Cephalexin for Dogs - DogGear

Cephalexin for Dogs

Cephalexin is manufactured as a broad-spectrum antibiotic that is created in the form of capsules, tablets, or oral suspension, and it is a medicine used for the treatment of bacterial infection in your dog’s body. It is an antibiotic that belongs to cephalosporins, which is a class of drugs that fights bacteria inside the body. Cephalexin can also be used as treatment for infections such as urinary tract infections, bronchitis, skin and soft tissue infections, respiratory tract infection, bone infection, as well as skin and ear infections. Cephalexin is mostly advantageous for dogs in treating staphylococcal or deep skin infections. It can also be taken as treatment for other illness, as well as for other purposes such as the prevention of the possible infection of your dog’s heart valves. But Cephalexin needs to be prescribed from your dog’s veterinarian before you can administer this medicine to your pooch.

Brand name and generic name

Cephalexin is a generic name, and the brand name is Keflex (Advancis). Cephalexin is available in the market in the trade names of Rilexine, Keftab, Biocef, and Sporidex. And it is also popularly recognized as cephalexin, which is basically the same medicine but has a different spelling.

How it works

Cephalexin is a highly efficient oral cephalosporin antibiotic that functions as a suppressant of the progression of micro-organisms in the body such as protozoa, fungi, and bacteria. It can be mixed with your dog’s food or drink, or can be given directly to your pet orally. Cephalexin for dogs is much better when you can purchase the liquid form, because it is easier to mix on the dog food, or simpler to give orally to your pooch. However it’s given, Cephalexin is effective when the right dosage is strictly followed. 

When will the vet prescribe Cephalexin?

Once you have taken your dog to the vet and the vet suspects that your ailing dog is suffering from bacterial infection, the vet will process skin scrapings as well as blood test to identify the type of bacteria that is making your dog sick. Depending on the findings, the vet may prescribe Cephalexin in order to treat your dog’s illness.

Cephalexin is recognized to be “quite active” in treating numerous gram-positive bacteria, and it is “moderately active” only in fighting gram-negative bacteria. And in cases of anaerobic bacteria, or those entities that efficiently develops without the need for oxygen to survive, the vet may lean towards prescribing penicillin rather than Cephalexin. But, of course, your dog’s vet will check your dog’s medical history first before giving a prescription, to make sure that your pooch is not allergic to either medication.

Bacteria killed by Cephalexin

Cephalexin is successful in fighting of bacterial infection in your dog’s body, and it has specific type of bacteria that it can eliminate efficiently.

  • Staphylococcus aureus
  • E. coli
  • Haemophilus influenza
  • Klebsiella pneumonia
  • Proteus mirabilis
  • Streptococcus pneumonia
  • Streptococcus pyogenes

Cephalexin dosage for dogs

The dosage of Cephalexin for your dog is based on the orders of your pet’s vet, but the usual dosage is 10 to 15 mg for every pound of your dog’s body weight. Cephalexin is typically given three times a day, and a missed dose can significantly lessen the effectiveness of the medicine. And it is ideal to give Cephalexin to your pooch at the exact time every day for consistency. However, if you happen to miss one does, give your dog the needed dose immediately once you realized your mistake. But, skip the dose of it is already time for the next dose. Never give double dose of Cephalexin to your pooch just because you missed to give the previous dose. Though overdose in not a problem for Cephalexin for dogs, it is still better to be cautious about giving the doses, because overmedication can cause stomach upset for your pet. Religiously follow the vet’s instruction in the administration of Cephalexin for your dog, for your dog’s safety as well as your peace of mind. The treatment using this medication may take seven to ten days to complete.

Allergic reactions on dogs

It is vitally important to consult your dog’s vet first before you give Cephalexin to your dog. But, if this medicine is prescribed but you noticed that your dog is having allergic reactions, you must contact the vet immediately, or bring your dog directly to the vet’s clinic or animal hospital. You will know if your dog is reacting badly to Cephalexin because there are signs of the side effects such as:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Rash
  • Hives
  • Vomiting
  • Mucous or blood in the stool
  • Diarrhea
  • Swelling of the tongue, lips, or face
  • Unusual bleeding or bruising
  • Loss of appetite
  • Uncharacteristic drooling
  • Rapid breathing
  • Abnormal excitability
  • Itching
  • Severe or mild nausea
  • Yeast infection

Overdosing does not lead to serious problems, but consuming more doses than needed is known to advance the side effects of Cephalexin for your dogs. And the prolonged use of this medicine can cause liver or kidney problems for your dog. Your dog’s platelet count may also reduce considerably, and so it is important to give your pooch Cephalexin only as prescribed, with the right dosage and timeframe for treatment.

Contraindications of Cephalexin

Cephalexin is the perfect solution for bacterial infection in your dog, but this medication is contraindicated for some pets. Cephalexin cannot be given to pregnant dogs or nursing dog mothers. This medication is also not good for dogs with kidney failure, epileptic dogs, and dogs that have gone through a seizure in their life. Cephalexin is not prescribed to dogs that have a medical history of allergic reactions to penicillin or other types of antibiotic. It has also been reported that Cephalexin can lead to motor problems or lameness in bigger dogs, or those dogs that are larger than the Labrador retrievers. However, in this case of motion issues, vet consultation is a must, in order to ensure that even larger dogs can get the best results that Cephalexin can provide.

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