Cytopoint Review: Are There Cytopoint Side Effects

Here is my Cytopoint review.  My dog was ten years old.  Since the age of about two, he was diagnosed with eczema.  I initially bought pet insurance when he was a puppy but they denied all my claims related to skin issues because the vet noted a small pimple on his skin on his first check up.  This isn’t a picture of my dog but this French Bulldog is so cute!

Cytopoint Review

Cytopoint Injection for Dogs Review

This is a post about how expensive pets can be!  I think I’ve spent at least $10,000 on my dog.

I also wanted to share my experience with the Cytopoint medication and my Cytopoint review, since there seems to be lots of scary information about it on the Internet (like causing deaths, etc.).  This Cytopoint review is by no means sponsored or anything but just wanted to share my experience since there are probably a lot of allergy suffering dogs out there!

Warning, you might not want to scroll down if you don’t want to look at really bad dog skin!!  Stop reading! I am warning you!

My dog’s eczema is really bad.  It’s hard to have a dog with a chronic disease.  I worry that other pet owners will judge me for maltreatment of my dog when I’ve actually tried everything under the sun and have spent thousands and thousands of dollars to try and improve his skin.  I worry that people will report me to the SPCA for being a bad pet owner!

It all started in the beginning when he started getting itchy.  The breeder confirmed that my dog’s sibling was allergic to chicken.

Related: Review

He’s had good months and bad months, and since 2014 he has basically had bad skin continuously.  He scratches so much that sometimes I can’t sleep because I hear him scratching and licking his paws.  He goes into another room to scratch oftentimes because he knows I’ll ask him to stop scratching.

I have to vacuum every day because he scratches and there’s a pile of skin flakes on the floor (I know, it’s gross).  His skin is thickened on his chest because of the constant scratching and there’s hair missing on his sides and paws because of scratching and licking.  He also has a very pungent odor because of his scratching and chronic skin infections.  I’ve tried many, many, different things for my dog’s eczema.

I’ve spent thousands, THOUSANDS of dollars for his skin.

What I’ve tried for my Dog’s Eczema

I have tried a number of things for my dog’s eczema.


I took him to a pet dermatologist (yes, there’s such a thing) and he was confirmed to have allergies to dust, pollen, dander, grass, and trees.  After paying thousands of dollars I tried an oral immunotherapy (a sort of regimen where you take the allergen and increase the amounts ingested so my dog will be less allergic to the allergen) but it didn’t work.


I took him to a vet specializing in acupuncture.  She thought maybe his stress was contributing to his allergies.  It didn’t work.

Raw Food “BARF” Diet

Some vets thought it was the food that was causing him to be itchy, so they recommend a raw meat diet.  He’s been on raw rabbit, raw ostrich, raw kangaroo, raw beef, raw bison, and even pasteurized pork and sweet potato. With the raw food he lost a lot of weight (it’s basically like the Atkin’s diet for dogs) and became very lean but the itching didn’t stop.

The best diet for him was the pasteurized pork and sweet potato but the supplier stopped distributing the product.  His raw dog food was almost $5 a day, so I think at one point he was eating better than me in terms of cost on a daily basis.

Vegan Dry Food Diet

He’s also been on a vegetarian dry food diet from Natural Balance.  It didn’t worsen his skin but it didn’t improve his skin either.

Microbubble Bath

I also drove one hour each way once a week to take him to a Japanese micro bubble bath by Thera-Clean and went with him about six times.

He was quite relaxed with the baths but it was just too much driving and there wasn’t any improvement with his skin.  It also basically wiped out my Saturday mornings for six weeks.  Obviously, this was before I had a baby!

Antibiotics and Antifungals

My dog has been on multiple antibiotics to treat his skin infections. His skin infection occurs because the skin is so dry and it is being scratched so often that bacteria can hang out and cause trouble. He’s also been on courses of anti fungal medication as well.  They solve the problem for a short duration and then it comes back.

Weekly Chlorhexidine Baths

I still give him a weekly chlorhexidine bath which helps keep the bacteria at bay.  It hasn’t cured his skin but it ‘maintains’ it.

Oral Steroids

He takes an oral steroid about three times a week to keep the itch at bay. He takes it regularly (long term).

He’s tried Benadryl too but that made him too sleepy.

