Can I Give My Dog a Small Amount of Ibuprofen For Pain?

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Ibuprofen works wonders for reducing aches and pains, but it is downright dangerous for your dog.

That is the clear message we wish to send regarding this popular pain killer.

Still, sometimes we get asked a question like, “How about if I dose Ibuprofen very conservatively for my dog?”

Can I Give My Dog Ibuprofen?Our view remains the same: Do not mess around!

For piece of mind, your pet should not be given this NSAID. Unless you have specific instructions from your vet, doing so is fraught with unacceptably high risks.

While it is possible your dog won’t be harmed, Ibuprofen has an extremely narrow margin of safety for animals.

For fever, joint trouble or anything else – there are much safer ways to help. Keep reading to learn more…

Never Give Your Dog Ibuprofen

We’re going to provide you with a few alternatives. But first let’s explain why this over-the-counter pain killer can easily be poisonous — even fatal for a precious pet.

Why Ibuprofen is So Toxic

First off, toxicity is so common that Ibuprofen is rarely prescribed by vets these days.

And here is the exact reason…

The drug is a non-selective cyclooxygenase inhibitor. For dogs, and especially cats, that is extremely problematic from a medical standpoint.

This type of NSAID, Ibuprofen included, will inhibit inflammatory prostaglandins but also those that help regulate the kidneys and other bodily functions.

Advil and Motrin, because they contain Ibuprofen, are also not safe enough for your dog.

And, with toxic effects occurring so easily, any dose is highly questionable at best.

Forget about using Ibuprofen on your dog. You’d be putting their well-being at significant risk.

Some Serious Consequences

So now you know that Ibuprofen cannot be relied upon for a pet dog’s arthritis or any other type of aches and pains.

It cannot be stressed enough:

You really have to be careful with all non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs as they may harm your dog’s nervous system, GI tract and contribute to kidney failure.

Seizures, coma and even death is possible.

Symptoms of a Poisoned Pet

Hopefully you’re convinced that Ibuprofen’s effects can be quite serious.

In fact, a vet’s assistance is necessary if your dog is ever accidentally given any amount. And, again, this goes for similar pain meds like Advil.

Here are some early signs to watch for:

  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Lethargy
  • Stomach pain
  • Pale gums
  • Loss of appetite
  • Halitosis

Any dog with these symptoms could be headed for more serious trouble including stomach ulcerations, renal failure, seizures and even neurological damage.

FYI: Tylenol is another pain med that can be extremely harmful for dogs. Severe liver damage is possible.

Good Ibuprofen Alternatives

Thankfully, there are safer and equally effective (pet-friendly) pain killers.

In particular, some of the newer non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs make much more sense.

Instead of Ibuprofen, look into Rimadyl.

Metacam and Zubrin are also options to investigate. They are actually designed for dogs!

Finally, Carprofens are another type of pain reliever to consider.

Be sure to speak with your vet about these safer anti-inflammatory drugs!

The Bottom Line

Ibuprofen is absolutely off limits!

Whatever the situation, avoid giving this NSAID. Many dogs have suffered, even died, because of this pain killer.

It is highly recommended that you get your animal checked out. It’s then you’ll also be able to discuss appropriate alternatives to Ibuprofen.

What Do You Think? Have Your Say Below…

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21 thoughts on “Can I Give My Dog a Small Amount of Ibuprofen For Pain?”

  1. My boy Jerry lee is a 93 pound King German Shepherd. He’s just undergone surgery to be neutered at five years old. His incision is open a bit, not much, and it’s already healing. But he is very swollen and it’s sensitive and it hurts him.

    Normally I wouldn’t ask if I can use Advil or Ibuprofen, even a little, but now I’m reading all this. I’m not going to risk my Jerry Lee’s life. I normally use Bayer, with the coating around the pill, because it’s safer than baby aspirin.

    But my boy is hurting, can’t get comfy and is moving a lot. I am keeping the vet updated and my Hubby is getting some antibiotics and pain meds until I can get Jerry to the vet.

    He takes about 4 pain pills and 1 antibiotic every 12 hours. That’s a lot of meds even for a big boy. The meds are 100mg Carprofen and 50mg of Tramadol. Any ideas until his Daddy can get here with his meds? I would appreciate it.

  2. How many Rimadyl 100mg can I safely give my 13 year old, 100 pound Lab in a day? She is hurting and I can’t take her to the vet until Monday. She has been on 1 morning and 1 in the evening but today she is having trouble walking and seems to be in pain.

    1. Hello Bonnie. I would get your baby on some joint supplement. I had gotten some from Tractor Supply. I have a White German Shepherd that had an incident with one of my other German Shepherds. She was to the point to were she couldn’t walk for three months.

      With a lot of tender loving care she recovered, but there was a price. She has problems walking so I got this advance hip joint chewable and she started to have some improvement. Use that with Rimadyl. It can help.

