So imagine you’ve found, I don’t know, say, a dead frog in the middle of your bedroom floor when you’re about to go to bed. A remote possibility I agree but it must surely have happened to someone at some point in history. Back in the Middle Ages perhaps?
Anyway, you’ve found this dead frog in the middle of your bedroom floor. You’re just about to go to bed. You don’t want to squish it if you have to get up to go to the loo during the night, so you simply kick it under the bed instead.
That’s just like giving your dog Apoquel for canine atopic dermatitis (a rash). Sure, the drug will remove the rash from sight, but it will still be there in the morning. Just like the dead frog under your bed in fact.
And it will still be there the next morning, and the next, and the next. It will still be there, you just won’t be able to see it. Because you haven’t dealt with the underlying inflammation that caused the rash in the first place. You’ve temporarily dealt with the symptom, but the cause of the problem remains.
In a very short time time, the dead frog will start to bloat and decompose, and when it does, it will start to smell. And when that happens, along come the maggots and the flies and then goodness knows what else in the way of bacteria and germs.
Immunosuppressants are not the answer
It’s the same with giving your dog Apoquel for his or her rash instead of finding a remedy for your dog’s canine atopic dermatitis. Apoquel suppresses your dog’s immune system reponse to the problem. The symptoms, the rash, the itch. But switch off the immune system and you run the risk of infection flourishing.
Mange and ear infections are potential issues with the drug. Likewise are the risks of pneumonia and a reduced while blood cell count. And that’s without the more common Apoquel side-effects like vomiting, diarrhoea, anorexia, lethargy and increased cholesterol.
Treat the cause, not the symptom
Why? Why would you do that to your dog. Why wouldn’t you take responsibility for your best friend and investigate the cause of the rash rather than taking the easy option and hiding the symptoms? Because if you simply hide the symptoms, guess what will happen? They’ll come back. They’ll come back and your vet will prescribe yet more Apoquel and so the cycle will continue. And with each successive cycle you increase the chance of your dog developing one of the major side-effects of the drug like pneumonia. Best case scenario your dog will end up, like so many, being prescribed Apoquel for life and never being truly happy or healthy because the problem will always be there.
Is that any way at all to treat your best friend? Especially when there’s a safe and natural remedy for canine atopic dermatitis!