Apoquel? Given by vet as quick fix .... advice please - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-11-2017, 12:16 PM Thread Starter
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Apoquel? Given by vet as quick fix .... advice please

Shelby was at the vet today for his routine check and has some irritations to his eyes and paws, as he is becoming restless the vet recommended a few weeks on apoquel (as its middle of the road cost wise and has the least side effects compared to steroids or the other treatments.

He outlined that he didn't want to put him on a constant course, because we think the irritation has occurred since we started feeding him cooked steak a few times a week and are going to stop immediately.

Having read various posts online I'm having reservations... some seem to think they are the worlds worst treatment, others suggest they are great?

Should I be concerned, or just use it as the intended "quick fix" to see him through til we've removed the cause of allergy. I don't want to go in blind and cause him problems down the line, although I know this is less likely if we are only using them to clear up his current irritations, not as a constant supplement,

Thanks
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-11-2017, 12:35 PM
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Originally Posted by James1892 View Post
Shelby was at the vet today for his routine check and has some irritations to his eyes and paws, as he is becoming restless the vet recommended a few weeks on apoquel (as its middle of the road cost wise and has the least side effects compared to steroids or the other treatments.

He outlined that he didn't want to put him on a constant course, because we think the irritation has occurred since we started feeding him cooked steak a few times a week and are going to stop immediately.

Having read various posts online I'm having reservations... some seem to think they are the worlds worst treatment, others suggest they are great?

Should I be concerned, or just use it as the intended "quick fix" to see him through til we've removed the cause of allergy. I don't want to go in blind and cause him problems down the line, although I know this is less likely if we are only using them to clear up his current irritations, not as a constant supplement,

Thanks
Personally, I would rather get to the root of the sensitivity than give drugs.

If this were my dog, I'd try an elimination diet for 8-10 weeks, raw preferably. There are commercially prepared Balanced diets with limited ingredients.
One protein food, one treat of the same protein (100%) meat like "Pure Bites" and a Human Quality Digestive Enzyme/Probiotic.....NOTHING else..... including things like Bully stix.

Examples:
Raw Food
Darwin’s: Home delivery: http://www.darwinspet.com/ How Much should I feed? https://www.darwinspet.com/why-raw/how-to-feed-raw/
or

Stella & Chewys (HPP): https://www.stellaandchewys.com/prod...rozen-patties/Feeding Calculator on right side of page.


Treat: Pure Bites Beef Liver: https://www.chewy.com/purebites-beef...dried/dp/53160


Digestive Enzyme (helps assimilate food) ProBiotic (puts the "Good" bacteria in gut) Sunday Sundae – Digestive Enzyme/Probiotic combo: </title> <link rel="profile" href="http://gmpg.org/xfn/11"> <link rel="pingback" href="http://www.feedsentials.com/xmlrpc.php"> <title>Feedsentials for K9 ? for the working dog

Since about 75% of the immune system lies in the gut (immune system helps fight allergens and MANY other things) it is very important to keep it healthy.


Moms
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-11-2017, 07:44 PM
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What I don't like about this approach is that it kind of seems to me to not necessarily follow the recommendations set forth by the international, blue-ribbon panel of vet derms. Apoquel isn't the first thing but it's where you can end up where other things fail. Ask your vet about that protocol.

From what I read, it starts with recommending medicated baths to remove allergens and opportunistic bacteria that follow inflammation. Chlorhex (or Keto-chlor) shampoo is the common approach -- and it works for lots of dogs. It's OTC, but most vets stock it. I've posted about it many times.

Whole Dog Journal ran an article last year about the development of the recommended protocol for these sorts of "itchy skin" issues -- you may be able to find it online. I think I've posted in detail about it in the past, when it came out -- I no longer have it in front of me, but that old post still lives here somewhere.

