Atopica.

Discussion in 'Dogs - General Dog Chat' started by PWCorgi, Apr 19, 2013.

  1. PWCorgi

    PWCorgi Priscilla Winifred Corgi

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    Anyone have experience with this drug?

    I'm making an appointment to talk with my vet about it for Frodo. His allergies are out of control and he is miserable. He went after Megan's foster dog the other day and made her bleed. He's never attacked another dog before, he will get snarky, but he has always been very careful about never making contact. His barking has gone way way up again, won't settle. He's hot to the touch.

    It's becoming quite obvious that he needs something stronger than the natural remedies that help some, but not enough. It all goes back to my promise to give him quality over quantity of life in all my decisions, and right now I don't see a whole lot of quality going on :(

    So yeah, just looking for anyone who has experience with it. And you don't need to tell me it's expensive, I've seen the cost, had my mini heart attack, and decided it's worth it if it works.

    TIA
     
  2. sassafras

    sassafras mushinois

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    Honestly I really like it. The dogs we have on it do really well and I haven't seen any major side effects except some minor GI upset. The only reason I don't use it more is because of the cost. Most people just can't/won't do it.

    Pip's allergies are well controlled by his allergy shots, but I'd be absolutely comfortable using it for him if they weren't.
     
  3. sillysally

    sillysally Obey the Toad.

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    Haven't used it but I've been thinking about it for Sally. How much does it cost?
     
  4. PWCorgi

    PWCorgi Priscilla Winifred Corgi

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    From what I can tell, it would initially cost about $90 a month for 30# Frodo. Fortunately it looks like often you reduce it and can do every other day, or even more days off sometime.
     
  5. PWCorgi

    PWCorgi Priscilla Winifred Corgi

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    Thanks! That's good to know.

    I'm expecting that my vet might not be so pleased with my wanting to put him on it, but I am ready to push for it.
     
  6. GraceTW22

    GraceTW22 New Member

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    I've used it for an autoimmune condition and found it to be really well tolerated. I absolutely would have more reservation about prednisone than the atopica regarding quality of life for the dog, the atopica just seems scarier because it's expensive and uncommon!
     
  7. SevenSins

    SevenSins APBTs & One Crazy Banana

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    Sillysally, at my vet it's about $300 per 6 weeks for a 90 lb dog, no idea what the dosage on a smaller dog would be.

    I had experience with it, as a completely last-resort drug. Not a really good experience. The dog I was using it for ended up having a major reaction to it (nasty case of hives) and though you're supposed to freeze the pills and give the drug either X amount of time before or after a meal, he still vomited every time he got it. From the day I started touching the pills, I had a mild to moderate feeling of nausea up until I stopped giving the drug (to be fair I honestly can't tell you for certain if it was from touching the pills or just a coincidence). Some vets, including the derm specialist I was seeing at the time, will tell you it's a harmless drug with no or few side effects, doesn't need special handling, etc. Another derm specialist we contacted for a second opinion was mortified as the information the first one gave... I know that it works extremely well on some dogs, but I would read this so that you know exactly what you're putting in your dog:

    http://www.dogsnaturallymagazine.com/atopica-dangerous-dogs/
     
  8. SevenSins

    SevenSins APBTs & One Crazy Banana

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    I sent you a message on FB since my post got moderated (has a link in it) and I have no idea when it'll pop up. :p

    Sillysally, it was 300 dollars every 6 weeks for a 90 lb dog.
     
  9. Saeleofu

    Saeleofu Active Member

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    We only have one dog on it, for an autoimmune issue, but he does amazingly well on it. He takes a human form...don't know if it's because it's generic or if his owner just gets it cheaper because she's a rep, but may be worth looking into. Most of our allergy dogs are on allergy injections and/or steroids.
     
  10. stardogs

    stardogs Behavior Nerd

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    A family friend used it with their dog as a last resort and it literally saved his life. He's no longer losing fur or itching until he bleeds.
     
