Caring for a Three Legged Dog or Cat
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25 April 2007
First, if you haven't seen our Gabapentin articles, do check them out.
This story came out in the vet publication Clinician's Journal and I wanted to share it because it has a good summary of how pet parents should be instructed to use Gabapentin in dogs and cats. You can download it below, but if you just want to know the highlights keep reading:
Top 5 Uses for Gabapentin in Dogs & Cats
GABAPENTIN DOSAGE INFORMATION FOR DOGS & CATS
- Use in veterinary patients is extra-label.
- Conditions associated with neuropathic pain
- Dogs: 10 mg/kg PO every 8 hours
- Cats: 8 mg/kg PO every 6 hours
- Dogs/cats: 20 to 25 mg/kg PO the evening before the appointment and 20 to 25 mg/kg PO at least 1 to 2 hours before the appointment
- Sedation is likely in both dogs and cats at 20 mg/kg PO.
INAPPROPRIATE USES FOR GABAPENTIN
- Single agent for acute postoperative pain: Inflammation is the most common component of acute postoperative pain. Gabapentin modulates pain signals from the periphery but does not treat inflammation and can reduce (but will not stop) pain signaling in the CNS.
- Renal compromise: Gabapentin is removed from the body via the kidneys and should be used with caution in patients with renal insufficiency, as increased adverse effects (eg, sedation, hypotension) are possible.
- As-needed administration. Frequent administration of gabapentin is required to maintain adequate plasma concentrations in dogs and cats. Administration on an as-needed basis or at intervals less frequent than indicated by pharmacokinetic studies can result in insufficient plasma concentrations and lack of efficacy.
- Long-term postoperative sedation: Sedation is a common adverse effect of gabapentin, particularly with administration of high doses; however, this effect diminishes over time, and gabapentin is unlikely to provide sedation over several days or weeks.
- Pelvic-end weakness. Ataxia is a common adverse effect of gabapentin. Administration in patients with pelvic-end weakness may exacerbate signs and decrease the ability to ambulate without assistance.