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Vet Dermatol. 2012 Jun;23(3):228-e47. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-3164.2012.01054.x.

Owner assessment of therapeutic interventions for canine atopic dermatitis: a long-term retrospective analysis.

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  • 1Animal Dermatology Clinic, 3901 East 82nd Street, Indianapolis, IN 46240, USA.



Canine atopic dermatitis is a frequent diagnosis in veterinary medicine; however, the long-term prognosis for canine atopic dermatitis has not been evaluated in a systematic fashion.


To compare the relative efficacy of commonly used therapies for canine atopic dermatitis in two groups of dogs over 5 and 10 year time periods.


Dogs were identified from the medical record database of a privately owned veterinary dermatology practice in the USA.


Clients completed a four-part, 28-question, Internet-based survey. Surveys were included in the analysis if one entire section was completed. Each question was completed independently of the answers to other questions.


Several respondents failed to complete all questions. Some respondents answered similar questions with contradictory answers. Each question was analysed individually. A total of 136 owner surveys were completed, 39 from the 10 year and 97 from the 5 year study dogs. Eighty-five of 135 respondents indicated that their pet was receiving some form of medical therapy for atopic dermatitis at the time of the survey. Thirty of 90 respondents (33.3%) indicated that their dog improved during a dietary trial. Five dogs met the study's definition for clinical cure. All five of these dogs had been treated with allergen-specific immunotherapy.


This study revealed that clients believe antihistamines can be a useful part of multimodal therapy for canine atopic dermatitis. The results also demonstrated that a significant number of canines benefited from dietary modification. In addition, allergen-specific immunotherapy was the only treatment to induce true clinical remission of atopic dermatitis.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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