The veteran English striker prompted a fiery reaction from Manchester City defender Nicolas Otamendi when he appeared to throw back his arm midway through the second half of the Black Cats' eventual 1-0 home loss on Tuesday night.
Otamendi and fellow Argentine Martin Demichelis both pointed the finger at Defoe in the wake of the incident but Allardyce feels that perhaps the South American duo were making the absolute most of the scenario.
"The referee was so lenient with Man City, it was untrue today, as they committed 16 fouls and it took 13 fouls before he booked one of their players," he said on Sky Sports.
"We committed four fouls before he booked the first player for us in the second half. So I thought the ref was extremely lenient for Man City and not us.
"Jermain Defoe does not elbow people on purpose, not at all, so they make a big fuss about it, don't they? And that is what they do, but that is mostly foreign players, they do make a big fuss about it.
"That is in their nature, I am not saying… that is the way they are brought up, they react more volatilely to incidents like that than we do. But we accept that and I do not think Jermain Defoe intentionally caught him with his elbow."