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Benefits and Side Effects of Clavamox for Dogs

Clavamox, an antibiotic, is usually prescribed by veterinarians to combat bacterial infections in both dogs and cats. Just like any other drug, the side effects of Clavamox on dogs can be dangerous, so caution is advised. This DogAppy article tells you more.
DogAppy Staff
Please Note
Do not self-medicate your pet under any circumstance; always consult a vet. Medication doses given to animals differ drastically from those meant for humans, and can cause serious complications, or even death.
Antibiotics are generally prescribed to get rid of infections that affect a being, be it humans or other animals. Pets, with dogs and cats in particular, have been administered medication meant for humans with much success, although the difference in the dosage remains clearly apparent.
There are times when medication even when administered in the right manner and dosage can result in side effects in dogs, be it mild or serious. Therefore, it is imperative for the pet parent to understand the implications of a particular drug beforehand.
Clavamox, as an antibiotic, has been deemed safe for dogs when prescribed and administered correctly. Before we move on to understand the effects of this medication, here's how it actually works.
What is Clavamox?
It is a combination of amoxicillin and clavulanic acid. Amoxicillin is a version of penicillin that is considered to be long-lasting, resists stomach acid, and is absorbed better. The compound kills both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria. It is useful in the prevention and treatment of infected wounds and abrasions, along with infection present in the upper respiratory system and the bladder.
Amoxicillin is used in conjunction with clavulanic acid to combat Staphylococci as well as other bacteria. With the addition of clavulanic acid, the compound becomes effective against a wider set of bacteria by stopping the mechanisms the bacteria has against amoxicillin.
» Uses of Clavamox for dogs include treatment of skin and soft tissue infections such as wounds, abscesses, dermatitis, and cellulitis.
» It has been particularly effective in treating pyodermas, an inflammation characterized by pus-filled lesions.
» It is also used to treat bone infections, infections in the mouth, pneumonia, and bladder infections.
» Its bactericidal and antibiotic properties make it highly effective against Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus spp., E. coli, Pasteurella multocida, and Pasteurella spp., among others.
» Additionally, Clavamox also remains stable in the presence of gastric acid, making it a safe drug for pets.
Clavamox, mind you, is not suitable for treating parasitic or viral infections.
Precautionary Measures
If your vet plans to prescribe Clavamox, ensure that you inform him about any of the following conditions, if applicable to your pet:
  • Pregnancy or lactating pet
  • Allergy or hypersensitivity to another penicillin or to cephalosporin
  • Incidence of liver or kidney disease
Clavamox is available in forms of 62.5mg, 125mg, 250mg, and 375mg tablets, and 62.5mg/ml oral liquid. General dosage for dogs is 6.25 mg/lb (1 mL/10 lb) of body weight, administered twice a day. Ensure that you follow your vet's instructions accurately regarding the dosage, as it may differ from breed to breed. If the dog fails to respond to the treatment within 3 days, consult your vet immediately.
Side Effects
» Any medication should only be given to the pet after consulting the vet. Although it is deemed safe for dogs, occasional side effects include diarrhea, loss of appetite, vomiting, or an allergic reaction (symptoms may include labored breathing, rash, etc.).
» Additionally, Clavamox may react adversely with antacids, other forms of penicillin, erythromycin, tetracycline, and chloramphenicol. There have also been instances wherein the animal's system has developed resistance to the drug, as a result of which he does not respond to the treatment.
If your pet experiences diarrhea that is severe and lasts longer than three days, or if he has an allergic reaction, like shortness of breath, hives, swelling of the lips, tongue, or face, rash, or fainting, immediately consult your vet.
Ensure that you consult your vet regarding any query you may have regarding dosage or efficacy of the drug. After administering any medication, keep a close eye on your dog to watch out for any negative reaction. In case of any trouble, do not waste a moment to contact your vet.
Disclaimer: This DogAppy article is for informative purposes only and should not be used as a replacement for the advice of a veterinarian.