2018

Here are my Portuguese Water Dog’s experiences with Cytopoint:   
[He is] a large Portuguese Water Dog with a normal weight at 63-66 pounds. [He is] 8 years old. [He has] a history of all-over itchiness to the point that he scratches until his hair comes out. Only itchy from September-May.  He had Cytopoint shots on 3/17, 9/17 and 12/17.  Excellent results – measured by not seeing dog hair all over the house and minimal scratching. The shot seems to last quite some time as indicated above. He still gets a rash on his stomach that needs to be treated with antibiotics. He has gained 8-10 pounds since starting Cytopoint. Currently weighs 76 pounds. His thyroid check revealed normal results. My dog eats a very precisely measured and monitored diet.  We have even reduced the amount of his food with continued weight gain. We can find no reason for his weight gain, except the Cytopoint.  I did note that you have [other] reports of this on your site.  My Vet is contacting his Cytopoint rep to discuss this and hopefully, we may gain some insight.  L. M.
Dear Ms. M.,
Thank you for your email. You are quite blessed that one shot lasts so long ! I hope it continues to do so and I would appreciate you letting me know how he does as time goes by. Regarding his weight gain. I would like to keep up with that too. If he is getting no more calories or less exercise since beginning Cytopoint,  I am unsure how the two could be related. However it is perhaps conceivable. There is a lot of messenger compound “crosstalk” in the body. They “chat” and one often influences the behavior of others.  The messenger compound that Cytopoint targets, Interleukin-31 (IL-31), shares a receptor (docking station) for another compound, Oncostatin M (OSM). OSM can affect weight gain. (ref) Perhaps, in some as yet unknown and complex way, there is a connection. I hope others write to me regarding similar weight changes in their pets.


February 18, 2018

I have a 12-year-old ShihTzu/Maltese. My dog just had his 2nd Cytopoint shot. The first one didn’t do much. I’m from the Netherlands. This afternoon I found out that the [suggested Cytopoint] dosage in the U.S. is higher than the dosage in the Netherlands. In the U.S. it’s 2mg per kg. body weight. In the Netherlands it’s 1 mg. per kg. body weight. I find that rather strange, and that would explain why it’s not working very well for my dog. And the costs are way higher here. I’m a bit confused now, should I ask for a higher dosage? And would that be safe.
Thank you.
J.V.S.  The Netherlands
Dear J.V.S. You are correct about that. The European Medical Agency approved their Cytopoint label as recommending a minimum dose of 1 mg/kg body weight while the US FDA approved their minimum dose at 2mg/kg body weight. I believe that that is no more than a clash of bureaucracies. The EMA is considerably more conservative and demanding in their requests for pre-marketing study data than our FDA. If, in one of those studies, they found Cytopoint effective at 1mg/kg, the conservative thing would be to set that as the minimum dose. The EMA does not say that the dose can not be higher.


February 1, 2018

I have a 5 year old boxer who received a second Cytopoint injection yesterday.  (First injection was approximately 6 weeks ago). His reaction immediately was agitation and restlessness. Over 12 hours after injection, he developed vomiting. He ate this AM and seems more “normal” however more needy. Previous to starting Cytopoint, he was taking Apoquel, Zyrtec and 50mg Benadryl daily and did not have as much relief as with Cytopoint. My question is whether the side effects should be considered unsafe for him to continue.
Thank you,
D.M. Omaha, NB

Dear Ms. M.,
That is a very hard question to answer and I am not allowed to comment on individual dogs. Cytopoint focuses on the immune system. The sort of side effects I would expect -if they occurred -would be some type of negative effect on immune cells, not the effects you describe. However, almost all veterinary injectables have contents in their formula in addition to the active ingredient. Many dogs are fearful at veterinary hospitals. That can just be an underlying element in their individual personalities or things like commotion at the facility, scents of another fearful dog (even after its left) or a less than amicable relationship between a veterinarian or technician administering the product. Probably more important, dogs closely key off of their owner’s fears and mood. Dogs are exquisitely sensitive to that. So if you were apprehensive, your pet would be too. You cannot hide your emotions from your dog.

