Cephalexin is an antibiotic for treating bacterial infections such as upper respiratory, the skin variety as well as urinary tract infections. Most dog owners will likely be trying to treat their pet for a UTI. Something like Cephalexin is common to have, often as left over supply, from a previous prescription. Are you wondering if it will work for your dog?
Let’s be clear, even though some vets will prescribe it for some canines, this doesn’t make it safe for your particular dog. Trying to dose them using a human medication such as Cefalexin can often result in negative side effects that can cause them undue pain and suffering.
Sometimes when you start trying to take matters into your own hands and make medical decisions that you’re not qualified to make, things can get dicey. We’ll take a closer look at the use of Cephalexin so you can make a more informed judgement regarding your dog’s health.
Can I Give My Dog Cephalexin? Answer: With vet approval only
If your dog needs to be treated with an antibiotic, giving them some Cephalexin that you happen to have on hand is not the way to go.
If you suspect that they have an infection, it probably needs to be diagnosed and properly treated. This is definitely cause enough to take them to a veterinarian, or at least make a call to their office.
A professional can verify a diagnosis and advise on the proper steps for treating your dog properly. This might be in the form of an antibiotic developed particularly for canine use. Alternatively, they may suggest letting things run their course.
Save Yourself Some Grief
The benefit of not treating them yourself and getting professional advice is that you’re off the hook as far as a guilty conscience goes. You’ll have the peace of mind of knowing that you did the proper thing for your dog.
If the situation does escalate, you won’t have that feeling in the back of your mind that you may have exacerbated things. Trying to medicate a dog from home, from your own medicine cabinet, can be a recipe for disaster and Cephalexin is no different in this respect.
Dodgy Doggy Drugs
There’s an entire industry devoted to making pharmaceuticals for dogs. This is reassuring because the big drug companies that manufacture products for humans aren’t thinking about dogs when they are doing their testing and research or for determining proper doses.
That’s why it’s somewhat alarming to hear owners ask for dosages from the general public, often strangers. Often, such medicines aren’t even safe for dogs, at any dose, and there is a lot of misinformation floating around. We certainly cannot recommend a dose for your beloved dog in respect to Cephalexin.
Side Effects of Cephalexin
Cefalexin is a cephalosporin antibiotic which comes with its share of side effects. These can include nausea, stomach cramps, and dehydration, and that’s when it’s used by humans. The side effects for dogs lacks research, but they definitely do exist. There is anecdotal evidence, from owners that have given it to their dogs and have seen for themselves, that they often don’t handle it very well.
It’s not something that you want to give to them, as it likely won’t produce the desired effects. It may even worsen their situation dramatically. In particular, many older dogs don’t take well to antibiotics such as this one.
Best Steps to Take
First speak with your vet and get your dog onto a proper treatment plan. Then try to determine, if possible, what caused the problem in the first place. Altering their environment may be beneficial so they aren’t reinfected.
Also consider upgrading their dog food so that they’re getting the right mix of nutrients and vitamins. This will make perhaps the biggest difference towards improving their general well-being. It’s also one of the easiest things you can do for them.
It can be rough seeing your dog if they aren’t doing well. The best way to treat them is to put it in the hands of a well-trained professional. In the meantime, please keep your supply of Cephalexin out of reach!