Acceptable Household Medications For Pets Chart From My Veterinarian

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I received an email the other day from “Joyce” who said I had printed the wrong dosage for Imodium and dogs in this article about dog medications safe for dog diarrhea.

Panicked, I rushed to double-check right away, and found that I had NOT listed the wrong dose… Whew!

Here's a list of human medications safe for dogs.

Her confusion lies in the fact that I mentioned the dosage for liquid medications in milliliters (ml), whereas others (including a site I actually linked to in that article) sometimes mention the dosage for solid medications (pills) in milligrams (mg).

UPDATE: See the new “important note” about Imodium below.


Doses For Liquid vs Solid Dog Medications

For some reason, my dogs have always been more receptive to liquid forms of medicine, rather than pills.

No matter what I try to “hide” the pill in, they find it and spit it right out.

But with liquid meds, I just mix it in cottage cheese (which they rarely get, so they think it’s a special treat …or sometimes I even mix it in their own dog food gravy) and they never even know it’s there!

UPDATE: I finally figured out how to give a dog a pill — which is much easier than the way I used to do it (when I only had a 50/50 success rate).

Which brings to light the fact that it’s imperative to closely double-check dosing information before dispensing any human medications to your pets.

While there rarely is a difference in the effectiveness of liquid vs solid medications, there is a huge difference in doses if you happened to mistake mg’s (milligrams / weight) for ml’s (milliliters / volume).

Here’s a great online Vet Conversion Calculator for measuring things for your dog by volume or by weight.


List Of Acceptable Human Meds Vet Approved

merck-manual-for-pet-healthThe following Acceptable Household Medications For Pets chart came directly from my veterinarian.

This list has been a lifesaver for me! It has saved me lots of unnecessary trips to the vet — when I could simply provide dog-friendly doses of over-the-counter medications that we already had on hand.

One of the human meds for dogs we use most frequently in our household is Benadryl.

By the way, sometimes it’s easier to give the liquid form of safe dog medications instead of the pill form. However, when I asked my vet for the liquid dosage specifically for Benadryl, she said to always give a dog the pill form of Benadryl instead! Otherwise, you would have to give way too much of it from a bottle and it wouldn’t be cost-effective — especially if you have a large dog.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Before giving your dog Imodium, please see the updated pet dosage information from a veterinarian!

Now onto the lists of acceptable household medications for pets that I got from my veterinarian…


The Household Medications For Pets chart I got from my vet in the Summer of 2004:

Acceptable Human Medications For Pets chart from my Veterinarian


The Household Medications For Pets chart I got from my vet in December of 2007:

Household Medications For Pets Chart from our veterinarian

The most notable changes from 2004 to 2007 are:

  • The clarification of dosages for liquid vs caplet forms
  • The addition of canned pumpkin to relieve constipation
  • The clarification that Ibuprofen is not an acceptable medication for dogs or cats
  • The addition of Robitussin DM to relieve a hacking cough

NOTE: As stated in a comment at the end of this article, the brand name Kaopectate no longer contains kaolin and pectin. It now contains bismuth salicylates and is absolutely not safe for cats. So it’s still one of the dog medications safe for dogs — but not for cats.


Other Dog Medications From The Human Medicine Cabinet

To the above charts showing human meds vet approved, I would also add: Neosporin and Hydrocortisone cream (or gel or spray) — as discussed here.

I use Neosporin and Hydrocortisone cream a lot with my dogs — sometimes in addition to Benadryl, other times without giving Benadryl.

Whenever I notice a small nick or scratch on my dog’s paw or nose (or a hot spot, which one of my dogs gets a lot from obsessively licking her paw), I put either Neosporin (to help cuts heal faster) or Hydrocortisone cream (to help stop the itch) on it.

While it won’t hurt your dog if they lick it, it’s recommended that you use a dog cone or e-collar to keep them from licking it all off — before it has had time to work.


