• Home
  • News

Actress Kate Walsh Encourages Dog Owners to Share Their Dog’s “A-Game” to Help Bring Attention to Allergic Dog Itch

Show Us Your Dog’s A-Game will support police, military and service dogs through the K-9 Courage Program from Zoetis Petcare

Wednesday, July 31, 2019 8:30 am EDT


"I’m excited to be partnering with Zoetis to help spread the word about Itchy Pet Awareness Month and skin allergies in dogs. I’ve experienced first-hand how worrisome it is to witness your dog’s itching get in the way of doing the things he or she loves"

PARSIPPANY, N.J.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Zoetis, the leading global animal health company, today announced it is teaming up with actress and animal lover Kate Walsh1 to help dogs feel their best and stay on their A-Game. The Show Us Your Dog’s A-Game campaign brings awareness to how skin diseases and allergies affect a dog’s well-being, and encourages pet owners to visit their veterinarians who can provide the right treatment to bring back their dogs’ A-Games.

Timed with the inaugural “Itchy Pet Awareness Month” in August, Zoetis encourages dog owners to share photos or videos of their dogs’ A-Games on social media using the #MyDogsAGame hashtag. Each post will trigger a $10 donation2 by Zoetis Petcare (a U.S. business unit of Zoetis) to its K-9 Courage Program, which provides healthcare assistance to retired military and police dogs, as well as active service dogs that assist veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress. Posts may also be featured on an interactive gallery on www.MyDogsAGame.com, where dog owners can learn more about allergic dog itch.

“I’m excited to be partnering with Zoetis to help spread the word about Itchy Pet Awareness Month and skin allergies in dogs. I’ve experienced first-hand how worrisome it is to witness your dog’s itching get in the way of doing the things he or she loves,” said Walsh, whose dog, Rosie, is treated with APOQUEL® (oclacitinib tablet) to manage her allergic skin disease. “When I first noticed Rosie’s symptoms, I decided to take her to the veterinarian – and I’m so glad that I did! I was relieved to find a treatment that stopped her allergic itch at the source. APOQUEL has helped bring Rosie’s A-Game back; she’s now able to enjoy long walks and giving high-tens to new friends.”

Itching is the number one reason for veterinary visits by dogs3, yet millions of dogs continue to suffer because their owners underestimate the severity or frequency of their dog’s itching and do not seek medical care that could help their dogs. An occasional itch may be quite normal, but it should never interrupt activities, or cause hair loss or skin damage. It also should not occur often enough that it is bothersome to the dog owner or cause a break in the human-animal bond.

“If left untreated, your dog’s allergic skin disease can lead to worsening symptoms that require further medical care and can impact its quality of life. It’s important to talk to your veterinarian if your dog’s itching gets in the way of everyday activities,” said Andrew Hillier, BVSc, MANZCVS, DACVD, Veterinary Specialty Operations and Veterinary Medical Lead – Dermatology for Zoetis Petcare. “The good news is that your veterinarian can prescribe APOQUEL, a safe and effective treatment to help stop allergic itch at its source to help your dog return to normal. It can help your dog in as soon as four hours, and unlike over-the-counter remedies, APOQUEL provides long-term effective itch relief as well as decreases inflammation, redness, or swelling of the skin.”

It’s common for pet owners to try over-the-counter treatments such as antihistamines or oatmeal baths; however, these often are not effective in providing the necessary relief.

Zoetis has an industry-leading dermatology portfolio of safe and effective treatments to address the unique needs of dogs, including two targeted therapies – APOQUEL and CYTOPOINT® – to treat allergic itch. APOQUEL is a daily oral medication that stops allergic itch at the source for dogs 12 months of age and older. It works quickly, in as few as four hours, for all types of allergic dermatitis, including food and environmental allergies. CYTOPOINT is an injection that provides long-lasting relief for dogs of all ages with atopic and allergic dermatitis that is administered at the veterinarian’s office.


APOQUEL was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in May 2013 and is the first and only Janus kinase (JAK) inhibitor approved for veterinary use. Unlike over-the-counter treatments such as shampoos and antihistamines which often do not provide necessary relief, or corticosteroids which cause short-term side effects such as increased hunger, thirst and frequent urination4, APOQUEL is the only treatment specifically designed to go straight to the source of the itch. The most common side effects in a short-term clinical study were vomiting and diarrhea.5 APOQUEL starts to relieve the itch within 4 hours6,7 and effectively controls the itch within 24 hours.5 Clinical studies have shown that APOQUEL provides rapid relief from itching and improves inflammation8,9 in dogs that suffer from allergies. APOQUEL is not a steroid. For more information, please visit www.APOQUELdogs.com .

