Can I Give My Dog Carprofen?
As a dog parent, your pain in seeing your four-legged friend suffering from inflammation is not easy. You want to do everything you can to ease your dog’s pain, as your pooch’s well-being is important to you. Your dog provides you comfort when you are feeling down, and gives you unconditional love and loyalty. And when your furry friend is sick, you want to suddenly have the power to heal your canine companion. When your dog just went through surgery or suffers from an illness that is caused by inflammation, the best medication that is typically prescribed by vets is called Carprofen.
WHAT IS CARPROFEN?
Carprofen is an effective and trusted non-narcotic, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) that is mostly prescribed by veterinarians to dogs. This medication is intended to relieve post-operative and arthritic pain in your dog, as well as alleviate inflammation. This analgesic anti-inflammatory medication is especially helpful when your dog went through orthopedic surgery that involves the soft tissue.
Various brand names of Carprofen
IS CARPROFEN SAFE FOR DOGS?
Carprofen is designed for dogs and it is definitely safe for your canine companion. A vet’s supervision is needed if your dog is suffering from kidney or liver disease, bleeding deficits (like Von Willebrand’s disease), dehydration, or other health issues, but other than that, Carprofen is safe for your pet. This medication is perfect for the treatment of osteoarthritis in your dog, and it is FDA approved.
Carprofen has not been proven to be bad for dogs that are pregnant, lactating or breeding, but to be on the safe side, always consult your vet before administering this medication to your pet.
ADVERSE EFFECTS OF CARPROFEN
Carprofen is a reliable medication for dogs, but it has adverse effects that you must be watchful for in your pooch. Below is a a list of both common and uncommon side-effects dogs might experience when taking carprofen:
- Increase in thirst
- Loss of appetite
- Increase in urination
- Ataxia (Loss of coordination)
- Fatigue and/or lethargy
- Staggering, weakness, full paralysis, stumbling, or partial paralysis
- Change in behavior (aggression, disinterest, hyperactivity)
- Change in skin (scabs, redness, scratching)
- Liver dysfunction
- Blood in urine or stools
- Urinary tract infection
- Acute tubular necrosis
- Constant nose bleeds
- Severe anemia
- Lowered red blood cell function
- Immune-mediated thrombocytopenia (bruising and bleeding)
- Facial swelling
- Skin lesions
- Excessive shedding
- Ensuing hair loss
- Abdominal bruising
Be careful not to administer extra dose of Carprofen to your dog, because an overdose can lead to ulcer formation or gastritis. Always follow the recommended dosage prescribed by the vet, and bring your dog to the vet’s clinic immediately if you accidentally given more dosage to your pet. Signs of overdose include:
- Excessive vomiting
- Excessive thirst
- Excessive diarrhea
- Blood in stools or vomit
- Severe abdominal pain
- Increased urination
This dog medication is generally safe for dogs, but there are factors that affect the increase of risks of your dog experiencing side effects in taking Carprofen.
- Brand – there are many brand names for Carprofen, and side effects may vary according to the brand.
- Duration – Carprofen must be given to your dog according to the timeframe that is prescribed by the vet. Prolonged ingestion of this medication may cause the increase of developing side effects on your dog.
- Age – the seniority of your dog is a huge factor in the high risk of adverse effects. Younger dogs can tolerate Carprofen and can finish the prescription without experiencing side effects, but older dogs may be more prone to negative effects due to their age.
Carprofen cannot be given to dogs with the following health situations:
- Bleeding disorders
- Kidney disease
- Liver disease
- Renal disease or low renal function
- Cardiovascular disease
- High blood pressure
- Congestive heart failure
- Gastrointestinal (GI) disease
- Carprofen, steroids, and other NSAIDs
If you need to give your dog steroids as prescribed by the vet, you must stop giving Carprofen for three days to your dog before you can administer steroids. Carprofen mixed with steroids can cause ulcers to your dog. Most importantly, never give your dog other NSAIDs medications when you are giving your pooch Carprofen. Or don’t give Carprofen to your dog when your pet is already ingesting other NSAIDs:
HOW CARPROFEN WORKS
Carprofen belongs to the propionic acid class together with naproxen, ibuprofen, and ketoprofen. This medication effectively blocks the COX enzyme in the dog’s system, which is the primary cause of inflammation. By ingesting Carprofen, your dog’s internal system prohibits the unwanted chemical from influencing the growth of inflammation. Carprofen inhibits the COX-1 to help the gastrointestinal and renal systems function well. And the blockage of the COX-2 reduces inflammation.
You must always follow the directions of the vet regarding the dosage of Carprofen for your dog. For oral administration, the recommended dosage is 2 mg/lb or 4.4 mg/kg of a dog’s weight, to be given each day. You can administer this dosage once a day or you can divide it and give the medication to your dog two times per day. Twice a day Carprofen dosage is 1 mg/lb or 2.2 mg/kg.
Carprofen medication comes in caplet form, and they can be purchased in 25 mg, 75 mg, or 100 mg for every caplet. The caplet sizes are packed in 30, 60, and 180 caplet bottles. It is important to note that you need to store Carprofen at a room temperature of 59 to 86 degrees Fahrenheit or 15 to 30 degrees Celsius.
Carprofen is an effective and safe medication for dogs. But like all other medications, Carprofen can be harmful when abused and misused. Always consult your dog’s vet before you give Carprofen to your dog, even if you have given the same medication to your dog in the past.