Quality of Life

It got so bad that I was worried about his quality of life. Of course, he loves to eat and seems very happy eating, seems happy going for walks, but in between, when he’s scratching, he looks miserable.

His compulsive scratching was affecting his quality of life and MY quality of life.  It was frustrating, to say the least and I felt helpless that I couldn’t help him stop his itch.

Cytopoint Review

Out of frustration, I decided to take him to the vet again for an attempted treatment for another flare up.  The vet acknowledged that having a dog with severe allergies can be very frustrating and said there’s a new medication approved on the market in Canada called Cytopoint.  It is an injectable medication given every 4-8 weeks (which means if it works, I would need to give it to him for life) that blocks his desire to scratch himself.

Cytopoint is a biologic therapy and is actually manufactured antibodies.  Apparently, there are minimal side effects and it shouldn’t affect his kidneys or liver (that’s what the drug manufacturer says, but there are probably always side effects with any drug).  It doesn’t heal his infections but just stops the itch and provides the time for his body to heal from the skin infection (if you treat the skin infection).

The cost depends on your dog’s weight.  Because my dog is under 20lbs, the cost wasn’t very much and was under $60 for the medication plus another $25 to inject the medication.  This is about a $100 a month cost per month.

Given that I’ve basically tried everything, I decided to give it a try.  He also started on some antibiotics again to stop skin infection he currently had.

Within 24 hours, I noticed that he wasn’t scratching as much as before.  There was probably a 70-90% decrease in the amount of scratching (depending on the day).  He licked and scratched a few times but it wasn’t in a compulsive manner that it was before.

I did give him a bath the day after the vet (they recommended it) and he seemed like his usual itchy self after the bath.  It settled down after a few hours. He was drowsy the first day after the injection and ‘didn’t seem himself’ but this resolved on its own.

Also, he developed a new ‘sore’ on his back near his collar that developed by itself.  I pointed it out to my vet but he didn’t seem worried.  After about a few months this sore disappeared.  As you can see on the first day he has more scaliness and scabs, after a week, his skin was soft again after two chlorhexidine baths with conditioning.

On week three he seemed to be licking more, I could hear him licking at night, but by week four this seemed to settle down.  I took him to the vet on week five to be reassessed and have another injection of Cytopoint.  Given that his allergies are year-round, hopefully, this will continue working for him to improve his quality of life.

Here’s a picture of the first day after Cytopoint:

As part of this Cytopoint review I’ll share some pictures.  As you can see my dog has lots of dry skin and the skin looks thickened.


This post may contain affiliate links.  Please read’s disclaimer for more information.

Here’s a picture 14 days after Cytopoint:


Here’s a picture 30 days after Cytopoint:

His skin is less red and in some areas there is fur growing back.  Again, not much change to his chest area.

My hope is that he will grow all his fur back, just like it was back in 2014.  Nonetheless, I’m very happy with the decreased scratching and licking, and his quality of life seems much better.

For my Cytopoint review, I think it’s worth it for the $100 every 6 weeks if it improves his quality of life and helps decrease the amount I need to vacuum!  Quality of his life is what matters to me, and he seems to be happier these days.

Here’s a picture about 5 months after Cytopoint first started!

As you can see, his hair is growing back (!) and his skin is soft and not thickened anymore.  I’m going to continue with this as he isn’t itching as much as he was before and his skin is sooo much better.  H

e still has missing patches of hair on his flank and the vet said he probably will never grow that hair back, but now he doesn’t have to wear a shirt anymore outside or inside.  His quality of life is remarkably better.

He does seem to wheeze on occasion and I’m not sure if this is related to his atopic dermatitis or the Cytopoint injection (I read the side effects and it does not note ‘wheeze’ as one of them) as he may have asthma now, but the vet does not seem concerned and the occasional wheezy cough is not distressing him.

Cytopoint Review

Unfortunately, you can’t order Cytopoint from the vet pharmacies available online (I order my dog’s Vanectyl-P online and my vet agrees it is cheaper to order online), but you can get your dog’s heartworm and roundworm medications for much less than you would at the vet.

My vet recommended flea and tick prevention to rule out a cause of his itchiness and to protect our human baby from roundworms and heartworm.

