9 Benadryl Alternatives: What’s The Best Antihistamine for Dogs?

So you need a Benadryl alternative for dogs, but do not know where to look? Well, search no more. We have gathered up some alternatives that are just as effective and safe for your dog as any Benadryl would be.

Benadryl alternative for dogs

Benadryl alternative for dogs

If your dog has an allergic reaction, it’s important to treat it quickly. A first-aid remedy such as Benadryl can help relieve the symptoms of an allergic reaction and make your pet more comfortable until you can get him to a vet. However, it’s possible that your dog might react badly to Benadryl. If this is the case, you have to find a suitable alternative.

  1. Cetirizine (Zyrtec)
  2. Fexofenadine (Allegra)
  3. Loratadine (Claritin)
  4. Clemastine (Tavegyl)
  5. Chlorpheniramine (ChlorTrimeton)
  6. Cyproheptadine (Periactin)
  7. Hydroxyzine (Atarax)
  8. Terfenadine (Seldane)
  9. Trimeprazine (Temaril-P)

There are also many natural alternatives available that contain herbs with anti-inflammatory properties. These supplements may take some time to work since they need to build up in your pet’s system before they begin to show results, but they are generally safe for long-term use if recommended by your veterinarian.

What is a natural antihistamine for dogs?

Many people are turning to natural remedies instead of conventional ones these days, and there are many different options available to help dogs with allergies.

Some of these include:

  • Chamomile
  • Green tea
  • Quercetin
  • Calendula

Do vets recommend Benadryl for dogs?

Many vets recommend Benadryl (diphenhydramine) for dogs with mild allergies.

Diphenhydramine is usually available over the counter at pet stores and online. The active ingredient works by blocking histamines, which are responsible for causing allergic reactions in your dog’s body.

Diphenhydramine also has mild sedative effects, helping your dog relax and sleep better during times of stress.

Can I give my dog Benadryl allergy plus congestion?

No, you should not give your dog Benadryl allergy plus congestion. Benadryl allergy plus congestion (same ingredients, different name) is contraindicated for dogs and cats because it contains the decongestant phenylephrine and pseudoephedrine.

If you have to give your dog medication for allergies, try to find one that does not have pseudoephedrine or phenylpropanolamine in it.

Can dogs have children’s chewable Benadryl?

Children’s chewable Benadryl comes in a dosage of 12.5 mg, which is appropriate for small dogs. You can purchase these at any pharmacy or online, and they are relatively inexpensive.

Dogs weighing less than 25 pounds should take children’s chewable Benadryl. Dogs over 25 pounds can take regular Benadryl tablets.

Your veterinarian will prescribe the appropriate dosage based on your dog’s weight. The dosage depends on the severity of your dog’s allergies. Usually, it is given once a day, but if symptoms are severe, your vet may recommend more frequent dosages.

How much Benadryl can I give my dog?

The most commonly recommended dose of Benadryl for dogs suffering from allergies is 1 mg per pound of weight every 8 to 12 hours. If you’re administering the medication orally, it’s best to crush up the pill and mix it with food as not all dogs will swallow pills easily.

  • A 30 lb dog: 30 mg of Benadryl
  • A 40 lb dog: 40 mg of Benadryl
  • A 50 lb dog: 50 mg of Benadryl
  • A 60 lb dog: 60 mg of Benadryl

Is there a dog version of Benadryl?

Yes, there is a dog version of Benadryl. It is called Vetadryl, which is the FDA-approved form of diphenhydramine for dogs and cats. Dogs can also be given the human version of Benadryl if their vet prescribes it. The benefit is the pill form of Vetadryl is smaller so it can be dosed on dogs easily.

Some brands of Benadryl are approved for use in pets, but not all. Some are only approved for use in humans. If your pet has allergies, check with your veterinarian to see which brands may be appropriate and how they should be used.

What are the side effects of Benadryl for dogs?

The most common side effects of Benadryl include drowsiness, dizziness, and dry mouth. Other side effects may include diarrhea, loss of appetite, and vomiting.

In rare cases, Benadryl can cause serious side effects in dogs including liver damage or even death if you give too much of it at once or have been giving it regularly for several days in a row without giving your dog time between doses.

Benadryl overdose symptoms may include:

  • Vomiting
  • Confusion or disorientation
  • Dizziness or weakness
  • Fast breathing rate or difficulty breathing
  • Incoordination

Conclusion of Benadryl alternatives for dogs

Benadryl is a common over-the-counter drug used to treat allergies in dogs. However, it can cause some serious side effects and is not recommended for long-term use.

Benadryl is a great medication for dogs, but it’s not the only one. There are many other options that can be used as substitutes in case you run out or if your dog is allergic to the main ingredient of Benadryl.

The most common side effect of Benadryl is sedation, which can make your dog drowsy and uncoordinated. This effect usually wears off within 8-12 hours of stopping treatment with Benadryl but may last longer if your dog has taken high doses. Other possible side effects include increased heart rate, increased blood pressure, and dilation of pupils.

If your dog has been prescribed Benadryl by your veterinarian, it’s important to follow their instructions carefully. If you have any questions or concerns about using this medication, talk to your vet right away.


Hannah Elizabeth is an English animal behavior author, having written for several online publications. With a degree in Animal Behaviour and over a decade of practical animal husbandry experience, Hannah's articles cover everything from pet care to wildlife conservation. When she isn't creating content for blog posts, Hannah enjoys long walks with her Rottweiler cross Senna, reading fantasy novels and breeding aquarium shrimp.

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