Benadryl for Dogs | Bites & Stings | Trupanion Blog
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Benadryl for Dogs: Treat Allergies, Bites and More

Curious About Benadryl for Dogs? Ask Your Veterinarian

Benadryl is an effective medicine for humans, but is it safe for your dog? It’s a common question many dog owners ask, and most veterinarians would agree that it can be used safely and effectively. Benadryl, in its pure form, is also known as Diphenhydramine Hydrochloride (its non-trade name). It is vital that you select a form of Benadryl that does not contain other medications for cold or sinus symptoms; only the pure form of Diphenhydramine Hydrochloride is safe for your dog. Talk to your veterinarian prior to giving your dog Benadryl as a treatment to discuss how much is safe.

Here are some scenarios where using Benadryl could help your dog.

Benadryl for Bites and Stings

benadryl for dogs

Dogs, just like humans, get stings and insect bites, especially during the spring and summer. Depending on the location of the bite, the critter that inflicted it and your pet’s sensitivity, this could be a minor irritation or an emergency.

If the bite or sting is located in the region of the neck and throat, monitor your dog carefully for signs of breathing difficulty. The most common place of injury for a dog is the face and muzzle because they bite at insects. Once a dog is bitten, swelling typically ensues. It is usually not very painful, but can cause severe itching. Be sure to monitor the swollen area carefully to make sure your dog can eat and breathe as he should.

Other Uses for Benadryl in Dogs

Benadryl can be used in most instances of bites and stings. It can be used to treat seasonal and non-seasonal allergies, vomiting, motion sickness and muscle tremors. These seasonal dog allergies are very common in the spring when forestry equipment is being used in nearby wooded areas. It can also prevent extreme swelling. If your dog is nursing or pregnant, you should avoid using Benadryl unless advised to do so by your veterinarian. The most common side effect from giving your dog Benadryl is drowsiness; sedation may be mild to moderate. Other side effects for dogs include dry mouth and the inability to urinate. Potential side effects that are less common include loss of appetite, diarrhea or vomiting.

When to Avoid Giving Your Dog Benadryl

Dogs with the following health conditions should not be given Benadryl:

  • Prostatic Disease
  • Cardiovascular Disease
  • Glaucoma
  • Hyperthyroidism

If your dog takes any medications for pain or other sedatives, interactions should be discussed with your veterinarian prior to administering this antihistamine. Working animals such as police dogs, sight dogs and hearing dogs should not be given this type of medication. Your veterinarian will be able to tell you the appropriate dose and frequency for your dog’s weight, age, and health.

While Benadryl for can be safe and effective for dogs, always check with your veterinarian before using it or if you have any concerns.

Michelle is a blogger and current freelancer for a forestry equipment company. She’s written about almost every topic under the sun, and loves constantly learning about new subjects and industries while she’s writing. Whenever she’s able to step away from her computer she enjoys spending time outdoors with her dogs.


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