Why not call Zoetis Customer Service line and present your concerns to them. Let me know their take on this. Scroll down to items 20-22 on the Zoetis information sheet  I have attached. It may have been revised since I downloaded it.
Best wishes, RSH


January 19, 2018

I gave my dog, Gidget, her first Cytopoint Injection in October 2017. On December 18th, 2017, my 3-year-old miniature schnauzer [was diagnosed with [ ] full blown acute lymphosarcoma. [She] is not going to make it. [ ] She had a check up by the vet the day she received her 1st Cytopoint injection in October and had no swollen lymph nodes then. [ ] She was a perfectly healthy three year old dog. She was spayed at 6 months of age, has received the necessary immunizations, along with her annual boosters needed and rabies every three years. She has been on a grain free diet. She lives in a clean environment, frequents community common areas for walks and bathroom use, no pesticides used in the home or exterior of the home, just an overall happy go lucky girl I love so much. She is a spoiled dog who lives indoors but is exercised daily and in the evenings. She had a physical exam by the vet in October. I had mentioned the bottoms of her feet were quite red and she had started licking them. He at first recommended Apoquel, which I declined after asking some questions. He then recommended  Cytopoint and stated no issues, completely safe, many of his patients doing well on it. In December, 2017 my son found a lump under her jaw. He took her in for me while I was out of town and the veterinarian found all lymph nodes were swollen after which they did a biopsy. That day they also gave her another Cytopoint injection because her licking thing had started again. I have attached the Antech pathology report. The vets stated her blood tests were normal. I have started her on CBD (cannabidiol) oil. She is still eating, drinking and still playful at times but the vets do not believe she will survive. (Gidget passed away on 1/22/18)

E.B.,  Dana Point,  California


November 20, 2017
Our vet convinced [us] to switch from Apoquel to Cytopoint due to [its] reduced side effects. [Buster is an English bulldog] We [found] that Apoquel wasn’t as effective over an extended period of time [as it had been] and we were hesitant to increase the dosage, as with any medication, our dog’s health comes first. We discussed the list of benefits as well as side effects – gastrointestinal upset i.e. stomach or diarrhoea. Things have been going well on the Cytopoint  [two injections, a month apart so far] until a few weeks ago when our dog started developing Gastro upset in the mornings. As a young dog he had some G.I. issues and we were prescribed famotidine to deal with acid problems. However those problems subsided and we discontinued the famotidine. For years he has been fine. He is now 9 ½. [] I belong to many Facebook bulldog related groups, and started seeing more people commenting on their bulldogs having gastrointestinal upsets as a result of Cytopoint. We went for his booster injection yesterday and upon reading this in a forum last nigh a light bulb went on that possibly his Gastro upsets were a result of the Cytopoint and not necessarily a result of a previous medical issue from years ago. I was looking into more info when I came across your page and felt compelled to let you know our experience.

G.C.   Delta, BC Canada


October 25, 2017

My dog Grey is an 8-year-old neutered puggle. She was diagnosed with severe atopic dermatitis [skin allergies] when she was 9 month old. Her management over the years included weekly injections of allergy serum and corticosteroid tablets that were required almost every day. In 2014, the steroids were replaced with 16mg of Apoquel once a day. By 2015, the dose of Apoquel had to be doubled to twice a day. In June of 2017, our vet discontinued Apoquel and began Cytopoint  (9mg I believe) every 4 weeks. She remains itch-free for about 2-3 weeks after each injection and has had to resume taking Apoquel for the remainder of the month.
[On Cytopoint, I notice more skin infections versus Apoquel and they are more severe. In September, she developed a severe lower urinary tract infection (UTI). In October, she still had protein in her urine but the number of WBCs in her urine has decreased.]
Don’t know if we will continue the monthly Cytopoint injections now that [almost] daily use of Apoquel is also required.

