Aspirin, also called acetylsalicylic acid, is a salicylate and is used as an antipyretic drug, which means that it cures fever and has anti-inflammatory effects as well. It is one of the most common drugs used by humans to treat several inflammatory diseases, swelling, and to reduce pain and high fever. Long term usage of aspirin is also seen in humans to prevent heart attacks, blood clots, and strokes. Despite the fact that there can be several side effects of aspirin, it is used in high doses for longer periods of time.
Another fact is, being one of the easily-available 'home remedies', aspirin is also used for treatment in dogs. There are several dog illnesses that need urgent attention. Although it is a helpful medicine for humans, there can be several complications if given to dogs without proper knowledge of the correct dosage. There are certain limitations when it comes to using this drug for curing dog health problems.
The foremost use of aspirin for dogs is to treat arthritis. Adult dogs mostly experience joint problems and painful muscle spasms. Canine arthritis is a chronic disease and there are two in every ten dogs that are affected by it. Hence, several vets advise several dosages for dogs that are going through such conditions. There are several other conditions like reducing fever, speeding up the recovery time of any surgery, and reducing pain and swelling, increased heart rate or palpitation, high blood pressure, increased respiration, etc., in which cases the vet may prescribe aspirin as an analgesic.
There are certain enzymes present in the body system of dogs that strengthen the analgesic effects of aspirin in the body in order to treat diseases. However, puppies and cats are not equipped to deal with it. Hence, it is a strict rule that small puppies and cats as well as kittens must never be treated with aspirin. There are also certain dosage limitations for adult dogs that must be carefully followed so as to avoid any toxic side effects on the dog's health.
The dosage must always be given in the amount recommended by the vet. There is a simple calculation that vets do to determine the correct aspirin dose for dogs. Normally, 5 mg to 10 mg aspirin per one pound of the dog's weight is the correct recommended dosage. This dosage must be provided once every 12 hours (with dog food), and this timing must be maintained. For better knowledge of aspirin dosage in dogs, you can refer to the following chart.
|Dog's Weight||Aspirin Dosage|
|Less than 10 lbs||1/2 aspirin (baby)|
|11 lbs to 30 lbs||1 aspirin (baby)|
|31 lbs to 50 lbs||1/2 aspirin (regular)|
|51 lbs to 100 lbs||1 aspirin (regular)|
|More than 101 lbs||2 aspirins (regular)|
The correct and recommended dosage is very important for faster recovery as well as to avoid any complications as far as the health of the dog is concerned. Even a little higher dosage can be disastrous and can have several irreversible as well as life-threatening effects on your dog.
If the appropriate dosage is not provided, then there are several side effects of aspirin that can be seen on the dog's health. Some of the most distinct side effects of an aspirin overdose are changes in the blood circulatory system and digestive system of the dog. There are several gastrointestinal problems that can be caused due to a higher dosage; some of these are diarrhea, bloody vomiting, loss of appetite, etc.
Aspirin overdose can also lead to sudden and excessive bleeding, panting, lethargy, fatigue, anxiety, acute kidney failure, black stools, light urine, excessive thirst, and several such effects. If such effects are seen in your dog, don't ever try to treat it at home but go and visit the nearest vet and let him do the right evaluation of the problem.
To avoid any side effects or overdose of aspirin, it is always recommended to go and see the vet and let him determine the safe dose of aspirin for your dog for whatever health problem it must be experiencing. If there is an emergency, make sure that you provide your dog with the pure aspirin and not coated or any other aspirin-like pain killers. It is very important as far as the dog's health is concerned.
Disclaimer: This article is strictly for informative purposes. Always consult a vet before administering any medication to your dog to avoid any health problems.