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Are you wondering if Excedrin is a pain reliever that can be given to dogs?
It’s great that you are checking first because, to be quite honest with you, this idea comes with considerable risks.
Excedrin is basically a combination of aspirin and acetaminophen.
But that’s not all. Several versions of this headache/migraine medication contain caffeine which further complicates matters.
While canines can usually handle small doses of aspirin for pain, obviously that isn’t the only factor here.
Due to the active ingredients, Excedrin should not be given to your dog unless your vet is closely involved in the decision.
Excedrin Is Generally Unsafe For Dogs
This over-the-counter product contains Acetaminophen AKA APAP, the main ingredient in Tylenol.
If going it alone, Excedrin is not an option for your dog because it could be terribly toxic. Severe side effects would not be surprising and too high a dose could be fatal.
Be sure to read our Acetaminophen article for more detailed info regarding the dangerous effects.
More on The Ingredients
Excedrin’s PM Headache caplets are unique in that they contain diphenhydramine citrate.
Compare that to the Extra Strength, Migraine and the Tension Headache versions which have caffeine in the formula.
More importantly, they all contain Acetaminophen meaning there’s a high potential for harm — even with the nighttime Excedrin. Think twice before using this pain killer on your dog!
Excedrin Pet Poisoning
Has your dog managed to get a hold of a bottle of Excedrin? Are you unsure how many tablets they’ve consumed?
You should immediately phone your vet or animal poison unit!
They may suggest giving your dog some salt water to induce vomiting. And a laxative, to remove or dilute the toxic ingredients, could also be necessary.
An Alternative to Excedrin
Generally speaking, medications that cannot be used for young children are also not suitable for dogs.
For your pain’s pet, a conservative dose of aspirin or baby aspirin can provide short-term relief.
Remember that even relatively safe human meds can cause trouble for dogs. Just think of how the dosage will spread through their bloodstreams, a lot quicker, due to their smaller size.
Watch For Certain Symptoms
Any dog that takes Excedrin may experience vomiting, diarrhea, weakness and clumsiness.
Another serious complication can involve slipping into a coma. Of course, there have been many cases of deaths.
Excedrin poisoning, and with similar drugs, happens all the time. It’s sad because it is entirely preventable!
Once you notice that your dog is suffering from any of these symptoms, find the empty Excedrin bottle and phone your vet.
Monitoring And Rehydration
Keep a close eye out!
If your dog does not show signs of improvement, you will need to advise the veterinarian once again.
And be sure to offer plenty of water. If vomiting and diarrhea have been induced, they may be very sick which can lead to dehydration.
The Bottom Line
Do not give your dog Excedrin unless your veterinarian expressly signs off. The active ingredients have a small margin of safety for animals.
Thankfully there are safer drugs, such a baby aspirin, for when your pet experiences pain.
Head over to what can be given to dogs for pain to learn more!