More Household Medications For Pets Charts

Human medications are structured for the human digestive system — so a dog’s digestive tract will react differently to human medication. If you do not have a prescription and need to administer medicine, choose a low dose of Aspirin for anti-inflammation, or Benadryl for allergies. Source

By the way, my dog ate Ibuprofen one time. We rushed her to the vet — they gave her a huge dose of Toxiban (liquid activated charcoal) which bonded to the Ibuprofen (toxic to dogs) and she ended up being ok.

A list of dog medications that are in your medicine cabinet.


Better Safe Than Sorry!…

One important thing to note here is… you should call your vet before giving your pet any of these meds for the very first time.


Three reasons:

  1. To make sure that the meds (and doses) are still safe according to the latest findings regarding animal health and human medications — and that they won’t interfere with other meds your dog may already be taking.
  2. For peace of mind. Almost always, the veterinarian will assure you that your dog will be just fine if they take these human meds. Plus, they will also give you signs of what to watch for if the problem persists! (Usually, anything lasting more than 48 hours requires a trip to the vet for a visual exam, or at least a phone call to the veterinarian.)
  3. So your dog’s health chart stays up-to-date with all major and minor ailments through the years. (A quick phone call is all it takes!)

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Human Medications Vet Approved For Dogs

Vet Meds Approved For Dogs

Acceptable Household Medications For Pets Chart From My Veterinarian


I like to help Dog Parents find unique ways to do things that will save time & money -- so I write about "outside the box" Dog Tips and Dog Hacks that most wouldn't think of. I’m a lifelong dog owner -- currently have 2 mixed breed Golden Aussies that we found abandoned on the side of the road as puppies. I've always trained my own dogs and help friends train theirs, as well. Professionally, I worked at a vet and have several friends who are veterinarians -- whom I consult with regularly. (And just because I love animals so much, I also worked at a Zoo for awhile!) I've been sharing my best ideas with others by blogging full-time since 1998 (the same year that Google started... and before the days of Facebook and YouTube). My daily motivation is to help first-time dog owners be better prepared from the first day your new puppy enters your home. I like to help dog owners understand what's 'normal' and what you can expect in terms of living with and training your dog -- how to get through the ups & downs of potty training, chewing, teaching commands, getting your dog to listen, and everything else that takes place during that hectic first year! When I'm not training, walking, grooming, or making homemade treats for my dogs, you will find me at the corner of Good News & Fun Times as publisher of The Fun Times Guide (32 fun & helpful websites). To date, I've written over 600 articles for dog owners on this site! Many of them have upwards of 200K shares.

28 thoughts on “Acceptable Household Medications For Pets Chart From My Veterinarian

  1. Thank you for providing this information. I’ve given my dog imodium before, but I always forget the correct dosage. I usually call my sister who works in a vet clinic, but this time I was unable to reach her so your chart was great. Thanks again!

  2. Hi Sherrie,

    My boxer randomly gets diarrhea, and the vet always says he is fine. I’m wondering if he has a wheat allergy as well. What wheat-free dog food do you give your dog? Thanks is advance!


  3. The dosage for regular strength Pepto Bismol chewable tablets or caplets should be 1/4 tablet or caplet per 20 pounds instead of 1 caplet or tablet per 20 pounds.

  4. I believe 1 ml per pound of Imodium is still wrong. It is not equivalent to the 1mg/20lb tablet dose listed. The strength of liquid Imodium is 1mg/7.5 mL. According to your chart, a 20 lb dog would receive a 20 ml dose, or 2.67 mg of Imodium. 1 mg/20lb sounds a lot more accurate — in that case a dog should receive 0.375 mL/pound of liquid Imodium.

  5. Thank you Lynette! Have a dog with diarrhea right now and vet pills not working. Will try the Imodium. I am going to give this chart to all my dog friends.

    1. You are absolutely right. Not only Australian Shepherds but many types of “herding” dogs. Collies, Shetland Sheepdogs, Old English Sheepdogs, etc. Loperamide (Immodium) can be deadly.

      Here’s more info:

  6. I have used Bach Flower Rescue Remedy for anxiety in my dogs for years. It is a harmless preparation that is extremely good, and is even great in animals experiencing deep grief after the loss of a loved one, animal or human. I buy the ingredients now and make my own, it is so cheap to do so, but if you buy it, it does have a shelf life of about 3 months.

