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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Has anyone used this medication to help treat skin allergies? My dog (non-Dobe) was prescribed it yesterday, but after I read some of the short and longterm side-effects, worry-wart me is a bit nervous. Has anybody used it? It is an immunosuppressant. Thoughts? Am I over-reacting?

I know I should just express my concerns with my vet, but I'm a people pleaser and don't want to come off like a know it all who is questioning him (which I am doing...here :D).

Anyways, thanks to anyone who has used it and can provide some insight.
 

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We used it on a senior golden retriever when I managed a show kennel. She was highly allergic and that was the ONLY thing that worked for her. It is very expensive but worth it for dogs who are that miserable.
 

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I used Atopica with Stormy's allergies for several months. It was very expensive but worked very well.

I ended up having her skin tested for allergies and she was on shots for a year plus and is now completely relieved of any problems.
 

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I would worry about using an immuno suppresent too! Would only use out of desperation. Sorry you are at that point.:( I think I would do allergy skin tests at that point. Sorry, your having so much trouble.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the input! At this point, I am a bit too scared to try it with her. Her symptoms are manageable and she is not bothered by her allergies to the point of being unhappy, so I am going to hold off for now. We'll try some other options for now. I'm a total worry-wart weenie.
 

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I tried it on Eli, he did not have allergies as we later discovered so of course it didn't work. If I had a dog who was depressed due to allergic reactions I would not hesitate to use it. I'd rather my dog lived 10 years comfortably than 11 years uncomfortably if you understand my meaning. I think it depends on how bad your dog is and how miserable. It is very expensive for a large dog, don't know what kind or size dog you are considering it used on. If your vet feels it is safe or better than the treatment you have available I'd listen.
 

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I use Atopica on my Westie along with the monthly shots. She is only 2.5 and has terrible allergies which unfortunately are common to the breed. The hope is that the shots will help with the allergies (can take up to a year) and then we can ween her off the Atopica. It is a "miracle" in that it's effective but I don't want to give it long term. I hate using drugs, but without them she will scratch and chew her hair completely off. She is on a raw diet so that I can control everything that goes into her, but unfortunately it is environmental.
 

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rah has lived on atopica since 2007 - he chewed himself raw, bleeding, and was itchy nonstop. thanks to atopica, which literally saved his life - the 1.5 years he spent on antibiotics nonstop (including MRSA), the months on pred, the resulting aggression - atopica was a lifesaver. i use it a ton on my clients for dogs with allergies, but rah is the poster child.
 

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If absolutely nothing else worked and the dog was miserable, I would try it. I'd try everything else first myself, including raw diet.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Again, thanks for the input, everyone. doberkim, you make me feel MUCH more comfortable about giving it to her. As I mentioned earlier, her symptoms are actually pretty mild right now, so she is not a miserable doggy by any means. The doc prescribed Atopica to prevent any further flare-ups, but since her symptoms have been so mild as of recently, I'm going to hold off for the time being.

We do not know what she is allergic to. Allergy testing will be our next step. I think it is something environmental, like grass.

She is eating Honest Kitchen dehydrated raw right now and gets probiotics, fish oil/vit e and Bug-Off flea and tick preventative (garlic pill). I just ordered the fish protein of Honest Kitchen and will move her onto it instead of the chicken formula she is currently eating. The vet suggested trying another protein, just in case. My Dobe, Chase, is on raw raw, and I have been thinking long and hard of transitioning her to that, as well. She is a seriously dangerous gulper, even with ground raw, so it would take some careful management.

Again, thanks for the feedback :D
 

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My sister has had her German Shepherd on Atopica/Cyclosporine for several years. When she found out her dog was allergic to everything including God's green earth (meats and grasses among others) Wendy (the GSD) was already chewing herself raw and constantly scratching to the point of obsession. She was finally able to afford the medicine, and Wendy is a completely different dog now. Most of her hair has grown back, she's put on healthy weight and lives comfortably now.

My sister concluded the same thing: Would rather have Wendy for a healthy 10 years than a miserable 11 years. Wendy just turned 9, when naturally, she shouldn't have lived past the first 2 years.
 
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