JMJ, Arlington, VA


August 6, 2017

Hello Dr. Hines,
I have a 9 year old GSD, Dunbar, who has been itchy his whole life and for the last several years he has lived in a hood, since it steadily has increased. He is on Royal Canin Ultamino since he also seem to be an IBD dog although he’s never been scoped. I was hoping the diet would also help the itching but it did not have any effect at all. We used Apoquel briefly but it really didn’t make more than a slight difference and I was worried about the potential side effects. I have used Omegas, baths, everything I could find that might help. (short of cortisone). He had the Cytopoint injection about 2 weeks ago, and although it took him a full 48 hours to start seeing a difference, he is markedly better now. I actually left him home 2 days without his hood and without supervision. He did not create havoc anywhere on his body or paws! He still bites some but is very interruptible, whereas before he would not stop- frantically biting feet, flanks,back, belly etc. I realize this is still early but this is the best he has been in years. I can only hope it continues and remains effective with future injections. No side effects so far. Just wanted to let you know since. I do believe he has gained some weight since the start of the Cytopoint, probably about 4lbs at the most.. as I noticed his weight gain I have cut his food back a bit and he has taken about a pound off. He is now at 84.7lbs. I would like to get him back to 83lbs or so. I have not noticed a marked personality change, other than he is probably more playful at times- hard to be playful in an Elizabethan collar, and feeling itchy all the time! We have now had 4 injections, one was 4 weeks after the first, the next was out to 8-9 weeks due to some scheduling errors.. and we just got another on last Monday. The one we went too long on didn’t seem quite as effective, so I was worried that the effect was diminishing. So far the one he just got last Monday at the 4 week mark seems to be better. This last month he also popped up with some dry scabby circular lesions unlike I have seen before, under his armpit and in his groin, and he has been licking his anus more again. Topical treatment has resolved that and he has been better since Monday’s injection. We live in CT and the grass allergy levels have been up lately perhaps causing that. I am watching too, to see if the injections become less effective in time! As an aside, we have found that the vet needs to inject his allotted amount split into 2 places, or he finds it very painful..splitting it into 2 seems to have resolved that. Even when he gets more itchy and starts on his paws, or flanks, or scratching on the Cytopoint he is interruptible whereas before, you literally had to move his head to get him to stop biting. There have been a occasional times since his injections, where he has irritated his paws by licking, and so I use NeoPredef/Tetracaine after cleaning the area, and then put his e-collar on to keep him away from it for several hours. Previously he would get his paws or flank raw all the time if he did not have his e-collar on. He literally lived in his e-collar prior to this.. I am also bathing him (only monthly, not as often as I would like) with DermAllay shampoo with ceramides, which seems to help a bit..
As far as seasonal, he has been itchy on some level most of the time.. from puppyhood, and it has simply increased with age. He actually at times is worse in winter, in spite of a humidifier and trying all sorts of humectants or baths for his skin..we have air conditioning with an air filter, and during summer, if he’s not outside a whole lot and is inside with the AC he seems better. A boring life though..So far I’d say I’m really pleased with his response.. it is the first thing that has had a beneficial effect on his itching, ever! Obviously it doesn’t stop the allergic reactions, which he still has but at least his itching is suppressed to the point he doesn’t make a complete mess of himself !
J.P., Connecticut


August 4, 2017

Hi Ron!
Sonia began receiving Cytopoint instead of Apoquel. Her general itching overall subsided but she is still rubbing her chin on the stairs( did that on Apoquel too) – not obsessively, occasionally, less than before but over-all it subsided. A couple of growths disappeared, one between her eyes. Other growths seem to have diminish in size. Her lymphocyte count came down to normal but her white blood cell count went up to 24,000. She developed a cough and her nasal keratonosis got worse. Her left eye appeared inflamed. My Vet put her on Baytril for 10 days which cleared up the nose and eye. Cough is still there, slightly better, I’m giving her teaspoons of raw honey to try to sooth the cough. Her activity level got better and higher, she is at least 12 maybe 13 years old and though she’s still a chow hound I believe not as bad as before. Her mood seems better and more alert. Before she acted like she was always starving, now its just regular am/pm meals and some treats. Her weight remained the same on her first and second injection of Cytopoint. I would say Cytopoint is just as good at controlling the itch. The first injection I managed to extend her to seven weeks giving her Claritin® one day I felt her itching was rising. We are into the third week of her second injection. Yes I still give other medications.
Sonia had one spot on her chest before we switched from Apoquel to Cytopoint that I was concerned about, that spot spread to different areas of the chest and to her back. It starts out like chicken pox, erupts and develops itchy crusts and spread. If I don’t touch them, she doesn’t itch. If you touch the eruptions, she is itchy. I have bathed her about every week in a shampoo that my previous Derm Vet invented which has Sodium hypochlorite in it which she says is basically bleach besides some cerinamides and vitamin E. I scrub the crusty itchy spots and let the shampoo soak for 5-10 minutes. The back appears clear now but the chest is still erupting and she still has a cough which concerns me. She is allergic to staph and this looks like that. The last time she had a staph infection that did not clear up she had to be on Doxycycline and Niacinamide for 30 days. She was on Staph Lysate injections for the last four years every two weeks than three than four. She has had staph infections even on the Staph Lysate before. I think she will always need more than just Cytopoint, like medicated baths and ear cleaning unless she lives in a bubble. Does she mind the injections? No. Right now she just gets the Cytopoint and medicated baths, ear cleaning and Zymox. I may have to restart staph lysate and she may need antibiotics again for the staph unless her immune system and the baths can kick this soon. I just switched her from Frontline to Nexgard, and she is on Heartgard. We’ve tried fish oil on and off, but she gets an upset stomach on it.
Let me close by saying I love Sonia and yet if anyone offered me another dog with skin issues I would run in the other direction. I never realized how bad, how much time and work and money this disease was going to take. If the Cytopoint continues to work plus the medicated baths and ear cleaning, it’s a blessing compared to the Atopica ( constant soupy ear infections while on Atopica) nightmare and then Apoquel which was much better but not perfect.

