There are going to be tough times during the life of a dog owner where they find themselves asking, “What can I give my dog for pain?” You may have found your dog injured after a fight, hurting after an operation, stung by a bee, or even just suffering from arthritis. No matter the situation, you are likely going to want to do what you can to relieve their pain, but find yourself unable to figure out what is safe to give them in your house.
No Over-the-Counter NSAIDs
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, more commonly referred to as NSAIDS, are probably abundant in your medicine cabinet. The common over-the-counter medications you have in your house to treat pain are not medications you should be giving your dog for their pain. NSAIDs are typically made with a human user in mind, and are therefore not usually going to have any adverse effects on you. However, when it comes to dogs, they process and metabolize things differently, leading to issues with NSAIDs such as gastrointestinal ulcers, vomiting and diarrhea that is often bloody, kidney dysfunction, liver damage, loss of appetite, and bleeding disorders.
With these dangers from NSAIDs, you would still need to get the dosage exactly right, which is extremely difficult if you are not a veterinarian who can factor in a myriad of things to arrive at the correct dosage. Failing to get the dosage right can result in giving too much of the medication to your dog, causing them to overdose on the medication.
NSAIDs to avoid include:
-Baby Asprin (a smaller dose doesn’t guarantee safety)
Veterinarian Prescribed Medications
There are NSAID medications that have been specifically made for dogs and other animals that have been proven effective at providing pain relief for your dog while being safe for them. While you can get some of these medications over-the-counter, there are some of them that your veterinarian will most likely have to provide you with a prescription to get.
Using these medications for your dog is going to make it much easier to make sure you get a safe and correct dosage for your dog that is still going to be effective while providing them with adequate relief.
Approved NSAID medications to give your dog include:
Benadryl is one of the few over-the-counter medications you will be able to give to your dog for pain relief with little to no instruction from your veterinarian. If the source of your dog’s pain isn’t related to an injury, but rather bee stings, allergies, skin rashes, or various other similar issues, Benadryl is the perfect medication you can give to your dog to help relieve some of their symptoms and pain.
When it comes to finding the correct dosage of Benadryl for your dog, you still need to be careful, as you can give them too much of the medication and cause an overdose. The best way to figure out the right dosage for your dog is to go by their weight. For Benadryl, 1 mg of the medication should be used for each pound your dog weighs. For example, if your dog weighs 7 pounds, you should give them 7 mg of Benadryl. If your dog weighs 43 pounds, you should give them 43 mg of Benadryl.
With Benadryl, it is best to avoid the Benadryl capsules and the liquid Benadryl. Benadryl capsules are much harder to get a correct dosage on and are designed to be a time-release medication meant for human metabolisms, while your dog has a much different metabolism that could result in them getting too much of the medication too quickly, leading to an overdose. Liquid Benadryl is safe to give to dogs, but can be very difficult to find the right dosage, as liquid medications are absorbed much differently.
When you find your dog in pain, you tend to ask yourself a common question from those in your shoes: what can I give my dog for pain? The answer is never a simple one, as most over-the-counter household medications will result in hurting your dog, rather than helping. Luckily, people in your same situation developed pain medications specifically for dogs.