Melatonin is an over-the-counter pill that people usually take to relieve symptoms of insomnia. For people, this is considered to be a safe type of drug as it is made of natural ingredients. Let’s find out more so we can determine if it is safe for dogs.
The melatonin hormone is actually naturally produced inside the body through the Pineal gland in the brain. This triggers sleepiness and makes a person sleep soundly throughout the night. On the other hand, insufficient production of Melatonin can lead to insomnia and even depression.
That’s why melatonin pills and tablets are sometimes prescribed to people experiencing sleeping problems.
Dogs can have sleeping problems too. And sometimes the sleeping problems are caused by fears and other external factors. In cases like these, should you give a melatonin pill to your dog too?
Can I Give My Dog Melatonin? Answer: Yes.
Melatonin is just as safe for dogs as it is for humans. This type of over-the-counter drug is being prescribed by vets for dogs with sleeping problems and separation anxiety issues. The soothing effects of the melatonin can help a dog relax and feel less agitated. They will sleep soundly through the night too.
If your dog has fear of lightning, thunderstorms and other loud noises (fireworks, gun fires, etc.), a melatonin tablet can provide some relief. You should always keep this type of medicine around the house as too much fear can cause seizures in dogs.
Melatonin Versus Tranquilizers
Another way to calm down dogs that are experiencing extreme fear and agitation is to tranquilize them. However, this is not a recommended solution. Tranquilizers in pets, particularly in dogs, can have many side effects. Just like their human counterparts, frequent and high dosage of tranquilizers can lead to depression and even hallucination. You don’t want your dog to experience those things, right?
You can use melatonin instead, as this is one type of people medicine that isn’t harmful to the canine family. Your pet dog will feel relaxed and even-tempered as soon as the Melatonin takes effect.
Safe Dosage for Melatonin
When giving medication to your dogs, you should first consult your vet as to the safety of the drug as well as the proper dosage. In the case of melatonin, you can typically give 3mg for every 35 to 100-pound dog three times a day. Small breeds usually require around 1.5mg of melatonin and large breeds of dogs can have as much as 6mg.
Again, you should consult a vet before administering melatonin to your pet. Although this is a safe hormonal drug, it is still better to be on the safe side and not possibly overdose your dog with it.
Where You Can Get Melatonin
Melatonin can be easily bought in drug stores nationwide. These are sold in places that also sell vitamins and supplements for humans. Being an over-the-counter type of herbal medication, you can get melatonin without a prescription.
The effects of melatonin can vary from dog to dog just as its effects can also vary among different types of people. Usually the calming effect of the drug can last up to 8 hours. So if you are going to give Melatonin to your dog, who usually stays up all night, it would be a good idea to give this medicine at around 10pm. This will ensure a continued and restful sleep up to around 6am the next day.
Some Safety Precautions
Melatonin is generally safe for dogs but you should avoid giving this to pregnant doggies. You should always be cautious in giving medication to pregnant dogs as this can affect the puppies and the mother dog’s health as well. In this type of situation, you should really consult a vet. Your veterinarian can either recommend a smaller dosage that wouldn’t be harmful to a pregnant dog. Some other types of drugs can also be prescribed as remedies for your dog’s sleeping problems and restlessness issues.
Staying Cool and Relaxed in Extreme Situations
You can safely rely on the Melatonin medication in keeping your panicky or phobic dog relaxed. That’s why you should always have this medicine on hand, especially if you have a dog with anxiety issues. By giving this medicine as a first aid treatment, you can prevent more serious problems from arising.