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Can Dogs Have Unisom? Is It Safe For Them?

If your dog is having some allergy issues or not sleeping through the night, then you may be considering giving your dog some Unisom sleep tabs.

But can you give your dog Unisom?

Yes, you can give a dog Unisom to treat allergic reactions, motion sickness, and vomiting. However, the dose should be overseen by your dog’s vet to make sure it is a safe dosage.

It’s important to have your vet in on this decision because not all types of Unisom are okay for dog consumption.

What You Should Know Before Giving Unisom To Dogs

Unisom is an antihistamine that is also a mild sedative. It is typically prescribed by vets for allergic reactions, motion sickness, and vomiting.

In essence, it is pretty much the same thing as Benadryl because both are brand names for the drug Diphenhydramine.

Your dog’s vet may prescribe Unisom to be administered in tablet, capsule, oral liquid, or liquid injection.

You should expect the Unisom to work quickly and see the effects in your dog within one to two hours time.

image: dysamoria from USA, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

How Much Unisom To Give To Dogs (Dosage Amount)

You should give your dog the dosage of Unisom recommended to you by your vet.

This should be around 1 mg of Unisom per pound of the dog’s body weight.

Never try to determine the correct dosage on your own because your vet is the only qualified person to make this decision.

Side Effects & Risk Factors Of Unisom For Dogs

If you are considering giving Unisom to your dog, then you may be wondering – is Unisom safe for dogs?

Yes and no.

In the dosage recommend by your dog’s vet, the Unisom should be safe. However if you try to administer the Unisom yourself without consulting a vet, it may not be safe for your dog.

In fact, some types of Unisom have Acetaminophen as an ingredient, which is toxic to your dog.

Side effects of giving Unisom to dogs include:

  • lethargy
  • dry mouth
  • urinary retention
  • vomiting
  • diarrhea
  • lack of appetite

In severe cases, Unisom may cause death in your pet as a high dosage is toxic to dogs.

Unisom Sleep Tabs and Unisom PM should never be given to your dog, unless your vet advises it.

These two types of Unisom contain Acetaminophen as well as Doxylamine Succinate, which are not safe for dogs.

Also note that Unisom should be used cautiously in pets with glaucoma, prostate enlargement, intestinal or bladder obstruction, COPD, elevated thyroid hormone, heart disease, or high blood pressure. Use with caution in pets that are pregnant or lactating, geriatric, or are working dogs.

What If My Dog Ate Unisom?

If your vet has not prescribed Unisom for your dog, but the pup got into on his own and ate some, then you need to contact your vet or local animal hospital.

In large doses, Unisom is toxic to dogs and may kill your dog.

Here are signs of Unisom toxicity in your dog:

  • Severe sedation
  • Severe agitation
  • Hyperactivity
  • Aggressive behavior
  • Panting
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Drooling
  • Tremors
  • Hyperthermia
  • Walking drunk
  • Slow breathing
  • Slow heart rate

If you notice any of the symptoms above, then immediately take your dog to the local emergency animal hospital.

Unisom Alternatives For Dogs

Most dog owners want to use Unisom to help their dog sleep through the night, but there are better options for that.

A popular, and more safe, option is melatonin for dogs.

We also recommend CBD for dogs.

You can also focus on lifestyle changes to help your dog sleep without any supplements or natural aids.

Final Word

As you can see, Unisom can be safely given to dogs in small doses, but you have to make sure that you don’t give them the type of Unisom with Acetaminophen as well as Doxylamine Succinate.

In high doses, Unisom can be toxic to dogs, and low doses may cause side effects.

Never give your dog Unisom without first consulting with your dog’s vet for the proper dosage amount for your pup.

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National Canine Research Association of America