The major flashpoint arrived in the 76th-minute when referee Lee Mason pointed to the penalty spot after Florent Hadergjonaj had tumbled in the box.
Several Cardiff players rushed towards Mason's assistant in the corner and the referee soon made his way there for a conversation.
Mason then dramatically reversed his decision and penalised Hadergjonaj for fouling Joe Bennett rather than the other way round, much to the bemusement of Huddersfield manager David Wagner on the touchline.
"I really can't find the words how this can happen," Wagner said.
"The fourth official had no idea either, he was a surprised as everyone else was. Decisions like this make tables and seasons. We have had so many decisions against us and I don't know why.
"It was clearly a penalty, the video footage speaks for itself and we have not got it."
Although this draw stopped the rot of eight successive league losses, this point will do little to allay the fears that Huddersfield are destined for the drop.
"The boys left everything on the grass, and only one team deserved something out of the game," Wagner said. "One point is not enough, we needed to win."