Does Cytopoint Cause Cancer? Debunking the Myths and Facts

In recent years, there has been speculation and concerns regarding Cytopoint, a medication commonly prescribed for dogs with allergic conditions, and its potential association with cancer.

Does Cytopoint cause cancer? This article will debunk the myths and provide accurate information about Cytopoint and its relationship with your dog’s health conditions.

What Is Cytopoint?


Cytopoint is a prescription medication used in veterinary medicine to treat dogs with allergic itch conditions.

It is an injectable therapy that neutralizes a specific protein in the body called interleukin-31 (IL-31), which plays a role in triggering itchiness and inflammation associated with allergies.

By blocking the activity of IL-31, Cytopoint helps to alleviate itching and provides relief for canines suffering from conditions such as atopic dermatitis.

A veterinarian administers it, which typically provides relief for several weeks, reducing the need for frequent oral medications or topical treatments.

Still, can CYTOPOINT injections cause cancer in allergic dogs? Let’s unveil the truth!

Does Cytopoint Cause Cancer In Dogs?

Currently, no substantial scientific evidence suggests that Cytopoint causes cancer in dogs.

The concerns regarding a potential link between Cytopoint and cancer are largely based on anecdotal tidbits and individual cases.

It’s important to note that correlation does not necessarily imply causation and further research is needed to establish any conclusive association.

Suppose you have concerns about the potential risks or adverse effects of Cytopoint or any other medication.

Discussing them with your veterinarian is crucial to get accurate information and ensure the pet’s well-being.

How To Safely Use Cytopoint For Dogs? 


Is CYTOPOINT really safe for dogs? To safely use Cytopoint for dogs, following specific guidelines and consulting with a veterinarian throughout treatment is important.

Here are some key considerations:

Veterinary Consultation

Before using Cytopoint for your dog, it is best to schedule a veterinary consultation.

They will assess your dog’s health condition, check its history of cancer, conduct a thorough examination, do allergy testing, and determine if the medicine is one of the appropriate treatment options.

When I took my pooch to the vet, they also took other factors into account.

They asked me about his conditions and further checked my dog’s medical history, any underlying conditions, potential drug interactions, allergic reactions, itch signals, or adverse side effects.

A veterinary consultation ensures that Cytopoint injection is administered safely and effectively, tailored to your dog’s needs.

Remember, your veterinarian’s expertise and guidance are invaluable in determining the best course of action for your furry friend’s well-being.

Proper Administration

  • Trained Professional: Do not attempt to administer the injection yourself unless instructed and prepared by your veterinarian.
  • Injection Technique: The veterinarian will determine the appropriate size and technique for administration to guarantee proper absorption and effectiveness.
  • Timing of Administration: Do after the recommended schedule to control your dog’s allergic symptoms consistently.
  • Storage and Handling: Comply with any specific storage requirements, such as refrigeration, to maintain the integrity and potency of the medication.

Adhere to Dosage Instructions

Cytopoint is usually prescribed as an injection, and the dosage is measured in milligrams (mg).

The recommended daily dosing may vary, but it is typically given as a single injection every 4 to 8 weeks.

Your veterinarian will determine the exact dosage and frequency based on your dog’s needs.

It is significant to strictly adhere to the immunosuppressive drug instructions your veterinarian provides.

Never adjust the dosing protocol without consulting your vet first, as it may create adverse reactions and interfere with the effectiveness of the treatment.

Monitor for Side Effects

Is CYTOPOINT safe long term? Although uncommon, some canines may experience some potential side effects from this allergy treatment:

  • Injection site reactions: Pay attention to the area where the injection was administered. Look for signs of redness, swelling, or irritation.
  • Allergic reactions: Watch for signs of an allergic response, such as severe itching, hives, facial swelling, difficulty breathing, or vomiting.
  • Behavioral changes: While rare, some dogs may exhibit temporary changes in behavior, such as lethargy, restlessness, or increased thirst.
  • Other possible side effects: Other potential side consequences may include gastrointestinal disturbances (diarrhea or vomiting), ear canal infections, decreased white blood cells, or mild transient muscle pain.

I will dive deeper into the most popular side effects in the next part.

Regular Veterinary Check-ups

Regular veterinary check-ups allow your veterinarian to adjust the effectiveness of the treatment and make any necessary changes.

They also help detect potential medical conditions early on and provide preventive care measures such as vaccinations and parasite screenings.

Moreover, frequent check-ups ensure that any side effects or concerns can be addressed promptly, and your veterinarian can offer ongoing guidance and support throughout the treatment process.

