Zyrtec For Dogs: Proper Dosage, Uses, Side Effects and Its Safety Precautions

Dogs are allergic susceptible. It could either be a seasonal allergy or caused by proteinous food like turkey. Zyrtec is an antihistamine medicine that can be given to your pooch for the relief of allergy symptoms. I’ll discuss more about this medicine in this article and how it can help your dog from itchiness and redness of the skin. As a fur parent, I understand that when it comes to administering medicines, you want only the safest for your pooch.

Learning more about the efficacy and the safety of the medicines is one of your top concerns for the health of your pooch. For this reason, I will help you understand more about skin allergies and antihistamine like Zyrtec for dogs.

What is Zyrtec for Dogs?

Zyrtec’s generic name is cetirizine. An antihistamine medicine that reduces the body’s histamine reaction. If you’re wondering what histamine is, then let me be a bit scientific for a while so I can help you to understand the correlation between histamine and the body’s reaction from it.

Histamines are chemicals that are naturally found in the body of your dog. These are like “club bouncers” whose job is to get rid of what the body doesn’t want. In this situation, allergens such as pollens, bee sting, and protein food allergy are unwanted substances.

Once these allergens are sensed, histamines start the process of knocking them out of the dog’s body, but as a consequence, symptoms such as redness of the skin and itchiness appear. Although histamines ‘ intention is indeed good for the dog’s system (by removing allergens), but the overreaction of histamines to these allergens has some adverse impacts on the dog’s body. This is where Zyrtec comes into the picture.

Zyrtec for dogs tames those histamines to stop or reduce the allergic reactions so your pooch will stop scratching itself.

Is Zyrtec Safe for Dogs?

Yes, Zyrtec is safe for dogs. This antihistamine medication is actually well-tolerated by a majority of dogs with very few side effects. In fact, Zyrtec for dogs is a second-generation antihistamine type, and this implies that it does not contain sedative elements such as the antihistamine of the first generation such as Benadryl.

But you have to realize as a fur parent that Zyrtec is actually a medicine meant for human use. Although Zyrtec is safe for dogs, there has been no extensive canine research. Therefore, supervision by a veterinary doctor is of utmost importance before using Zyrtec for dogs.

Uses of Zyrtec for Dogs: (What Does It Treat?)

This medicine is used in the treatment of allergic dermatitis and atopy in canines.

1. Allergic Dermatitis:

This is a medical term that describes a group of skin allergies in dogs that are caused by various factors. Here are the most common types of allergic dermatitis in dogs:

  • Bites from fleas
  • Food allergies
  • Bacterial Allergies
  • Contact allergies such as exposure to certain chemicals like detergents and floor polish
  • Allergies from ticks, worms, and mites.
  • Bee Sting

What are the Signs That Your Four-Legged Companion Has Allergic Dermatitis?

Regardless if it is allergic dermatitis or canine atopy, the symptoms are all the same. The only exception is that for canine atopy, the itchiness and the redness are almost year-long.

  • Skin Redness
  • Skin Irritation
  • Excessive Itching
  • Rubbing of Face and Muzzle Often
  • Paw Chewing
  • Swelling of Face and other Parts of the Body

Dogs that suffer from allergic dermatitis begin showing symptoms upon exposure to the allergen, and the condition improves and disappears in a few days after treatment with Zyrtec for dogs.

2. Canine Atopy:

Atopy is a skin disease in dogs due to substances in the air like pollens. These allergens are either inhaled or in direct contact with the skin of your dog. Atopy is believed to be a hereditary health problem that starts at a young age.  It usually begins as a seasonal allergy which eventually worsens and becomes all-year-round itchiness.

What are the Signs That Your Four-Legged Companion Has Canine Atopy?

  • Frequent Licking of Paws
  • Skin Irritations
  • Frequent Biting of Paws and Other Parts
  • Head shaking
  • Rubbing Its Face and Muzzle
  • Skin Thickening

For dogs with Canine Atopy, the prolonged use of Zyrtec for dogs is proven effective in the management of this type of skin disease.

What Are The Factors to Look Into Prior to Giving Zyrtec for Dogs?

All types of medicines are made from chemicals which can be harmful to canines. As I mentioned a while ago, Zyrtec is generally safe for dogs, but there are SOME CONDITIONS WHEREINYOU SHOULD SEEK VETERINARY ADVICE RE ZYRTEC FOR DOGS:

1. Pregnant and Lactating Dogs:

Zyrtec is not provided to pregnant and breastfeeding human females. It is discovered that this antihistamine drug has some adverse effects on the growing fetus. Now with that in mind, if your pooch is pregnant as well as lactating bitches, it may not be safe to offer Zyrtec. Consult a vet over these problems at all times.