      I used Bayer with the coating too. Ask your vet to see what’s the best hip and joint supplement. They may have better or know which one that can help your baby girl better. I wish you and your girl the best of luck.

  3. My Pomeranian just ate an Advil. What can I do? It’s Saturday and my vet is not in.

  4. Can I give my dog Dihydrocodeine slow release?

  5. I have spoken to our vet about the inability for our Beagle to get around on her own. She was acting as if in pain while walking or trying to climb stairs. It turns out that Beagles are very prone to arthritis. We’ve raised Beagles for 20+ years. Never ever give your dog Ibuprofen, even the smallest amount can kill them or cause irreversible damage.

    He did say that one aspirin per day will help with her arthritis and is not going to cause damage. Be careful and watch for signs of bleeding, check the stools. This is now the 2nd time that one, a different one as we own 3 at the moment, is suffering from this.

    There was no physical injury as our dogs go out on a long leash one at a time. We live in the country and have foxes across the way. They have never come into the yard, but have been seen just across the street. Our dog’s barking does keep the foxes away.

    We divide 1 regular aspirin into 2 pieces and give half every 12 hours. We have done this for years and it only takes about 1 week before they are their regular running self again. Also, make sure that their nails are clipped on a regular basis!

    Most dogs are not getting enough exercise and walking on pavement to help keep their nails short enough to walk with comfort. Pavement can be very hot and can literally burn the pads on their feet. Those can become raw and increase the risk of infection.

  6. My dog has an ear infection and I can’t get her to the vet until tomorrow. I need to know what I can give her for the pain.

    1. You can give your dog Tramadol for pain. The vet gave us them after my dog was castrated in order to cure his enlarged prostate gland. Beware that small dogs may be too little for an entire 50mg capsule!

      My dog is a 25 kilogram Staff Cross and is allowed 50mg two times a day. Just do the math, a dog that’s half this weight can have half these doses. You would have to split the powder into 2 and put the dose in the food.

      1. My dog, an Australian Shepherd Cocker Spaniel mix, weighs 25 pounds and just had a mass on her face removed. The vet gave her 1/2 a 50mg Tramadol every 10-12 hours for pain and she has done really good.

        She also just began showing signs of arthritis in her rear legs and has been on steroids, every other day for that and it has worked really well. Thank you Natalie for providing this info.

  7. I took my dog out for a walk and he was attacked by another dog who wasn’t leashed. He bit him on his right leg to where it left him with a limp and swelling. Can I give him Ibuprofen? Or what can I do to help with the pain and swelling?

    1. Do not give the dog Ibuprofen! Please, it can result in death!

  8. My dog has road burn and I don’t know what to do. What can I give her for pain?

    1. How is she, your dog, now? If you still don’t know what to do I really recommend vet. They know what to do. Good luck to you and your dog.

  9. My German Shepherd is not as frisky as usual, sleeps a lot. It’s hard for him to get around. What can I give him for pain and how to put a pep back in his step?

    1. Anonymous says:

      First, a vet appointment is in order. Seems like arthritis or could be hip dysphasia. Shepards can have buffered aspirin one every 4-6 hours. If needed, try a heating pad while she is resting.

    2. About 3 years ago we noticed our German Shepherd was always sluggish. He’d normally jump at going for walks, eventually would make it half way up the driveway and then lay down to wait for us to get back.

      I took him to the vet and it turned out to be heart worms from mosquitoes. Shepherds seem to be more prone to these worms, said the vet. He had to have a special shot to get rid of them which was costly but well worth it. He became very active again.

      1. I also had a dog with heart-worms because I didn’t know any better. I did not have her on the monthly medicine. The treatment is rather harsh as they use arsenic to kill the heartworms.

        She had gotten sluggish, her hair was dull and stiff and she stopped spinning in circles when happy. Now all my dogs are on heartworm preventative meds.

        In the US they are rather expensive, but Australia has them at reasonable prices. I have 5 dogs from 3 to 30 pounds so value is a must. I get a 6 month supply for 18 US dollars per dog. Heart-worms will make your dog very sick and they are fatal if not treated.

  10. My dog was snakebitten causing some bleeding with lots of swelling under his right jaw. I gave him some Advil for the swelling and it’s going down. The vet said this may affect his kidneys. I’m giving him Pedialyte along with an antibiotic. My dog moves about on his own strength but, so far has not had an elimination. He does not appear to be going into shock.

    1. Read up on Sovereign Silver for your dog. I’ve had great success with this. It works on many ailments for dogs and humans as well. It’s Colloidal silver, but I buy the brand named Sovereign for its purity. It’ll be worth your while.

  11. My Beagle was hit by a car yesterday and broke his leg really high up. The vet said the break is too high for a splint and to just let him lay around but its pretty swollen which I guess is expected. Is there anything I can do to ease the pain for him?

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