Some human drugs are dangerous and can even be fatal when given to dogs. When a dog develops a health problem at home such as vomiting, diarrhea, or coughing, many pet owners want to know what they can safely give their dogs at home before taking their dog to the veterinarian.
Not only is important to know which medications are safe but also which medications are available to you without a prescription. Drugs you may obtain without a prescription are referred to as “OTC” drugs which means over-the-counter. OTC drugs are available at most pharmacies such as Wal-Mart®, Walgreens®, CVS®, Target®, and/or online pharmacies and drug stores.
Below are 15 more over-the-counter medications (OTC) that are commonly used in humans and can be used safely in most dogs. For the first 15 over-the-counter medications (OTC) that are commonly used in humans and can be used safely in most dogs, please visit this article: 15 Human Over-the-Counter Drugs Safe for Dogs.
Allergy Medications (con’t)
16. Cetirizine (Zyrtec®)
Cetirizine, commonly known by the brand name Zyrtec®, belongs to a class or drugs known as antihistamines, similar to Benadryl. It is commonly used in dogs with allergic symptoms such as inflamed and/or itchy skin. In cats, Cetirizine is more commonly used to treat inflammation of the nose and sinus. Many pet owners prefer Cetirizine over Benadryl because of its longer lasting effects.
A common dose used for dogs is 0.25 to 0.5 mg per pound of body weight. Therefore a ten-pound dog would get 2.5 to 5 mg total dose and a 50-pound dog would get 12.5 mg to 25 mg total dose. Common OTC pill sizes are 10 mg.
For more information on how to safely give Cetirizine in dogs.
17. Chlorpheniramine (Chlor-tabs® or Chlor-Trimeton®)
Chlorpheniramine maleate is a type of anti-histamine drug commonly used in dogs with allergies to control itching. Human formulations include Chlor-tabs®, Aller-Chlor®, Chlo-Amine®, Chlor-Trimeton®, and various generic preparations. A common side effect is sedation and therefore is occasionally used as a mild sedative.
Chlorpheniramine is contraindicated in dogs with glaucoma, lung disease, heart disease, high blood pressure and prostate gland enlargement.
Chlorpheniramine is available in 2 mg, 4 mg, 8 mg, 12 mg and 16 mg tablets and as a 2-mg/5 ml oral syrup. Most dogs take 4 to 12 mg (total dose) orally. Learn more about how to safely dose Chlorpheniramine in dogs.
18. Fexofenadine (Allegra®)
Fexofenadine, commonly known as Allegra or Telfast, is an antihistamine drug that can be used to control itching and other signs related to allergic conditions. It is important only to use products that indicate the active ingredient is Fexofenadine. Formulas containing Fexofenadine and pseudoephedrine, such as Allegra-D can be toxic to dogs so please be VERY careful. Make sure if you give Fexofenadine to your dog, that Fexofenadine is the ONLY ingredient. Learn more about how to safely give Fexofenadine to your dog.
19. Loratadine (Claritin®)
Loratadine, commonly known as Claritin or Alavert, is a type of antihistamine drug commonly used in dogs to control itchy skin. Loratadine is typically considered less sedating than other antihistamines. Learn more about how to safely dose Loratadine.
20. Traumeel (T-Relief®)
T-Relief is an over-the-counter homeopathic medication commonly used to pain and inflammation associated with arthritis and musculoskeletal injuries, such as with arthritis, sprains and traumatic injuries.
T-Relief contains a combination of plant and mineral extracts. It has gained popularity in veterinary medicine as an alternative to the class of drugs called non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (commonly abbreviated as NSAIDs) because of its good results with minimal to no side effects.
T-Relief is available in the forms of tablets, drops, injection solution, ointment, and gel. Learn more about how to safely dose Learn more about how to correctly dose Traumeel (T-Relief) in your dog.
T-relief is commonly used with other pain relieving drugs. When combined with other drugs, it can sometimes allow you to use lower doses of medications associated with more side effects.
Zeel® is a homeopathic medication used to treat pain and inflammation often associated with musculoskeletal injuries, such as sprains and traumatic injuries, and as supportive therapy in pain and inflammation of the musculoskeletal system such as with arthritis in dogs and cats. Like T-Relief, Zeel® has gained popularity in the United States an alternative to non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NASID) to treat pain and swelling.
Zeel® is available in the forms of tablets, ointment, and drinkable ampules. Zeel® can be used in conjunction with other pain medications and is sometimes used in conjunction with another homeopathic medication called Traumeel (T-Relief). It can be used safely with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID’s), steroids, and other pain relief drugs.