Excedrin is a pain relief medication which is FDA approved for human consumption only. It’s made up of aspirin, acetaminophen and caffeine & is used to relieve headaches, toothache, migraines and backache.
When a medication is FDA approved for human consumption only, that doesn’t mean that your vet will not suggest the medication for your pet. As you probably know pets can take a small dose of aspirin for pain, but it’s the other ingredients in these pain killers which are the problem.
When unsure what you can give your dog without causing damage, a quick phone call to your vet can clear up any questions you have. Your veterinarian will also be able to advise dosage and directions for human over the counter medication. When administering medication to dogs, the dosage is determined according to the size and weight of your dog.
Can I Give My Dog Excedrin? Answer: No
One of the main ingredients of Excedrin is acetaminophen which is also the main ingredient of Tylenol. This is highly toxic to dogs and can give them severe side effects, with a too high a dose possibly being fatal. Usually any medication which cannot be used for children is not suitable for dogs.
If your dog is in pain and you’re desperate to relieve this, speak to your vet. A simple dose of aspirin according to their size can relieve pain, but Excedrin is definitely not the solution you are looking for.
Bear in mind that the FDA will suggest medications for human consumption for a reason. Dogs systems work very differently from humans, so their bodies aren’t able to digest the medication properly and the dosage will spread through their bloodstreams a lot quicker due to their smaller size.
If Your Dog Eats Excedrin by Mistake
All dogs are mischievous and will get into cupboards and cabinets that they shouldn’t. There will be times when they get hold of a medicine bottle and eat the contents.
If you find your dog has managed to get hold of the Excedrin bottle and you’re not sure how many tablets it’s consumed, phone your vet or Animal Poison Unit immediately.
They will probably suggest you give the dog salt water to induce vomiting or if your dog is already lethargic, they may suggest you bring it in immediately where they will induce vomiting and give a laxative to get the toxic ingredient out of their system.
Symptoms to Look For
Dogs are often poisoned by human medications, sometimes due to them finding the medication and eating it on their own and sometimes they are given it by the owner, who doesn’t realize the dangers. On average over one thousands pets are admitted to the Animal Poison Unit each year with acetaminophen poisoning.
If you know your dog has eaten Excedrin they may start displaying some symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, weakness and clumsiness. Other symptoms include a coma and in very severe cases death.
As soon as you notice your dog displaying these symptoms and you find the empty Excedrin bottle, phone your vet and get them there as soon as possible.
Close Monitoring & Rehydration
Once you bring your dog home from the vet you will need to keep a close eye on them to ensure that they are improving. If your dog doesn’t display any signs of improvement, you will need to advise the vet.
Your vet will probably give you instruction on things to look for and keeping your dog close by will enable you to monitor them closely and notice any changes as they happen.
Offer your dog plenty of water. If vomiting and diarrhea have been induced they may be very sick which can lead to dehydration. Make sure there is plenty of fresh water available in close proximity and offer it to them on a regular basis.
Over The Counter Medications
Any medication you purchase over the counter from your pharmacy is probably bad for your dog. If you get this idea in your head, you will not be tempted to self-medicate them and will turn to the vet for advice.
Your vet will let you know if they feel your dog should be given an over the counter medication before bringing them to the vet, which is a cheaper option for you. A piece of an aspirin tablet for pain is sometimes suggested and if there is no improvement, you can get them to the vet for further medical assistance.