Can I Give My Dog Benadryl Allergy Plus Congestion?

Your dog is sneezing and itchy because of allergies. You may wonder: Can I give my dog Benadryl allergy plus congestion?

Can I give my dog Benadryl Allergy Plus Congestion

No, you should not give your dog Benadryl allergy plus congestion because it contains the decongestant phenylephrine and pseudoephedrine. Decongestants can make your dog’s heartbeat faster than normal, cause tremors, raise blood pressure and even lead to seizures, coma, or death.

Taking any over-the-counter drug that contains phenylephrine or pseudoephedrine is risky for dogs because of their lack of resistance to these chemicals. Therefore, it is generally not recommended to give your dog any OTC drugs that contain these substances.

Can I give my dog Claritin for congestion?

Claritin-D should not be given to animals as it may cause serious side effects such as vomiting or tremors. In fact, the drug carries an explicit warning on its package insert stating that Claritin-D should not be administered to animals under any circumstances.

Can a dog take Benadryl and Claritin at the same time?

In some situations, yes. If you have a simple allergy and don’t plan to give your dog anything with additional ingredients, then Benadryl or Claritin can be just fine for your pet. However, if either drug is combined with other ingredients that could be harmful to pets — like decongestants — then you’ll want to stay away from them completely.

It is important to consult your vet before administering any new medications to your dog.

What type of Benadryl can I give my dog for allergies?

It’s best to buy the Vetadryl because it’s manufactured specifically for use in dogs and cats. It contains a lower dosage and therefore causes fewer side effects than other forms of diphenhydramine.

The dosage will be different depending on your pet’s weight, so always follow the instructions on the label or on your vet’s advice. If you do not have Vetadryl, you can also use Benadryl.

In general, many veterinarians don’t recommend giving animals OTC medications without first consulting with their vet. There could be side effects, interactions with other medications, or side effects that you might not even know about until it’s too late.

How often can I give my dog Benadryl for allergies?

The standard dose for reducing allergic reactions in dogs is 1 mg per pound every 8 to 12 hours.

Treating the symptoms of an allergy attack is also very important. Giving Benadryl will help with this, but it may not stop the allergic reaction completely. During that time it’s important to take your dog to a veterinarian so they can assess the severity of the situation and decide on a proper course of action.

Alternatives to Benadryl for dogs

Instead of using Benadryl for dogs, you can try one of the following:

  • Cetirizine (Zyrtec)
  • Fexofenadine (Allegra)
  • Loratadine (Claritin)
  • Clemastine (Tavegyl)
  • Chlorpheniramine (ChlorTrimeton)
  • Cyproheptadine (Periactin)
  • Hydroxyzine (Atarax)
  • Terfenadine (Seldane)
  • Trimeprazine (Temaril-P)


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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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