Imodium is an anti-diarrhea medication for people, not dogs. This brand name is the generic drug Loperamide. It slows down digestion so the small intestines have more time to absorb fluids and nutrients.
It also treats chronic diarrhea normally caused by inflammatory bowel disease. Imodium helps regulate frequency and make stools more solid. It treats human diarrhea symptoms, but is this drug safe for a pet dog?
There are specialized medications for canine diarrhea. But there are also over-the-counter drugs that can be used to treat your dog’s condition such as Pepto Bismol. One of the safest OTC drugs for dog diarrhea is Imodium.
Can I Give My Dog Imodium? Answer: Yes, under a vet’s supervision
But a prebiotic made specifically for dogs is likely a better solution.
Imodium is considered safe for treating canine diarrhea. Dogs obviously experience diarrhea. This doesn’t mean that you should give them Imodium at the first sign of diarrhea. One of the common causes is taking in food they shouldn’t eat such as spoiled food, foreign objects or toxic substances. Figuring out the reasons for such symptoms could be highly beneficial and the basis for treatment.
If your dog has unexplained loose bowel movements or you observe chronic and recurring diarrhea, take them to a vet to find out what’s actually causing it. They’ll know when and how to give this readily available medication. Perhaps they would advise you that your particular dog shouldn’t take it.
Veterinarians Do Use It
Veterinarians have prescribed this medication to treat acute and chronic diarrhea in dogs. Although considered generally safe for dogs, it should only be used under close care and with detailed instructions from a professional. It’s not recommended for pregnant and nursing dogs. If given incorrectly, it could mean more trouble for your dog.
Keep in mind, the underlying cause of your dog’s diarrhea will be your vet’s basis for giving medication. If Imodium is given improperly, meaning if they receive the wrong dosage or it’s been ingested by an allergic dog, they may experience more problems or even death.
Side Effects of Imodium
The usual side effects of Imodium in humans are mild drowsiness and dizziness. These may also be experienced by your dog. Your pup may also face some mild constipation, abdominal pain, bloating and vomiting due to this drug’s potency.
Be sure you let your dog rest while they’re medicated as they may experience some mild discomfort. Any side effects that indicate a worsening of your dog’s condition should immediately be addressed with a veterinarian.
Warnings & Contraindications
As stated above, Immodium shouldn’t be given to dogs who are pregnant and nursing puppies. Aside from this, if your dog has ingested poison, this drug can’t be given until the toxin has been removed from their system.
If your dog is also experiencing abdominal pain or head trauma, refrain from giving this drug as it may lead to even more complications. If the diarrhea was caused by bacterial infection such as salmonella, other medication or treatment should be used instead. This is why veterinarians can be life savers.
Treatment of Canine Diarrhea
Most of the time, the initial treatment for dog diarrhea is to withhold food and fast them for at least 24-hours. Once fasting, supply them with ample amounts of fresh water to prevent dehydration. Diarrhea greatly contributes to dehydration so it’s very important to sustain your dog’s water supply during this critical time.
If their condition doesn’t improve, your veterinarian may then prescribe a medication to regulate your dog’s bowel movements. On the other hand, a steadily improving condition may mean you can begin feeding them bland and low-fat foods for a period.
You may be advised to mix certain probiotic products into their meals since the bacteria in probiotics could help replenish the nutrients they’ve lost. Continue providing a simple diet such as chicken with rice until your dog achieves normal bowel movements. It may also be helpful to give high-fiber foods such as pumpkin.