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Melatonin For Dogs: Is It Safe?

Dog trying to sleep with a blanket over his head while his owner wonders is melatonin for dogs safe?

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If your dog has a hard time with going to sleep, you might be considering to give him melatonin. Humans have been using melatonin for years. It helps us go to sleep, have a better sleep cycle and feel more rested. But is melatonin for dogs safe?

Recently, some evidence suggested that melatonin can help for different canine conditions. As melatonin also has some sedative properties, it can help treat separation anxiety in dogs, general anxiety and depression. It can be especially helpful in high stress situations for dogs triggered by things such as fireworks, thunderstorms or separation from a loved one.

Melatonin can also be helpful to treat other conditions, such as alopecia or general hair loss.

Is melatonin safe to use on dogs?

Melatonin is a normally occurring neurohormone and many people like it for it’s natural properties. However, that doesn’t mean that you should prescribe melatonin to your dog yourself. Always discuss with your vet before giving any melatonin to your dog. There hasn’t been much testing done on animals and the effects of melatonin are still pretty unknown.

Although rare, the known side-effects of melatonin in dogs include:

  1. Itchiness
  2. Tummy upset
  3. Increased heart rate
  4. Confusion
  5. Decreased fertility

While this side effects don’t occur often, you still need to take them into consideration. Because of that, your vet should be the one prescribing it. Especially if your dog is taking any other type of medications with the melatonin.

What’s the right dosage of melatonin for dogs?

Melatonin is widely avalanche as an over-the-counter medication. However, that doesn’t mean that any type of melatonin will do the job. You’ll have to give it to your dog in the right dosage. However, the one deciding on the dosage won’t be you — but your veterinarian.

Always follow the guidelines of your vet’s specific prescription. Hopefully, then it will help calm your dog’s anxiety, stress or insomnia.

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