Benadryl is widely used antihistaminic in humans and dogs blocking the biological effects of histamine inside the organism.
While our blog’s mascot is a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, these tips apply to any breed.
Why Give your Dog Benadryl?
The active ingredient in Benadryl is diphenhydramine. Primarily the medication alleviates symptoms induced by allergic reactions such as intense inching, eye discharge, frequent sneezing, nose discharge, and can be also used to treat anxiety and motion sickness in dogs.
Generally, diphenhydramine is used in treating and eliminating symptoms of allergy, both seasonal and non-seasonal. Furthermore, it reduces the symptoms of a common cold in dogs and it has anti-anaphylactic characteristics. This is especially useful when dogs get bitten by insects and the area around the bite starts to swell.
This is a localized type of allergic reaction which is really painful for the dog. Also, veterinarians sometimes prescribe Benadryl for the treatment of heartworm disease or tumors, but the effect mechanisms in such cases aren’t thoroughly investigated.
How Much Benadryl Should I Give? – Dosage Information
Similar to most other medications, the Benadryl dosage for a dog highly depends on the dog’s size and weight. It’s always best to consult your veterinarian first for the appropriate dosage for your pet.
Dosage Based on Weight
Considering the weight of the dogs, they can be separated into three categories: dogs weighing 30 lbs or less, dogs weighing 30-50 lbs and dogs over 50 lbs. The appropriate dosage for the first category is 10 mg, for the second category 25 mg and 50 mg for the third category.
More accurately the dogs should be treated with 1 mg of Benadryl for 1 lb of body mass. That means if your dog weighs 23 lbs, you should give him 23 mg of the medication. For treatment of acute allergic-mediated inflammations, the medication should be given 3 times a day in an interval of 8 hours.
When you stick to the prescribed dosage there isn’t a big risk of negative impacts of the medication. In cases of overdosing, dogs are usually presented with signs of CNS (Central Nervous System) excitability manifested with seizures, increased heart rate, constipation and dilated pupils. These situations can be potentially life treating so you should take your dog to the vet as soon as these symptoms occur.
If you already consulted your veterinarian about the possible side effects of giving your dog Benadryl, then you probably know that negative symptoms can and do occur. That’s why the best option when introducing the new medicine to your dog is waiting and observing the animal for a couple of hours until you are sure that nothing bad is going on. The medication is considered to be pretty safe but never take that information for granted.
Most common side effects include hypersalivation, fast and shallow breathing, rapid heart rate, retention of urine, sedation, and dry mouth. Rarely symptoms such as diarrhea, vomiting, appetite loss or increased appetite can be observed.
In certain cases, the effects of Benadryl can be fatal for your dog. That’s why you should always consult your veterinarians first before giving Benadryl in cases when your dog has a history of seizures, asthmatic symptoms, bladder obstruction, hypertrophy of the prostate, glaucoma, heart failure, and pregnancy.
This post is brought to you by our pet deals and coupon site, Pet Coupon. Check us out for our best deals and favorite pet supplies and gift ideas. As always, please check with your veterinarian if you have questions about treatments and your dog’s health.
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