Cytopoint Side Effects

I am not sure what the Cytopoint side effects are, but about a year or so after he was on Cytopoint he ended up with possible lymphoma and passed away.

He was an older dog already so I am not sure if this was a direct relation to Cytopoint or just him being more frail and having chronic disease all his life.

Have you tried Cytopoint before for your pet?  

What is your Cytopoint review?  

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56 thoughts on “Cytopoint Review: Are There Cytopoint Side Effects”

  1. Awww, you are a good dog mommy! I’m sure there are plenty of pet owners who would do nothing at all about their pet’s chronic condition.

    One of our cats has kidney issues, so we buy special food for him. He also had to have all his teeth removed, so we spent about $700 for that. Other than that, we haven’t had any “big” expenses yet, thankfully.

    • @The Luxe Strategist- Kidney problems seems to be very common in cats. $700 for teeth removal is quite a pretty penny! It’s nice to see the money you spend to see their quality of life improve. After 4-5 months I’m finally seeing some improvement, it was getting a bit hairy for a while there, pardon the pun.

  2. GYM,
    Sorry to hear your dog and you went through so much for his skin condition. Also glad to hear his skin is getting better, that’s wonderful. I’m not a pet owner, but know how much a pet means to a family. Best wishes to your dog, and you.

    • @Helen- Thank you Helen! We will see how his skin does. He’s still hairless on his sides but at least he doesn’t have to wear a shirt anymore to cover up his bald spots. It really does wax and wane.

  3. Poor little guy to have to go through eczema 🙁 That’s great news that Cytopoint is helping him get better though!
    Good thing he has you as his mommy to care for him.

    • @Lisa- Thanks 🙂 I think dog allergies and eczema seems to be very common these days. I recently met another dog mom who fed her dog raw kangeroo daily.

  4. Hi GYM!
    We’ve wanted a Frenchie for the longest time! Yours is very lucky to have you as his mom. I’m glad he’s doing better. I agree with you, the expense is worth it; it all comes down to the quality of life (for both of you). Cytopoint sounds like Eucrisa (for humans hehe), it does wonders, but boy is it expensive!? I guess it’s just a matter of setting priorities and taking care of what matters most! May your cute pooch continue in good health! 🙂

    • @Lily- Mine isn’t a Frenchie (I wanted one too haha) but he’s a pug mix. Yeah, it’s expensive. But I think it’s easier to handle since it’s a small amount every month. If I had to pay $1000 up front it would be a more difficult pill to swallow.

  5. We thought about getting a dog (white husky) a few months ago, but decided against it. Since we’re moving every year, it’s just not realistic to bring a dog with us everywhere we go.

  6. The things we do for our pets!! I’m so sorry that your insurance didn’t cover you for this stuff…. that’s a little ridiculous over one little pimple. I’m so glad that this new medication seems to be working so far for you!!

    My shih-tzu was very sick in her last days and we ending up spending a lot on vet bills, medications, and all different types of food because it was really hard to get her to take her pills.

    My Frenchie is about ten months now and I’m really hoping that she doesn’t develop any serious health problems. She’s had an ear infection and UTI i’m hoping these aren’t an ongoing thing.

    • @French Bulldog Encyclopedia- Sorry that your shih-tzu’s last days were difficult, may she rest in peace and she’s not suffering now. Fingers crossed for you for your Frenchie! Frenchies are so cute, I love them.

  7. I sympathize with you. It’s so tough when they are miserable with all that itching. My 11 year old Wheaton/lab/poodle mutt went on this drug 3 months ago, hallelujah! Remarkable difference even though there is some initial lethargy right after the shot. He’s jumping around like a puppy these days. Like you I had tried everything, every kind of diet and alternative therapy. For my dog this drug works and I’ll be buying a case online and injecting him every 3 months for as long as he’s with us, or needs it!

    • @Jo- Thank you!!! My dog is 11 years old too. My dog didn’t see much improvement for the first 3 months actually. Now it’s almost 1 year and he is much better. He doesn’t have any rough spots anymore but still has (permanent) hair loss in some areas. He also doesn’t get tired or lethargic after the shot anymore. Where do you buy a case online? I’ve only been able to get it at my vet and buy it every 2 months.