  11. sassafras

    sassafras mushinois

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    Keep in mind, too, that cyclosporine has been used for decades for various problems before it was branded and marketed for skin allergies as Atopica, so there is a lot of empirical data out there (which is admittedly anecdotal). No drug is side effect free, but like any drug you have to weigh the benefits and risks. I have a diabetic cat (can't take oral steroids, owner can't afford inhalers) with asthma on it right now who would probably be dead without it and is tolerating it well.
     
  12. Paradis

    Paradis New Member

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    I don't post here often. Mainly a lurker. My dane is on cyclosporine for his extreme allergies. He is also hypothyroid. I've started a blog for him since he's been on the cyclosporine that has photo evidence on how he has progressed. I get the generic from Costco for him (also avaliable at walgreens and riteaid). I would not be able to afford the brand name with a dog his size. The IMPORTANT thing to remember if you go the generic route is to get the Cyclosporine MOD. There are two generics out there, one is microencapsulated (like Atopica is) and one is not. I was just at Costco picking up another 4 month supply for him and it was $500 for 180 capsules of the 100mg size. He is on 300mg every other day. He started out on 300mg every day for a month and we've been able to wean it down to every other day since then and he is doing wonderfully. There are some side effects, it is hard on their stomach and it can cause diarrhea (which my guy gets loose poops on his 'on' days then back to normal). It can cause dizzyness and vomiting but that usually will go away with some time on the medication. Oh and it has to be given on an empty stomach. It can also be hard on their kidneys and liver. Festus got a blood test 3 months after starting the cyclosporine and all his levels were well within range which is fantastic. He is going again on May 4th for some follow up bloodwork on his thyroid pills as him being on the cyclosporine has for some reason made his thyroid levels skyrocket from when he was on them before and within normal ranges. Quite possible that it is his skin being generally healthier overall now than it was before.

    Anyways, onto the blog: www.festusdane.blogspot.ca might be helpful for you for Frodo.
     
  13. PWCorgi

    PWCorgi Priscilla Winifred Corgi

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    Sass, for Pip did you just have an in house type allergy test run?

    If you don't mind sharing (or you can PM/FB me) was the test/injections more expensive than the Atopica in the long run?
     
  14. sassafras

    sassafras mushinois

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    I went up to the UMN for dermal skin testing. They ended up doing the serum test to confirm, too, because his allergens are kind of weird (basically every mold in existence, enough to require two different allergen mixes, but absolutely nothing else. With seasonal symptoms. :/ )

    Anyway, at the time (which would have been around 2008-2009) I think the whole thing ran me about $5-600. So probably a bit more expensive now, I would count on $6-800 these days. I have no idea if they gave any kind of professional discount, to be honest. I doubt it. The allergens cost me between $150-200 but that is for two mixes which most dogs don't need. He's on maintenance getting shots every 3-4 weeks at this point and one refill will last me almost a year. When you first start out, you'll go through them a bit faster.

    If you end up going up there, I will warn you that they really love their food trials with specific foods - HA or z/d. Or at least they used to. I did food trials, but not with those, and I was very confident that his allergies were not food related. I just lied and said I'd used z/d. :p
     
  15. SpringerLover

    SpringerLover Active Member

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    I really did do a z/d trial with Buzz years ago. And I almost died. He had THE WORST odor coming from him, his body smelled like absolute death. And it did nothing for his allergies... I religiously went through two of the biggest bags. And then he got about a million baths and went on Fromm.
     
  16. PWCorgi

    PWCorgi Priscilla Winifred Corgi

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    Frodo DOES have food allergies, but through elimination diets I've figured out what they are. I can control those. I can't control the darn environment!

    I think I am going to call and make an appointment for when I get back from PA, because I don't want to start him on something with potential big side effects, then leave him for a week.
     
  17. MisssAshby

    MisssAshby Richy Rich HM Twit!

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    Have you thought about allergy testing him and then getting him in with a dermatologist? IMO the cost is worth it, because a specialized vet has more experience with the issues therefore having a larger bag of options to pick from.
     
  18. JessLough

    JessLough Love My Mutt

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    No advice, but I know those woes :( poor Ren has bad allergies, and while I can control his food, I can control what products are used in the house... I can't control the environment.
     

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