Doxycycline is a broad spectrum antibiotic that’s used by veterinarians for treating Lyme disease, UTIs and many other types of infections. There are some important details you should know prior to giving your dog this popular prescription drug.
While this antibiotic can be very effective, some pets are allergic to Doxycycline. Even if your dog is able to take this medication, you must carefully follow strict guidelines for successfully administering it.
One thing’s for certain: you should never provide your pet dog with a leftover supply of Doxycycline because it’s just too risky. Sure, it does an excellent job at preventing bacteria from spreading but safety is the top concern.
Can I Give My Dog Doxycycline? Answer: Yes, with vet approval
This tetracycline antibiotic is often prescribed for all sorts of canine infections including Rocky Mountain spotted fever.
It cannot be stressed enough that Doxycycline needs to be used under strict guidance from a veterinary professional. Ask for detailed dosage instructions in order for the treatment to be effective, while also reducing the possibility of side effects. Young or pregnant pups or dogs with liver disease are especially susceptible to harm when given Doxycycline.
A much safer option, especially for a typical UTI, is an all-natural herbal remedy designed especially for pets.
Dosage and Directions
Your vet will likely instruct you to provide 2-5 milligrams per pound of your dog’s body weight every 12 to 24-hours. In tablet form, you can break it up and mix the contents in with their meals. Although taking Doxycycline with food is not required, it may reduce side effects. The use of a syringe may help you to administer this medication in liquid form.
Doxycycline is given over a specified time period, even when a dog appears to be healthy or greatly improving. The time-frame may vary based on the type of infection being treated. It is absolutely critical that you exhaust the medication completely for a full recovery.
Tip: Do not give your dog any dairy products while on this medication since it tends to reduce absorption and the effectiveness.
Possible Side Effects
Giving your dog a broad spectrum antibiotic can come with undesirable side effects including nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite and diarrhea. If your canine develops any of these symptoms, do not stop the medication but advise your vet immediately. Liver or kidney damage is rare but it does occur. A good veterinarian will have you to stop the use of Doxycycline when doing so is warranted.
Keep a Close Watch
Closely monitor your dog while they are on Doxycycline. This way you catch any negative side effects early on. If need be, an alternative treatment can be provided. Watch for a loss of appetite, hair loss or signs that your dog is confused. While such symptoms may pass, they should be brought to the attention of a professional. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.
Antibiotics in General
Antibiotics are routinely prescribed to dogs when the immune system cannot fight off an infection. Doxycycline, in particular, is effective at penetrating certain infections. Treatment, however, is not always so straightforward which is why you need to involve your vet. For example, Doxy could negatively interact with several other drugs including antacids and many others.
Once again, never use someone’s leftover prescription to treat your dog. Besides, infections usually require a professional diagnosis to form the basis for safe and effective treatment. Another common mistake that owners make is failing to fully complete such prescriptions. This is very important because there is always the possibility of a relapse.
Conclusion on Doxy
Only a vet can decide if Doxycycline is right for your dog. If so, get detailed directions for dosage and duration. Do not provide this powerful drug to your canine on your own as the consequences can be tragic. Know the side effects and what to do if they occur. There are pros and cons to using Doxy which need to be discussed with a vet after their diagnosis. Follow these tips to ensure that your dog receives the best possible care for their infection.