10-24-2017, 02:11 PM
Join Date: Oct 2017
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Itching, fungal ear infections & Apoquel
Last Spring I had my then-2 yr old neutered male St. Bernard to the vet for a rather nasty fungal ear infection and when the vet noticed that he was scratching a little and licking at his paws a little, he surmised he had allergies and placed him on Apoquel. There were never any wounds, hot spots and/or missing hair but the vet said the allergies were contributing to the development of the fungal ear infections and the Apoquel would stop them.
I was able to stop the Apoquel over the winter once the grass died but we were back to the Apoquel (and another fungal ear infection) in April when the grass started taking off again.
The scratching has been reduced and he doesn't lick at his feet as much on the Apoquel but I've noticed that he's getting the fungal ear infections more & more frequently lately. He's had 2 more since the one in April! Although he's not had any (known) side-effects to this point, I've never been all that comfortable with him being on the Apoquel because of the ugly things I've heard about the drug. Also, I'm spending $200/mo. on this med!! I tried transitioning him to Benadryl but the itching returned...although, looking at the antihistamine dosing list someone posted, it looks like I had been under-dosing him as I was only giving him (140lbs/ approx. 64 kg) 75mg twice daily & @ the 2-4mg/kg that is recommended he was under the minimum dose of 125mg twice a day.
Are fungal ear infections an indication for starting Apoquel? I love my vet and usually agree with him 100% but it bothers me that he went straight to Apoquel without trying anything else "safer". I would really feel more comfortable getting my dog off of Apoquel, not only for his health but the health of my wallet! I'm going to try transitioning to Benadryl again using the higher dosage but is there a different OTC antihistamine that works better than Benadryl? Can I reduce his exposure/dose of Apoquel by supplementing with Benadryl? Is there something special, beyond general ear care, that I should be doing to help prevent these fungal infections?