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What is Carprofen Poisoning?

Carprofen is a medication commonly prescribed to canines with osteoarthritis; it works well for pain management and is very palatable making it a medicine well suited for canine ailments. The positive results seen by pet owners who give this medicine to their dogs regularly is well documented. The anti-inflammatory properties of this drug are also known to be beneficial. Many canines are prescribed carprofen long-term, though patients on this medication must be followed by the veterinarian to monitor the effects of the drug. Carprofen has caused toxicity in dogs who have been on the medication long-term; however, cases of poisoning are most commonly seen with an accidental overdose of the medication. Our canine companions enjoy the flavor of this medication and will help themselves to it if available. Symptoms will vary depending on the amount consumed and can range from vomiting to abdominal pain, and gastrointestinal perforation in very severe cases.

Carprofen is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug used in the veterinary field for pain management. Prescribed as a medication to alleviate inflammation and pain associated with arthritis, as well as pain management after surgery, ingestion of more than the prescribed amount can result in serious consequences.

Carprofen Poisoning Average Cost

From 34 quotes ranging from $300 - $2,500

Average Cost

$500

Symptoms of Carprofen Poisoning in Dogs

The severity of signs of carprofen poisoning will be contingent on how much of the medication was ingested by your pet. The peak plasma concentration (the highest level of medication in the blood) is reached in one to three hours.  Symptoms you may see in your dog will vary.

  • Vomiting (can be bloody)
  • Diarrhea (can be bloody)
  • Abdominal pain
  • Weakness
  • Lethargy
  • Muscle twitching

In severe cases, additional signs will be seen.

  • Tremors
  • Seizures
  • Gastrointestinal perforation
  • Stupor
  • Coma

Signs of kidney failure are as follows.

    • Blood in the urine
  • Extreme thirst
  • Excessive urination
  • Fatigue
  • Vomiting

In addition, if the liver is experiencing damage, jaundice will be present in the form of yellow colored skin, mucus membranes, and whites of the eyes.

Types

Carprofen poisoning in dogs can be acute after the ingestion of a large qunatity over and above the prescribed amount. Chronic carprofen poisoning may result if your dog develops a sensitivity to it over a period of time. There are side effects and possible adverse reactions to carprofen in some canines, this is why a dog who is on a regular prescription will be monitored through regular check-ups with the veterinarian.

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Causes of Carprofen Poisoning in Dogs

Although adverse reactions to the drug are rare, ingestion of high amounts due to a canine gaining access to his medicinal supply is common. NSAID’s in general can be responsible for gastrointestinal issues with long-term use; therefore, an overdose of a chewable tablet or capsule will cause your pet to experience stomach upset in mild cases, to gastrointestinal irritation or perforation in severe cases of poisoning. Reduction of gastric acid secretion and blood flow to the mucosa can occur causing hemorrhaging along with kidney and liver failure. Other risk factors for severe carprofen poisoning can be:

  • Dogs with coagulation disorders such as von Willebrand’s disease
  • Other medication that is prescribed concurrently like glucocorticoids and sulfonamides
  • Dehydration
  • Predisposition to liver and kidney disease
  • Compromised liver and kidney due to age
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Diagnosis of Carprofen Poisoning in Dogs

If you have witnessed your pet indulging in his carprofen tablets, do not question or wait for the result. A visit to the veterinary clinic is essential. Bring the empty packaging with you, along with any other medications your pet may be on (if any). The veterinarian will base his diagnostic decisions on clinical signs exhibited by your dog (like nausea and abdominal pain) and will also rely on information you can provide. The veterinarian may ask questions as he examines your pet’s mucus membranes and eyes and takes his vital signs.

  • How long has your pet been on the carprofen?
  • What is the reason is it was prescribed?
  • How long ago did you realize that he may have ingested an overdose amount?
  • What have the symptoms been so far?
  • Are they getting worse as time progresses or staying at the same intensity?
  • How much is he drinking and urinating?

The veterinary team will take blood tests in the form of a complete blood count and blood serum chemistry to evaluate levels such as BUN (blood urea nitrogen), creatinine, electrolytes, and liver enzymes. A urinalysis will determine the concentration or dilution of the urine.

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Treatment of Carprofen Poisoning in Dogs

Decontamination

Depending on the timing between ingestion and hospitalization, the veterinary team may choose to induce vomiting and administer active charcoal (to bind the remaining medication).

Supportive Care

IV fluids will provide much supportive and corrective care. Nausea medication, antibiotics, gastroprotectants, vitamin K1 for the liver, and diazepam if there are seizures can all be administered during supportive therapy. Kidney and liver function, as well as urine outflow, will be assisted through intravenous fluids. Your furry family member will be monitored carefully and will remain in the hospital as needed until blood levels are normal and organ function has returned.

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Recovery of Carprofen Poisoning in Dogs

Studies show that cases of carprofen poisoning in dogs can have a good prognosis with timely medical intervention. If there has been severe kidney or liver damage or if the ulceration and hemorrhaging in the gastrointestinal tract and stomach are extremely damaging, the chances of recovery become guarded. If your pet is able to return home after treatment, he may require special care and will need a follow-up appointment with the veterinarian to re-evaluate with blood tests. As with all other types of medication, carprofen should be kept out of reach of children and pets.

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Carprofen Poisoning Average Cost

From 34 quotes ranging from $300 - $2,500

Average Cost

$500

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Carprofen Poisoning Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

Need pet health advice? Ask a vet

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Ask a Vet

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Great Dane

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One Year

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Unknown severity

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0 found helpful

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Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Lethargy

My dog got spayed 2 days ago and the vet gave us carprochews for pain and tonight she chewed up the bottle and I’m assuming ate them bc I don’t see any in sight. She a little over 135 pounds and ate about 1100 mg. What do I do and can this kill her? I had to put my 11 year old boy down today and I pray I don’t lose them both! She ate them about 3 hours ago. She is currently showing no signs of distress but she is lethargic. Help please!

