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At a Glance
Active ingredient Oclactinib inhibits receptors that cause skin disorders.
Treatment in the dog's skin therapy.
Relieves intense itchiness from skin disease.
Administered orally twice a day.


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At a Glance
Active ingredient Oclactinib inhibits receptors that cause skin disorders.
Treatment in the dog's skin therapy.
Relieves intense itchiness from skin disease.
Administered orally twice a day.

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Ultimate Guide to Apoquel

Meet the Itchy Skin Reliever: Apoquel!

Apoquel is the veterinarian-approved and FDA-approved dog medication that is used to control a dog 's pruritus (i.e., itchiness) from skin disease caused by allergic and atopic dermatitis. Apoquel is a twice-daily, oral tablet for up to 14-day skin therapy to guarantee your pup 's comfort.

What is Apoquel?

Apoquel is a medication that treats a dog 's skin disease which causes intense itching. Pruritus is the medical term for itching and scratching in dogs that is commonly associated with skin disorders from flea dermatitis and other allergic skin diseases.

What causes skin disease in dogs?

Skin disease is most often caused by dermatitis or other allergens, in which dog owners need to seek veterinary care.

Flea allergy, atopic, and contact (e.g., soaps and perfumes) dermatitis are very common causes of skin disease in dogs. Additionally, seasonal environmental allergies, food allergies, and sarcoptic mange from mites cause skin disease and irritation in pups.

How does skin disease appear?

Skin disease appears as red, inflamed areas of skin may lead to a common bacterial skin infection in dogs called pyoderma. If severe enough, the dog may develop hair loss, scabs, and bleeding skin from self-trauma.

Is it easy to treat skin diseases?

It can be very challenging and frustrating for both dog owners and veterinarians to treat skin disease. To diagnose the specific cause of itching on a dog, several tests and treatments are necessary for weeks to months. The tests may be skin scrapings and skin cytology to look for mites (e.g., mange), other insects, or various infections.

Varied treatments, such as Apoquel, can aid in relieving skin irritability, pain, and development from a dog 's self-trauma.

How does Apoquel work?

Apoquel targets a key itch signal in the dog 's nervous system that allows your veterinarian to diagnose the underlying cause of itch while providing your dog with relief. Brand Apoquel 's active ingredient is Oclactinib, its trade name.

Oclactinib inhibits the activity of signal transducer JAK (Janus kinase) that causes inflammatory diseases. This then prevents the expression of inflammatory cytokines under the skin that causes skin disease and itchiness.

How is Apoquel for dogs administered?

Apoquel is an oral pill administered twice a day. Apoquel dosing provides 3.6 mg, 5.4 mg, or 16 mg of oclacitinib per tablet, and each manufactured bottle is packaged with 20 counts or 100 counts of scored tablets. See the dosage chart below where the size of the tablet is perfectly suited for your dog 's size:

Body Weight

Apoquel 3.6 mg

Apoquel 5.4 mg

Apoquel 16 mg

6.6 to 9.9 lbs.

Half (0.5 tablets)

10 to 14.9 lbs.

Half (0.5 tablets)

15 to 19.9 lbs.

One tablet

20 to 29.9 lbs.

One tablet

30 to 44.9 lbs.

Half (0.5 tablets)

45 to 53.9 lbs.

Half (0.5 tablets)

Half (0.5 tablets)

54 to 59.9 lbs.

Half (0.5 tablets)

Half (0.5 tablets)

60 to 89.9 lbs.

One tablet

90 to 129.9 lbs.

One and a Half (1.5 tablets)

130 to 175.9 lbs.

Two tablets

What are the precautions to which you should be aware?

Apoquel is not for use in dogs that are:

  • Less than 12 months of age.
  • Breeding
  • Pregnant
  • Lactating
  • Suffering from serious infections
  • Susceptible to infection

This product is for oral use in dogs ONLY, not for humans or children. This also means that you must wash your hands immediately after administering pills.

Taking Apoquel in combination with systemic immunosuppressive agents medications has not been evaluated yet. However, Apoquel for dogs has been safely used in conjunction with antibiotics, parasiticides, and vaccinations.

What are the Apoquel side effects of which you should be aware?

Apoquel 's most common adverse reactions reported are vomiting and diarrhea. Dogs should be monitored for the potential development of infections, such as neoplasia or demodicosis.

Frequently Asked Questions
  1. What is the Apoquel dosage?

    The dosage of Apoquel tablets should be 0.18 to 0.27 milligrams per pound. Apoquel should be given twice daily for up to 14 days of therapy. The medication can be taken with or without food. However, the product can be taken for the short term or long term, according to your veterinarian.

  2. What do the Apoquel reviews say?

    Apoquel reviews rate at 5 out of 5 stars. Most reviewers say that Apoquel is a miracle worker because it reduces and eliminates their dog 's itchiness and improves their dog 's quality of life.

  3. Is Apoquel for puppies?

    Apoquel can be administered to young dogs that are at least 12 months of age and are at least weighing 6.6 pounds.