  8. My dog, a frenchie, has been suffering for years. We tried different foods, had allergy tests and acted accordingly. Unfortunately he is also allergic to grass and mold growing in the woods. We live in the country! He was on apoquil which worked at first but wore off. He couldn’t sleep at night so neither could we. Always jumping off the bed to scratch himself.
    Vet suggested cytopoint so we did. Anything was worth a try at this point.
    Amazing. Bo, my frenchie, is so happy and we’re all sleeping better
    So far so good!

    • @Cindy- That’s good 🙂 Yeah, it really fixed my dog’s skin issues, but he did develop a tumor about a year later after regular injections, sometimes I can’t help but wonder if it was related.

      • That is nice. Yes, definitely a good dog Dad or Mom. Just so very caring. My dog is itchy too but has Pancreatitis a very serious disease to his GI tract. Now, I just heard Cytopoint has been discontinued due to the GI upset Cytopoint can cause.
        I’m sitting here looking at side effects because my baby just got his Cytopoint injection and he is not feeling well(!!)
        He seems to be very distressed and I am worried sick about his Pancreatitis!! No one ever mentioned GI trouble until now – now that Cytopoint is discontinued for Severe GI upset!!
        My baby has a lump in his throat. I’m not sure if it’s related to when we started Cytopoint.

  9. My Bichon got his first Cytopoint injection today. I really hope it works. He’s never had such bad allergies until a few months ago. I’m hoping this gives him some relief.

  10. Hi,
    I have just found your post on using Cytopoint and wondered if you could give me an update on how things are going?
    Your story sounds like it was written about my own dog, who today for has been given an injection of Cytopoint for the first time.
    Within a few hours I have already noticed that she hasn’t been scratching or chewing her feet as much so I am feeling cautiously optimistic but know I have been here before.
    Would be great to hear your experience of using it.

    • @Wendy- It really worked for him, after a few months his skin was smooth again and not flaking. He unfortunately passed from a probable cancer, but I’m not sure if that is related to the cytopoint. He was almost 12.

  11. Did you ever do a detox to quiet the body down prior to starting raw? Probiotics like nusentia probiotic miracle? This could also be leaky gut and adored beast sells a protocol along with a yeast protocol. Was overvaccinating and monthly preventatives chemicals still being administered? I run an apoquel awareness group on Facebook and we have files on cytopoint. We expose the fact that apoquel is classified as an immunosuppressant drug ,with a host of side effects listed on the zoetis website, yet traditonal vets say its perefctly safe ?. Your gambling alot relying on that cover up shot. You were on the right track but it does take time. This is all a sign of a weak immune system and giving into the pred weakened it more and took many steps back. Dogs detox through their skin and its why patience in this true healing journey is so crucial. Anything that works like this is a red flag and not true healing of the body. While i know you love your baby and your happy hes feeling better, alot more could be brewing you cant see yet. Please read the EMA reports on cytopoint and seek a true holsitic vet who has read it too. I have helped many when a traditonal vet couldnt through diet and true healing. I understand quality of life where you were doing raw and felt defeated. However i believe you had some missing links and with time you could of achieved success without buying into big pharma. Also, Chicken is a known irritant in dogs , lamb as well.

    • Seriously? Did you read what she said?
      Have you been through something like this?
      If you have then talk about it, but don’t be so critical here. Bad move.
      What do you suggest in the mean time, to let the dog continue to rip itself bloody raw and continue to get infections?
      Yeah okay. It takes time. Meanwhile the dog dies of an infection but hey it was detoxing right?
      How about a colonic to help the detoxification? lolol
      Get a clue.
      Medication is not always a bad thing..
      Who said that cytopoint was an immune suppressant?
      You must be a liberal. After all they are always the smartest ones in the room eh?

      • Cytopoint Kills … read the number of stories about this and you’ll see it’s not always a miracle drug and with each injection you put more at risk. I get why you needed to try anything at all costs but people need to be aware of the dangers of this drug. Nothing to do with being liberal or conservative or whatever.

  12. my dog is s female multipoo she has atopic dermatitis for a long time i hv tried apoquel for almost 2years but does seem to be working .she is suffering so much .Can someone pls advice me what i can do next

  13. Is your dog still on Vanectyl P ? So far that is the only med that is working for my golden , but they don’t want to keep him on it because of the steroid in it . I am at the point of seeing a dermatologist and trying the cytopoint ! He is also eating raw and I’m seeing no difference 🙁 I don’t think it’s a food allergy at all, which doesn’t help ! Back to square one ! Ugh 🙁

    • @Sarah- Sorry that your golden retriever is having skin issues. My dog was still on Vanectyl P sometimes, maybe about every third day or so or two times a week with the cytopoint. He has since passed.

