How Does Cerenia Kill a Dog? Everything You Must Know

Last Updated on: July 9, 2024

With the many reports of dog deaths caused by Cerenia, most pet owners have been wondering if this medication can kill their pup. And if so, what are the available alternatives? Sure, this drug can be quite effective, but it has a number of adverse effects that can result in the demise of your pet.

Therefore…

In this guide, we’ll show pet owners how does Cerenia kill a dog? And its numerous side effects.

Can Cerania Kill My Dogs?

Remember, Cerenia injection and drugs have caused the death of about 4.9% of dogs in the United States. However, the main reason behind their death is usually the main cause of vomiting and, in some cases, not the drug. So to be on the safe side, it’s always a good idea to follow the veterinarian’s instructions.

When used as prescribed by a veterinarian, Cerenia is generally considered safe for dogs and should not lead to their death. Cerenia tablets are commonly prescribed to treat and prevent nausea and vomiting in dogs, due to motion sickness.

However, like any medication, it must be administered according to the veterinarian’s instructions to ensure safety.

Therefore, it’s essential to follow your veterinarian’s guidance on the correct dosage and administration of Cerenia. Giving your dog too much Cerenia, administering it without proper veterinary oversight, or using it inappropriately can potentially lead to adverse effects or complications. 

These may include symptoms like excessive drooling, lethargy, unsteadiness, seizures, or other adverse reactions, but it is uncommon for Cerenia to be fatal when used as directed.

Always consult with your veterinarian before giving any medication to your dog, even if it is to deal with motion sickness. Make sure to inform them of your dog’s complete medical history and any other medications your dog may be taking to prevent any potential interactions or complications. 

If you suspect that your dog has ingested Cerenia inappropriately or is experiencing adverse effects, contact your veterinarian immediately for guidance and assistance.

What Is Cerenia?

Cerenia is a brand name for a medication called maropitant citrate. It is commonly used in veterinary medicine to prevent and treat nausea and acute vomiting in dogs and cats. Maropitant citrate works by blocking certain receptors in the brain, specifically those associated with the feeling of nausea.

Cerenia is often prescribed by veterinarians in situations where pets are likely to experience motion sickness (such as during car rides) or as a pre-treatment for procedures that may induce nausea or vomiting (like surgeries or chemotherapy).

It’s important to note that Cerenia is a prescription medication and should only be administered under the guidance of a licensed veterinarian. 

The dosage and duration of treatment will be determined by the vet based on the individual needs and conditions of the animal. Like any medication, it must be used as directed to ensure the safety and well-being of the pet.

Cerenia is usually administered as per the dog’s age. Pups between 2 and 7 months should consume a dose of over 0.9mg per pound for five days in a row. Dogs over 7 months can consume the same amount until they stop vomiting.

Cerenia use can help prevent acute vomiting, so you can give it to your pet before the onset of vomiting. The cause may be chemotherapy or car sickness. And if your dog can’t hold water or food down, then the vet will recommend an injection.

How Does Cerenia Kill a Dog?

Cerenia is not intended to cause harm or death to dogs when used according to veterinary guidelines. It is an FDA-approved medication designed to treat and prevent nausea and vomiting in dogs.

However, if Cerenia is administered improperly, in extremely high doses, or if there is an unwanted reaction (which is rare but possible with any medication), it could potentially lead to serious health issues.

Here are some scenarios where misuse of Cerenia could potentially be harmful:

  • Overdose: Administering an excessive dose of Cerenia beyond what has been prescribed by a veterinarian can lead to overdose. Symptoms of overdose can include excessive drooling, lethargy, unsteadiness, and, in severe cases, seizures. In extreme cases, an overdose could potentially be life-threatening.
  • Allergic Reactions: While uncommon, dogs can have allergic reactions to medications, including Cerenia. Symptoms of an unwanted reaction may include swelling of the face, lips, or tongue, hives, difficulty breathing, and collapse. An allergic reaction can be serious and requires immediate veterinary attention.
  • Interaction with Other Medications: Cerenia may interact with other medications a dog is taking, potentially leading to adverse effects. It’s crucial for veterinarians to be aware of all the medications a dog is receiving to avoid potentially harmful interactions.
  • Pre-existing Health Conditions: Dogs with certain underlying health conditions may be more sensitive to the effects of Cerenia. In these cases, a veterinarian may need to adjust the dosage or consider alternative treatments.
  • Side Effects: Although most dogs tolerate Cerenia well, some may experience mild side effects like lethargy, diarrhea, or decreased appetite. These side effects are generally temporary and not life-threatening.

The Side Effects of Cerenia in Dogs

While it is generally considered safe when used as prescribed by a veterinarian, like any medication, it can have potential side effects. It’s important to be aware of these side effects and to follow your veterinarian’s guidance when administering Cerenia. Common side effects of Cerenia in dogs may include:

Lethargy

Lethargy refers to a state of tiredness or lack of energy and can manifest as decreased activity, reluctance to move, or excessive sleepiness.

It’s important to note that not all dogs will experience lethargy as a side effect when taking Cerenia, and for those that do, it’s typically a temporary and mild effect. In many cases, the lethargy will resolve on its own within a short period after the medication has been metabolized by the dog’s body.

