Looking for an easy to administer drug to help relieve allergies in your dog? Benadryl is also known as diphenhydramine, which is a powerful and effective antihistamine. These antihistamines work effectively by blocking and preventing the effects of the chemical histamine that is present in the body naturally.
Dogs are somewhat prone to allergies and this is especially true for some specific dog breeds like Golden Retrievers, Boxers, Boston Terriers, Dalmatians and Wirehaired Fox Terriers. However, any dog could develop allergies and this is why it is important that you know what to do about it.
While Benadryl is a human medication, it is considered safe for dogs and many veterinarians actually prescribe it in certain health conditions. Usually, dogs do suffer from the same allergies and health issues as humans and this is why this medicine is effective for them also.
Here, you will get all the important information about the dosage, benefits and side effects of Benadryl for dogs.
How does Benedryl Help Dogs?
Similar to humans, dogs can also have allergies. However, before administering any medicine, it is important to know whether it is an allergic reaction or seasonal or environmental allergies. Moreover, dogs are more likely to show different signs and symptoms of allergies, that could be different from humans.
Many times, dogs show similar allergic symptoms as of humans. In such a case, it is important to know that the symptoms are not severe and that it is just a mild allergic reaction. If you notice symptoms like coughing, red eyes and nasal discharge then these are the symptoms of respiratory infections. These are not caused by any allergies and this is why you should take your pooch to the doctor immediately.
What are the Symptoms of Allergies in Dogs?
There are a number of indications of allergies in dogs. However, there could be symptoms that are more dangerous and serious than the others and should be treated accordingly. Assuming that they are allergic reactions would not be a sensible thing but if your vet notices that there are indeed caused by some allergy then they may recommend an antihistamine like Benadryl.
Some of the common signs of allergies are given below:
- Watery and red eyes
- Breathing difficulties
- Itchy skin
- Audible whistling when exhaling
- Disturbed sleep
- Nasal congestion
- Dry Mouth
All of these symptoms are of allergic reactions but you must get your dog checked in any case and do not give any medication without consisting of the vet. Even the healthiest dog breeds are prone to get sick. Therefore, do not ignore the allergic reactions of a dog belonging to any dog breed.
Benadryl Dosage for Dogs
What is the standard dosage of Benadryl for dogs? Before giving the medicine, it is important that you know about how the medication works on your dog’s system and whether it is beneficial for him.
On average, you should give 1 mg of Benadryl per pound bodyweight of your dog. For example, your dog weighs 25 pounds, the proper dose for him will be 25 mg. Usually, the diphenhydramine tablets that you will find in the medical stores are for a 25-pound dog.
If you do not know how to give Benadryl to your dog then instead of blind guessing, ask your veterinarian about it.
Benadryl Dosage for Dogs by Weight
Is Benadryl Safe for Dogs?
Yes, Benadryl is absolutely safe for dogs but like any other medication, you must consult the veterinarian before giving anything to your dog. When given the medicine for the first time, it is important that you keep a close eye on your pooch to see if the medicine is working fine.
How much Benadryl is safe for dogs? Knowing that Benadryl is safe for your dog is not enough, you must know about the right dosage also. On a safer level, 2 to 4 mg of Benadryl per pound bodyweight of the dog is considered safe.
Can dogs take children’s Benadryl? Yes, children’s Benadryl for dogs is safe but you will have to look after the quantity carefully. Small dogs that are under 25 pounds can have Benadryl for children.
According to the vets, 5 ml of children’s Benadryl contains about 12.5 ml of diphenhydramine and is given as per the dosage of 0.4 ml per pound bodyweight.
Children’s Benadryl Dosage for Dogs
||Children’s Benadryl Dosage
|1 - 10 lbs
||0.4 - 4 ml
|10 - 20 lbs
||4 - 8 ml
|20 - 30 lbs
||8 - 12 ml
|30 - 40 lbs
||12 - 16 ml
|40 - 50 lbs
||16 - 20 ml
|50 - 60 lbs
||20 - 24 ml
|60 - 70 lbs
||24 - 28 ml
Types of Benadryl for Dogs: Which One is the Best?
What kind of Benadryl for dogs? Or what type of Benadryl is safe for dogs? Though Benadryl is a safe drug for dogs, this does not mean that you can give just any kind of Benadryl to Coco. below are some of the main kinds of this drug and the kind that works the best for your canine.
1. Liquid Benadryl for Dogs
Besides tablets and creams, Benadryl is available in liquid form also. However, the liquid form contains alcohol and may not be safe for your dog. But if you want to give it to your dog, choose a children’s Benadryl that does not contain alcohol and is safe for your dog. It is ideal for small dogs but its dosage will be different from pills.
2. Benadryl Spray for Dogs
Benadryl spray works great in emergency situations. If your dog is having a severe allergic reaction like difficulties in breathing and rashes. But using the spray on open wounds or rashes could sting and cause discomfort to your dog. Therefore, be careful.
3. Benadryl Cream for Dogs
Benadryl creams and gels are also available and work as quickly as the spray. Like the spray, these creams are for topical use and could be applied directly on the skin in case there is an allergy caused by some insect bites. However, if used for a prolonged time, it could cause irritation.
4. Benadryl Pills for Dogs
Tablets are the most commonly used form of Benadryl but usually, the tablets come in 25 mg Diphenhydramine and are made for dogs of 25 lbs of weight. But dogs do not really like to swallow tablets and this is why you will have to hide it in a tasty treat to administer it. But do not use time-release tablets as you do not know how they will absorb in your dog’s body.
5. Benadryl Injections for Dogs
Injections are given in severe conditions like when your dog is suffering severely due to an allergic reaction and there is no time to give a pill. However, do not try to use the injection on your dog yourself and leave it to the veterinarian. The injection could be given directly in the vein, under the skin or the muscle.
Are there any Side Effects of Benadryl for Dogs?
Benadryl is usually safe for dogs and helps in relieving allergies. Besides drowsiness, there are some other symptoms that your dog may experience when given Benadryl. Some of those symptoms are given below:
- Dry Mouth
- Rapid and Heavy Breathing
- Urinary Retention
- Increase in Heart Rate
- Disturbed Appetite
Other than these, your dog could experience some other side effects also. In case your dog’s condition worsens, contact the vet immediately.
Zyrtec Vs. Benadryl for Dogs: Which one is Better?
Both Zyrtec and Benadryl are over the counter medication or antihistamines that are used to manage and get rid of allergies in both humans and dogs. Though both of these drugs are considered the same by many, they have some slight differences.
Benadryl is a first-generation antihistamine that contains diphenhydramine as the main medicine formula. Though there are no serious or dangerous side effects of this medicine, drowsiness is a common side effect of this drug. Some dog owners use this side effect to their benefit.
Since some dogs have motion sickness, they administer it to their animals, dogs and cats, before car rides to keep them calm.
Zyrtec is a second-generation antihistamine that is used to relieve seasonal allergies. Dog owners prefer Zyrtec to Benadryl because it causes less drowsiness, which is a common reaction to Benadryl. However, it is still not FDA approved drug for dogs and you must not administer it to your dog without proper medical advice.
Both of the antihistamines work great to relieve allergies in dogs but you will have to follow the proper dosage and identify the allergy symptoms properly.