- How to know if your dog needs a sedative
- Groups of drugs for calming the dog
- Popular sedatives
- What medicinal herbs can be used at home to calm the dog
- Non-drug sedatives
How to know if your dog needs a sedative
The following changes in your pet’s behavior can indicate stress:
- fast eating (especially if the pet usually eats slowly);
- suurenenud erutuvus;
- söömisest keeldumine;
- unwillingness to go for a walk;
- indifference to what is happening around, apathy;
- sleep disturbances (at night, the dog often gets up, walks around the house, tossing and turning, and so on);
- the pet howls often;
- trembling appears in the limbs;
- the animal is looking for a place to hide, clogged “in a corner.”
These and many other symptoms require owner intervention.
Groups of drugs for calming the dog
Ideally, the owner should contact a veterinarian if the above symptoms appear repeatedly. The veterinarian will prescribe a sedative drug, based on the characteristics of the dog. Medicines have a sufficient number of contraindications and side effects (even of plant origin), so you should not choose them yourself. Taking into account the state of health, age, body weight of the pet, the doctor will select the best option for drug treatment, tell you how long to take, and set the maximum dosage. This is especially important, since sedatives come in different groups.
Sedatives for dogs belonging to this group exhibit a sedative and hypnotic effect, eliminate convulsions. They are shown if the pet has a strong fear and anxiety. As a rule, they quickly relieve symptoms, but the effect of taking them disappears just as quickly.
Benzodiazepines should not be used frequently – the animal can get used to them. In addition, they can only be prescribed by a specialist. An example of sedatives in this group is Diazepam, which copes well with epileptic seizures, but due to its strong effect on the nervous system, it is used only in an emergency.
Means of this group are distinguished by a milder effect on the body. As an example, you can take Spitomin. The drug does not cause drowsiness, effectively eliminates anxiety, helps with various phobias, as well as urinary incontinence caused by fear. The medicine can be given to the dog for 1-1,5 months. Spitomin is often used for small breeds.
Causeless dog aggression against the background of panic, fear is a reason for prescribing sedatives related to tricyclic antidepressants. Due to possible side effects, these medications are prescribed by a veterinarian after making sure that there are no contraindications.
This group includes, for example, drugs such as Clomicalm, Amitriptyline. The course is quite long (up to 35 days), since the effect becomes noticeable only by the third week of admission, as the active ingredient accumulates in the pet’s body. Periodically, you will need to do a blood test – these drugs suppress hematopoietic processes in the bone marrow; the owner also needs to be prepared for the likelihood of “side effects”: most often there is a refusal to eat and increased thirst. Tricyclic antidepressants begin to give the pet with a small dosage, gradually bringing to the optimum.
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The dog should take medications of this group systematically. They are considered safe for pet health, but can lead to gastrointestinal disorders. Most often prescribed drugs such as Fontex, Solaks. Indications for admission: panic, intolerance and fear of loneliness, aggression, anxiety.
General narcotics and muscle relaxants
Preparations of this group are used to calm dogs infrequently. They act on the central nervous system of the animal, eliminating pain, relaxing muscle tissue. These are strong drugs that are used mainly in the clinic to prevent or eliminate negative reactions on the part of the dog to stress, for example, for medical manipulations and interventions. Such sedatives, if used ineptly, can provoke the death of a dog, so most of them are sold in specialized stores or by prescription.
Plant based funds
Herbal sedatives are the safest drugs for four-legged friends. As a rule, they have a small number of contraindications. At the same time, the calming effect may not be clearly expressed – the susceptibility to plant components in all dogs is different, in some cases there is no result. Means containing herbal ingredients are not recommended to be combined with the above drugs – this can lead to a sharp increase in side effects.
Pheromone based products
Pheromones are volatile compounds secreted by the external glands of mammals. These are chemical signals that have a peculiar smell, perceptible at a very subtle molecular level. They are a source of information about the animal, they control its behavior.
To calm the dogs, an artificial analogue of the substance that the body of the female who feeds the puppies secretes is used. This pheromone causes a feeling of peace, removes anxiety and fears. The most popular products containing pheromone are: Adaptil, Help dog. On sale you can find sedatives with pheromone in the form of a spray, electric or ultrasound diffuser, collar.
Sedatives with amino acids
Some sedatives for dogs contain amino acids that reduce anxiety, improve the mental state of the animal by directly participating in specific reactions in the central nervous system. Such amino acids include, for example, glycine and tryptophan. They are given in courses, with a mandatory break. The dosage and duration is determined by the veterinarian.
