NOTE: It’s always best to contact your veterinarian for guidance before administering any medication to your pet, including Benadryl.
Benadryl, also known by its generic name, diphenhydramine, is one of the few over-the-counter drugs that veterinarians routinely have owners administer at home.
You might be looking for Benadryl to ease your dog’s anxiety, or maybe your dog was stung by an insect and is having a mild allergic reaction.
While Benadryl is generally well tolerated by dogs and has a wide safety margin, it’s not necessarily the answer to your dog’s issue.
In some dogs, trying to give them Benadryl to calm them may have the opposite effect and make them more anxious. In addition, Benadryl should not be given to animals with certain health conditions.
Benadryl can also interact with other medications that your pet may be on (such as anticoagulants and other depressants for the nervous system), making it pertinent to speak with a vet prior to administering.
Find out when Benadryl is effective and safe and when your dog needs a different treatment. Here are a few things you should keep in mind before giving your dog Benadryl.
Dosage of Benadryl
As an approximate guideline, the maximum dosage of Benadryl for dogs is 1mg for every 1 pound of the dogs body weight, given 2-3 times per day, about 8-12 hours apart. Many factors can change this general guideline, so you should always talk to your vet to determine the proper dosage for your dog. In general, start with a lower dose and gradually increase it until the desired effect is reached. Some dogs are more sensitive to Benadryl than others, so starting small is best.
|Max Dose (every 8-12 hours)||Max Dose (every 8-12 hours)|
|Dog Weight||Tablet (mg)||Childrens Liquid (ml)|
|1 lbs – 10 lbs||1 mg – 10 mg||0.4 ml – 4 ml|
|10 lbs – 20 lbs||10 mg – 20 mg||4 ml – 8 ml|
|20 lbs – 30 lbs||20 mg – 30 mg||8 ml – 12 ml|
|30 lbs – 40 lbs||30 mg – 40 mg||12 ml – 16 ml|
|40 lbs – 50 lbs||40 mg – 50 mg||16 ml – 20 ml|
|50 lbs – 60 lbs||50 mg – 60 mg||20 ml – 24 ml|
|60 lbs – 70 lbs||60 mg – 70 mg||24 ml – 28 ml|
|70 lbs – 80 lbs||70 mg – 80 mg||28 ml – 32 ml|
|80 lbs – 90 lbs||80 mg – 90 mg||32 ml – 36 ml|
|90 lb – 100 lbs||90 mg – 100 mg||32 ml – 36 ml|
|100 lbs – 110 lbs||100 mg – 110 mg||40 ml – 44 ml|
|110 lbs – 120 lbs||110 mg – 120 mg||44 ml – 48 ml|
|120 lbs – 130 lbs||120 mg – 130 mg||48 ml – 52 ml|
|130 lbs – 140 lbs||130 mg – 140 mg||52 ml – 56 ml|
|140 lbs – 150 lbs||140 mg – 150 mg||56 ml – 60 ml|
Is Benadryl safe for dogs?
It is possible for dogs to overdose on Benadryl, and the symptoms can be life-threatening. If you notice any of these symptoms, contact your vet or emergency veterinary hospital immediately.
Ironically, Benadryl can cause an allergic reaction in some dogs. Just as with all drugs, you should always watch your dog closely after their first use.
Can Benadryl Be Used for Dog Allergies?
Benadryl is an antihistamine that blocks the H-1 receptors on smooth muscle and blood vessels. Taken orally, Benadryl can be mild to moderately effective for dogs experiencing mild allergic symptoms.
Vets commonly use it to treat environmental allergies and allergic reactions to insect bites or stings. It can also be used as a pre-treatment for possible vaccine reactions.
But if your pet is having an acute allergic reaction with facial swelling or difficulty breathing, take them straight to the vet. Many allergic diseases also require a combination of allergy medicine and treatment of underlying infections.
Can I give my dog 2 ml of Benadryl?
How many 25 ml Benadryl can I give my dog?
Is liquid Benadryl safe for dogs?