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Are you wondering if Prozac is safe enough for dogs? Do vets even prescribe this antidepressant?
Fluoxetine, the actual drug’s name, is a naturally occurring chemical that can help regulate mood. And it works for animals too!
But here’s the deal:
While some dogs can benefit from taking Prozac, its use is not to be taken lightly.
Obviously this powerful SSRI wasn’t designed for canines. However, there is an FDA-approved form of the medication.
Dogs Can Take Prozac (with vet approval)
Never provide a leftover supply unless your veterinarian signs off on it.
Going it alone is too risky!
Besides, Prozac may or may not be necessary. You’ve got to confirm that a serotonin inhibitor makes sense for your dog’s situation and, even then, there are lots of treatment options.
It cannot be stressed enough:
Putting your pet on Prozac is serious business because this psychiatric drug can easily be toxic.
Looking for a much safer way to reduce stress or anxiety?
Consider all-natural calming chewable treats for your dog.
But long-term behavioral issues would require a diagnosis and quite possibly a Fluoxetine prescription.
Vets Do Prescribe Prozac
Yes, this drug is utilized by veterinarians.
Prozac, like other antidepressants, may greatly improve your dog’s condition. But again, a proper diagnosis may point to better and safer alternatives.
Defining Dog Depression
Rates of depression are actually much lower for dogs.
But when the condition does occur you can expect grumpiness and a lack of energy.
Some dogs experience real detachment from things they used to get excited about. Once enjoyable activities loose their appeal.
Mental health can certainly be an issue including a condition called Separation Anxiety.
Left untreated, such problems become ingrained.
Aggressive behavior, whining, excessive barking and even property destruction could be the result of a dog’s depression.
SSRI And K9 Complications
There is no doubt about it…
Dog depression must be addressed.
But ideally, treatment should be different from how human mental illness is handled.
Again, antidepressants such as Prozac are potentially dangerous medications for animals.
Improper dosage can cause vomiting and lethargic behavior. And there are more serious complications.
Serotonin syndrome, a condition marked by agitation, high body temperatures or shivering, accelerated heart rate, disorientated behavior, tremors and even seizures.
A Prozac overdose can result in death.
Warning: Seek medical attention if your dog accidentally ingested some Prozac.
Proper Prozac Dosage
Correct Prozac, AKA Fluoxetine Hydrochloride, dosage is essential for reducing side effects.
The following is for reference only:
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.
Never abruptly stop giving Prozac. Ween your dog off gradually.
And, of course, monitor for undesirable changes during use.
Better Ways To Help
Dogs obviously cannot vocalize their feelings.
Pay attention during times of transition and periods of sadness within a household. Your dog can sense things and become affected.
In any case, you can probably avoid the use of Prozac.
Get your dog outside and moving around. Exercise is a key aspect.
The Bottom Line
Never give your dog Prozac without your vet’s approval.
In the meantime, try lifting your dog’s spirits by spending quality time with them. One suggestion would be to play stimulating games since boredom worsens depression.
Prozac is, in fact, used on dogs. But antidepressants should be a last resort.