The use of gabapentin in dogs is primarily to manage chronic nerve pain, with mild effectiveness managing seizures. As with human use, the mechanism that allows the medication to work is not well understood, however, while it is structurally similar to the neurotransmitter GABA, it does not negatively affect its function. That is not to say that there are no negative gabapentin side effects in dogs, but with regular use that is monitored by a veterinarian the benefits of gabapentin for dogs outweigh the risks. Every dog will react differently to the medication and working to find the gabapentin dosage for dogs that are similar to your own with your veterinarian will ensure the best results.
Gabapentin dosage for dogs
Gabapentin in dogs is used in varying doses depending on the severity of the pain that they are experiencing. The medication tends to be more effective when it can be used in conjunction with other types of pain relievers such as NSAIDs. Common disorders that gabapentin dogs receive treatment for include: hyperalagesia, allodynia, chronic arthritis pain, and other nerve pain disorders. Use of gabapentin in dogs, as part of the epilepsy therapy isn’t as effective as it is in humans. Most of the time the gabapentin for dogs that require therapy for seizure is just a component of the overall therapy plans. Independent of the gabapentin dosage for dogs, the delivery of the medication is usually best administered in its oral solution form. Combine the short active half-life with the rate of metabolism by gabapentin in dogs, and the oral solution is the top choice for easy regular administration.
Gabapentin side effects in dogs
While most of the gabapentin side effects in dogs are limited to mild sedation and ataxia, there are a number of more serious side effects that are associated with exceeding the recommended dosage. When an overdose of gabapentin in dogs occurs the symptoms that would occur include: severe lethargy, somnolence, depression, and intense ataxia. If you notice that your dog overdosed on this medication you can take gut emptying precautions to decrease the likelihood of severe negative side effects.
General precautions when administering gabapentin dogs
If the dogs have decreased liver function or renal complications then is it advised to take extra care with this medication, as it can negatively affect these disorders. As with human consumption, gabapentin for dogs should not be stopped abruptly because the withdrawal symptoms can cause seizure or immense pain. When securing the gabapentin dogs oral solution it is important not to use the human product as it contains xylitol, which can be toxic for their blood.