There has been a huge discussion on advantages and disadvantages of carprofen used in dogs during the last decade now. You as a dog owner need to be aware of signs and symptoms of possible side effects.
Their occurrence should alert you and make you take action.
Your vet is supposed to inform and advise you about these side effects.
Do not forget to tell your vet about your dog's symptoms and all medication she receives currently: prescriptions, over-the-counter medicines, herbs, vitamins, natural remedies and flea- and worm medications.
Insist on diagnostic blood tests for the evaluation of your dog's general health status. Ask for an owner-leaflet.
Your vet will be able to determine if the usage of NSAID drugs in your dog is safe or if a different medication should be used.
What Is Carprofen ?
Carprofen is a member of the chemical family of NSAID's (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs).
Two pharmaceutic companies (Pfizer and CEVA) do market it in the UK:
Rimadyl® (Pfizer) and Carprodyl® (CEVA).
Rimadyl is also available in the US and widely used.
Rimadyl ® comes as tablets and in an injectable form.
Beside the "normal" white, small tablets, they developed palatable tablets in different sizes and doses, that are very much liked by dogs.
They resemble dog-treats and clients report no problems with giving them to their dogs.
This is also a reason to store these tablets in a safe place out of the reach of children and... your dog. Avoid accidental over doses.
Usually dogs are sent home with a few days supply of tablets to ensure an easy, pain controlled recovery time.
7 Action Steps - Dealing With Bad Reactions --
Stop Drug -Call Vet Immediately
Do you suspect your dog showing the above listed signs and symptoms while she/he is on carprofen or other NSAID drugs? If yes, do not panic, but act immediately!
Step 1 :
If you recognize any of the above listed signs in your dog, stop giving carprofen immediately.
Step 2 :
Take your dog to your veterinarian for a thorough check-up. Let your vet do a full blood screen and complete blood cell count (CBC), so she or he can decide and initiate the therapy that is necessary for your dog's individual needs.
Step 3 :
In case your dog shows severe symptoms get an immediate appointment at your vet surgery or seek help in an emergency clinic.
Always explain that you suspect an adverse reaction to Rimadyl and insist in ruling out this possibility thoroughly by considering and comparing the side effects described on the Rimadyl drug description leaflet. It is easy to overlook or misdiagnose them.
Step 4 :
Call the manufacturer (in Rimadyl's case Pfizer) directly and ask your vet to call them as well for further information and advice about additional diagnostic tests and treatment options.
Pfizer US: 1-800-366-5288
UK: your vet needs to report to Pfizer UK directly.
Step 5 :
In the rare event of death it will be necessary to perform a post mortem necropsy. This will help to disclose the reasons of death.
The post mortem should be done by an independent veterinarian. The manufacturers, in this case Pfizer, needs to be informed immediately. They are entitled to get some of the tissue samples.
Step 6 :
Write down every detail that happened before, during and after your dog's adverse reaction to the drug. Be very specific and as detailed as possible and try to get copies of all of the medical records and test results etc of your dog.
Step 7 :
Report and/or ask your vet to report the adverse drug reaction to:
Center of Veterinary Medicine of the FDA
phone 1-888-332-8387 or 1-888-FDA-VETS
Veterinary Medicines Directorate
phone: 01932 - 338427
The signs and symptoms are listed in order of their occurring frequency. Your dog might show only one of these symptoms or combinations of them.