Immunotherapy for Treating Atopic Dermatitis

Immunotherapy involves slowly exposing your dog to increasing amounts of allergen, which gradually increases their tolerance to the allergen. Minute amounts of allergen are given either through injections or by giving a solution under the tongue (sublingual). Studies have shown a 50% success rate compared to placebo, with up to 60% of dogs showing a good to excellent result.

Pros

• Treatment costs are the same regardless of bodyweight, so immunotherapy is a cost-effective option for large breed dogs. • There are sublingual (under the tongue) and injectable formulations that you can choose from • 60% of dogs show a good to excellent response. • The therapy is tailored to the specific allergen(s) that your dog is reacting to.

Cons

• Immunotherapy can take up to a year to show results. • Your dog must visit a vet practice for regular treatments (usually monthly) • It doesn’t work for every pet • Certain treatments cannot be given alongside immunotherapy, such as steroids. • Dogs can become allergic to new things, necessitating a re-formulation of the immunotherapy