2. Kidney Problems and Liver Problems:

It is not safe for dogs that suffer from some kidney and liver health problems to be administered Zyrtec. Due to the possibility of drug interaction, it is not advisable to give over-the-counter medicines to dogs. It could only worsen the current kidney or liver problems by administering Zyrtec.

IMPORTANT: Check the Box!

Since you can buy Zyrtec without a prescription, be very careful and check the box that what you have is the right type of Zyrtec. There is Zyrtec, and there is also Zyrtec-D. Both are antihistamine medicines with the generic name of cetirizine.

Both of these medicines are used for the treatment of allergies without any sedation side-effect. BUT there is a significant difference between the two medicines. ZYRTEC-D HAS AN ADDED INGREDIENT CALLED PSEUDOEPHEDRINE HYDROCHLORIDE, a nasal decongestant.

The Pseudoephedrine is toxic to canines. It will overstimulate both the heart and the nervous system, which then leads to seizure, high blood pressure and eventually death.

You will lose nothing if you double-check the box to be 100% sure that what you will give to your dog is Zyrtec for dogs and NOT Zyrtec-D.

Zyrtec Dosage for Dogs:

Giving more than what is needed is bad for your four-legged baby and at the same time, giving less may not treat its allergies. Thus, you must learn the correct Zyrtec dosage for dogs.

Your dog’s weight is the determining factor for the correct dosage of Zyrtec for dogs. If it is a tablet type, the right dosage is 0.5 mg of Zyrtec for dogs per pound. So, for instance, half a tablet of 10 mg is given to a small breed dog like a Maltese. A big dog takes one tablet of 10 mg of Zyrtec for dogs.

To simplify the dosage, dogs which weigh less than 10 pounds are given a half tablet of 10 mg of Zyrtec once a day. For dogs which weigh over 10 pounds are given 1 full tablet of Zyrtec 10 mg once a day.

The period of dog use of Zyrtec depends on what type of situation is being treated, the dog reaction to Zyrtec and, the development of adverse reactions if any. You must complete the Vet’s prescription even if your pooch feels good already. There are instances when relapse is seen due to incomplete of the drug prescription.

In most cases, Zyrtec for dogs is given on a 5 to 7 day period for allergic dermatitis. For canine atopy, the administration of Zyrtec for dogs is longer.

The Zyrtec for dogs can be given before or after a meal. If you are having a hard time letting your dog swallow the pill, no problem because you can use pill injector for dogs like Four Paws Quick and Easy Pet Pill Dispenser or Mikki Pill Gun.

What Are The Side-Effects of Zyrtec for Dogs?

Although Zyrtec for dogs is safe but as in all type of medicines, it is advisable to be vigilant and watch out for side-effects.

Overdose suffering is uncommon and there are no documented instances of toxicity or any unwanted reactions in the event that you accidentally overdose your pooch with Zyrtec for dogs. The only issue is if you mistakenly offer Zyrtec-D for your pooch, which is bad.

What you need to know is that antihistamines aren’t really curative— these medicines aren’t treating the causes but treating only the symptoms. Zyrtec for dogs is like a band-aid measure –the symptoms will go away, but once the dog is again exposed to the allergy, the symptoms will return.

Listed below are the common side-effects of Zyrtec for dogs:

  • Constipation
  • Vomiting
  • Excessive Salivation
  • Drowsiness
  • Urine Retention

Why Zyrtec for Dogs is the Best Choice?

This is the leading brand in the market for the treatment of allergies in dogs. This is an all-around solution that is efficient for both allergic dermatitis and canine atopy. The reason why vets around the globe suggest Zyrtec to dogs is its safety and absence of side-effects, particularly when used for a more extended time.

Another plus factor of Zyrtec for dogs is that a huge majority of dogs does not have a drowsy issue.

How To Use Zyrtec for Dogs Safely? (Conclusion)

Zyrtec for dogs is well tolerated and has no adverse side effects. But it doesn’t imply that you will order online and then just give your dog the medicine without consulting a veterinarian. It just does not work that way. Here is a guideline on how to treat skin allergies with this antihistamine medicine for your dog:

  • Always ask your Vet regarding the dosage and as to how long it must be given to your dog.
  • Use caution when giving this medicine if your dog has some liver or kidney disease, if your dog is pregnant and if your dog just gave birth and nursing its puppies.
  • Cetirizine must only be the active ingredient (Zyrtec for dogs). At all cost, do not give Zyrtec-D as it also contains pseudoephedrine apart from cetirizine.

If your four-legged companion is itchy, biting its skin, and red all over, then act now to relieve it from allergies. When it comes to the safe treatment of allergic reactions in dogs, Zyrtec for dogs has a good track record. Give your dog the love that it deserves by easing the itch-invest in Zyrtec for dogs now!

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