Can I Give My Dog Bactrim?

Can I Give My Dog Bactrim?Bactrim is a popular human antibiotic used for infections with bacterial origins. The family dog is also susceptible to these conditions, so it makes sense to inquire about this drug’s suitability for canines.

Also known as Trimethoprim Sulfamethoxazole, it’s especially effective for treating urinary tract infections but it works for many others as well. The drug inhibits growth of bacteria while also destroying harmful microorganisms present in the body.

If you have a dog with a bacterial infection, you may find it practical to administer Bactrim to them. But is it safe to assume that Bactrim can work for a pet as well? As with any medication, safety is always a top concern. Of course, you’ll need a professional diagnosis before you can begin a treatment plan but here’s some good news.

Can I Give My Dog Bactrim? Answer: Yes

It is generally safe for pet dogs, as long as it’s recommended and prescribed by a vet.

Many animal doctors administer this medicine to dogs because of its high efficacy rate in curing bacterial infections. It’s even used for treating other forms of diseases like cystitis. However, there are sometimes side effects which we’ll discuss. In addition, you shouldn’t provide any Bactrim to pregnant dogs or those suffering from or prone to liver and kidney diseases.

Administering a Bactrim Dose

As with all types of drugs, especially people medicines, it’s important to provide the right amount of dosage to your dog. You need to consult a vet for this, as the medicinal therapy will depend on their overall health as well as their breed, size and weight. The particular type of infection will also be considered, as well as your pet’s response to said medication. Depending on the initial progress of the drug’s effects, your vet may decide to increase or decrease the dosage.

There are several ways to administer this type of medication. If you are giving the tablet form of Bactrim, crush the tablet so that you can mix this with dog food. You also have the option of shoving the pill down your dog’s throat if you are used to this method. If your vet recommends intravenous Bactrim treatment, for serious cases, you will need to bring your pup to the vet’s clinic for confinement.

Bactrim Overdose Symptoms

Be very careful when giving any human medicines to your dog, as the dosage isn’t the same for people and canines. Generally, dogs are given reduced amounts because they are smaller and weigh less than people too. If you mistakenly provide an intolerable amount of Bactrim to your pet, it can cause poisoning and complications.

Some of the symptoms of poisoning include diarrhea and vomiting. There could also be a decrease in appetite. In such a case, observe for signs of blood in the dog’s stool and urine, as these are signs of internal bleeding. If you notice that your dog’s eyes are becoming yellowish in color, it could mean liver damage. At this point, it becomes an emergency and you should call a vet right away.

Certain Allergy Symptoms

Although Bactrim is effective for treating bacterial infections, it can have many adverse side effects on your dog. Some dogs can develop an allergic reaction to the drug, so you should watch out for symptoms of allergy as well. If you notice that your pet is having some difficulty breathing or there are signs of swelling of the tongue, lips, and face, then you should stop administering the drug immediately.

Call the vet so that an anti-allergy drug can be administered to your dog to treat the condition. You should also encourage your dog to drink plenty of fluids, so that the drug can be flushed out of their system.

Conclusion on Bactrim for Dogs

Yes, this antibiotic can be given to dogs. Vets prescribe Bactrim all the time. It’s generally safe for canines but you should also be aware of the potential for side effects and watch out for symptoms vigilantly. There may be medicines just as effective so it’s prudent to ask your vet for other alternative medications that may pose minimal risks to your best buddy.

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{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

Trisha April, 2015

I have a dog with a small wound in his neck. It has, in the last 10 hours, swollen to the size of a softball. My dog is a Pit bull Labrador Retriever mix so he’s quite big. I can’t afford a vet visit right now and have Bactrim DS on hand from my last ear infection. Can I give him that and at what dosage?

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Anne April, 2015

I would not give him any medication without knowing what is wrong with him. It could make the problem worse. How about some cold wet towels (not ice) held on the area to reduce swelling. He is going to need a veterinarian. Call your local humane society. They usually have low or even no cost services. Another option is to turn him over to a rescue group. He needs medical attention.

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Van January, 2015

I have a 1 year old Lab. His ears keep bothering him, scratching and shacking his head. A vet said it was a yeast infection. Can I give him Bactrim? I do not have the money to take him to a vet right now.

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Sarah January, 2015

Bactrim won’t help because it is not effective at all against yeast infections. It might even make the yeast infection worse because it can kill the normal bacteria that live in your dog’s ears. Buy an over-the-counter ear cleanser for dogs. I use a Burt’s Bees product, which I buy at Petco, and use it daily according to the directions. I clean my Beagle’s ears daily when they smell musty and a couple of times a week just to keep them healthy. Don’t ignore the yeast infection as it is painful for the dog and can lead to deafness if left untreated. Continuous cleaning with a good product should help.

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Debbie June, 2015

Buy a small bottle of apple cider vinegar and mix it 50/50 with water. Then just pour a couple of teaspoons of that in his ear and let it sit. Put a cotton ball down in his ear for absorption. You should take him to a vet if it doesn’t clear up soon. You can do this procedure every day for about a week. If it’s not gone by then, he needs to go to the vet. You shouldn’t have a dog in the first place if you can’t afford to take him to the doctor.

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Pankaj December, 2014

I have two month old Labrador puppy. He is healthy with a good immune system but is suffering from a skin infection, not a boil but welt, in one of his eyes. I gave him Cefpet 50mg, Cefpodoxime Proxetil, for 4 days but there is no relief. Can I give him Bactrim and what is the proper dose? Please help.

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Derick January, 2015

I have a Lab/Pit mix and he has had the same issue as your dog. I had him on Bactrim. The pill was an 800mg but I cut that in half and gave it to him twice a day. Due to the size of your puppy, you may want to cut that size in half. Also, pay close attention to ensure that your dog doesn’t have an allergic reaction like difficulty breathing or swollen tongue. If so, stop giving it to him. While on the med, have your dog drink plenty of water. Good luck.

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Ginnie June, 2014

My 9 year old female Dachshund (about 16 pounds) was given Bactrim two weeks ago for a staff infection after several other antibiotics didn’t help. Now she is extremely lethargic with a loss of appetite and seems to not want to walk anymore than necessary, even when she has to go outside.

I’m taking her back to the vet today, but have you any suggestions, as he seems to be having a problem helping her. Surgery and a biopsy gave no diagnosis.

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Bridgette November, 2013

My dog was given Bactrim for kennel cough and it has hurt his joints in his back legs. The vet discontinued it, but the damage has been done. I saw him lowering himself to the ground and I thought he was sick. Then he wouldn’t sit down at all. I finally got him to lay down, I thought he was dying.

I cried and prayed and he got a little better. I took him back to the vet and he told me to stop the antibiotic. I did and he came out of it, but now has trouble getting up on the couch and things. His back hips obviously hurt him. Now I’m looking for steps and joint lubricating substances, guilt ridden for what I subjected my dog to. I would ask for Amoxicillin if given Bactrim.

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