Prozac is an antidepressant SSRI that was developed for people, not dogs. This prescription drug treats depression by regulating serotonin imbalances but its use for canines is questionable.
A serotonin balance is important for mental well-being. This naturally occurring chemical regulates mood, appetite, sleep and memory. This also applies to pets so giving Prozac to a dog could work, at least in theory.
But giving this potent drug to a dog isn’t something to be taken lightly. You really should speak with a vet if you think Prozac can help your buddy battle a bout of depression.
Can I Give My Dog Prozac? Answer: Yes but w/ a vet’s prescription only
Doggie depression doesn’t mean you should share your supply of this SSRI.
Prozac, often times, is not appropriate for animals. If your dog is stressed, or has anxiety, treat them to some all-natural calming chews made for canines. They’ll reduce symptoms until you find out what’s really going on at the vet. But it’s true that dogs can struggle with mental health, most notably a condition called separation anxiety. Left untreated, such problems become ingrained.
Aggressive behavior, whining, excessive barking and even destruction of property could all be the result of a dog’s depression.
Prozac Prescribed to Dogs
Yes, this drug is sometimes prescribed by vets. Prozac, and other antidepressants, can improve your dog’s condition but a proper diagnosis is required.
The process may lead to better and safer drugs for treating depression. If your dog accidentally ingested some Prozac then you’ll need to immediately seek medical attention.
Defining Dog Depression
Depression isn’t sadness. It’s a chronic mental illness which ultimately becomes a quality of life issue. It’s not something your dog can just snap out of. The good news is that rates of depression are generally much lower for dogs.
When it does occur, pets often display grumpiness and a lack of energy if they aren’t lashing out. Typically enjoyable activities loose their luster and appeal. Some dogs experience detachment from things they used to get excited about.
Prozac is likely not appropriate for your dog.
Consider SSRI Complications
Dog depression needs to be addressed. Ideally, treating it should be different from how we deal with human mental illness. Antidepressants, such as Prozac, are very dangerous medications for animals especially when used incorrectly. Improper dosage can cause, at the very least, vomiting and lethargic behavior.
More serious complications include serotonin syndrome which is a condition marked by agitation, high body temperatures or shivering, an accelerated heart rate, disorientated behavior, tremors and even seizures. A serious overdose could even cause death.
Proper Prozac Dosage
Prozac, chemically known as Fluoxetine Hydrochloride, is a serious drug. The correct dosage is important to reduce chances of side effects. Ask your vet but 1/3 of a milligram per pound of your dog’s body weight over a 24-hour period is likely the maximum.
Anything more may cause unpredictable behavior. If your pup is put on Prozac, never abruptly stop providing it. You’ll need to gradually ween your dog off of it by reducing the dose gradually!
It’s important to monitor your dog for undesirable changes during Prozac use.
Better Ways to Help Fido
Dog depression is a reality and since they can’t vocalize their feelings, pay close attention to them during times of transition and periods of sadness within a household. Dogs can sense such things and become affected.
There are ways to help and you can probably avoid the use of Prozac. First and foremost, get your dog outside and moving around. Exercise is something they need even more than people do!
Conclusion on Prozac
Never give your dog Prozac without first consulting with a veterinary professional. In the meantime, try lifting your dog’s spirits in a more natural way. Spend more quality time and play stimulating games with your pet since boredom tends to worsen depression. Never use your own supply even if you believe that your dog requires SSRI medication.