Can I Give My Dog Diazepam?

Can I Give My Dog Diazepam?You may be thinking of giving your pet dog a sedative medication like Diazepam if they are anxious. Perhaps Fido is high strung or petrified of loud bangs such as fireworks and thunderstorms.

Know that this drug, also known as Valium, is powerful and can have serious side effects. Diazepam may also be highly addictive. Administering your own supply, of this controlled substance, to a dog is likely a bad idea.

There are, however, veterinary uses for Diazepam which we will be covering. But it’s often the case that dogs must be carefully weaned off of Valium to prevent aggressive behavior and withdrawals. When possible, safer alternatives should be considered.

Can I Give My Dog Diazepam? Answer: Yes, under the right circumstances

Only with veterinary consultation can this drug we given to your pet.

Diazepam is actually the most commonly used anti-epileptic for treating dogs with status epilepticus. So this potent drug can, in fact, be a life saver for some canines. Vets also utilize this tranquilizing muscle-relaxant for symptoms of separation anxiety. Otherwise, be very cautious about administering Valium to your pet dog. Diazepam is a strong sedative with highly addictive properties and it’s also easy to overdose on.

If your vet has prescribed Diazepam for your dog then follow their instructions to the letter.

Pet Precautions & Side Effects

Dogs with liver or kidney problems should never be given this prescription medication, nor should dogs that are pregnant or nursing. Once Diazepam is absorbed into the blood it could quickly reach the placenta, sedating unborn puppies and easily overdosing them.

Common Valium side effects include hypotension, respiratory problems, loss of appetite, vomiting and diarrhea. Contact a vet if your dog develops any of these and stop the medication. If your dog begins vomiting or has diarrhea after Diazepam use, it’s critical that they drink plenty of water to avoid becoming dehydrated.

Be Very Careful of Overdose

Giving a dog any type of sedative is potentially dangerous. Even closely following instructions does not eliminate risks. Monitor your dog closely if they become lethargic, cannot stand up or they seem exceptionally clumsy. Coma has been known to occur in some dogs that take too much Valium.

The sooner they get to a veterinary professional, the better. If your dog gets hold of a bottle and eats many Diazepam pills, do not delay getting them to the vet. They will probably induce vomiting and give them a laxative. It’s easy for death to occur due to a massive overdose.

Useful for Epileptic Dogs

Caring for a dog with epilepsy can be scary, especially the first time they have a seizure. Such dogs will likely be on special medication, indefinitely, as a way to ease seizure symptoms. Diazepam, and other muscle relaxers, are used to control seizures. That’s true it is seldom a realistic long-term solution.

A good vet may prescribe Valium if your dog experiences many seizures over a short period of time. But Fido will need to be weaned off a drug like Diazepam and put on something more sustainable. Remember this particular med has a highly addictive nature which is why it’s often inappropriate.

Conclusion on Diazepam

Valium or Diazepam has specific veterinary uses for dogs, but applicable medical conditions first need to be diagnosed. This prescription drug should not be given to a pet without a professional’s care. There are too many ways to misuse a sedative and powerful muscle relaxant such as Diazepam. It can be dangerous as well as addictive to give Valium to a dog. There are better ways to deal with your pet’s anxiousness.

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{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Kathy March, 2016

My dog is in kidney failure right now. I’m using 10mg Diazepam once daily for seizures. Is it safe? What should I look out for? Can she be left alone for any period of time?


Margaret February, 2016

I am moving and the car trip will be slightly over 1 hour. My dog is a Rottweiler. She was a rescue dog and gets nervous around strangers. She has only been in the car on the few occasions that she’s been to the vet. You have to almost lift and push her into the back seat. When she is there she just lays there not panting or anything, she just looks scared.

These trips are of a very short duration about 10 minutes. So, someone suggested I give her some Valium to just calm her down and she may even doze during the much longer trip in the car. She weighs around 50 kilograms, so how much would I give her just to take the edge off? Thanks for any help you could give my family.


Maurine February, 2016

Is it okay to give my Pug some Alprazolam along with Phenobarbital? He weighs just under 30 pounds. How much of each is safe?


