Tylenol is a popular over-the-counter pain medication. Many people chose to get Tylenol because it is effective, cheap, and accessible. No matter if we have a headache, feel like we are getting a cold or we need something to relieve allergies, it’s the drug to go. But, what about canines? Can you give a dog Tylenol? Is it even safe for our four-legged friends?
Also read: Can You Give Dogs Aspirin?
As a dog owner, you’ve probably asked yourself this exact same question that one time your pooch had a stomach ache, or hurt his paw while running.
And, while it’s good that you’re thinking about ways to ease your pup’s pain, please never give him human medications. This includes Tylenol.
In this article, we’re going to explain why you should never give your dog this medication.
Can you give a dog Tylenol?
Tylenol is a drug made for humans and their needs. So, you shouldn’t give Tylenol to your dog.
It’s true that veterinarians sometimes prescribe Tylenol to canines to treat certain conditions, however, please never give your pooch this drug without consulting your veterinarian. It is simply not safe.
Despite being an over-the-counter drug Tylenol can cause many side effects in canines! Even in small doses it can be very dangerous for pups.
It’s proven that this medication can cause kidney damage, liver damage, and damage to the gastrointestinal system of your pooch!
What is this drug?
To better understand why it’s not safe for dogs, let’s see what Tylenol even is. You can treat pain with two different kinds of medication:
- steroidal anti inflammatory drug (SAID)
- nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID)
But, besides these two we also have acetaminophen. For us, NSAID and acetaminophen are important right now because they are available over-the-counter.
So, what is the difference between those two?
NSAID and acetaminophen both reduce fever and relieve pain. But, only NSAIDs can reduce inflammation, for example, swelling and irritation.
In which group does Tylenol belong? Is it an NSAID or acetaminophen? Tylenol is acetaminophen. So basically, it relieves pain by elevating the pain threshold.
When a vet prescribes it
To be completely fair, there are cases when a vet will prescribe pain relievers. Particularly, Tylenol as a painkiller for your dog. This is completely fine. Your pooch can take it if he or she is under a veterinarian’s supervision. So, when recommended by a vet, it’s is okay.
This is because a veterinarian will always prescribe a low dosage of the drug which is safe for some canines. Emphasis on “some dogs”. Veterinarians know which dogs can take low dosages of Tylenol and be fine.
However, the thing with Tylenol is that it’s just too risky, so not even veterinarians will usually recommend it. They’ll always go with some other drug, that actually is safe for pooches, instead of Tylenol.
What to do if your dog swallowed one?
What if you didn’t give your dog Tylenol on purpose. For example, you left it on your kitchen table and your pup stole and ate some? This is a very serious situation and in this case you should immediately contact an emergency veterinarian. I don’t want to scare you, but you should know that Tylenol poisoning in dogs can be fatal! This means that beginning treatment early is of the utmost importance!
Also read: What Can You Give A Dog For Pain?
There are also symptoms you should be on the lookout for:
- Rapid or difficulty breathing
- Abdominal pain
- Jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes)
- Discolored gums
- Brown urine
Alternative pain relief
When it comes to dogs and pain management many people reach for CBD oil.
CBD has become very popular in the last few years. We see it everywhere. And it’s used in everything. Drinks, skincare, in supplements, you name it. But, what is CBD oil? And is it safe for dogs?
CBD or cannabidiol is found in cannabis and hemp. What makes CBD so special is that it doesn’t contain THC. Which is the part of marijuana that makes you high. So, CBD products don’t contain THC and can’t make you high. That’s why it’s safe for dogs.
But, what effects doe it have on dogs? It’s not researched enough, but it is known that CBD has a number of benefits. Pet parents swear by it. They believe that it helps with seizures and arthritis, and it treats pain even joint pain! So, this was not scientifically proven. But dog owners claim their dogs would feel better after consuming it.
So, you can also try CBD oil as a pain reliever for your pooch.
There are over-the-counter medications that are safe for canines. But, no matter how harmless a human medication seems, it might not be safe for dogs!
And Tylenol is probably one of the most dangerous OTC drugs you could give your pooch. It is so dangerous that the ingestion of Tylenol could actually be fatal for dogs.
If you really need a good painkiller (If your pup has arthritis for example) you can opt for CBD oil. Alos, Rimadyl, Etodolac, and Meloxicam are three commonly prescribed medications for pain that are safe for dogs. Besides these, there are also Gabapentin, Prednisone, and Tramadol.
But the most important thing to remember is to never give any kind of medication to your canine without first talking to your vet. He knows what’s best for your dog.
Always make sure that the medications you’re giving your dog are safe for them! Don’t play with your dog’s health.