APOQUEL is the Law Enforcement and Arson category sponsor for the 2019 American Humane Hero Dog Awards®, an annual campaign that recognizes heroes on both ends of the leash. Learn more at www.herodogawards.org .


Do not use APOQUEL in dogs less than 12 months of age or those with serious infections. APOQUEL may increase the chances of developing serious infections, and may cause existing parasitic skin infestations or pre-existing cancers to get worse. APOQUEL has not been tested in dogs receiving some medications including some commonly used to treat skin conditions such as corticosteroids and cyclosporine. Do not use in breeding, pregnant, or lactating dogs. Most common side effects are vomiting and diarrhea. APOQUEL has been used safely with many common medications including parasiticides, antibiotics and vaccines. For more information, please see the full Prescribing Information at https://www.APOQUELdogs.com/APOQUEL_pi.pdf .


CYTOPOINT is a ready-to-use, sterile liquid injectable containing a monoclonal antibody specifically designed to target and neutralize cytokine interleukin-31 (IL-31), a key cytokine (protein important in cell to cell communication) involved in triggering the itch associated with canine allergic dermatitis. CYTOPOINT works by mimicking the activity of natural antibodies to selectively bind and neutralize IL-31, thus interrupting the itch cycle in atopic dogs. It begins working within 1 day and delivers 4 to 8 weeks of relief from the clinical signs of canine atopic dermatitis, allowing the damaged skin the chance to heal. It is safe for dogs of any age, even those with concomitant diseases, and can be used with many common medications. Cytopoint has been shown to be effective for the treatment of dogs against allergic dermatitis and atopic dermatitis. For more information, please visit http://www.CYTOPOINT4dogs.com .

About the K-9 Courage Program

The K-9 Courage Program from Zoetis Petcare provides financial donations to support retired police and military K-9s. Program contributions help assure caregivers that these courageous and loyal dogs continue to live happy and healthy lives. K-9 Courage also supports American Humane’s Pups4Patriots™ Program, which trains service dogs for veterans suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress and Traumatic Brain Injury. If you’d like to learn more or link to the program, the site is www.k-9courage.com .

About Zoetis

Zoetis is the leading animal health company, dedicated to supporting its customers and their businesses. Building on more than 65 years of experience in animal health, Zoetis discovers, develops, manufactures and commercializes medicines, vaccines and diagnostic products, which are complemented by biodevices, genetic tests and a range of services. Zoetis serves veterinarians, livestock producers and people who raise and care for farm and companion animals with sales of its products in more than 100 countries. In 2018, the company generated annual revenue of $5.8 billion with approximately 10,000 employees. For more information, visit www.zoetis.com.

# # #


1 Kate Walsh is a paid spokesperson for Zoetis

2 Donations made to the K-9 Courage Program from Zoetis Petcare will be capped at $25,000

3 Nationwide: Most Common Medical Conditions that Prompt Veterinary Visits.

4 Data on file, Pet Owner Quantitative Market Research, 2013, Zoetis Inc.

5 Cosgrove SB, Wren JA, Cleaver DM, et al. Efficacy and safety of oclacitinib for the control of pruritus and associated skin lesions in dogs with canine allergic dermatitis. Vet Dermatol. 2013;24(5):479-e114. Doi:10.1111/vde.12047.

6 Gadeyne C, Little P, King VL, et al. Efficacy of oclacitinib (APOQUEL®) compared with prednisolone for the control of pruritus and clinical signs associated with allergic dermatitis in client-owned dogs in Australia. Vet Dermatol. 2014;25(6):512-e86. doi:10.1111/vde.12166.

7 Data on file, Study Report No. A161R-AU-12-096, Zoetis Inc.

8 Data on file, Press Release, 2014, Zoetis Inc.

9 Gonzales AJ, Bowman JW, Fici G, et al. Oclacitinib (APOQUEL®) is a novel Janus kinase inhibitor with activity against cytokines involved in allergy. J Vet Pharmacol Ther. 2014;37(4):317-324. doi:10.1111/jvp.12101.

All trademarks are the property of Zoetis Services LLC or a related company or a licensor unless otherwise noted. © 2019 Zoetis Services LLC. All rights reserved. APQ-00868

Multimedia Files:

Preview image


Media Contacts:
Colleen White

Diana Bardusk