October 12, 2016
Several months ago we exchanged emails about Apoquel, and you mentioned a new injectable product [CADI]. Well after 30 years I changed vets, actually didn’t change my original vet left and started his own practice [] now we are back together again and he has the injectable. The cost is $57.00 per month but he said it may last as long as three months, so it wouldn’t necessary be needed monthly. I am now paying $30.00 per month for Apoquel. So as soon as my present prescription runs out, we’re going to give it a try. The cost isn’t important, his health and the safety of the new drug is paramount.
Thanks, S.K. Cleveland, OH . Sent from my iPad

September 19, 2016
Hi Ron,
Moby’s update.
[According to the University College, Dublin] CADI is not [yet] available In Ireland.
D.S., Dublin, Ireland

September 16, 2016
Dear Ron,
You asked if CADI was on the market yet in Holland. Normally the first to have the product is the University Clinic in Utrecht. I checked with them [recently] and the answer was NO.
Regards, P.H. , Kaag, The Netherlands

July 15, 2016
I wanted to share with you my experience with Apoquel and CADI for my very allergic dog [Wally he is 6 years old neutered Labrador retriever]. My vet [recently] referred him to a veterinary dermatologist; one of the few who had a regular supply [of Apoquel at the time]. Apoquel had an immediate effect and the poor guy was comfortable for the first time. The few times we tried to back off Apoquel (25 mg 1 x/day) for a 100 lb dog, we instantly regretted it. He started itching himself raw, shedding, and smelling. After 2.5 years on Apoquel, Wally was diagnosed with stage-3 kidney disease. [] The skin vet recommended taking him off the Apoquel and trying monthly CADI shots from Zoetis. The CADI shot worked amazingly and completely eliminated his itch and lasted for 5-7 weeks at a time. The first time we administered the shot, we noticed a small rash around his muzzle that eventually resolved. The second shot we feel caused a severe breakout around his muzzle and ear infections in both ears. Once the infections cleared, he was very comfortable and began to grow in a beautiful coat – the likes of which we hadn’t seen before. He was really comfortable and happy. We tried a third shot and right away he developed a severe urinary tract infection. I’m not certain if the [drugs] contributed to his kidney disease, but I do know that his quality of life without it would have been very poor. I was optimistic for the CADI shot, which worked also very well, but seemed to come with nuisance infections – though I’m uncertain if it would have been the same in a healthier dog. Between the two, the CADI gave the best relief, but was expensive and the nuisance infections involve the hassle and expense of vet visits and suffering for the pet. It also seemed that each successive dose of CADI resulted in a longer period of being itch-free, so it could be that over time dogs on CADI will need fewer and few shots. I hope this is all useful information for you. Wally had some complex problems and wasn’t the healthiest dog to start with, so who knows if other dogs would have the same experience on Apoquel or CADI.
For all his health problems, he was a wonderful dog, who really loved his people and we enjoyed a really nice 3 years with him, only wishing it was a bit longer. D.H. Ventura, California


April 23, 2016
My 10 year old lab mix has been suffering [] from canine atopy [] for about half her life. Initially, it was periodically; but now, constant and quite severe. She had been treated with antibiotics and fungal medication when flare-ups occur, but she is steady-state itchy and licks and scratches constantly.
We have not felt comfortable with what the dermatology vet [] has been offering regarding immunosuppressive drugs – and have steadily refused them. We have always treated our dog holistically, with minimal vaccinations and meds, using a variety of supplements and homeopathics, and acupuncture. Nothing has helped [her] – even with 2-3 baths per week, washing her dog bed covers when she gets a bath, vacuuming every other day, putting on child tees t-shirts to keep her from licking the elephant skin on her armpits, short walks during pollen season, etc. [] We are at a crossroads because we cannot continue to let this dog suffer. At our visit to Dr. ***** in December, he recommended the CADI shots – he is part of the study – since the Apoquel was unavailable at that time. I did some research (there isn’t much out there) and decided the immunotherapy shots were too new – the study just started last quarter of 2015. Apoquel was recommended at our last visit to Dr.***** (last week) – the supply is now available, but with a questionable long-term supply outlook. We have not given the dog the Apoquel yet and with the information at your site, are even more wary of the effects on her immune system. We planned to start M**** off on the maintenance dose (~10mg) after discussing the dosing recommended by the dermatologist with my regular vet (~10 mg 2 times per day for 2 weeks, then 10mg/day – M*** is about 50 lbs) and noting your comment that relief is often achieved at lower doses.
Since it seems that the Apoquel can have a broader negative effect on the immune system than the CADI shots (theoretically, I guess) my question is what is your advice about just starting out with the shots vs the Apoquel ? Thanks.