In veterinary pharmacology, sedatives for dogs are presented in a huge assortment. Below are brief descriptions of the most popular drugs.
- Antistress. These are tablets, the sedative component of which is motherwort. In addition, they contain ascorbic acid, seaweed extract, baker’s yeast. They help with nervous breakdowns, soothe in stressful situations, help strengthen the pet’s immune system.
- Beaphar no stress. The drug is available in the form of drops at the withers and a diffuser. The anti-stress effect is due to valerian.
- Stop stress. Presented in tablet form and drops. The composition contains phenibut, as well as extracts of medicinal plants. Suitable for large breed dogs, medium-sized animals and small pets. Acts quickly; the drug is indicated for increased arousal provoked by fear, sexual desire, panic.
- VetSpokoin. The suspension contains plant extracts. Effectively “removes” aggression and barking for no apparent reason, helps with excessive sexual arousal. The drug can be taken with you on the road, used before going to the hairdresser, to the veterinarian.
- Cat Baiyun. The manufacturer included extracts of medicinal plants in the composition of the product, which eliminate not only fears and anxiety, but also pain and spasms. In addition, Kot Bayun has a sedative effect. In the appropriate dosage, the preparation is suitable for small and medium breeds, as well as large dogs.
- Fiteks. These plant-based drops eliminate muscle spasms, soothe, normalize blood pressure in a pet, and support heart function in stressful situations.
- Phospasim. Homeopathic preparation based on passionflower extract. It is successfully used in neurotic conditions of the dog, phobias, improves the behavioral factor. It also strengthens the immune system and promotes adaptation to stress.
- Pillkan 20. The active substance is megestrol acetate. Effective with excessive sexual activity in dogs of both sexes, calms, normalizes behavior. It delays estrus if for some reason it is not necessary, for example, if an exhibition is planned, and pregnancy is not needed. The product is produced in the form of sugar briquettes, soluble in water.
- Sileo. The active ingredient is dexmedetomidine hydrochloride. Great for dealing with panic and anxiety if the pet is susceptible to loud noise. The drug is sold in gel form in a dosing syringe; injected into the oral cavity on the mucous membrane.
- Nutri-Vet Anti-stress. The product contains tryptophan, taurine, hops and other plant components. Available in tablet form, intended for chewing. Judging by the reviews, it helps to overcome anxiety, panic, fear of moving, visiting a veterinarian or carrying out hygiene procedures, effectively during estrus.
In addition to the listed sedatives, in order to eliminate fear and anxiety, prevent aggression and excessive activity of dogs, strong remedies are used for medical manipulations, examinations, and surgical interventions, such as Xilazal or Xyla. They are available in the form of solutions for injection, used to eliminate pain, muscle relaxation, immobilization of the animal.
What medicinal herbs can be used at home to calm the dog
What soothing decoctions and infusions prepared at home can be given? Folk recipes offer the following options.
It is used for neurotic arousal, panic, fears. The antispasmodic effect helps to eliminate intestinal upset that has arisen against the background of neurosis. If in the process of taking the animal aggressiveness or nervousness is observed (may be observed in large pets), the drug is stopped. You can give valerian to a dog for no longer than 7 days. The maximum dose is 15 drops three times a day (depending on body weight).
May come to the rescue if valerian causes aggression. The plant calms the dog in case of jealousy, aggressive behavior, panic.
It acts like valerian, but softer, without leading to aggression. They are accepted in the same way.
Eliminates not only acute panic conditions, but also the chronic form of neurosis. Restores the pet’s nervous system if it has experienced stress. It is impossible to give Baikal skullcap to dogs that have a violation of the activity of the heart, problems with blood vessels. Reception depends on body weight, the maximum dosage is 20 drops, given twice a day.
In addition to pharmacological drugs, other means can be used to calm the pet. For example, collars impregnated with special compounds: valerian and lavender essential oils (Beafar Antistress), pheromone (Sentry Good Behavior). Also on sale are lavender sanitary napkins that help calm the animal when visiting the veterinarian or at the exhibition (Perfect Calm wipes), and special natural-based soothing shampoos (Perfect Calm lavender).
Be that as it may, whatever products the veterinary pharmaceutical industry produces, the best sedative for a dog is its owner. Love and attention to the pet, willingness to support him in any situation, protect him from stress is the key to the health of the nervous system of a four-legged friend.