Ask a Dog Vet and Get Answers to Your Dog Health Questions
Hello I am Dr. Joey. Thanks for trusting me to help you and your pet today. I am a licensed veterinarian with over 15 years of experience. I look forward to working with you.
This is a tough question. The bot***** *****ne is we do NOT use this drug routinely for dog cancer. There are not good studies to prove it helps/works in either the pet literature or people literature, and like all chemotherapy drugs carries its own level of potential side effects. Well controlled prospective clinical trials are needed before reasonable advice can be given as to the clinical value of interferons for the treatment of a number of problems, including cancer.
I have heard of it rarely used for oral melanoma (not sure what type of cancer your dog has), but there is no data on efficacy in melanomas (or other cancers) in dogs. If considering use of this drug I would first consult your pet's oncologist to see how it would fit into your pet's current treatment protocol. Second, I would recommend carefully read the human literature on efficacy. Although it is definitely used for this type of cancer, I do not think it has been found to be that effective in the treatment of people that have developed metastatic disease (spread of the tumor throughout the body). Like many melanoma treatments, there are for sure individuals (people) who have responded, but it may not be the majority. It certainly is reasonable to try in dogs, but I would not expect a magical cure.