Carprofen Review: Is Carprofen Safe for Dogs?

Carprofen has been around for more than 30 years and it has become one of the most commonly used medications by veterinarians across the country. Its makers claim that it would be ideal for individuals suffering from joint pain, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, and more. However, this “miracle pill” has received some mixed reviews since its release in 1988.

Carprofen for dogs reviews

What is carprofen used for in dogs?

Carprofen is a prescription drug that treats pain, inflammation, and discomfort caused by arthritis or painful conditions. Carprofen works by inhibiting the release of several prostaglandins in the body that cause pain, swelling, and stiffness in dogs.

Carprofen comes in several forms, including chewable tablets, suspensions, and injectables. It is also available in capsule form only through veterinarians or from a compounding pharmacy.

The carprofen tablets come in a variety of strengths such as 25 mg, 75 mg, and 100 mg. Carprofen is often given in combination with other medications, so your vet will recommend the best dosage for your dog.

Carprofen may also be mixed with food or given directly into the mouth, depending on your veterinarian’s recommendations and product packaging directions.

To treat arthritis in dogs, start with the lowest dose that works for your pet. Work upward from there by adding a small amount of Carprofen every day until your dog stops showing signs of pain and inflammation.

Carprofen works best when taken every 12 hours. Some dogs require only one dose per day; others need two or three doses per day.

The most common side effects of carprofen in dogs include vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, and lethargy or sleepiness. In more serious cases, carprofen may cause kidney or liver damage when given to dogs at overdoses for long periods of time.

Pregnant and nursing dogs should not take carprofen because it may cause adverse effects.

Carprofen should not be used in dogs with liver, renal, or heart disease unless directed by a veterinarian.

Carprofen for dogs reviews

Pet parents have reported that they are happy with the results they got from using Carprofen on their pets.

“I have an 11-year-old golden retriever that has been suffering from arthritis for the past year. I decided to try carprofen and it has made a world of difference! He is able to be active again, he doesn’t want to lay down all day, and he is pain-free! If you have a pet with arthritis I would highly recommend carprofen!”

“I have an 8-year-old dog who has had pain issues for most of his life. He has been on carprofen for about 4 months now and I am so happy with the results. His pain is gone and it has made a huge difference in my life as well. It’s such a relief to know that I can take him anywhere and not worry about him getting hurt. I would recommend this medication to anyone who has an older dog with joint pain issues!”

“I have a dog that has arthritis. I got her started on Carprofen and she does great. She is always in pain and I can tell that the medication makes her more comfortable.”

“I have been using carprofen for about 3 weeks now. My 7yr old cockapoo has had some issues with her joints, and since starting Carprofen she seems much happier and more energetic than before. She also seems to be sleeping better at night. I would definitely recommend carprofen if you are looking for something effective and safe to use on your dog’s joints!”

“I have a 10-year-old lab that has always been very active. We live on a farm and she loves to chase sheep, chickens, and rabbits. She also loves to run in the field with the other dogs. She had been diagnosed with arthritis in her hips and after much research, I decided to try Carprofen for her arthritis. I started using Carprofen for my dog about 2 months ago. She does not have any significant side effects from this medication at all. This is amazing considering how much pain she is in before we used Carprofen!”

“I have a dog who has been on carprofen for over a year. She had a lot of pain and inflammation in her joints. I can tell that she feels better because she doesn’t limp as much as she used to do before taking carprofen. She also seems more energetic now than she was before taking the medication.”

What are the side effects of carprofen for dogs?

Carprofen may cause some side effects in dogs, including:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Lethargy or sleepiness
  • Loss of appetite
  • Allergic reactions such as rash or hives
  • Bloody stool
  • Kidney or liver damage
  • Gastrointestinal bleeding or ulcers
  • Partial/full paralysis
  • Seizures

Carprofen is safe for most dogs at recommended doses. However, if you notice any unusual signs from your dog after using carprofen, call your veterinarian right away.

Carprofen dosage for dogs

Dog’s weight (lbs) Carprofen dosage (tablet)
5 to 10 lbs 1/2 tablet of 25 mg
11 to 15 lbs 1 tablet of 25 mg
16 to 20 lbs 1/2 tablet of 75 mg
21 to 30 lbs 1/2 tablet of 100mg
31 to 40 lbs 1 tablet of 75 mg
41 to 60 lbs 1 tablet of 100mg
61 to 90 lbs 1 and 1/2 tablets of 100 mg
91 to 120 lbs 2 tablets of 100 mg
Carprofen RIMADYL® for dogs dosage chart
RIMADYL® dosing chart

NOTE: The dosage for Carprofen varies depending on the weight of your dog and the severity of the condition. It’s always recommended that you consult your vet before administering any medication to a pet.

How long do dogs stay on carprofen?

Dogs can be given carprofen for short or long-term treatment. The duration of a dog’s Carprofen therapy depends on the disease being treated and the severity of the disease itself.

In the case of surgery, dogs should be on Carprofen for two weeks. However, some dogs may require more or less time to recover from their condition.

NOTE: Dogs who take carprofen for long-term treatment should be monitored closely for signs of kidney or liver problems.

How long does it take carprofen to work on dogs?

The effects of carprofen can be seen within 1 or 2 hours of taking the medication, and the drug is effective for up to 12 hours.

Alternative to carprofen for dogs

You can give your dog other NSAIDs and natural joint supplements that may help relieve the pain and inflammation. If you’re looking for an alternative to carprofen, here are some suggestions:

  1. Galliprant
  2. Meloxicam (Metacam®)
  3. Deracoxib (Deramaxx®)
  4. Firocoxib (Previcox®)
  5. Glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate
  6. Omega 3 fatty acids
  7. Curcumin
  8. Boswellia
  9. Hemp chews
  10. CBD oil

NOTE: It is important to talk with your veterinarian about any changes in your pet’s medications or supplements.

Conclusion of carprofen for dogs

Carprofen is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) that is used to treat pain and inflammation from arthritis and other conditions in dogs.

Carprofen is also sold under brand names such as Rimadyl®, Novox®, and Quellin®. Carprofen may be used alone or as part of a combination treatment with other medications.

Carprofen is not recommended for use in pregnant or nursing dogs. Never give carprofen to any animal that has kidney or liver disease without consulting your vet first.

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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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