April 20, 2016
We have a 6-year-old Doberman Pinscher who [was] itching and scratching to the point that her chin and feet [broke] out in puss-filled sores. We tried the different foods: duck, fat dog formula, etc. Nothing worked. We went to a vet who started her on Apoquel and she [] cleared up. We then went to a dermatologist who said that they are now using a shot called Canine MAB Immunotherapeutic [CADI] instead of the Apoquel. She had the shot on April 6, 2016. She also had a shot called Bactrim [trimethoprim+sulfamethoxazole]. On April 7th she had two nosebleeds and we rushed her to the vet. They cleaned her up, said they didn’t know what had caused it and sent her home. That evening she had a huge nosebleed. On April 14th this perfectly spry and alert dog sneezed and dropped spread-eagle on the floor all four legs paralyzed. All the doctors say there is no connection between the drugs and what happened. She went to an emergency vet who wanted almost $9,000 to do an MRI and we would have to agree to surgery before he would run the tests. They did take x-rays and blood work – all was clear. We transported her back to our local vet and she is on a steroid regime. She is able to slightly move her legs but cannot stand. This is April 19th so its been six days since her collapse. She is very alert, eats and drinks well and recognizes us when we visit her. We still have no answers. If [you know of] anyone who has had these issues or knows anything about what has taken place please let us know. We are desperate for some answers. C. H. , Georgia


March 21, 2016
Just wanted to give you an update. Our dog, W*****, received two more CADI injections since we last communicated. It worked well for him with no noted side effects. His last CADI injection was at end of January. He has not receive another one since then. He has been on allergy drops based on serum allergy testing for almost 6 months and it seems to be helping. We decided to not give another injection and see if the allergy drops are working to ease his symptoms and it seems to be the case. I know you are not a big supporter of allergy testing and allergy shots or drops, but I do think it is worth trying as there are no other ways to reduce the allergic reactions. Thank you. A. W-M. Saint Petersburg, FL

December 30, 2015
Hi Dr. Hines,
I just wanted to share my experience with the new Canine Atopic Dermatitis Immunotherapeutic (CADI) injection. Our Derm vet has been using the CADI in 26 of her patients. My dog is a 7-year-old Standard Poodle. It started having issues with itching and skin lesions about one year ago, Issues that have become more frequent. He is also on thyroid supplement for sub-clinical hypothyroidism and has some signs of IBD. Our vet thinks the IBD and allergy are somewhat related. It has mostly environmental allergies and was started on allergy drops in late Sept. We are continuing with the drops twice a day. He was on Apoquel for about 2.5 months and it worked really well. On Dec 3, he received his first injection of CADI. I have to say it works just as well as Apoquel and I hope that since it is more targeted and will have less unwanted side effects compared with Apoquel. The hope is for the allergy drops to help and he won’t need the CADI in the near future. But for now, I am very happy with CADI being available as I feel it is effective without any known side effects at this time. We are actually going back today for another injection, a bit early due to upcoming holiday. It is still working well since the first injection- almost 4 weeks. The dog weights 72 lbs and the cost for the injection was $172 (two 40 mg vials). His pet insurance covers it.
A.W-M. St. Petersberg, FL

September 30, 2015
Stopping Apoquel and moving to a monthly shot called Canine Atopic Dermatitis Immunotherapeutic vaccine because of the supply demand problem of the Apoquel still going on. My dog is new to Apoquel for allergies he has been suffering from for years. He is on the Apoquel for another 30 days and we have been chosen to get the new monthly vaccine. I will try to update you on the shot when it releases. Our dermatologist just finished training for the new shot. No idea of cost yet either. Breed: Great Dane, DOB: Aug 10, 2008, Weight: 124 lbs. He has 18 Environmental allergies, zero food. Worse molds. Apoquel here cost $2.50 per 16 Mg pill, and he takes 4 a day. $300 per month. They suggested that vaccine will be equivalent or slightly less. Although, he stated again it is just an estimate. They have not mentioned taking both. Switching from one to the other. I hope this regime is effective because I have been watching him suffer for too long. He is my best friend. 🙂 S.B., Virginia

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