How Cytopoint Ended My Dog’s Misery and Stopped Her Constant Paw Licking

“I tried almost everything to get my Chihuahua to stop licking her paws obsessively—the licking was non-stop,” says Lorna Ladd, whose Chihuahua was suffering from extremely itchy skin due to seasonal allergies. 

Paw licking is one of the most obvious signs that a dog has an environmental sensitivity causing a persistent skin allergy. Licking helps to temporarily alleviate dogs’ itching, but in the long run, licking can make the allergic itch worse. Some dogs will lick other parts of their bodies, but because the paws are so accessible, they often put their focus there. 

Cytopoint Injection for Dogs

But, what do you do when none of the supplements or standard allergy medications work and your dog won’t stop licking? For Lorna and countless other dog owners, the answer was Cytopoint injections. 

“Our vet told us about Cytopoint, so we got the injection for our dog. It worked immediately and as far as I can tell, my dog had no side effects,” says Lorna about her experience getting Cytopoint injections for her dog. 

A promising and easily accessible treatment option, Cytopoint injections target and neutralize itchiness where it starts and can give your dog long-lasting relief from itchy and painful skin conditions caused by allergies. But, what is Cytopoint injection for dogs? Where can you get it done? If you get one Cytopoint injection for dogs how often will you need to get “boosters” or additional doses of Cytopoint for your pup? 

Remember, the final decision to give your dog any medication should be made under the direction of a veterinary professional. 

What is a “Cytopoint” Injection for Dogs? 

Cytopoint Injection for Dogs

Cytopoint is the brand name of an injectable antibody treatment option for atopic dermatitis, allergic dermatitis, and other skin allergies in dogs. Unlike more well-known allergy treatment options like antihistamines that treat allergic reactions as they arise, Cytopoint treats fully manifested symptoms of allergies and can help to reduce flare-ups in the future. 

How Cytopoint Works With Your Dog’s Own Immune System

Cytopoint stops allergic skin irritation at the source before it even starts. It basically blocks the “itchy” protein from telling the brain that the dog is itchy.  This allows dogs to go weeks without severe scratching or licking, giving their skin the chance to finally heal from allergies instead of being constantly irritated.

Cytopoint Injection for Dogs

The main ingredient in Cytopoint injections is called lokivetmab. It’s a special kind of protein made in a lab to target one specific issue – in this case, allergic reactions. 

Lokivetmab works by attaching to and blocking another protein called interleukin-31. This interleukin-31 protein is what signals the body to make the skin itchy and irritated when a dog is exposed to things they’re allergic to, like pollen or dust.

So when a dog gets a Cytopoint injection with lokivetmab, it prevents interleukin-31 from doing its job. This stops the itchy feeling before it even starts, rather than just treating the itchiness after it begins. That’s why dogs can go weeks without severe itching after a Cytopoint injection – it gives their skin a break from being constantly licked and scratched so it can heal.

What Are Atopic and Allergic Contact Dermatitis? 

Cytopoint Injection for Dogs

Atopic dermatitis and allergic contact dermatitis are related skin conditions that cause irritated, itchy, and inflamed skin. Atopic dermatitis is caused by environmental allergies to pollen, dust, grasses, etc. Allergic contact dermatitis is caused by physical contact with an irritant, either something the dog is allergic to or a poisonous plant like poison ivy. 

Dogs with allergies can develop severe chronic dermatitis, which they might try to soothe by constantly scratching and licking their skin. 

Cytopoint for Dogs: Benefits, Side Effects & Treatment Timelines

Giving your dog a new medication isn’t always an effortless experience, so it’s best to prepare as much as you can beforehand. Cytopoint shows exceptional potential for reducing the symptoms of skin allergies. Accumulated data from dogs given Cytopoint treatments show that around 65% of dogs see improvement in symptoms after the first injection. Nearly 88% of dogs given Cytopoint achieved “success” following at least three injections. 

Cytopoint Injection for Dogs

Of course, it isn’t always sunny—the same studies confirm that 10-81% of dogs given Cytopoint for allergies experience adverse reactions. As a dog owner, it’s important to be fully prepared for all scenarios when it comes to prescription medications for your pet. 

Benefits of Cytopoint Injections for Dogs

The benefits of Cytopoint start to show within 24 hours of administering the first injection. Specifically formulated to target atopic dermatitis, Cytopoint reduces or stops itching, relieves inflamed skin, and promotes skin healing. Cytopoint isn’t directly regenerative, but when your dog stops being itchy they’ll stop licking and itching their skin, giving it a chance to heal.