  4. How long does it take for Apoquel to work?

    After administration, relief starts taking effect after four hours and then is fully controlled after 24 hours.

Concluding Thoughts

The most important thing that you should know about Apoquel is its power to improve your dog 's quality of life as it relieves intense itching, scratching, and painful developments on the dog 's skin.

DISCLAIMER: FDA law restricts Apoquel only on order or prescription of a licensed veterinarian for the best pet health care advice. Ask your veterinarian or consult with one of our pet care specialists at 1-800-844-1427. This informative article is not meant to substitute for the diagnosis, treatment, and professional advice from your veterinarian or other qualified professionals regarding a medical condition. Ask your veterinarian if you should keep using the veterinarian product.

  • Zoetis Manufacturer
  • Zoetis Brand
  • Skin & Coat Pharmacy
  • Allergy Relief Pharmacy
  • Oral Application
  • Dog Pet Type

Is Apoquel the Same as Benadryl?

No, Apoquel is not the same as Benadryl. While both Benadryl and Apoquel tablets are used as dog itching medication, they have a major difference. Dog allergy medication, Apoquel, is an anti-itching pill for dogs who are over a year old. Benadryl on the other hand can be used as dog medications for itching for puppies under 12-months of age, as well as dogs over a year old. Hence, Benadryl is not an Apoquel alternative, even though an Apoquel tablet works the same as its counterpart.

How Long Can a Dog Take Apoquel?

You can continue an Apoquel dose for both short and long-term conditions. The FDA has not put any restriction on these pills regarding how long you can use them. Ideally, your vet will examine the dog and how it is making progress healthwise to let you know how long you should be using that medication. Clinical studies have used Apoquel for up to 2 years on adult dogs. However, this itching medication is not for pups that are under 12-months of age.

Can I Buy Apoquel Without a Vet Prescription?

No, you cannot buy Apoquel without a vet prescription. Apoquel is used to fight dog allergies and itching. It is a prescription medication, and as the FDA states, these types of drugs or medications can in no way be sold without authorization from a licensed vet. If any drugstore is willing to sell Apoquel to you without seeing a licensed vetโ€™s prescription, they are doing so illegally. Avoid these stores and buy Apoquel only when you have been prescribed by a vet.

Can I Just Stop Giving My Dog Apoquel?

Yes, you can just stop giving your dog Apoquel. Many drugs or steroids, however, cannot be stopped all of a sudden. You have to slowly lower the dosage over time, and then eventually stop giving the drug. With Apoquel, you can simply stop the dosage whenever you feel like it or as prescribed by your vet. Your dog is unlikely to show any withdrawal symptoms, but you will have to restart the dosage if the itching returns.

Is Apoquel Safe Long Term?

Yes, Apoquel is safe for long-term use. The FDA has no restrictions regarding how long you can use Apoquel. However, studies show that you can use Apoquel on dogs for up to two years. Your vet will determine how long you actually need to continue the Apoquel dosage.

Can I Give My Dog Apoquel Every Other Day?

Yes, you can give your dog Apoquel every other day, but only if that is what the vet prescribes. Generally, the dosage requires two pills a day for 14 days.

Will Apoquel Make a Dog Sleepy?

Drowsiness is one of the known Apoquel side effects in dogs. So yes, this drug will make your dog sleepy. Other side effects of Apoquel include vomiting, diarrhea, and anorexia. Besides, your dog will also start getting thirsty more easily and will feel tired. These side effects are somewhat mild, and will not need vet consultation unless things get worse. However, many adverse side effects like skin disorders or pneumonia are also possible. Urgent veterinary care will be needed if you notice these effects.

Can I Give My Dog 2 Apoquel?

Yes, you can give your dog 2 Apoquel pills for itching, but only for 14 days at a stretch. The FDA has not approved the two-pill dosage for any longer than 14 days.

Can Apoquel Cause Anxiety in Dogs?

Apoquel is not known to cause anxiety in dogs. However, there are other side effects of Apoquel in dogs including vomiting, diarrhea, anorexia, lethargy, drowsiness, and an increase in thirst.

Can Apoquel cause gastrointestinal side effects in dogs?

Yes, Apoquel has been known to cause gastrointestinal side effects in dogs. Apoquel's most typical gastrointestinal adverse effects are nausea, diarrhea, and decreased appetite. In clinical trials, these side effects were reported in approximately 10% of dogs receiving Apoquel.

Can Apoquel be used if my dog has a history of seizures?

Yes, but it should be used under control in dogs with a history of seizures. While Apoquel is not known to directly cause seizures, it can potentially lower the seizure threshold in some dogs, especially at higher doses. This means that dogs with a history of seizures may be more susceptible to experiencing seizures while taking Apoquel.

Can Apoquel be used in dogs with a history of cancer?

