Itchy dogs (and, to a lesser extent, cats) are a real problem for our clients at this time of year. It happens every Spring and keeps us busy providing treatment and advice. For pet owners, treating the allergies can be a big challenge and, potentially, a major source of frustration. Many of these itchy pets have what we refer to as Atopic Dermatitis and this is the most common cause of skin disease we see in dogs.
The good news is that we have a new, injectable, form of treatment coming onto the market shortly.
Our good friends at Zoetis have developed ‘Cytopoint’, a new drug that we think may be a very effective way of treating atopy.
The following few points give you an outline of the salient points about this new drug:
- Cytopoint is given by injection
- This is a simple, subcutaneous injection
- It’s a tiny needle and doesn’t hurt your dog at all
- The drug lasts from 4 to 6 weeks in the system
- Duration of effect depends on severity of the allergy condition
- In some cases, we may even be able to stretch this out to 8 weeks
- The injection targets nerve endings and side effects appear to be minimal
- Unlike drugs such as prednisolone, Cytopoint does not cause systemic changes
- Because the drug is acting at skin level only, it is very safe
- There is no excessive appetite or drinking/urination and no damage to kidneys or liver.
- Cytopoint is safe to give when other disease processes or treatments are present.
- Prevention of skin disease is better than cure and Ctyopoint should help greatly with this
- Scratching, caused by itchiness, results in inflammation. This, in turn, leaves the skin open to infection with both yeast and bacteria.
- We spend a lot of time treating these secondary infections, just as much as the primary allergic condition
- By preventing the scratching, we reduce the amount of secondary infection and improve skin control significantly as a result
- Costs appear to be quite reasonable
- Although not the cheapest drug on the market, Cytopoint compares favourably with other tablets such as Apoquel and Atopica
- Many clients will find that this form of treatment is not only quite affordable, but great value given the ease of use.
- We’re expecting to have access to Cytopoint in the next couple of weeks
- Just in time for the Spring ‘Allergy Season’!
- We’re currently discussing delivery with Zoetis, the manufacturer, but expect to have the medication in stock shortly
- Unfortunately, the drug is not appropriate for cats and so can’t be used on your itchy feline friends.
- There are still plenty of other options in treating itchy cats – I’ll talk about this in an upcoming blog describing some of the other factors in controlling skin disease generally including non-atopic dermatitis.
Although it’s only one tool in the box, we expect Cytopoint to make a big difference to the way we treat atopic dermatitis. We also expect that many owners will find their dogs have an improved quality of life, and that treatment becomes much easier for them.
If you think your dog is showing early signs of itching, rubbing and scratching, it would be a great idea to come in for a checkup. We’ll go out of our way to look after you so, don’t delay, give us a call and ask our fantastic receptionists to make a booking on 8522 3500. Even better, go online to book an appointment directly.