  14. I did read the EMA findings and the dogs that were treated benefited greatly with every follow up. See below.

    In a field study involving dogs with atopic dermatitis, 142 dogs received Cytopoint monthly for 3 months whilst 132 were treated with ciclosporin, another medicine approved for treating atopic dermatitis. Cytopoint was as effective as ciclosporin in treating itchy skin; after 28 days the pruritus score (measurement of itchiness) was reduced by 52% in dogs given Cytopoint and 44% in those given ciclosporin. Over the three months of the study pruritus score went down from a value of 74 at the start to 26 at the end in dogs given Cytopoint. In a follow up study, 81 dogs of the dogs continued Cytopoint treatment for a further six months and the itchy skin score went down further to 14.

    The wholistic vet we found has studied eastern and western vet medicine. Tucker is a golden and started itching when he was two. She gave him a supplement for detox, eliminated the four foods he was allergic to based on a blood work test. He also took several immune boosting supplements and a natural antihistamine. Still during the hot months, May – Sept his best friend was the brick wall. He would rub his hiney raw. He whines and bites himself to distraction, night and day. Yet when you call him, Sweet Tucker comeS with a wag his tail and a sparkle in his eyes. Had it been my skin, I would’ve been out of my mind.

    Tucker received his first Cytopoint shot today. After reading Bellandis comments, I am going to ask the new vet about using the detox supplement and a probiotic as well as an enzyme supplement.

    I will keep you posted. Praying that Tucker will find relief and that this drug helps more than it hurts.

    • @Debi- Hope Tucker gets some relief from itching 🙂 Cytopoint worked well for my dog too, his hair grew back and he stopped itching.

  15. It’s like you wrote my dogs life story pictures and ALL! Sleep is very important and an entire lifetime of itching is no good for me OR my dog. Had his first shot of Cytopoint ToDaY and to our amazement he’s chilled out only after 1-2 hours, but I think it may have been quicker! They say this could be a miracle drug for some dogs and fingers crossed…….. we’ll get his next dose in a few weeks!!!!!!! I know I’m jumping the gun but for him not to lick or scratch for 10 minutes is a rarity! Good luck to everybody that has found this injection and whoever invented it………… YOU ROCK❤️?????????❤️

  16. I tried the cytopoint and after the first injection it was like night and day, but now on our 3rd round he’s gone right back to where he was months ago!? I’m confused as to why it worked but isn’t helping now☹️ I feel so helpless and want to give him relief. Not sure where to go from here.

    • Hi! My vet told me that my dogs weight (15lbs) is rite on the cusp of do we go up in dosage or stay where we are, as for now we’re staying with his initial injection but if your dog is on a weight cusp you may want to ask your vet! Good luck?

    • I experienced the same with my dog. Cytopoint worked for about 2 months. My vet started my dog on it to get him off Apoquel. Now what?

  17. Cytopoint can cause disruption to the immune system of a dog . The condition is IMHA which is anemia that is almost always fatal in dogs. This is a side affect the vets or manufactures don’t not mention but it is all very real .
    Had our dogs first injection JULY 12 2021 it relieved the itching almost immediately . Within weeks he was eating less and some what fatigued and lethargic . These were possible side affects .
    They are also side affects of IMHA which are never mentioned .
    OUR DOG COLLAPSED and DIED suddenly , all indications were IMHA brought on by this injection . After the fact sadly I did some research on CYTOPOINT and found various instances of this occurring

  18. I did have insurance for a year and they paid absolutely nothing because my dog was diagnosed with allergies at the first visit so after a year I did drop the insurance.
    I also went to a pet dermatologist and had allergy testing done, which was 960.00. He is allergic to everything human dander, dust, cats, grass, trees, week and a lot of different foods, mostly proteins. He was on a special injection every 3 weeks for desensitization for 2 years, which did not work.
    Now we do cytopoint every 6 to 8 weeks, and weekly baths which seem to help. My dog is 4 years old and this started when he was 2 months old. He is a very expensive pet, but he is family and I will continue to do what I can for his health. He does get a prescription food, which I do add fresh food to it. He is a very picky eater and with all his allergies I know what he is getting when I make it myself. I mix the dry with the fresh so that he is getting all his vitamins and minerals he needs.
    His allergies are better conroled now, but will be a continuous battle.

