Can trazodone kill a dog?

by P B on December 14, 2022

When it comes to the health and safety of their beloved pet, dog owners often have questions. In particular, they may be wondering Can trazodone kill a dog?

It is not common for trazodone to kill a dog. But it is important to understand the side effects and potential consequences of using it.

Understanding Trazodone and its Use for Dogs

Trazodone is an antidepressant drug and is commonly used to treat depression in people. In animals, it is sometimes used to treat behavioral issues, particularly in dogs. It works by blocking the serotonin receptors in the brain, resulting in a calming effect.

Can trazodone kill a dog

The dosage of trazodone can vary greatly between dogs based on their weight, age, and medical condition.

Most vets will prescribe trazodone in an extended-release form. The usual dosage is 1-2 mg per pound of body weight, taken once or twice daily.

What are the Risks of Using Trazodone With Dogs?

The biggest risk of using trazodone with dogs is an overdose. It can lead to serious side effects such as an increased heart rate, extreme lethargy, and difficulty breathing. In some cases, an overdose can even kill a dog.

Overdoses can also occur more quickly in dogs with underlying conditions such as liver or kidney diseases. For this reason, it is important for dog owners to consult with their vet before giving their pet trazodone.

When to Give Trazodone to Your Dog

Trazodone should only be used as a last resort for treating behavioral issues in dogs, and only under the guidance of a veterinarian.

If you’re considering giving your dog trazodone, it’s important to know that the drug takes several weeks to reach its full effect. You may see some initial improvement in your dog’s behavior. It’s important to be patient and give the medication time to work.

You should also make sure to follow your veterinarian’s instructions for giving your dog trazodone. This includes monitoring your dog for any adverse reactions, such as lethargy, sedation, or loss of appetite.


Trazodone and Serotonin Syndrome

Another potential risk to consider is serotonin syndrome, which occurs when too much serotonin builds up in the body. In severe cases, this can be fatal.

This is why it is important to use caution when combining trazodone with other drugs that act on the serotonin system. Such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs).

Side Effects of Trazodone for Dogs

Although rare, trazodone has been known to cause side effects in some dogs. These can include decreased appetite, vomiting, and diarrhea. In some cases, dogs may also experience anxiety, agitation, or irritability. It is important to monitor your dog closely for any changes in behavior and contact your vet immediately if you notice anything unusual.

When to Contact a Vet

If your dog is showing any signs of an overdose or serotonin syndrome, it is important to seek veterinary help immediately. It is also advisable to contact your vet right away if your dog is not showing any improvement after taking trazodone for 24 hours.

Your vet may be able to suggest alternative medications or treatments to help with your dog's behavioral issues.

Conclusion - Can trazodone kill a dog?

Trazodone is a commonly used antidepressant drug for people and is sometimes prescribed to treat behavioral disorders in dogs. While it is not likely that trazodone will kill a dog, it is important to understand the risks and potential side effects of using it.

If used incorrectly, it can lead to an overdose and cause serious health problems.

It is important to speak with your vet before giving your dog trazodone. And to monitor your pet closely for any changes in behavior or health.