Medication Don'ts

Pain Medication and NSAIDs

Aspirin, Advil, Tylenol, Motrin, Ibuprofen, Aleve and all other over the counter pain medications are all dangerous to use on pets at home. While some of these products are specifically prescribed for particular problems for pets from time to time, they should never be indiscriminately used because their margin of safety is very narrow and their side effects are many - some of which can be fatal.

Antihistamines with Decongestants

Anti-histamines are often given to pets for allergy issues however they should never be used if combined with decongestants as the decongestants are toxic.

Xylitol

This artificial sweetener is used in many medications, particularly children’s products and is toxic to pets so always make sure you read the ingredients in human products at home.

Medication Do's

Antihistamines

These can be given to pets for allergic reactions or insect stings.
Diphenhydramine or Benadryl is given at a dose rate of 1 mg per pound up to 50 mg. Dogs up to 10 lbs can take ½ of a child’s 12.5 mg dose; pets 10 lbs to 20 lbs can take one 12.5 mg child’s dose; dogs 20 - 45 lbs can take a full 25 mg dose and dogs over 45 lbs can take 50 mg. The dose can be repeated every 12 hours for up to 2 - 3 days but if you are needing it for more than 3 days, or if any additional symptoms develop, our office should be contacted for a veterinary visit.

Claritin and Zyrtec can be given as a daily dose of 5 mg for pets under 30 lb pets and 10 mg for dogs over 30 lbs. The dose can be repeated every 24 hours for up to 2 - 3 days but if you are needing it for more than 3 days, or if any additional symptoms develop, our office should be contacted for a veterinary visit.

Imodium AD (Loperamide)

Imodium can be given for diarrhea in many pets, however some specific breeds like sight hounds and collies can be particularly sensitive to it. Liquid Imodium can is used at a dose of ¼ teaspoon full for pets under 10 lbs; ½ teaspoon full for pets 10 - 20 lbs; pets 20 lbs - 40 lbs can take one 2 mg capsule; pets over 40 mg can be given two 2 mg tablets or capsules. This does can be repeated every 8 hours till diarrhea subsides for up to 3 doses - if diarrhea still persists or if any additional symptoms develop such as vomiting, lethargy or loss of appetite, our office should be contacted for a veterinary visit. Note: Imodium does not typically resolve nausea or vomiting.

Pepto Bismol

Pepto Bismol can also be used for diarrhea at a liquid dose of 1 teaspoon full for pets up to 15 lbs, and 1 tablet for pets 15 lbs to 30 lbs and 2 tablets for pets over 30 lbs. It can be repeated every 8 hours for up to 6 doses - if diarrhea still persists or if any additional symptoms develop such as vomiting, lethargy or loss of appetite, our office should be contacted for a veterinary visit. Pepto Bismol does not typically resolve nausea or vomiting.

Motion Sickness Pills

Dramamine (dimenhydrinate) or Bonine (Meclizine) can all be given to pets for motion sickness. Note: these products DO NOT resolve any other cause of vomiting. Either one can be given at a dose of ½ tablet for pets under 25 pounds and 1 table for all bigger pets. Bonine or Meclinzine is given daily but Dramamine (Dimenhydrinate) can be repeated every 12 hours for up to 2 doses. Both should be given 30 - 60 minutes prior to travel.

If your pet is vomiting from any cause other than motion sickness - call our office for a veterinary visit and treatment.


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