Carprofen for Dogs Dosage Chart by Weight

When it comes to managing pain and inflammation in dogs, Carprofen, a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID), is a go-to for many veterinarians. It’s crucial, however, to get the dosage right to ensure efficacy while minimizing potential risks. In this article, we dive deep into understanding the optimal Carprofen dosage chart by weight for your furry friend.

Key Takeaways:

  • Consult Your Veterinarian: Before starting any medication, a consultation with your veterinarian is paramount. They can provide an accurate dosage based on your dog’s specific needs and health status.
  • Watch for Adverse Reactions: Side effects can occur, including gastrointestinal upset, renal issues, and liver dysfunction. Be vigilant for signs of adverse reactions and consult your veterinarian immediately if any symptoms arise.
  • Avoid Mixing Medications: Carprofen should not be used concurrently with other NSAIDs or corticosteroids due to an increased risk of adverse reactions.
  • Store Safely: Due to its chewable and potentially palatable nature, store Carprofen out of reach of pets to prevent accidental ingestion.
  • Follow-Up is Crucial: Regular check-ups with your veterinarian ensure the ongoing health and safety of your dog while they are on Carprofen.

What is Carprofen?

Carprofen is part of a class of drugs known as cyclooxygenase inhibitory NSAIDs, which work by reducing hormones that cause pain and inflammation in the body. While it’s effective in relieving pain, it’s not without potential risks. Gastrointestinal, renal, and hepatic toxicity are associated with its use, especially if the dog has underlying health conditions.

Understanding the Dosage: A Weight-Based Approach

The recommended dosage for Carprofen is 2 mg per pound of body weight, administered once daily, or divided into two doses of 1 mg per pound each. For postoperative pain control, it’s advised to administer the dose roughly two hours before the procedure.

Weight (lbs) 2 mg/lb Once Daily (mg) 1 mg/lb Twice Daily (mg)
5 10 5
10 20 10
20 40 20
30 60 30
40 80 40
50 100 50
60 120 60
70 140 70
80 160 80
90 180 90
100 200 100

Note: Carprofen tablets are scored, allowing for easy and accurate halving of the dose for precise administration.


Carprofen can be a life-changer for dogs in pain, but it’s crucial to get the dosage right and to monitor for any potential adverse reactions. By following a weight-based dosage chart and staying in close contact with your veterinarian, you can help ensure that your furry friend receives the relief they need safely and effectively. Remember, the health and well-being of your pet is always the top priority!


What Are the Known Side Effects of Carprofen in Dogs?

Gastrointestinal Issues:

Vomiting and Diarrhea: A noticeable percentage of dogs might exhibit signs of vomiting and diarrhea. In some cases, this can lead to dehydration, necessitating immediate veterinary attention.

Loss of Appetite and Weight Loss: Dogs may experience a decrease in appetite, which can subsequently lead to weight loss.

Stomach Ulcers: Prolonged use or high doses can lead to stomach ulcers, evident by bloody stools or vomit.

Liver Function:

Liver Enzyme Increase: Some dogs may show an increase in liver enzymes, which can be indicative of liver damage.

Jaundice: Yellowing of the gums, skin, or whites of the eyes may occur, pointing towards liver dysfunction.

Kidney Concerns:

Changes in Urination: Increased thirst and urination can be a sign of kidney issues.

Blood in Urine: The presence of blood in urine is a serious symptom that requires immediate veterinary care.

Neurological Effects:

Seizures: Though rare, there have been instances of seizures in dogs taking Carprofen.

Disorientation and Behavior Changes: Some dogs may appear disoriented or show significant changes in behavior.

Dermatological Reactions:

Skin Irritations and Allergies: Rashes, itching, or other skin irritations may occur.

Hematologic Issues:

Anemia and Bleeding Disorders: There have been reports of anemia and other bleeding disorders associated with Carprofen.

Can I Give Carprofen to My Pregnant or Lactating Dog?

The safety of Carprofen in pregnant or lactating dogs has not been established. If your dog is pregnant, planning to breed, or is nursing puppies, consult with your veterinarian before administering this medication.

How Should I Store Carprofen Chewable Tablets?

Carprofen Chewable Tablets should be stored in a secure location out of reach of dogs, children, and other pets. Due to the palatable nature of the chewable tablets, there is a risk of overdose if consumed in large quantities.

Can Carprofen Be Used Alongside Other Medications?

Carprofen should be used with caution when given concurrently with other medications, especially those that are bound to proteins, or drugs that are metabolized by the liver. Always inform your veterinarian about all the medications and supplements that your dog is taking before starting Carprofen.

What Should I Do in Case of an Overdose?

If you suspect your dog has ingested an overdose of Carprofen, contact your veterinarian or an emergency pet poison hotline immediately. Symptoms of an overdose may include vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, dark or tarry stool, incoordination, seizures, or lethargy.

Can Carprofen Be Given to Dogs with Pre-existing Conditions?

