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What is Apoquel (Oclacitinib) prescribed for?

Apoquel is a veterinary medication used to control aptopic dermatitis and pruritus (itching) from allergic dermatitis in dogs of atleast 12 months in age.  This medication has been used to reduce the itchiness caused by flea infestations, and it is considered to be highly effective in dogs, and has been established as a safe medication for short term use.

Take this medication by mouth, however your veterinarian has prescribed.


Before giving your pet this medication, talk with your veterinarian if your pet has any allergies or other known conditions.  This medication is not labelled for use in dogs younger then one years old, due to reports of it causing demodicosis. It should also be avoided in dogs less then 3 kg (6.6lb.)

It also should not be used with dogs that have had a history with cancer.

Side Effects

Side effects in this medication are infrequent, mild, are mostly self-limiting. The most common side effects are gastrointestinal problems (vomiting, diarrhea and appetite loss) and lethargy.  Most of these can sometimes be alleviated by giving the medication with food.

Less common side effects include; diarrhea, pneumonia, infections on skin, ear and/or urinary tract, and histiocytomas (benign tumors). Increase in appetite, aggression and thirst have also been reported.


 What happens if I suddenly stop giving my dog this medication?

There may be a relapse in symptoms as well as side effects. You should speak your vet before stopping taking this medication.


What is the best dosage to take?

The diagnosis with your vet will be able to determine the best dosage for your pets treatment. Work with your vet closely for dosage and dosing schedules.


What happens if I miss a dose?

You should give the missed dose as soon you realize you have forgotten. If the forgotten dose is closer to your pets next scheduled dose, take the next schedule dose to avoid overlapping in dose.


What is the best way to store this medication?

This medication is stored at room temperature, and should be kept away from children . Do not throw away this medication in the wastebasket. If you are uncertain how to dispose of this medication speak with your pharmacist for help in safely disposing of this medication.

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