Ibuprofen is a medication designed to treat pain. It is most often used for the reduction of fevers and swelling as well as for treatment of muscle aches and pains. It is a member of the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory class of drugs abbreviated as NSAIDs. It is available over the counter without a prescription and with a variety of brands as well as generic forms it is relatively inexpensive compared to most prescription medications. Though it has wide spread use amongst humans it can also be rarely used in veterinary medicine in particular to treat symptoms experienced by dogs. When using ibuprofen to treat symptoms experienced by dogs it is important to note the difference in dosage amounts and side effects experienced in dogs vs humans. Another concern is when dogs accidentally ingest ibuprofen as it can be fatal or harmful in lower amounts than it is in humans.
Can dogs take ibuprofen?
A common question asked by pet owners is whether or not their dog can take ibuprofen. In general it is not advised to give your dog ibuprofen without recommendation from a veterinarian. The reason for this is dog's bodies process medications differently than humans so toxic and adverse side effects can be experienced in much lower amounts of medication. For smaller breeds of dogs it is rare that a veterinarian will ever recommend giving them ibuprofen. As due to there smaller mass just one 200mg tablet can be quite toxic. For larger dogs with strained muscles or inflammation a vet may recommend taking ibuprofen to help with the pain or to reduce inflammation.
Ibuprofen dosage for dogs
Generally, the dosage recommended is lower than 200mg. The best way to dose below 200mg is with liquid preparations of ibuprofen most often found marketed for use with children. These preparations are designed to be less irritating to the stomach and gastrointestinal system. Different breeds of dogs to will have different reactions to ibuprofen as some dog breeds are known to have more sensitive stomachs than others. For this reason it is best to always check with a veterinarian before giving your dog any amount of ibuprofen even if it is a larger breed.
Ibuprofen adverse reactions in dogs
Just one 200mg tablet in smaller dogs may lead to bleeding and ulceration of the stomach in smaller dogs. For this reason as a responsible pet owner it is required to keep ibuprofen and other medications out of reach so as to avoid curious dogs from accidentally ingesting ibuprofen. In amounts far lower than that for humans ibuprofen can be lethal to dogs as well. If your dog begins vomiting blood or you detect blood in its stools you should take it to a veterinarian immediately for treatment. Your dog can be given activated charcoal or have vomiting induced to prevent absorption of the medication. In cases where a veterinarian recommends giving your dog ibuprofen it is wise to check for adverse reactions to the medication just to be safe as every dog reacts differently to medication. For dogs with more sensitive stomachs there are coated forms of pain medication which can be given to them to reduce the chance of stomach pain or bleeding.
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