Can you give Acetaminophen (Tylenol) to your dog?
I have had many owners come in with a limping dog and tell me well I gave him some Tylenol. My question always is how much did you give him/her? and did you ever consider that it was not safe to give that to your dog?
Acetaminophen as well as other drugs react differently in dogs than they do in humans. In some cases dogs should not get certain drugs that we take such as Ibuprofen should not be given to dogs. In the case of acetaminophen a lower dosage is needed and many people overdose their little dog. The proper dosage for acetaminophen is 5mg per pound (10mg per kg) of dog so for a little 25 lb dog the dose would only be 125mg and only twice a day or every 12 hours not every 6. If you overdose your dog you are risking permanent liver disease as well as a severe chemical reaction in the blood causing an inability of the dogs blood to carry oxygen.
Now even though you have a correct dosage for using acetaminophen for your dog there still is a reason why I would not recommend using it – there are better drugs out there for your dog. There are safer “natural” anti-inflammatories that have the same effectiveness with no or minimal side effects and then there are veterinary prescribed anti-inflammatories that are more effective and although have similar side effects seem to be “safer” than acetaminophen. So no matter which way you choose it is better to go with a dog anti-inflammatory or a natural anti-inflammatory to provide pain relief for your beloved pet and not acetaminophen.
As a side note – it is NOT safe to give a cat acetaminophen! There are no dosages safe for a cat.