Combination With Other Medications

If your dog is taking any other medications or supplements, it’s crucial to inform your veterinarian. Here’s why:

  • Avoiding drug interactions: By disclosing all the medications your puppy is taking, including prescription drugs, over-the-counter medicines, and supplements, you can evaluate potential interactions and make appropriate recommendations.
  • Optimizing treatment outcomes: The vet can assess the compatibility of different veterinary medicines and design a comprehensive treatment plan to maximize the benefits and ensure your dog’s safety.
  • Minimizing risks: Informing your veterinarian about other medications your dog takes helps reduce the risk of unintended side effects or adverse reactions.
  • Addressing specific health conditions: If your pet has underlying health conditions requiring additional medications, consider the interaction between Cytopoint and these drugs.

What Are the Common Side Effects Of Cytopoint?


Although severe allergic reactions to Cytopoint are extremely rare, however, there are some typical allergen specific immunotherapy side effects you should learn:

Mild Reactions

Mild reactions are among the potential side effects of Cytopoint in dogs.

I notice that these reactions typically occur at the point of injection on my pooch’s skin, including redness, swelling, or itchiness. I usually bathe my dog in vinegar to soothe these symptoms.

While these symptoms can be concerning, they are usually temporary and resolve independently without intervention.

However, if the mild reactions persist or worsen, you should call your veterinarian for further guidance and assessment.

Gastrointestinal Issues

Some puppies may experience digestive disturbances such as vomiting, diarrhea, or changes in appetite. These symptoms can run from mild to moderate in severity.

Gastrointestinal issues can be caused by various factors, including the animal’s sensitivity to the medication or underlying gastrointestinal conditions.

If your pet experiences persistent or severe vomiting or diarrhea or shows signs of dehydration, such as excessive thirst or decreased urination, it is crucial to consult the doctor.


Lethargy is another common side effect that may occur in dogs treated with Cytopoint.

It refers to reduced energy or increased tiredness, where dogs may appear sluggish, lack interest in their usual activities or exhibit decreased responsiveness.

For example, I see my dog suddenly hesitating to jump up after taking Cytopoint. Lethargy can vary in severity, ranging from mild fatigue to more pronounced weakness.

Importantly, note that some degree of lethargy can be expected after receiving any clinical trial, including Cytopoint, as the body adjusts to the treatment.

However, if the lethargy is severe, persists for a couple of days, or is accompanied by other concerning symptoms, it is crucial to take your pet to the vet.


What Should I Do If I Notice Any Unusual Symptoms After My Dog Receives Cytopoint?

If you notice any unusual symptoms in your dog after they receive Cytopoint, contact your veterinarian immediately.

Please provide them with details about the signs and follow their recommendations.

Additionally, once the symptoms are severe or life-threatening, seek emergency care and record the symptoms and any changes in your pet’s condition for further essential treatment.

Is Cytopoint FDA-Approved And Vet Recommended?

Yes, Cytopoint is FDA-approved for animal use and is recommended by veterinarians.

It has undergone extensive testing and evaluation to demonstrate its safety and efficacy in managing allergic skin diseases in dogs.

What Is The Difference Between Cytopoint vs. Apoquel?

Apoquel and Cytopoint are medications commonly used to control and treat allergic skin diseases in canines, but they have some key differences.

  • Mechanism of Action: Cytopoint is a monoclonal antibody, specifically working with and neutralizing a protein named IL-31 (interleukin-31), which plays a role in the itchy sensation.

Apoquel, on the other hand, is an oral medication that inhibits certain enzymes taking part in the allergic response.

  • Administration: Cytopoint is administered via injection by a veterinarian, typically once a month. Apoquel is an oral tablet that the veterinarian can give daily or as directed.
  • Duration of Action: Cytopoint provides long-lasting relief from the itch and allergic symptoms for 4-8 weeks with a single injection.

Apoquel provides shorter-term comfort and needs to be given daily or as prescribed by the veterinarian.

  • Side Effects: Cytopoint has a favorable safety profile with minimal known side effects.

Apoquel, while generally well-tolerated, may have side effects such as gastrointestinal upset, being more vulnerable to infections, and a potential impact on the immune system.

  • Treatment Focus: Cytopoint primarily targets itch relief and allergic symptoms associated with atopic dermatitis.

Apoquel is broader in its effects, targeting multiple aspects of the allergic response, including itching, inflammation, and immune-mediated reactions.


Does Cytopoint cause cancer? After analyzing the available evidence, there is currently no substantial scientific evidence linking this allergic treatment option to an increased risk of cancer in dogs.

As always, it is crucial to consult with your veterinarian, who can provide expert advice tailored to your pet’s individual needs and medical history.

By staying informed and relying on reliable sources, you can make informed decisions about your pets’ healthcare and ensure their well-being.


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Hi I am Mitchell. Dog Growth is a blog about dog caring and training where I share my experiences to my community. Hope you enjoy it!

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