Can You Give Your Dog Aleve?

When your beloved pet is in pain and it’s after regular veterinary hours, you can start to feel desperate to help him. There are some things that you can do, but others could lead to even worse health problems. The natural response is to treat a dog with the same types of medicines that you take to relieve pain, but that might not be such a good idea. A common question that pet owners ask is can I give my dog Aleve? The answer is No!, but it’s important to know the reasons why.

Why can’t dogs take Aleve?

Pet health experts at Dog Time explain that Aleve is an over the counter medication that is in the NSAID classification. The acronym stands for a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug. The reason why dogs should never be given Aleve is that this drug is highly toxic to dogs. Even if you break off a small piece of the tablet, it only takes a small amount to produce side-effects that may be life-threatening.

Do vets ever use Aleve to treat pain in dogs?

Aleve is usually the last resort when all other pain killed have failed in easing arthritis pain in dogs. On rare occasions, a veterinarian will prescribe a safe dosage of Aleve to a dog. The only way that this potentially fatal drug can be given to dogs safely is under the supervision of a licensed vet.

What are the side effects of Aleve in dogs?

The danger in giving your dog any amount of Aleve is immense. There are so many side effects that it’s not worth taking the risk. In dogs, Aleve can cause a low red blood cell count leading to anemia. It can also lead to intestinal perforations, stomach ulcers, gastrointestinal bleeding, neurological problems, liver damage, and kidney failure. Any one of these conditions can be fatal, and they are all painful ways to die.

Use caution with human medications

Aleve contains the drug Naproxen. This is also a brand name of the anti-inflammatory drug that is listed as an NSAID. Wag Walking cautions that giving your dog Aleve, Anaprox, Mediproxen, Naprelan, or Naproxen can result in the severe medical conditions discussed above. Naproxen is an enzyme blocker that helps to reduce inflammation and fever responses, but it also takes a toll on other normal body functions, inhibiting the very processes that protect the body. It’s much worse in dogs.

Signs your dog has ingested Naproxen

If your dog accidentally ingests an NSAID, it’s best to call your veterinarian immediately. Signs that indicate your dog may have ingested this drug include lethargy, bloody stools, and vomiting. Animal Poison Control fields thousands of reports of dogs receiving accidental doses of NSAID medications. It can take anywhere from 2 to 24 hours for symptoms to develop.

What should I do if my dog eats Aleve?

Fortunately, there is help available if your dog ingests Aleve or a similar NSAID. Quick action by consulting with a reputable licensed veterinarian can help to save your dog’s life and prevent serious injury to his internal organs. The condition is referred to as Naproxen poisoning, but if it’s caught early, there are effective treatments available. Most of the symptoms that are caused by Naproxen poisoning can be resolved and even kidney dysfunction is reversible in most cases, but treatment is required. However, if you give your dog a high dose of this medication, the damage could become so severe that there is no way to save your pet.

Can my dog take Tylenol?

Tylenol contains acetaminophen which can also be toxic to dogs in fairly small doses, according to Hills Pet. This drug has been known to cause damage to the livers and kidneys of dogs. The same goes for aspirin. It is considered an NSAID, like Naproxen and it should never be given to your dog except under the supervision of your family vet. There are really no safe over-the-counter human medications that can safely be given to your dog.

How can I treat my dog’s arthritis pain?

If your beloved pet is suffering from pain from an injury or from canine arthritis, it’s really not safe for you to provide any type of medication that is intended for human use. Most of these drugs are toxic unless the precise dosage is given, and some dogs cannot even tolerate them in smaller dosages. Some dogs are more sensitive than others. The best course of action is to call your family vet and schedule an appointment. Your dog will receive a thorough examination and possibly testing and X-rays to determine the cause of his pain. The vet will attempt to determine the nature and extent of the condition and will then prescribe the recommended safe treatment to help ease your dog’s pain. Some vets recommend giving arthritic dogs glucosamine because it helps to loosen stiff joints and ease the stiffness. This is a natural supplement that has shown a promising degree of efficiency in dogs. Although the effects are not immediate, over time natural joint supplements can help to improve the conditions that are causing your dog to be in pain.

Final thoughts

You should never give Aleve or any over the counter pain relief to your dog. This and other drugs like it are toxic for dogs and may result in poisoning that could have fatal consequences. At a minimum, the side effects from a low dose can cause serious illness, if not death. Even if a friend or family member has given their pets this type of treatment, it’s not worth taking the risk. If their pet had no adverse reactions, they were lucky. The only safe way to give your dog any kind of pain management medication is to consult with his vet to identify the most appropriate course of treatment.

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