Pet Medication 101: Alprazolam
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 Xanax (alprazolam) is used for, how it works, and potential side effects in cats and dogs. Always consult a veterinarian before giving your pet any medication.
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1. Drug Name:
2. Common Names or Brand Names:
Xanax, Niravam, Alprazolam Intensol
3. How Dispensed:
0.25mg, 0.5mg, 1mg, 2mg, and 3mg tablets; oral suspension
5. Drug Type/Class:
6. Uses for Cats and Dogs:
Used off-label in pets to treat anxiety, panic disorders, or phobias (noise/storm phobias, etc.). Also used to treat inappropriate urination in cats. Sometimes used to complement seizure control medications when a pet’s seizures are not well-controlled on a single medication.
7. How it works:
As a benzodiazepine tranquilizer, alprazolam depresses activity in various areas of the brain. The exact mechanism of sedation and anti-anxiety action is not fully understood.
8. Side Effects and/or Signs of Overdose:
Heavy sedation, increased appetite, ataxia/abnormal walking (dogs). Increased affection, depression, odd behavior (cats).
9. Drug Interactions:
CNS depressants, fluoxetine, non-depolarizing neuromuscular blockers, theophylline, tricyclic antidepressants, cimetidine/Tagamet, itraconazole, propranolol.
10. Cautionary Statements:
Use caution with liver and kidney disease or in debilitated patients
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