Dogs with pre-existing liver, kidney, or heart conditions, or those with bleeding disorders, should be given Carprofen with caution. Regular monitoring and blood tests may be required to ensure the medication is not causing adverse effects.

How Quickly Does Carprofen Start Working, and How Long Does It Last?

Carprofen typically starts working within 1-2 hours, and its effects can last for around 24 hours. However, the response to the medication can vary depending on the individual dog and the condition being treated.

Is There a Generic Version of Carprofen Available?

Yes, there are generic versions of Carprofen available, which can be more cost-effective than the branded versions. Ensure you purchase any medication from a reputable source, and consult with your veterinarian before making any changes to your dog’s medication regimen.

Can Carprofen Be Used for Long-term Treatment?

While Carprofen can be used for long-term treatment in some cases, regular veterinary check-ups and blood tests are necessary to monitor your dog’s response to the medication and to check for any potential adverse effects.

How Does Carprofen Compare to Other NSAIDs for Dogs?

Carprofen is similar to other NSAIDs in its mechanism of action, efficacy, and potential side effects. The choice between different NSAIDs should be made based on the individual dog’s health status, pre-existing conditions, and response to the medication.

What Should I Monitor While My Dog is on Carprofen?

Regular Veterinary Check-ups:

Blood Work: Periodic blood tests help in monitoring liver and kidney functions, ensuring they remain within normal ranges.

Observation for Adverse Effects: Close observation for any signs of adverse reactions, including changes in behavior, eating habits, or bowel movements, is crucial.

Proactive Communication:

Reporting Symptoms: Immediate communication with the veterinarian is necessary if any unusual symptoms or changes in your dog’s health are noticed.

Can Carprofen Mask Symptoms of Other Conditions?

Underlying Issues: Carprofen’s effectiveness in reducing pain and inflammation can sometimes mask symptoms of underlying issues, potentially delaying diagnosis and treatment.

Close Monitoring Required: Veterinarians need to conduct thorough evaluations to differentiate between pain relief due to medication effectiveness and potential masking of serious conditions.

What Alternatives Are Available to Carprofen?

Other NSAIDs: There are other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs available for dogs, each with its own profile of effectiveness and potential side effects.

Holistic and Natural Remedies: Some pet owners explore holistic or natural remedies, though their effectiveness and safety profile might not be as well-established as pharmaceutical options.

How Does Body Weight and Size Affect Carprofen Dosage?

Dosage Adjustments: Carprofen dosage is generally based on the dog’s body weight, requiring precise adjustments to ensure efficacy while minimizing the risk of adverse effects.

Importance of Accuracy: Accurate weight measurements are crucial, as even small deviations in dosage can have significant impacts, particularly in smaller breeds.

Is There a Difference Between Carprofen for Dogs and Human NSAIDs?

Specific Formulation for Dogs: Carprofen is specifically formulated for canine use, taking into account their unique physiology and metabolism.

Risk with Human NSAIDs: Administering human NSAIDs to dogs can result in severe toxic reactions, as dogs metabolize these drugs differently.

How Does Carprofen Affect Dogs with Food Allergies or Sensitivities?

Potential for Reactions: Dogs with known food allergies or sensitivities might react to the ingredients in the chewable form of Carprofen.

Alternative Administration Options: Non-chewable forms of Carprofen or other medications might be considered for dogs with these conditions.

Can I Administer Carprofen on an Empty Stomach?

Risk of Gastrointestinal Upset: Administering Carprofen on an empty stomach can increase the risk of gastrointestinal upset.

Recommendation for Food: It is generally recommended to give Carprofen with food to help reduce the risk of stomach upset.

Are There Any Breed-Specific Reactions to Carprofen?

Individual Sensitivities: While breed-specific reactions to Carprofen are not widely documented, individual dogs, regardless of breed, can have varying sensitivities to the medication.

Importance of Monitoring: Close monitoring and regular veterinary check-ups are necessary to ensure safe and effective use of Carprofen across all breeds.

What Happens If I Miss a Dose of Carprofen?

Avoiding Double Dosing: If a dose is missed, it should be given as soon as possible, but a double dose should never be given to make up for a missed dose.

Maintaining Schedule: Consistency in administration helps maintain stable levels of medication in the dog’s system, contributing to its effectiveness.

Can Carprofen Be Used in Conjunction with Physical Therapy?

Supporting Rehabilitation: Carprofen can be used alongside physical therapy to manage pain and inflammation, potentially aiding in quicker rehabilitation.

Close Supervision Required: Both the medication and physical therapy programs should be closely supervised by veterinary professionals to ensure optimal outcomes.

Are There Any Environmental Considerations for Disposing of Carprofen?

Proper Disposal Methods: Unused or expired Carprofen should be disposed of properly, following local regulations to prevent environmental contamination.

Avoiding Water Contamination: Medications like Carprofen should not be flushed down the toilet or disposed of in drainage systems, as this can contribute to water contamination.

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