Josephine September, 2015

I hope that someone can help me. I live in Florida and we have some very bad thunderstorms. My one and a half year old Shi Tzu/Pomeranian just shakes so bad she can hardly stand up when we have lightning and thunder with a lot of hard rain. The Thundershirt did nothing to help her with this problem.

This morning we were having a very bad storm so I gave her one 2mg Valium as prescribed by my vet and she can barely stand up on her feet. I gave it to her at 8:00AM, it’s now 5:00PM and she is still not able to stand. Do you think that this reaction can be normal for the first time? Do you think I should wait another hour or two and see if she improves or should I get her to the vet now?


James September, 2015

Hello Josephine. Sorry to hear about your dog’s problems. Unfortunately, nobody here can give you an answer for something so urgent. Only your vet can determine the severity as well as the best course of action. In any case, I hope that your dog is doing better.


Larry August, 2015

I take Valium up to 10 a day, each being 10mg. My Chihuahua doesn’t even calm down on 5mg, but I’m afraid to increase it to 10mg.


Jane November, 2015

Please see a vet. This is not only addictive but sometimes these medications affect pets very differently. The dosage seems way too high for your size dog. It could be that another med would be better. I gave my 15 pound dog the dosage that my vet recommended which was 2mg. I cut it in half and it worked.


Darla June, 2015

I rescued a 7 week old Chihuahua puppy who was having 3 to 4 seizures a day. Zeus was full of parasites, had an infection, and had ear issues. I immediately rushed him to an emergency clinic. He had 5 seizures back to back. The vet immediately calmed him with Valium. It has helped him tremendously. He takes 1/4 Valium twice a day along with phenobarbital twice daily. His seizures are now down to 2 to 3 a week. We are trying to get him to one a month so we can wean him off the meds, if possible.

I feel Zeus would have died without us and the care of our vet. He is an amazing puppy. His parasite issues are nearly cleared up. He is still on meds for his ears. I definitely am not a bad pet owner for trying to save this little guy. I have eight other dogs that are strong and healthy. I feel great about how far Zeus has come in the short four weeks with us.


Elizabeth May, 2015

A couple years ago, I gave my Maltipoo 0.25mg of Xanax and he was out of it for a long while. It was to the point we were about to take him to the animal hospital. If you look up the normal dosage of Valium, which is like Xanax on steroids, the minimum for an adult human is 2mg. The overall maximum for any adult treatment is 10mg. Those dogs are happy and calmer because they are stoned out of their minds. It’s just irresponsible!


Cindy June, 2015

I have taken Diazepam for years due to sever panic and anxiety attacks. I guarantee you that 10mg is not the overall maximum for any adult treatment. When I started taking it, I was on 30mg and I now take 5 or 10 depending on the day. I’m considering giving my 75 pound Australian Shepard 1mg for a long car trip we will be taking soon. It is what my vet recommends. He will only take it for the trip to help with his anxiety of riding in the car and I will be monitoring him closely. I do not consider myself an irresponsible pet lover! I just don’t want him to be miserable for the entire trip.


Cindy May, 2015

My Chihuahua has been using Tramadol for chronic pain. Unfortunately, he has run out and his vet is out of town. I have given him 2mg of Valium and he has calmed down, breathing and pulse are also normal. My concern is when and how much to give for subsequent doses. Does anyone know?


Denise May, 2015

Cindy, I just found this regarding Valium dosage for a dog:

0.5 to 1mg per kilogram of dog. A kilogram equals 2.2 pounds. Use a lower dosage to start, say 0.5 or one half of a milligram. Just once in a 24 hour period! This is assuming the dog isn’t on other meds or antacids.

I’m not sure of the exact dosage schedule for a Chihuahua. But Valium has a long half life, meaning it takes a long time to clear the system. It builds up making for a high over-dose potential. 2mg seems quite high for that low body weight. In fact, 2mg knocks me out! Please go online and search for an after hours or 24 emergency vet in your area. You can then call them for advice.


Linda January, 2014

I have started giving my old dog Valium and it has worked wonders for him. He is back to his old self. He is happy again and much more active and his noise phobia is completely gone. I am, however, going to stop giving it to him because I will not have him go through withdrawals. Maybe I will use it occasionally for severe fear. I am doing this all with my vet, however she tells me not to worry about withdrawals but she just doesn’t get it.


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