Can I Give My Dog Muscle Relaxers?

Can I Give My Dog Muscle Relaxers?People, and less commonly dogs, turn to muscle relaxers to get relief from all types of pain including arthritis. By taking these medicines, in either tablet or capsule form, mild to severe pains can be alleviated and normal activities can be taken on again.

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Your pet dog may sometimes display pain in certain parts of the body. This is particularly evident if you see your dog limping or if they seem to be sore in one area or another. Your dog will likely react, which is a telltale sign, even if you put only mild pressure on a tender spot.

As a dog lover, it hurts to see your four-legged friend in pain. Unfortunately, this might lead you to act on instincts and give your dog a type of muscle relaxer that you’ve found to be effective for yourself. But can muscle relaxers intended for people really help dogs? Are they safe and effective for getting rid of canine muscle tension?

Can I Give My Dog Muscle Relaxers? Answer: No

Muscle relaxers fall under the category of pain reliever and these are generally harmful to dogs.

You should be very careful about administering people medicines to your dog. Why not look into something like acupuncture. It could be a viable treatment if you are looking for a more natural and lasting solution to what ails your friend.

Muscle relaxer medicines can impair your dog’s nervous system. Mild forms of intoxication may result in weakness and depression. You might notice that your pet dog is having mood swings as well. The worse cases of muscle relaxant toxicosis can lead to disorientation, seizures, coma and even death.

K9 Overdose & Intoxication

Some dogs are more vulnerable than others and can easily be affected by drug overdose or misuse. Puppies and small breeds are particularly vulnerable compared to larger breeds. This is because muscle relaxers, much like alcohol, affect a smaller body more potently with all factors being equal. That’s why it’s important that proper dosage is followed when giving medicines, whether it’s human medication or dog medicine.

Senior dogs can be easily affected by improper medication as well. Just like in people, older dogs have lower stamina than younger pups. Their tolerance level could also be lower and their bodies can easily react poorly to medicines that aren’t suited to them. The liver, kidney, heart and some other organs can fail in older dogs.

You should also be particularly careful if your dog has an existing health problem. If they already have known issues with their heart, liver or kidneys; giving improper muscle relaxers can trigger an early failure of an organ.

Take Preventive Measures

Know which types of medicines are safe and which types are harmful to canines. Before giving any type of medicine to your doggy, including a muscle relaxer, please consult with a vet first. They’ll know the proper dosage for administering said medicine.

As most people medicines are hazardous to pets, particularly certain pain relievers, you should keep all your medicines safely secured in tight bottles inside your medicine cabinet. Don’t just store your medication in plastic bags since your pet dog can easily chew through them. Obviously, don’t leave your medicine lying on top of tables for any period of time. Large dogs can easily reach on top of tables presenting a potentially terrible problem.

If you have children or elderly people around the house, you should also supervise their medication. The young and the elderly may not be that careful with their pills and they may drop a tablet or two on the floor accidentally. You can imagine how fast your dog can get to grandma’s muscle relaxers in such a case!

Symptoms of Poisoning

If your dog accidentally digests people medicine, especially pain relievers or muscle relaxers, you should immediately call the vet and report the type of medicine taken in by your dog.

At that point, you need to watch for any vomiting, diarrhea and/or blood in their stool. Drooling is another sign of poisoning as well as clearly pale gums. In some of the worst cases, your friend may display symptoms such as shaking and overall weakness.

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Dr. Stephanie Flansburg Cruz, a practicing vet, has reviewed and endorsed this article. She has 3 dogs of her own and cares about the welfare of all animals.


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