The use of Apoquel (active ingredient: oclacitinib) in dogs with a history of cancer should be approached with caution and discussed with a veterinarian. Apoquel works by suppressing the immune system and reducing inflammation, which can be beneficial in the treatment of allergic dermatitis in dogs. However, because it affects the immune system, there is concern that it could potentially promote the growth and spread of cancer cells in dogs. If a dog with a history of cancer requires treatment for allergic dermatitis, alternative treatments should be considered.

Can Apoquel be given with other medications?

Apoquel can be administered together with other drugs, but it's vital to speak with a veterinarian before doing so. This is due to the possibility of drug interactions between Apoquel and other drugs, which might raise the likelihood of side effects or decrease the drug's efficacy. Apoquel, for instance, may interact with immune system suppressants such as corticosteroids or cyclosporine. These drugs may raise the risk of infection or lessen Apoquel's ability to treat allergic dermatitis.

How should I store Apoquel?

Apoquel (active ingredient: oclacitinib) should be stored at room temperature, between 68-77°F (20-25°C). It has to be stored in the original container and away from moisture and harsh sunlight. Apoquel should also be kept out of the reach of children and animals.

How long does Apoquel last in the dogโ€™s system?

The effects of Apoquel (active ingredient: oclacitinib) typically last for 24 hours after a single dose, meaning that it is generally given once daily. However, the duration of the medication in a dog's system can vary depending on several factors, including the dog's individual metabolism and the dose administered.

Can Apoquel be used to treat allergies in humans?

No, Apoquel (oclacitinib, the active ingredient) is not licensed for use in treating allergies or any other medical conditions in humans. Apoquel is a prescription drug that was created and approved expressly for use in dogs to treat the itching and inflammation brought on by allergic dermatitis.

Is Apoquel the same as antihistamines prescribed for humans?

No, Apoquel is not the same as antihistamines prescribed for humans. While both medications can be used to treat allergic reactions, they have different mechanisms of action and are intended for different species.

Can Apoquel be used to treat other skin conditions in dogs?

Apoquel (active ingredient: oclacitinib) is specifically indicated for the treatment of allergic dermatitis and pruritus (itching) in dogs. It works by inhibiting certain enzymes in the immune system that are involved in the development of allergic reactions. While Apoquel is not approved for the treatment of other skin conditions in dogs, it may be used off-label by veterinarians to manage certain skin conditions that are associated with inflammation and itching.

Can home remedies be used to treat skin diseases in dogs?

Home remedies such as regular bathing, omega-3 fatty acids, and coconut oil can help alleviate some symptoms associated with skin diseases in dogs, but they are not a substitute for veterinary care.

Can skin diseases in dogs be contagious to humans?

Some skin conditions in dogs can spread to people while others cannot. Skin disorders caused by parasites such as fleas, ticks, and mites, as well as fungal and bacterial infections, can be spread from dogs to humans through direct contact with affected skin or hair, or through contaminated things such as beds, brushes, and toys. Ringworm, sarcoptic mange, and scabies are a few canine infectious skin conditions that may spread to people. Similar symptoms to those seen in dogs due to these illnesses in people include skin irritation, itching, and redness.

Can stress cause skin diseases in dogs?

Stress can contribute to the development of skin diseases in dogs. Just like humans, dogs can experience stress, and when they do, it can affect their physical health. Stress can weaken a dog's immune system, making it more susceptible to infections and other health issues.

APOQUELยฎ should not be used in dogs less than 12 months of age or in dogs with serious infections. APOQUEL may increase susceptibility to infection and demodicosis and may exacerbate neoplastic conditions. APOQUEL has not been evaluated in combination with systemic immunosuppressive agents such as glucocorticoids or cyclosporine. APOQUEL should not be used in breeding dogs or pregnant or lactating dogs. The most common APOQUEL side effects in dogs post-administration were vomiting and diarrhea. APOQUEL has been safely used in conjunction with other common medications including antibiotics and parasiticides and with vaccinations.

The dose of APOQUEL tablets is 0.18 to 0.27 mg/lb (0.4 to 0.6 mg/kg) APOQUEL should be given twice daily for up to 14 days of therapy and once daily thereafter for maintenance APOQUEL may be given with or without food APOQUEL may be used concomitantly with many common therapies including vaccines, NSAIDs, antibiotics and allergen immunotherapy3

Keep Apoquel safely secured at room temperature.

Apoquel is manufactured by Zoetis

How to Order Prescriptions Online

1. Find the Right Product

Make sure it matches your pets prescription. Donโ€™t forget to compare the dosage for pills/capsules!

2. Add to Cart

Just like any other online store. Make sure the quantity matches whatโ€™s been prescribed by your vetinarian.

3. Tell Us About Your Pet and Vet

Answer some questions during checkout and weโ€™ll contact your vet and verify the prescription for you. You can also mail us the written prescription.

4. Thatโ€™s It!

If the prescription has any refills, processing your future orders for that medication can be expedited.

Related Articles

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How Apoquel Can Help and Tips for Pet Owners

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Atopy in Dogs: Causes, Diagnosis, and Treatment

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Apoquel for Dogs

The Relief for Itchy Skin

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