Gastric ulcers, also known as gastric mucosal injury (GMI) or gastritis, occur when the lining of the dog’s stomach is damaged by excessive acid production. Gastric ulcers are a common cause of GI bleeding in dogs and can be difficult to treat. Dogs with a history of gastric diseases, such as chronic vomiting or chronic diarrhea, may have an increased risk of developing gastric ulcers even if they aren’t showing any signs of vomiting or diarrhea at that time.
If your dog is diagnosed with gastric ulcers, your vet might prescribe an over-the-counter medication like famotidine. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at famotidine and find out whether it is effective in treating gastric ulcers.
What Is Famotidine for Dogs?
Famotidine is a prescription drug used to treat gastric issues in dogs. It helps to control stomach inflammation and acid reflux by blocking the actions of histamine and other hormones that cause these conditions.
This medication can be administered orally (by mouth), or it may be injected directly into your dog’s bloodstream, depending on his individual situation.
How Does Famotidine Help Dogs?
Famotidine is an H2-receptor antagonist that helps to treat stomach ulcers and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). It is also used to prevent vomiting in dogs with food allergies, as well as dogs suffering from stomach inflammation.
Famotidine works by blocking histamine receptors on cells lining your dog’s digestive tract. This prevents the production of gastric acid, which helps break down food before it reaches the stomach.
What Should be the dosage?
The dosage of famotidine that your dog needs will depend on several factors, including the condition being treated, your dog’s overall health, and other factors. Avoid administering the drug to your dog without talking to a vet first.
Your veterinarian should be the one to decide the appropriate dosage for your dog, and you should always follow their instructions. Famotidine is typically available in tablet form in three different strengths: 10 mg, 20 mg, and 40 mg.
What Are the Side Effects of Famotidine?
Famotidine is a safe medication for dogs, but some dogs may experience low white blood cell (WBC) counts. Your vet might prescribe blood tests to keep an eye on your dog’s WBC count. If you notice your dog needing a lot of famotidine or other medications like it, talk to your veterinarian about increasing the dosage.
These are some of the precautions that a dog parent needs to consider while adapting famotidine:
- Only use the recommended dose. The recommended dose is 1-2 capsules per 10 pounds of body weight every day for 7-10 days.
- Administer the medicine according to the instructions on the label, and do not give any other medicines at the same time unless directed to do so by your veterinarian. It is possible that mixing these products with other products may result in a serious adverse reaction for your dog or cat; therefore, we recommend that you consult with a veterinarian before administering any supplement containing vitamins A and D3 (as well as many others).
- Store in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.
Though side effects from famotidine are uncommon, your pet may lose its appetite or become tired. If you observe either of these symptoms, reach out to your veterinarian. You should also contact your veterinarian if your pet develops any signs of an allergic reaction. Watch out for symptoms like swelling, hives, itching, or difficulty breathing.
Famotidine isn’t for animals allergic to it. Be cautious when using it with geriatric animals or those with kidney, liver, or heart disease. Your pet’s stomach acid production may go up temporarily when you stop using famotidine. Use famotidine with caution in pregnant animals.
When discussing any other medications, vitamins, or supplements with your veterinarian, be sure to mention famotidine. It’s important to consult with them before using them with other medications, such as antacids, sucralfate, digoxin, metoclopramide, or ketoconazole.
Famotidine is a very good medication to help dogs with digestion and stomach aches. It can also be used as an anti-inflammatory, which can help with arthritis pain and inflammation of other bones in the body. The main side effects are vomiting and diarrhea, but these are usually mild and not too common unless you give your dog too much or don’t monitor how much famotidine goes into his/her system.