Thread: dog sprains
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Old May 8th, 2003, 07:31 AM
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homer homer is offline
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Toronto
Posts: 53

Often the biggest problem is THE DOSE.

If I were you I would call my veterinarian, but I did find this on another site. Good luck Homer

Acetaminophen (Tylenol™) safety in dogs and cats

Question: Hi Dr Mike:

I have a question about Acetaminophen (Tylenol™). The
Receptionist at our local veterinarian told us that in case of fever, it was ok to give our dogs
a Tylenol™ and NOT to give them ASPIRIN, or IBUPROFEN.

According to the AVMA Pet Poison Guide ratings scale, it appears
to me that the Acetaminophen (Tylenol™) is more dangerous then the ASPIRIN, or
IBUPROFEN. Is this true or am I misunderstanding what I am reading or was
this by chance a misprint?

What would you recommend be given to a dog in case of a fever
ASPIRIN, IBUPROFEN, Acetaminophen (Tylenol™) or something else?

Thank you for your time. I hope to hear from you soon, David

Answer: David-

Based on reactions in our canine patients, this is the ranking I would give
these medications: safest = acetaminophen (Tylenol tm), also safe =
aspirin, less safe = ibuprofen (Advil tm, Motrin Rx). However, this is
the ranking that I would give them based on the reports in the literature
and factoring in the likelihood of a bad reaction causing death: safest =
aspirin, also safe but less so = acetaminophen and less safe = ibuprofen.

The reason for these rankings include these things. Aspirin is reasonably
likely to cause gastric ulcers, which can be life threatening if ignored
but which respond to withdrawal of the medication. Acetaminophen doesn't
seem to cause ulcers but there are uncommon reactions to it in which liver
failure occurs and this may not respond to therapy, so death is a
possibility. Ibuprofen is very likely to cause ulcers, with 100% of dogs
developing ulcers with the use of ibuprofen in at least one study. On the
other hand, lots of my clients come in and tell me "I gave my dog an
ibuprofen last night" and I have only had to treat one or two cases of
ulcers and I can't recall a dog dying from this medication, yet.

My personal preference for pain and fever in dogs is aspirin but we do warn
our clients to discontinue the medication if the dog stops eating and to
call us or come in for a recheck if that happens.

In cats the situation is different. Acetaminophen is very toxic to cats and
this medication should simply never be used to treat a cat. Aspirin has a
long half life in cats, at least 24 to 48 hours, so it will reach toxic
levels pretty quickly if it is given more frequently than once every 48
hours and the dosage is 10mg/lb so a baby aspirin (81mg) is a much more
appropriate dosage for a cat than an adult aspirin. I have not seen much
information on ibuprofen and cats but it is a good idea to avoid all
non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications in cats, at least until one of
them does prove to be safe in someone's clinical trials.

Mike Richards, DVM
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