- Drug Name: Benadryl for Dogs and Cats
- Common Name: Benadryl®
- Drug Type: Antihistamine
- Used For: Allergies, Inhalant allergies, Motion sickness in dogs, Hyperexcitability
- Species: Dogs, Cats
- How Dispensed: Over the counter
- Available Forms: 25mg and 50mg capsules, 12.5mg and 50mg tablets, Oral liquid, Injectable
- FDA Approved: No
Benadryl® is an antihistamine that is commonly used in both people and pets. It is used in the treatment of many symptoms, including allergies and car sickness. It does not treat the underlying problems causing these symptoms.
Can I Give My Cat or Dog Benadryl®?
Yes, but you should only give this drug to your cat or dog under the recommendation of your veterinarian.
How Much Benadryl® is Okay to Give a Cat or Dog?
Benadryl® dosages for dogs and cats vary. You should always consult your vet before giving this drug to your pet to find out the proper dosage.
How It Works
Antihistamines counteract histamine, which is a chemical released to cause inflammation and itchiness as part of an allergic reaction. Diphenhydramine works by blocking H-1 receptors, which occur on the small blood vessels and smooth muscles. When histamine attaches to these receptors, it causes these vessels to widen causing inflammation and itchiness and muscles around the airways to contract, which causes difficulty breathing.
The anti-motion sickness property of Benadryl® works by blocking impulses to the vomiting center in the brain. This is only effective in dogs.
Store in a tightly sealed container at room temperature.
Give the missed dose as soon as possible. If it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose, and continue with the regular schedule. Do not give your pet two doses at once.
WATCH: How to Give a Pet Pills
Side Effects and Drug Reactions
Benadryl® may result in these side effects:
- Hyperexcitability in cats
- Dry mouth
- Decrease in urination
- Loss of appetite
Benadryl® may react with these drugs:
- Central Nervous System deppressants
- Heparin sodium or calcium
- Warfarin sodium
USE CAUTION WHEN ADMINISTERING THIS DRUG TO PETS WITH HEART DISEASE OR HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE, BLADDER DISORDERS, OR HYPERTHYROIDISM
USE CAUTION WHEN ADMINISTERING THIS DRUG TO PREGNANT PETS