Side Effects of Cytopoint Injections 

Documented side effects of Cytopoint injections are relatively common but generally mild, and most adverse reactions manifest as facial swelling and itchy skin. Other somewhat common side effects of Cytopoint include tenderness at the injection site, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, lethargy, dermatitis, and bacterial skin infections

Cytopoint Injection for Dogs

Some more serious and long-term side effects of Cytopoint—including death—have been reported anecdotally online in dog owner forums and on natural pet care blogs, but there are few substantiated claims. Reports of seizures, epilepsy, and death following Cytopoint injections have been investigated and determined to not be related to the treatment

How Often Do Dogs With Allergies Need Cytopoint Injections?

One of the best things about Cytopoint injections is that they work almost immediately after the first dose, and more than one clinical study confirms that Cytopoint can begin to relieve symptoms of skin itching within one day. But, that first injection won’t last forever, and your dog will need “booster” injections to give them continuous relief. 

Most veterinarians recommend dogs receive Cytopoint injections every 4-8 weeks during periods when they experience daily allergic reactions. Some dogs may only need Cytopoint injections during certain seasons when specific environmental allergens are high, while others may need this therapy year-round. 

Cytopoint Injection for Dogs FAQ

Cytopoint Injection for Dogs

Now that you’ve learned the basics of Cytopoint injections—how they work, side effects, etc.—it’s time to get into some more specifics. These are some common questions asked by dog owners like you trying to decide if Cytopoint injections are right for their allergy-ridden pup. 

Remember that you should always consult your veterinarian before you choose to give your dog any medication. Reading overviews, guides, and Cytopoint injection for dogs reviews can give you a lot of good information, but your veterinarian will ultimately give you the best advice. 

Can you do Cytopoint injection for dogs at home?

No. Cytopoint injections must be administered at a vet’s office or animal hospital. If you’ve been Googling “Where can I buy Cytopoint injection for dogs?” with no success, that’s because you cannot buy Cytopoint over the counter. Cytopoint must be prescribed by your veterinarian and administered in a veterinary office by a qualified veterinary professional. 

How much are Cytopoint injections for dogs? 

As with all medical treatments, Cytopoint injection for dogs cost can be prohibitive for some dog owners. The average price for a single Cytopoint injection is between $50–$200, but remember that your dog will need additional injections to achieve continual relief from their allergy symptoms. 

Does Cytopoint work for dogs with food allergies? 

Yes, Cytopoint can reduce itching and skin irritation as a result of both environmental and food allergies. Most dogs receiving Cytopoint injections get them specifically for environmental allergies, which are unavoidable. If your dog is having allergic reactions to a food, you should eliminate that food or ingredient from their diet which will naturally reduce itching and skin irritation. 

Allergy-friendly dog foods and dog foods formulated with novel proteins are good options for pups with food allergies. With a little searching, it’s fairly easy to find dog food formulas that fit even the most niche allergy needs. 

What environmental allergies are common in dogs? 

Like humans, dogs can be allergic to things like mold, pollen, grass, dander, and more. Many environmental allergies are unavoidable—your dog needs to breathe, even if there are allergens in the air. Therapeutic treatments like Cytopoint help your dog manage their allergy symptoms so your pup can still go on walks and enjoy the outdoors even when pollen counts are high. 

Does pet insurance cover Cytopoint injections?

Yes, some pet insurance providers offer partial or full coverage for allergy treatments. If yours does not, speak with your veterinarian to see if they offer payment plans or alternative therapies. 

Does Cytopoint damage the liver?

No! There is no evidence to suggest that Cytopoint puts pressure on or causes damage to the liver. 

Are Cytopoint injections safe for puppies and senior dogs?

Yes—Cytopoint injections for allergies are approved for dogs of all ages. 

Can Cytopoint be taken with other medications?

Talk to your veterinarian to determine the risk factors associated with giving your dog Cytopoint injections. Most medications are safe to take alongside Cytopoint, but your vet can give you more detail and look through your pup’s medical history. 

Why is my dog still itchy after Cytopoint injections?

If your dog has had several rounds of Cytopoint injections and still has itchy skin, they could be having an adverse reaction to Cytopoint or the itching could be caused by a non-allergy-related issue. Bacterial and fungal infections, mange, fleas, and other health issues can make your dog’s skin itchy, even if the Cytopoint injections work properly. 

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