If you notice that your dog is unusually lethargic after taking Cerenia, it’s essential to monitor their overall condition. If the lethargy persists, worsens, or is accompanied by other concerning symptoms, such as vomiting, diarrhea, difficulty breathing, swelling of the face or extremities, or any other signs of distress, it is crucial to contact your veterinarian promptly.

Diarrhea

Diarrhea is a potential side effect of Cerenia, although it is not one of the most common side effects associated with this medication. If your dog experiences diarrhea while taking Cerenia, it’s essential to monitor the severity and duration of the diarrhea and contact your veterinarian for guidance.

Here are some considerations regarding Cerenia and diarrhea in dogs:

  • Mild Diarrhea: In some cases, dogs may experience mild and transient diarrhea as a side effect of Cerenia. This typically involves loose stools that may last for a short period after taking the medication. This type of diarrhea often resolves on its own without the need for treatment.
  • Persistent or Severe Diarrhea: If your dog’s diarrhea is severe, persistent, or accompanied by other concerning symptoms (such as blood in the stool, vomiting, lethargy, or dehydration), it is crucial to contact your veterinarian promptly. Persistent diarrhea could be a sign of an underlying issue that requires medical attention.

Decreased Appetite

A temporary decrease in appetite can sometimes occur in dogs taking Cerenia. This can lead to reduced food intake, but it usually improves within a short period. While it is not one of the most common side effects, some dogs may experience a temporary decrease in their desire to eat while taking this medication.

Here are some considerations regarding Cerenia and decreased appetite in dogs:

  • Temporary Effect: For some dogs, the decrease in appetite may be a short-lived side effect that resolves on its own after a short period of time.
  • Monitor Food Intake: It’s important to monitor your dog’s food intake while they are on Cerenia. If you notice a significant decrease in appetite that lasts for an extended period, consult your veterinarian.
  • Maintaining Proper Nutrition: If your dog experiences a decreased appetite while on Cerenia, it’s crucial to ensure they are still receiving proper nutrition. You may want to consider offering smaller, more frequent meals or providing high-value and easily digestible foods to entice them to eat.

Excessive Salivation (Drooling) 

While it is not a very common side effect, some dogs may experience an increase in salivation after taking this medication. For most dogs, excessive drooling is a short-lived side effect that usually subsides on its own after a short period of time.

Keep an eye on your dog for signs of excessive drooling, particularly after administering Cerenia. This can help you gauge the severity and duration of the side effects. But in most cases, mild to moderate drooling is not a cause for concern and is considered a relatively benign side effect of the medication.

If the excessive drooling is severe, persistent, or accompanied by other concerning symptoms, such as difficulty breathing, facial swelling, or signs of distress, contact your veterinarian promptly.

Other Side Effects 

  • Vomiting: Ironically, while Cerenia is used to prevent vomiting, it can occasionally cause acute vomiting as a side effect. If your dog vomits repeatedly or severely, contact your veterinarian.
  • Injection Site Reactions: If a Cerenia dose is administered as an injection, there may be localized reactions at the injection site, such as redness, swelling, or discomfort. These reactions are usually mild and transient.
  • Allergic Reactions: Though rare, some dogs may exhibit signs of an adverse reaction to Cerenia tablets, including swelling of the face, lips, or tongue, hives, difficulty breathing, or collapse. If you observe any of these signs, seek immediate veterinary attention.

What Happens When You Give Your Pet a Cerenia Overdose?

Giving your dog too much Cerenia can potentially lead to an overdose, which can result in adverse effects and may be harmful to your dog. Cerenia should always be administered according to the veterinarian’s prescribed dosage and instructions. Giving an excessive dose can increase the risk of side effects and complications.

The first thing you’ll notice is increased salivation or drooling. Your dog may appear unusually tired or lethargic. Dogs may exhibit uncoordinated movements or wobbliness.

Paradoxically, giving too much Cerenia can lead to vomiting, which is the symptom the medication is intended to prevent. In severe cases, an overdose of Cerenia can lead to tremors or seizures. Some dogs may experience difficulty breathing.

In extremely severe cases, an overdose could potentially lead to collapse or loss of consciousness.

Final Thoughts 

Giving your pet too much Cerenia can have some adverse effects on your dog. To ensure the safe and effective use of Cerenia or any medication, it should only be administered under the guidance of a licensed veterinarian. 

The dosage and duration of treatment should be determined by a veterinarian based on the individual dog’s needs and medical history. If you suspect your dog has ingested Cerenia or any other medication inappropriately or is experiencing adverse effects, seek immediate veterinary care. 

If you notice any of the above side effects, then you should consult a vet immediately.

Frequently Asked Questions

How does Cerenia kill a dog?

Despite being an FDA-approved drug, improper usage of Cerenia tablets can kill your dog. It may also trigger an allergic reaction, resulting in the demise of your pet.

What is the active compound in Cerenia medication?

The active compound in this product is maropitant, a popular NK1 receptor antagonist. Maropitant inhabits the substance P on the dog’s CNS, a neurotransmitter that induces dog vomiting.

Can Cerenia help with treating pancreatitis?

Yes, Cerenia is an exceptional solution for dealing with pancreatitis. It can also provide relief from nausea, and you can give it to your pet as a painkiller. 

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