Can I give my dog loratadine and Benadryl? A Complete Guide

Frequently Asked Questions About Dog Allergy Meds

Here are some of the common questions we get from our readers about dog allergy meds.

You should always check with your vet before administering any medication to ensure it’s safe for your dog. Each dog is different, and dosage amounts vary based on the dog’s size and needs.

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Claritin syrup is preserved in propylene glycol and should not be used in cats. Oral disintegrating loratadine tablets (also called “orodispersible” tablets) may contain xylitol, a sweetener which is toxic to dogs and should not be used in dogs. References

And when buying loratadine, make sure the product you buy only contains loratadine, because some products combine loratadine with a decongestant (such as Claritin-D) which can cause side effects in dogs such as a rapid heart rate and pulse and anxiety in a dog and possibly worsen the allergic condition you are trying to treat.

The usual dose of loratadine for dogs to relieve allergies is 0.12 mg/lb to 0.22 mg/lb (0.25 to 0.5 mg/kg). For example, a 20lb (9kg) dachshund would require 4mg of loratadine but a German Shepherd weighing 60lbs (27kg) would require approximately 12mg of loratadine. You should always talk to your veterinarian first about the dosage before you administer it to your dog.

Yes, you can give loratadine to dogs, it is usually well tolerated and is unlikely to produce side effects such as drowsiness that tend to happen with some of the older antihistamines, such as diphenhydramine (also known as Benadryl). The human form of loratadine is the same as the form administered to dogs and it can be purchased at any drug store or grocery store.

Loratadine is available in 5mg tablets, 10mg tablets, and syrup. Tablets are best to give to dogs, so round up or down the dosage to the nearest half tablet. For example, if the dosage works out to be 4mg, give one 5mg tablet. If the dosage is 12mg give two and a half 5mg tablets (makes 12.5mg).

Does Benadryl Work?

Whether your dog is suffering from digestive issues or skin problems, allergies can wreak havoc on a dog’s body. How can you relieve your dog’s suffering? You’re likely wondering, what can I give my dog for allergies? Our experts tell you all of the safe medications, supplements, and other products that can help your pup.

Some of the best allergy meds for dogs are available only by prescription from your veterinarian. These allergy meds are immunosuppressants, which work directly on your dog’s immune system to suppress an allergic reaction.

Nonsteroidal immunosuppressants relieve allergies without the negative side effects of steroids. The dog allergy medicine Apoquel (oclacitinib) is highly effective against airborne allergens and food and flea allergies. It begins to relieve itching and inflammation within four hours, and its effects can last up to 24 hours. Learn more about Apoquel for dogs.

Atopica (cyclosporine) is another nonsteriodal immunosuppressant, which is most commonly prescribed for airborne allergies. Both Apoquel and Atopica are suitable for both short and long-term treatment.

Steroids help control allergy symptoms by reducing inflammation. But because they have significant negative side effects, they’re best for short-term treatment. The most common oral steroids prescribed for dog allergies are prednisone and Temaril-P (trimeprazine with prednisolone).

Some veterinarians use longer-acting steroid injections such as Vetalog, but side effects can be harsher with injections rather than steroid pills. Long-term side effects from steroids can include increased urinary tract infections (UTIs), susceptibility to bacterial and fungal infections, obesity, muscle weakness, and more.