Use of Sileo® in Dogs
- Dexmedetomidine Oromucosal Gel, commonly known by the brand name Sileo®, is used in a dog with behavioral problems and anxiety related issues and specifically to noise aversion. The name is pronounced /si-lehh-o/. It’s a Latin word that means to “be silent.”
- Common noise aversion triggers include fireworks, thunder, construction work, traffic or street noise, celebrations, vacuum cleaners, and smoke detectors.
- Sileo® is the only FDA-approved treatment for canine noise aversion.
- Behavioral disorders in dogs are common causes for veterinary visits and behavioral problems are also a frequent reason for euthanasia of pets, especially when unacceptable or dangerous animal behavior is involved.
- Sileo® is a potent and selective alpha-2 adrenoceptor agonist. It binds with the alpha-2 receptors in the locus coeruleus, preventing a release of norepinephrine and reducing levels of norepinephrine. Reduced levels of norepinephrine reduce the levels of anxiety and fear.
- The goal of Sileo® is to calm but not sedate the dog.
- Sileo® is absorbed through the mucous membranes in the mouth.
- Sileo® is a prescription drug and can only be obtained from a veterinarian or by prescription from a veterinarian.
- This drug is approved for use in animals by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Brand Names and Other Names of Dexmedetomidine Oromucosal Gel
- This drug is registered for use in humans only.
- Human formulations: None
- Veterinary formulations: Sileo® (Zoetis Animal Health)
Uses of Sileo® in Dogs
- Sileo® is used for calming in dogs specific to behavior modification of dogs. Sileo® may be used for various anxiety problems and is specifically targeted for noise phobias (such as fear of fireworks). Read more about Thunder and Fear Induced Dog Anxiety.
Precautions and Side Effects of Sileo®
- While generally safe and effective when prescribed by a veterinarian, Sileo® can cause side effects in some animals.
- Sileo® should not be used in animals with known hypersensitivity or allergy to dexmedetomidine or to any of the excipients.
- Sileo® should be used with caution in dogs with a history of severe cardiovascular disease, liver or kidney diseases, respiratory, or in conditions of shock, or severe debilitation.
- Sileo® has not been approved for use in dogs under the age of 16 weeks or breeding, nursing, or lactating dogs.
- Sileo® may interact with other medications. Consult with your veterinarian to determine if other drugs your pet is receiving could interact with Sileo®.
- Side effects associated with Sileo® include lethargy, sedation, and vomiting.
- Handlers should use gloves when handing Sileo® to avoid direct exposure of SILEO to their skin, eyes or mouth.
- Overdoses of Sileo® can occur from failure to lock the ring-stop on the syringe before dosing. Overdoses should be promptly treated by your veterinarian.
How Sileo Is Supplied
Sileo is available in a preloaded in a multidose oral syringe.
Dosing Information for Sileo® in dogs
- Medication should never be administered without first consulting your veterinarian.
- SILEO is formulated as a gel that is absorbed into your dog’s body when you apply it to the mucous membranes between your dog’s cheek and gums. Sileo should not be swallowed. With each dose, SILEO is absorbed into the tissues of the mouth through mucous membranes. It should not be swallowed. If your dog swallows SILEO, allow at least 2 hours before applying the next dose.
Below – we cover how to dose followed by when to dose your dog with Sileo®.
- A dosing chart on the box is by body weight and associated number of dots on the prefilled syringe. Carefully follow your veterinarian’s instructions on the dosing and the information on the box.
- See this link to view videos on how to administer Sileo. It is important to dose this drug correctly to avoid the risk of overdose.
- Additional dosing recommendations include:
- A dose greater than 6 dots should be divided between both sides of the mouth to maximize absorption through the mucous membranes.
- Avoiding food and treats 15 minutes after dosing minimizes the risk of your dog swallowing any part of the dose.
- Ideally, this syringe should be used within two weeks.
- Use gloves when administering.
- Do not handle Sileo® if you are pregnant.
- Sileo is sensitive to light so please store inside the box.
- Call your veterinarian immediately if you accidentally overdose your dog.
The first dose can be given:
- Approximately 30–60 minutes before the noise event.
- As soon as your dog shows signs of anxiety or fear related to noise.
- Whenever you hear a noise that causes your dog to be fearful or anxious.
- If your dog swallows SILEO, allow at least 2 hours before applying the next dose.
Additional doses can be given:
- It takes about 30 minutes to 1 hour for SILEO to take full effect, and it typically lasts 2 to 3 hours. If the noise continues and the behavioral changes recur, further doses can be given at intervals of 2 hours, up to a total of five times during each noise event, as needed.
- Do not give another dose of SILEO if your dog appears sedated from the previous dose.
- Do not give more than 5 doses per event.
The duration of administration depends on the condition being treated, response to the medication and the development of any adverse effects. Be certain to complete the prescription unless specifically directed by your veterinarian. Even if your pet feels better, the entire treatment plan should be completed.
Resources & References:
- Plumb’s Veterinary Handbook by Donald C. Plumb, 8th Edition
- Textbook of Veterinary Internal Medicine, Ettinger & Felman
- Current Veterinary Therapy XV, Bonagura and Twedt
- ASPCA Pet Poison Hotline
- Pet Poison Helpline
- Zoetis website – https://www.zoetisus.com/products/dogs/sileo/pharmacology.aspx
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