Frequently Asked Questions:
Dogs with allergies may need Cytopoint, an injectable medication used to treat allergic skin conditions in dogs. The medication can provide relief from symptoms such as itching, inflammation, and skin irritation and is generally considered safe and effective for most dogs. Find out if your dog needs this medication, if it’s the best option, and if it’s safe so you can make an informed decision.
What Does Cytopoint Injection Do For Dogs?
Cytopoint, an injectable medication, treats itching in dogs caused by allergies. It contains a monoclonal antibody that specifically targets and neutralizes a protein called interleukin-31 (IL-31), which causes an itching sensation. The medicine binds to and blocks the IL-31 protein, reducing the signaling to the brain that causes the sensation of itching.
Dogs can experience relief from itching and scratching for several weeks. Also, it’s safe and effective for dogs with allergic skin conditions, such as atopic dermatitis. Most dogs tolerate the medicine well with few if any side effects making it a popular choice for pet owners and veterinarians alike.
What Are The Side Effects Of Cytopoint Injections?
Cytopoint, while generally safe, has few reported side effects but not none. The most commonly reported side effects of Cytopoint injections in dogs include:
Increased thirst or urination
Skin reactions at the injection site (e.g., redness, swelling, itching)
In rare cases, more serious side effects may occur, such as an allergic reaction or anaphylaxis. If your dog experiences any signs of an allergic reaction, such as difficulty breathing, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue, or hives, seek immediate veterinary attention.
What Is The Average Cost Of A Cytopoint Injection?
The cost of a Cytopoint injection can vary depending on several factors, including the size of the dog, the veterinary clinic or hospital where the injection is administered, and the location of the clinic or hospital. Generally, the cost of a single Cytopoint injection ranges from $50 to $100, but it could be higher or lower depending on your specific situation and location.
Additionally, the frequency of injections will depend on your dog’s individual needs and response to the medication. Some dogs may require injections every 4 to 8 weeks, while others may only need injections every 12 to 16 weeks. Discuss the cost with your vet, as they may offer package deals or discounts.
How Long Does A Cytopoint Injection Last For Dogs?
The relief from Cytopoint injections can vary greatly depending on each dog because of size, metabolism, the severity of itching, the cause of the itching, etc. However, in general, a single injection of Cytopoint can provide relief from itching for approximately 4 to 8 weeks. In some cases, the effect may last longer, up to 12 to 16 weeks.
Does Cytopoint Help With Licking Paws?
Yes, Cytopoint can help with licking paws in dogs if allergies are causing the action. Many dogs lick their paws in an attempt to deal with allergies for some form of relief. By reducing the urge to scratch and lick, Cytopoint may reduce licking for some dogs and the chance of secondary bacterial infections from excessive licking and scratching.
Does Cytopoint Work Against Food Allergies?
No, Cytopoint will not help your dog with food allergies. It’s designed to target and neutralize a protein called interleukin-31 (IL-31) which combats environmental allergies such as pollen, dust mites, and mold. The best way to avoid food allergies is to not allow your dog to eat those foods.
Is Cytopoint Better Than Apoquel?
Cytopoint and Apoquel are both effective treatments for managing itching in dogs caused by allergies, but they work in different ways and have unique advantages and disadvantages. As stated above, Cytopoint injects neutralize the protein interleukin-31 (IL-31), which is involved in the itch sensation. Dogs take Apoquel orally to inhibit the enzyme Janus kinase (JAK), which is involved in the immune response that causes itching.
Apoquel is effective at providing rapid relief from itching, with some dogs experiencing improvement within four hours of administration. However, Apoquel may have more potential side effects than Cytopoint, including vomiting, diarrhea, decreased appetite, and increased susceptibility to infections. The choice between Cytopoint and Apoquel ultimately depends on the individual dog’s needs and response to treatment.
What Kind Of Allergies Does Cytopoint Help?
Cytopoint can help to manage itching in dogs caused by allergic skin diseases from the environment, such as pollen, dust mites, and mold. These allergies can cause a range of symptoms, including itching, redness, and inflammation of the skin. Cytopoint can help alleviate the associated skin irritation and inflammation by reducing the itch sensation.
Is Cytopoint Bad For the Liver?
No current evidence suggests that Cytopoint causes liver problems in dogs.
Unlike some other medications used to manage allergic skin disease in dogs, such as steroids, the liver does not metabolize this medicine, meaning it puts less pressure on the liver, not more. Instead, it’s the kidneys that break down this medicine.
Is Cytopoint A Steroid?
No, Cytopoint is not a steroid. Steroids, such as prednisone and dexamethasone, are a type of anti-inflammatory medication that works by suppressing the immune system and reducing inflammation. While steroids can effectively manage allergic skin disease in dogs, they can also have significant side effects, such as increased thirst and appetite, weight gain, and increased susceptibility to infections.
If you are concerned about the potential side effects of steroid use in your dog, or if your dog has not responded well to steroid treatment in the past, Cytopoint may be a good alternative option. Talk to your veterinarian to determine the best course of treatment based on your dog’s specific condition and medical history.
What Is The Warning For Cytopoint?
As with any medication, there are potential risks and side effects associated with the use of Cytopoint. The manufacturer suggests you give this medicine under the guidance of their veterinarian. Further, they suggest you watch for adverse reactions. If you notice any of the symptoms listed above after receiving Cytopoint, contact your veterinarian immediately.
Next, do not use in dogs with a known hypersensitivity to the medication. However, it’s impossible to know until you try how your dog will react to the medication. Do not use it on pregnant or lactating dogs, as no testing has been done to determine the safety.
Furthermore, Cytopoint may increase the risk of developing cancer or worsen existing cancer in some dogs. It is important to discuss any history of cancer in your dog with your veterinarian before starting treatment with Cytopoint. Practice caution for dogs with immune-mediated disease as well as the medicine may affect the immune system and may worsen or trigger immune-mediated disease in some dogs.
Can I Buy Cytopoint Myself?
No, Cytopoint requires a prescription from a licensed veterinarian. It is not available for purchase directly by pet owners or through online retailers. Before prescribing Cytopoint, a veterinarian will typically perform a physical examination and may conduct diagnostic tests to determine the underlying cause of your dog’s symptoms.
Based on the results of these tests, your veterinarian may recommend Cytopoint or another treatment option that is most appropriate for your dog’s specific condition.
If your dog has been prescribed Cytopoint, your veterinarian will administer the injection in their office or provide you with instructions for administering the medication at home. Follow all instructions provided by your veterinarian and contact them with any questions or concerns about the medication, especially if your dog has a reaction.
Attempting to obtain Cytopoint without a prescription or administering the medication without guidance from a veterinarian can be dangerous and may result in serious harm to your dog’s health. Always go through a licensed veterinarian for prescriptions for your pet.