What is Amoxicillin for dogs? Does it work in the same way as in humans? Can I share my Amoxicillin with my dog, or do I need a prescription from the vet? We answer all of your questions about Amoxicillin for dogs here.
Amoxicillin is a broad-spectrum antibiotic, and although it works the same way in dogs as it does in humans, you should not share your pills or oral suspension with pets. Instead, you need to get a veterinary formula.
In this article, we will talk in-depth about Amoxicillin for dogs – the benefits, the risks, the considerations, administration dosages, and usage instructions.
Can I Give My Dog Amoxicillin?
Yes, you can give your dog Amoxicillin. You can . When used in the proper doses, it is safe and efficient for managing bacterial infections in dogs. However, before using Amoxicillin, you need the vet’s approval and a prescription.
Amoxicillin (brand names Amoxil®, Amoxi-Tabs®, Amoxi-Drop®) is an aminopenicillin antibiotic made from the Penicillium fungus. Amoxicillin is a more robust version of penicillin, has a broader spectrum of antimicrobial activity, and is more resistant to stomach acids.
For a more boosted efficacy, Amoxicillin is often paired with Clavulanic acid (β-lactam drug). In the veterinary medicine world, the combination of these medications is sold under the brand name Clavamox®.
When to Use Amoxicillin for Dogs
Amoxicillin is a broad-spectrum antibiotic, meaning it can be used against both gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria. It works by disrupting the formation of bacterial cell walls.
Therefore, Amoxicillin can kill existing bacteria and prevent the growth or formation of new bacteria. However, it is not effective against viral or parasitic infections. Consequently, it is safe to assume that Amoxicillin should be used when your dog’s diagnosis is a bacterial infection.
Keep in mind that human Amoxicillin is not the same as veterinary Amoxicillin. Human formulas often contain unsafe ingredients for dogs – artificial flavors, colors, and sweeteners (xylitol) which may directly or indirectly harm pets.
Benefits and Uses of Amoxicillin for Dogs
As already mentioned, Amoxicillin is used to manage bacterial infections. Let’s take a closer look at the specific bacterial infections, Amoxicillin can help with:
- Amoxicillin for Skin Infections. Various forms of dog skin problems or infections and bite wounds in dogs can be managed with a broad-spectrum antibiotic such as Amoxicillin.
- Amoxicillin for Ear Infections. Amoxicillin helps resolve dog ear infections that can lead to permanent ear damage and hearing impairments or deafness if left untreated.
- Amoxicillin for Dental Infections. This antibiotic can be used to manage tooth abscesses in dogs and is often prescribed to prevent dental infections after teeth scaling treatments.
- Amoxicillin for Respiratory Infections. Amoxicillin can be used to control bacteria causing infections of the upper respiratory pathways for dogs.
- Amoxicillin for Urinary Tract Infections. Bladder infections and other dog urinary tract infections are common in dogs and can successfully be treated with Amoxicillin.
Potential Side Effects and Risks of Amoxicillin for Dogs
Basically, all medications can cause side effects. The good news is, in the case of Amoxicillin, these effects are mild. Common side effects of Amoxicillin include gastrointestinal issues like:
Dogs sensitive to Amoxicillin may develop more severe allergic reactions manifested with:
- Facial swelling
- Hives and rashes
- Difficulty breathing
It is also worth mentioning that Amoxicillin must not be used in dogs with:
- Hypersensitivity to the active ingredient
- Allergies to penicillin, cephalosporin, and beta-lactam antibiotics
- Receiving medications that could interact with Amoxicillin
- About to take urine glucose tests as it can cause false-positive results.
Amoxicillin is ineffective in dogs with shock, blood infections, or other systemic diseases if used by mouth. Although considered generally safe, it is advisable to use it with extra caution in young puppies, pregnant and lactating dogs.
Finally, it should be noted that using exceptionally high Amoxicillin doses can cause adverse effects and make the situation worse instead of yielding improvement.
Amoxicillin Dosage for Dogs
The recommended dosage of Amoxicillin for dogs is 5 mg per lb of body weight, twice per day. The use should last for around 5 to 7 days or 48 hours after all symptoms resolve.
It is essential to stick to these design guidelines as Amoxicillin overdoses in dogs are possible. Notify your veterinarian immediately if you notice any of these symptoms.
- Muscle spasms, twitching, seizures
- Confusion, pain, and weakness
- Agitation or coma
Amoxicillin formulas for dogs are available in three forms – tablets, capsules, and oral suspension. Which form you will use depends on practicality and is something you should discuss with the veterinarian.
You can give your dog Amoxicillin on an empty stomach or with food. If your dog has a sensitive tummy and is prone to vomiting, mix the dose with its regular food or hide it in a treat. If using the capsules, you can put them inside a pill pocket for a no-fuss administration.
Amoxicillin for Dogs Usage Guidelines
Amoxicillin is a fast-acting medication that starts to work within 1 to 2 hours of administration. Although this fast kick-in is not visible on the outside, you should expect an improvement in your dog’s symptoms within several days.
As with most medications, drug interactions with Amoxicillin are possible. This antibiotic usually interacts with:
- Bacteriostatic antimicrobials
- Probenecid and allopurinol
Additionally, like all antibiotics, Amoxicillin kills bacteria in general – it does not differentiate between good and bad bacteria. Therefore, you should use this med in conjunction with a probiotic. We recommend the Honest Paws Pre + Probiotic supplement for dogs as it checks all boxes for safety, efficacy, and quality.
We should note that Amoxicillin is not safe for all pets. Never share this medication with small pets such as rabbits, guinea pigs, chinchillas, and hamsters.
Our Final Thoughts on Amoxicillin for Dogs
Remember that this article is informational, and reading it does not mean you should skip calling the vet. Antibiotic resistance is an ever-increasing problem in both human and veterinary medicine.
To ensure you are not part of the problem, follow your vet’s instructions carefully. Once you have the prescription from your veterinarian, you can go to Chewy, and choose the Amoxicillin formulation you need. to cart.