Can I Give My Dog Cortisone?

Can I give my dog cortisone?Dog owners often think of cortisone when their dog starts itching uncontrollably, either because of allergies or other conditions, or for arthritic symptoms. In humans it’s used to successfully treat all sorts of ailments, including asthma, hormone disorders, and arthritis. At full strength it is not available over the counter, and most vets will not suggest it as a course of treatment unless it’s needed in a critical situation.

In most instances if you’re thinking that your dog needs something like cortisone they should probably see the vet. If your vet wants to give your dog a cortisone shot be sure to do your research on it, but this will often only come up in an emergency situation where it’s one of the last resorts available.

It’s a prescription drug, and the general rule of thumb is that you shouldn’t give drugs that are prescribed to humans to dogs. There are just too many unknowns, and too many potential side effects that can have a worse reaction than the problems they’re already experiencing.


Can I Give My Dog Cortisone? Answer: No

There are plenty of warnings as to the side effects of cortisone in dogs, and many anecdotal stories from owners of dogs dying after receiving cortisone shots from the vet. This should not put you off of seeing the vet if your pet is suffering from a condition that doesn’t seem like it’s going to get better on its own. The overriding answer is that you would never want to give this to your dog on your own, and if your vet wants to give your dog cortisone, be sure to have them detail all of the risks so that you have the information you need to make the right choice.

What About Cortizone 10? (pictured)
If you are thinking of giving your dog a cream like Cortizone 10, it can be confusing because it obviously derives its name from cortisone, but is it the same thing? It’s actually still considered a steroid, and you should consider the risks involved with the side effects. This is a cream that is typically used on rashes and other allergy-induced itchiness, and should not be your first course of treatment. A vet may say it’s OK for your specific pet, or they may recommend an alternative cream that is better handled by dogs.

Potential Side Effects
There are a host of side effects that come with cortisone, and that’s when it’s used in humans. These side effects are compounded when you switch species to a canine, due to the possibility of getting the dosage wrong, the differences between the different breeds, and a dog’s individual medical history. These side effects can take their toll on many parts of the body, including the nervous system, which is what makes giving a dog cortisone so risky, and why it could end up being lethal.

With so many side effects, it’s just not worth the risk to try and treat your dog on your own, even if you think it will be better than leaving your dog untreated. If they are really suffering you should get them to the vet so they can do a full analysis of what’s wrong and get them on the proper treatment.

Trusting Your Vet
Your vet is no doubt an animal lover, and is going to do everything in their power to help your dog get well again. Sometimes in the course of treatment they might give your dog something that makes the problem worse, and sometimes a dog will end up dying from the treatment. But vets are always using their vast knowledge and experience to provide both emergency care, and long-term treatments for dogs and they are the best chance your pet has at making it through whatever situation they’re dealing with.

It would not be surprising to hear that your vet recommended Atopica.

Final Thoughts on Cortisone & Caution
It’s hard to watch your pet suffer, but you also don’t want to exacerbate the situation by giving them something like Cortisone-10 or Prednisone. There are too many instances where dogs have showed severe negative reactions to its use, and too many deaths have been linked to it to take it lightly. While it may end up saving your dog’s life if they are in dire need of it during an emergency situation, it’s always best to leave these decisions to the experts and hope for a speedy recovery.

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