Spring is when pollen is out, and LOTS of dogs are itching right now. There's a fair chance that's all this is. I'd ask the vet about bathing the dog frequently (even 2x a week, with a chlorhex shampoo is okay--KEEP OUT OF THE EYES), wiping the paws with chlorhex wipes each time the dog goes out, maybe trying an OTC antihisitimine for a bit -- it might be all that's needed.

Save the "big guns" for a last resort when other simpler solutions have failed.

Last edited by Magwart; 04-11-2017 at 07:47 PM.
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-11-2017, 07:54 PM
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I agree with the above posters and disagree. LOL

Your dog is restless and severely itchy. Waiting and allowing him to be uncomfortable for 8 weeks while doing an alimination diet, seems almost cruel to me.

I think a food elimination diet and medicated baths are a good idea, but you need to get him comfortable as well. So I dont think its wrong to treat the symptoms as your are working on finding the actual cause of the issues. And I would much prefer Apoquel to steroid, even for a few weeks.

Start supporting his gut, Sunday Sundae and fish oils, get him on a very limited ingredient diet and give it the 8 weeks, then wean him off of the Apoquel and see what happens.

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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-11-2017, 07:57 PM
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I used Apoquel short term. It will relieve the itching while you decide on your next step. I switched diet and I used that shampoo Magwart recommended to me when mine had the same problem.
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-11-2017, 07:57 PM
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I have tried apoquel once. My female always gets rashes spring and summer on her belly from grass. About 8 months ago she started chewing her paw. Not sure if it's a OCD thing that started or what. We tried the usual things we normally do for her: a skin spray, injections, and steroids. When those didn't work for the paw we did the apoquel. I can't for sure say it was the apoquel but she was more aggressive while on it. She attacked our male (for the first time) and they've been together 3 years. It was unprovoked. She seemed touchy with us as well. I asked the vet and he said like 10% of dogs might get more aggressive but he's never seen it. I took her off of it, and haven't had a spat between them since. She's 7.
It might be just the thing your dog needs but for me I like trying other things before a heavy hitter.
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-11-2017, 11:18 PM
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Another thought...

A referral to a vet dermatologist is often money WELL spent with itchy dogs. With a general practice vet, it's pretty easy to rack up a $600 bill for diagnostics that lead nowhere, and vet derms are more likely to get to a solution quickly and precisely -- saving money in the long run.
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-12-2017, 05:15 AM
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My Lexi was on a short course for a hot spot and it worked great. After she went off of it, she developed another hot spot on her belly--we couldn't see it, unfortunately and she's cleverly learned not to chew on herself when we can see her.

The hot spot got horribly infected. My poor little girl was really sick. So she's on antibiotics, a special mousse and Apoquel for the foreseeable future.
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-12-2017, 08:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Momto2GSDs View Post
One protein food, one treat of the same protein (100%) meat like "Pure Bites" and a Human Quality Digestive Enzyme/Probiotic.....NOTHING else..... including things like Bully stix.
This was in reference to food/treats.

I would never condone the discomfort of an animal!

There are other things the OP could use for itching - internally like Benedryl or Quercetin (nature's benedryl)
or externally like Wondercide Skin Tonic or Vetericyn or Derma-Ionx or even a 50/50 mix of Water + Organic Raw ACV.

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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-12-2017, 10:17 AM
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This allergy season has been horrible for my dogs and me. The medicated shampoo, Malseb, does wonders for mine. With my senior girl she hardly licks at all if I keep up a regime of baths (2-3 times a week). Two of the dogs get chlortrimeton as it works best for my senior. Benadryl is a good one too if it works for your dog.
If the apoquel is only short term it's worth a try, but by doing so it might be harder to figure out the cause of the itching. Two of our dogs have food allergies and environmental allergies, and the vet recommended apoquel for the Spring and Fall when environmental allergies are the worst, but so far with otc antihistamines, regular bathes, and food that works for them, I've been able to avoid it.
I second a dermatologist if your dog continues to have allergy symptoms. We finally figured things out without one, but I wasted time and money.
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