  7. “IMMODIUM IS NOT SAFE FOR COLLIES AND CAN BE FATAL IF GIVEN! Collies can use Pepto but NEVER IMMODIUM. It is part of a genetic mutation that many collies have (if you have had your collie tested for this mutation and they are negative, IMMODIUM could be used). If you have not had your Collie tested, it is a VERY prevalent problem and is VERY likely to be unsafe. This is also the case for other herding dogs, such as Shelties, AUstralian shepherds, etc.” Please share this warning when you pass this along.

  8. I was given a prescription of ciprofloxacin (antibiotic) in pill form. Is it suitable to mash the pill up, mix with a little water and give it to her via eye dropper. She will not take pills and cannot be tricked into taking them.

    1. You mean the prescription was given to your dog (from a vet), right? My reply is based on your vet saying that antibiotic is fine for your dog to take. If so, then I would make mixing it with water the very last resort because I think it really needs to dissolve in your dog’s stomach rather than becoming diluted ahead of time. Are you sure you can’t fit most of your hand inside your dog’s mouth to ensure that you get the pill in your dog’s throat and be done with it?

      1. Thanks for your quick response. Yes the prescription was from the vet. I will try to get it down her throat in one piece. If that doesn’t work I will contact Vet again and try to get something else.

        1. Hi Ron, if you’re looking for some tips for getting a pill down your dog’s throat quickly, here’s how I do it:

  9. Hi all,

    My LAB is 3 yrs old and now a days, her skin is very itchy. Tried medications with vet but the relief is only temporary. what can be done for my poor lab to stop suffering. All night she is scratching and sometimes it is biting itself making a self injury. I am using povidine iodine for those self made injuries. Pls help me in solving my dog’s problem.

    1. vijay – My best advice is to try olive oil sprinkled onto your dog’s food. Here’s the advice my vet gave me for my dog’s dry, itchy skin:

    2. your dog has a food allergy probably chicken go to global get lifestye dog food lamb an oatmeal the oatmeal relieves the skin irratation

  10. Hi

    I got a puppy a month ago. He is a Blue Bully Pit Bull mix. I took him for his first shots a month ago. I was cleaning my backyard with pine Sol and Vinegar and I caught him lapping up the water. Later that night, he threw up. The next day he had diarrhea. He seemed to have tried to be himself again later that night, but he is still listless and won’t eat. He drank a little water here and there. We don’t really have a specific vet yet (except where he got his shots). He jumps up on the lawn bed and lays down. He wags his tail enthusiastically. But that’s about it. I tried feeding him rice. Rice Water and egg. But no go. It is three days now since he drank the water. What do you advise?

    1. Iris Simone – you need to take your dog to the vet immediately.At the very least CALL a vet for advise on what to do. Or call the ASPCA Poison Control Hotline. You owe it to your puppy.

  11. My dog was prescribed 20mg of Famotidine (pepcid) once a day for throwing up and upset stomach. It has worked wonders. Our cat was on 10mg at one time for similar issues.

  12. you don’t feed her for 24 to 48 hours and slowly give her food starting at a quarter cup a and if no more diarrhoea increase every day a quarter cup give her water thought

  13. If your dog has a fever it could have a infection you can buy a bandanna that you put in the freezer its also good for the hot summer it keeps the body temperature down you can get it at pet smart

  14. Do i have to dissolved the imodium how many ml of water? I dont know her weight pls help me… She is not heavy. Maybe about 6 or 7 kilos and she drinks a small amount of water

  15. My dog has had a problem now for 2 weeks with walking and moving around. At first I thought she sprained or strained something playing with the other dog. Decided to take her to the vet when after 2 weeks there was no improvement. She is now diagnosed with hip dysplasia. Its pretty bad. I had to section off the yard for her so the other dogs don’t hurt her on accident and so she also can still interact with them. I am trying to find the best ways to help her long term with this. I will be giving her glucosomine and vetprofen for pain. Do you have any other suggestions I can do here at home?


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