Read This Before Giving Your Dog Celebrex!

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Celebrex (active ingredient Celecoxib) is primarily taken to reduce symptoms of arthritis.

Are you thinking of using a leftover supply to help ease your dog’s aches and pains?

Let’s start by pointing out something key:

Despite this pharmaceutical being a relatively new COX-2 NSAID, Celebrex comes with a host of potentially adverse effects. Even for humans, some of these can be quite serious.

Can I Give My Dog Celebrex?

For your dog’s sake, we’ll provide factual reasons to avoid taking it upon yourself to give this nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug.

Celebrex Is Not Recommended For Dogs

That is, unless your vet approves of its use and provides you with detailed guidance.

Better Alternatives

We asked Sara Redding Ochoa (DVM) for some solutions to canine arthritis and she offered the following advice:

“Look into glucosamine and chondroitin supplements. They are effective and safe to give to your dog daily. Omega-3 fatty acids can also greatly help improve joints.” 

Animals Most At Risk

Pregnant dogs are especially vulnerable to harm from Celecoxib.

And besides canines expecting puppies, dogs with ulcers (or those prone to bleeding) are poor candidates for Celebrex.

But that’s not all…

Does your buddy have a pre-existing heart condition? If so, Celecoxib can cause a stroke.

FYI: You also have to consider drug interactions. Kidneys could be at risk!

Dangerous Dog Dosing

So make no mistake about it…

You could harm your dog with Celebrex (with any dose). Obviously the more you give, the more damage you could be doing.

Take a close look at this Canadian study.

One finding was that gastrointestinal (GI) injury in rats and dogs occurred at “higher exposures” of the drug.

Chronic Canine Gastritis

You should also be aware of another study that evaluated the effects of Celecoxib and Meloxicam on dogs with hip osteoarthritis.

Basically the results were fairly positive in that Celebrex did reduce pain, but chronic gastritis was a common result. In fact, diarrhea was the most prevalent symptom.

Out of an abundance of caution, we cannot recommend any dose.

Several factors need to go into dosing a dog for Celebrex. Again, only a veterinarian can advise you on this.

Play it safe. Avoid poisoning your precious pet!

A Few Worrying Signs

Is your dog already taking Celebrex?

If so, you must be on the lookout for the following:

  • Blood in the stool
  • Behavioral changes
  • Trouble breathing
  • Lack of appetite (anorexia, hyporexia)
  • Lack of energy (lethargy)
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea

Discontinue use of the drug if you notice any of these easy to spot side effects.

Internal bleeding is another very real concern.

It is very important to closely watch over your dog while on a medication such as Celebrex.

The Bottom Line

Do not give your dog Celebrex.

This drug should be off limits and going against this advice is dangerous!

Talk to your vet about alternatives to Celebrex for your dog’s pain problems. They’ll very likely present you with better and safer options.

What Do You Think? Have Your Say Below…

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5 thoughts on “Read This Before Giving Your Dog Celebrex!”

  1. My 14 1/2 year old, 75 pound Lab is on 200mg of Celebrex instead of 7.5mg of Meloxicam. It’s for her bad arthritis. Is Celebrex OK?

    1. Paul Spencer MD says:

      I am an MD and have no business giving advice about dogs. My experience in animal medicine is confined to reading articles and trying to decide how to treat my own dogs.

      There seems to be a profound lack of solid science on efficacy and safety of medications in the animal world. Animal research is often done, initially, for human medication. It is more with an eye to major safety concerns which are used more to abandon products if major concerns arise.

      Some of the veterinary concerns about Celecoxib seem to reference research on Vioxx which was taken off the market permanently. There were no veterinary studies I could find showing actual safety data comparing Celecoxib to Meloxicam or other widely used dual inhibitors of COX-1/COX-2.

      In the human world, NSAIDs are virtually all generic. Generic companies do not do research. And brand name companies will not spend 20 million plus on a study for a product which has gone generic since there is no way to recover that money.

      There is inconclusive evidence for a possible benefit from glucosamine, but over the years most of my patients who used those products stopped them due to lack of benefit. Again, there will never be proper large scale studies on nutraceuticals because they are not patentable. There is no money to recoup at the end of the research rainbow. The same thing applies to the dog world.

      My dog survived celecoxib, but the bottom line is we just do not know.

      1. Thank you for the information. I was considering prescribing celecoxib for my Labrador retriever because Rimadyl 75mg tabs are $3.00 each and Celecoxib 200mg about $1.00 (generic). Given that the physiology of canines is so different than that of humans, I will pay the extra amount for the Rimadyl since it has been tested in dogs.

  2. Besides using Glucosamine as an all-natural way to treat arthritis, you can try:

    – Bovine cartilage
    – Chicken cartilage
    – Glucosamine Hydrochloride usually works together with Chondroitin Sulfate
    – Green Lipped Mussels from New Zealand
    – Perna Canaliculus

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