Cefadroxil (Cefa-Tabs®, Duricef® and Cefa-Drops®) for Dogs and Cats
Overview of Cefadroxil for Dogs and Cats
- Cefadroxil, also known as Cefa-Tabs®, Duricef® or Cefa-Drops®, is an antibiotic of the cephalosporin class used in dogs and cats. It is related to the penicillin drugs in how it kills bacteria, but cephalosporins have a much broader range of activity against bacteria than penicillins.
- Cefadroxil will prevent the bacteria from forming an adequate and protective cell wall. This results in instability and subsequent death of the bacteria.
- Cefadroxil is a prescription drug and can only be obtained from a veterinarian or by prescription from a veterinarian.
Brand Names and Other Names of Cefadroxil
- This drug is registered for use in humans and animals.
- Human formulations: Duricef® (Mead-Johnson) and generic forms
- Veterinary formulations: Cefa-Tabs® (Fort-Dodge) and Cefa-Drops® (Fort-Dodge)
Uses of Cefadroxil for Dogs and Cats
- Cefadroxil is used in both dogs and cats to treat a variety of bacterial infections, including skin infections, wound infections, bone infections, pneumonia, and bladder infections.
- Cefadroxil is very similar to the popular drug cephalexin, and veterinarians often use the two drugs interchangeably. They have equal effectiveness.
- Cefadroxil is not effective against infections caused by parasites (intestinal worms), mites, viruses or fungi.
Precautions and Side Effects
- While generally safe and effective when prescribed by a veterinarian, cefadroxil can cause side effects in some animals.
- Cefadroxil should not be used in animals with known hypersensitivity or allergy to the drug.
- Care needs to be taken with use in pets with kidney failure. Lower dose are often recommended.
- A pet that shows sensitivity to other cephalosporin drugs (cephalexin) or to penicillins (amoxicillin, ampicillin) may also be sensitive to cefadroxil. Sensitivity includes allergies or vomiting.
- Cefadroxil may interact with other medications. Consult with your veterinarian to determine if other drugs your pet is receiving could interact with cefadroxil. Such drugs include various other antibiotics.
- The most common side effect in animals is vomiting shortly after administration. It is usually not a sign of serious disease, but indicates that the pet is sensitive to this drug.
- It is not unusual for some animals to develop diarrhea from orally administered antibiotics, such as cefadroxil. However, this has not been a common complaint with cefadroxil.
How Cefadroxil Is Supplied
- Cefadroxil is available in a veterinary formulation as 50 mg, 100 mg, 200 mg and 1,000 mg tablets and a 50 mg/ml oral suspension.
- Cefadroxil is also available in a human formulation in 500 mg capsules and oral suspension in the strength of 25 mg/ml, 50 mg/ml and 100 mg/ml.
Dosing Information of Cefadroxil for Dogs and Cats
- Medication should never be administered without first consulting your veterinarian.
- The usual dose is 10 to 15 mg per pound (22 to 30 mg/kg) every 12 hours orally for dogs and cats.
- 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 to prevent relapse or prevent the development of resistance.