How much Benadryl can I give my 80lb dog? Get Your Pet Thinking

Benadryl dosage for dogs. The correct dosage of diphenhydramine for dogs depends on their weight. A small dog will need much less than a big dog to receive the same positive effects. According to the Merck Veterinary Manual, the safe dosage is 2-4 milligrams of medication per kilogram of weight, or 0.9 to 1.8 milligrams per pound. This amount can be administered two to three times daily, depending on your dog’s symptoms.Â

Dogs are curious and energetic, so it’s inevitable that some of them will wind up in some sticky situations. From running through some poison ivy to getting stung by a bee, there are plenty of problems that can lead to your dog feeling itchy, uncomfortable, and swollen from an allergic reaction.Â

Risks of Benadryl for dogs. While the right dose of Benadryl is safe for most dogs, occasionally a dog may be allergic to the medication itself. An allergy to diphenhydramine will have similar symptoms to other allergies, including:

Alternatives to Benadryl for dogs. If your dog reacts poorly to Benadryl but needs regular allergy treatment for a seasonal allergy, there are some alternatives you can use. Both cetirizine (Zyrtec) and loratadine (Claritin) are considered safe for dogs in the right dosage. However, they are also frequently combined with other ingredients like decongestants, which can hurt your dog. Always consult with a vet before giving your dog any new medication.Â

When to call your vet. In an emergency, you should always call your vet first. Your dog may experience anaphylactic shock from their allergies, or in rare cases, from Benadryl itself. Call the vet immediately if your dog is:Â

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Key Takeaway: Benadryl is a widely available drug used to treat conditions such as allergies, motion sickness, and hay fever in humans. So, if it works for us, what about Benadryl for dogs?

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    Most of us will find Benadryl in our medicine cabinet. It is a widely available drug used to treat symptoms of conditions such as seasonal allergies, motion sickness, and hay fever in humans. So, if it works for us, what about Benadryl for dogs? You know summer holidays are not your pets favorite time, specifically the 4th of July. Their stress then turns into your stress as you try to control the uncontrollable environment, including screaming children, intoxicated adults, and a booming firework display. Ask around, and you will find that many dog owners have also given their dogs Benadryl to treat various conditions such as allergy symptoms, motion sickness, and even firework anxiety. In some cases, people also provide Benadryl to cats. This popular drug is one of the few over-the-counter medications that the vet often recommends for owners to administer to their dogs and cats at home.

    How does Benadryl work for motion sickness or anxiety?

    Dogs may experience anxiety in unfamiliar or uncomfortable situations, such as during a move, going to the vet, or being left alone. Because Benadryl also causes drowsiness, pet parents have also had luck with using the medication to help calm their anxious dog.

    Some dogs experience motion sickness while riding in cars which can be due to anxiety. The Merck Veterinary Manual also recommends using Benadryl to help relieve motion sickness during car rides. In some cases, the sedative effects of Benadryl can be enough to reduce car anxiety and its related symptoms. However, for dogs that continue to get an upset tummy in car rides, be sure to consult your veterinarian.

    Benadryl is a relatively safe and effective medication for both dogs and cats, but there is a caveat. Your safest bet is to check in with your pet’s veterinarian first, especially if there are any other conditions or symptoms present.

    “Benadryl is widely available over the counter and can be used under the advice of your veterinarian for mild itching from allergies, insect bites, flea irritation and a number of other conditions,” says Dr. Justin Shmalberg, veterinarian nutritionist at NomNomNow. “It’s a very safe medication; it may cause drowsiness in some pets but my clients have never found this to occur at a concerning level. Of course, if a problem persists, if there are open sores or if you notice any adverse reactions to this medication, talk to your veterinarian as soon as possible.”

    The usual dosage is about 1 mg per pound, two to three times daily. Veterinarians often recommend that people start with a half dose to see how much it sedates the dog the first time. Also, pet parents should be aware the tablets and capsules commonly come in 25 mg size, but other sizes exist (like 50 mg). Read the labels on the bottle.

    Dr. Shmalberg recommends the following with a 25mg tablet:

    Size of dog 25mg tablet of diphenhydramine
    Very small (4-10 pounds) ¼ tablet
    Small (10-20 pounds) ½ tablet
    Medium (20-30 pounds) 1 tablet

    Larger dogs

    1 tablet per 25 pounds body weight

    Chewable tablets designed for children typically contain 12.5mg per tablet.

    Size of dog 12.5mg tablet
    Very small (4-10 pounds) ½ tablet
    Small (10-20 pounds) 1 tablet
    Medium (20-30 pounds) 2 tablets

    Larger dogs

    2 tablets per 25 pounds body weight

    Because liquid medications aren’t absorbed the same as pills, please talk to your vet before administering liquid Benadryl.

    If your dog or cat has any chronic conditions like glaucoma, diabetes, hypertension, epilepsy or seizures, or is pregnant, consult your vet before dosing your pet as some of these conditions can worsen with the addition of the drug. The most common side effects include:

  • Drowsiness
  • Dry mouth
  • Urinary retention
  • Increased heart rate
  • Rapid breathing
  • The rarest of side effects include diarrhea and vomiting
  • Benadryl For Dogs? Dr. Dan Explains