overdose in dogs

Overdose and Toxic Poisoning in Dogs

Dogs are so much like humans in so many different ways. They get many of the same diseases that humans do and can even have allergic reactions just like people. There’s no way for a vet to know if your dog is allergic to certain medications if he’s never given the dog that particular medicine before, so watch your dog carefully for the first few days of starting a new medication. It’s also very important to give the exact dosages prescribed by the vet, to keep from accidentally overdosing your pet. And, never give medicines to your dog that were meant for people. Your dog could get very ill, or worse.


Generally speaking, very few dogs have allergic reactions to their medications. And most allergic reactions won’t happen with the first or second dose but rather after multiple doses. Certain signs that point to a possible allergic reaction include itching, swelling in the facial area or around the snout, and hives. If your dog exhibits any of these traits, discontinue medications and call the vet.

What sometimes happens when dogs are sick and need medicine, is that more than one family member gives the medicine, causing an overdose. Agree on one family member who will give the medicine every time. If that’s not possible, assign a person who will give daytime medicines and another who will pass out night time medications. This will help prevent accidental overdosing. Also, be sure and keep medicines up in a high cabinet to prevent your dog from getting and chewing the bottle.

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Never give your dog doses of over-the-counter medications unless it is recommended by the vet. Some of these medications, including aspirin, acetaminophen, Imodium, ibuprofen and Claritan can cause severe damage to some animals.

If you think your pet may have ingested an over-the-counter medication, or has gotten into his prescription medicine, contact your vet immediately. Some indicators include a weakness or inability to walk, vomiting, seizures, tremors and excessive sleeping.

Treatment of toxic poisoning or overdosing is generally successful if the dog is taken to a vet immediately. If hours go by without treatment, the chances are greatly reduced. Make sure you put all medications out of dog’s reach at all times, particularly if leaving the dog alone. Call the vet any time your dog becomes even more ill while being treated for a disease or other ailment.


The care of your dog is ultimately on you, so take extra precautions to make sure he is safe and healthy.

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