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Pet Medication 101: Naproxen

can dogs take naproxen

It’s important to understand a medication’s uses and side effects before giving it to your pet. This medication info sheet is meant to give you a good understanding of what Aleve (naproxen) is used for, how it works, and potential side effects in cats and dogs. Always consult a veterinarian before giving your pet any medication.

1. Drug Name:


2. Brand Names:

Naprosyn, Aleve

3. How Dispensed:

Over-the-counter and prescription

4. Forms:

Tablet and capsule ( 200 mg, 250 mg, 375mg, 500mg), Liquid (125mg/5ml)

5. Drug Type/Class:

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAID)

6. Uses for Cats and Dogs:

No approved uses in small or exotic animals. Naproxen is approved in horses.

7. How it Works:

Naproxen and other NSAIDs work by decreasing levels of prostaglandins (chemicals in the body that lead to pain, inflammation, and fever). By blocking cyclooxygenase (the enzyme that produces prostaglandins), naproxen reduces these symptoms.

8. Side Effects and/or Signs of Overdose:

GI distress (diarrhea, ulcers), blood abnormalities (low protein, decreased hematocrit), renal problems (fluid retention), possible neuropathies. Signs of overdose include vomiting, lethargy, anorexia, bloody vomit or stool, anemia.

9. Drug Interactions:

Naproxen interacts with aminoglycosides, anticoagulants, aspirin, corticosteroids, furosemide

10. Cautionary Statements:

Do not use unless other NSAIDs that are approved haven’t worked. Do not use with a history of gastric ulcers. This medication is considered to be toxic to pets, especially cats.

Read more:

Signs of Pain in Dogs

Signs of Pain in Cats

Pet First Aid: How to Treat Minor Wounds

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