    • @Annette- That sounds very similar to my experience. I dropped insurance too after they considered his skin condition a pre-existing condition when the vet documented there was a small pimple on his belly. I went to a pet dermatologist too! You sound like you are taking such great care of your pet. Thanks for sharing your experience.

  19. I just found this article and am late to the thread. I wonder how your dog is doing now? My heart goes out to you and all here who experience and understand the drain and sadness from having a dog in this condition. For the man whose dog collapsed and died from cytopoint…what a terrible loss. that is the worst case experience we all likely fear in doing these treatments. I hope in time your grief eased and you are reassured you did all you could to give your dog a good life. I have a GSD who is nearing 7 and has spent her entire life itching, scratching, on and off antibiotics. She has now had several cytopoint injections. The 1st one produced immediate and remarkable results…her itching stopped within 24 hours. I waited 7 weeks for the next one, as the itching returned. Each one has been less effective than the previous. For this reason, and due to the unknown risks, I am less inclined to continue. My vet recommends apoquel and assures me that it is safe and not worthy of the warnings it receives. I wonder sometimes if these vets are completely delusional. It is basically a choice between risking their sudden death from the treatment, or allowing them to continue in a contstant cycle of antibiotics and infections which will also affect their longevity. This once beautiful dog is now a smelly, itchy mess with 1/3 of her body covered in black and red baldness. She is my 3rd GSD over the past 23 years and all of them have had allergies, though hers are the worst. I had her tested and the main culprit is dust mites. We had a new furnace installed and that seemed to instigate her worst episodes ever. I also vacuum daily, treat with a powder, removed any carpeting I could and wash her towels daily with special detergent. I bathe her weekly which isn’t easy. Nothing works, she gets out of the bath and starts itching immediately. Zymox shampoo line does seem to alleviate the redness for awhile. I am not sure what is causing an epidemic of unhealthy dogs, but it seems clear that breeding programs, rising environmental pollutants and over vaccination probably all contribute, as well as diet. I’ve tried it all (as clearly many who posted here have) and to those who continue to push the “holistic” route in lieu of traditional meds…I spent a decade doing so all the while my dogs were suffering as I would not “compromise their immune system” with traditional meds (as the breeder warned). It finally occurred to me my dogs already had compromised immune systems or I wouldn’t be in the predicament I was. I Feed raw food, tried the allergen shots, ripped out all garden plants replacing with brick, replacing HVAC ducts, installed medical grade air purifiers, removed carpets etc and etc. Got so desperate after holistic remedies didn’t work, that I tried cyclosporine, ketoconozole, prednisone (that worked but affected my dogs personalities so detrimentally that I discontinued it) I have resigned myself to the fact in our world as it is today, allergies are not going away and this will be my last dog. Something I never thought I would say, but it becomes too hard. I hope and pray many of you have a better success than I did.

  20. I am soo sorry for your loss!! I’m here now due to my dog being highly distressed after he just now got a Cytopoint shot. I did not know about any side effects at all until now.
    One side effect is Severe GI upset!! The very reason for Cytopoint being Discontinued!! Well my baby has Chronic Pancreatitis so this is really scaring me.
    Best Wishes and my deepest sympathy.

  21. I too have had the same experience with our, now, 11 year old cockapoo. He has been on the same path as all of you for the last 6 years. Last year we thought we finally had it under control, but about 2 months ago, he started with the bad smell and itching again. This week we took him to the dermatologist, who suggested we have a skin biopsy done to test for cutaneous lymphoma-seems this is rare, but he has some symptoms. So, next week we do that, hoping it’s not the case. He is such a wonderful dog.

  22. This introduction is mis-leading. I have been researching these medications; however, I opted out because of the potential side effects. But, IMHA does not kill most dogs. Serious; and, life threatening..Yes, Absolutely,. If caught early, survival rate can be as high as 80%. If identified late, fatality can be as high 80%.


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