Sept. 13, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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0 Recommendations

Thank you for your question. It is definitely necessary to take her to a veterinarian, yes. That is a huge dose of carprofen for a dog, and can cause kidney failure and stomach ulcerations. She may need to stay on IV fluids and they may need to check her enzymes, but if you act quickly, she may be okay. I hope that she is all right.

Sept. 13, 2020

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Labradoodle

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One Year

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Unknown severity

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0 found helpful

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Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Acted Quickly So No Visible Symptoms

Puppy (about 48 lbs) got into older dog's bottle of carprofen and ate about 40 75mg tablets. Took him to emergency maybe two hours after ingestion (came home and found empty bottle) where they pumped his stomach and gave him activated charcoal. They kept him overnight and suggested he may need to stay longer to monitor. Also, 3 year old lab mix (about 60 lbs) ate some of the carprofen, but much less. When stomachs were pumped vet said about three times more came out of the puppy than the lab mix. How long is a reasonable stay to monitor each dog or can I do that from home?

Aug. 16, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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0 Recommendations

Thank you for your question, I'm sorry that happened to your dogs! To be safe, with the danger for kidney failure or GI ulceration, I would think 48 to 72 hours of monitoring at the hospital would be best. They are probably checking kidney enzymes and the dogs are probably on IV fluids. Those are things that you cannot do at home, and it would be best to stay in the hospital to make sure they are okay. I hope that all goes well for them.

Aug. 16, 2020

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Pit Bull

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Eight Years

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Unknown severity

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0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Noisy Breathing

Accidentally gave him 2 pills in the same day 12 hours apart

Aug. 7, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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Thank you for your question. Without knowing the strength of the pills, and your dogs weight, I can't say if this is a toxic dose or not, unfortunately. It is probably okay if it is a medication that he gets daily, but it would be best to call your veterinarian and ask if it is a problem, since they know your dog and what medications he is on. I hope that all goes well for him.

Aug. 8, 2020

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Pit Bull

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Seven Years

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Unknown severity

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2 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

None

We accidentally gave our 75 lb pit bull and extra dose of 75 mg Carprofen. 1st dose: 7:00 am 2nd dose: 7:00 pm 3rd dose: 10:00 pm Can we just watch to see if he develops symptoms?

Aug. 5, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Gina U. DVM

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Hello You can monitor him for any GI symptoms such as vomiting or diarrhea. If you notice these clinical signs, I recommend that you take him to a veterinarian for an exam. Good luck.

Aug. 5, 2020

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Australian Kelpie

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One Year

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Unknown severity

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0 found helpful

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Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Possible Overdose

My dog may have ovetdosed

Aug. 1, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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0 Recommendations

Thank you for your question. WIthout knowing the dose of medication that your dog ate, or the weight of your dog, I don't have any way to say whether they overdosed, unfortunately. It woudl be best to call an ER in your area and give them that information, so that they can help you determine if any action needs to be taken. I hope that your dog is okay.

Aug. 1, 2020

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Bella

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Dodson /Min Pin

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9 Years

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Critical severity

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Critical severity

Has Symptoms

Seizure, Anemia, Kidneys Shu

My Dodson mix was prescribed this medication 1 week ago for arthritis. She has progressively lost her appetite, EXTREME thirst, and last night she had a seizure. We rushed her back to the emergency vet that had prescribed her the Carprofen last week. Her kidney enzymes are extremely elevated, she is severely anemic, her pulse is high, her hemoglobin is very low. We were told she either has terminal cancer or is in the end stages or kidney failure. We were told her care and treatment was going to be thousands of dollars and that we should consider euthanizing her. As we were waiting in the parking lot for the vet to call us back with an estimate for treatment (we refuse to give up on her without exhausting every possible option) we started reading about this medication and the horrible side effects. The more I began to read the angrier I became. We decided to holt thousands of dollars worth of treatment until we get a second opinion. The vet completely dismissed our concerns regarding the medication and insisted we have the blood transfusions, ultrasounds etc...if we wanted any chance at all to save her. We respectfully declined and brought her home until tomorrow morning when we can get a second opinion. Within 2 hours of being home, flushing her system with lots of pedialyte, trying to get this toxic medication out of her system. She is doing MUCH MUCH better than she was several hours ago. I will expose the maker of this lethal drug and report it to anyone who will listen . I'm livid that we were literally advised to humanly euthanize our family member, and seeing that she is already feeling so much better.

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Blossom

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terrier dachshund mix

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Three Years

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Moderate severity

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1 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Vomiting And Diarrhea

My 16 pound dog was prescribed Rimidyl 2 days ago. So far she has had 3 doses. She has been having liquid diarrhea for past 24 hours off and on, and started vomiting about 6 hours ago (two occasions) It has been 8 hours since her last dose. She ate and drank normally yesterday for the full day, we'll see what morning brings. We weren't warned of the specific SE of this drug, so as I'm reading this website, I am flabbergasted that we weren't told to watch for these specific symptoms. We will call the vet when they open this morning. We have no after hours vet in our small town, the closest is an hour away.

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Cooper

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Basset Hound

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3 Years

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Fair severity

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1 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Fair severity

Has Symptoms

Diarrhea
Vomiting

If anyone can give me some hope, I need it. My sweet 3-year old, 40-lb Basset mix ate about 5 pills of Rimadyl at 75mg. Within an hour and a half, he was at the vet and had vomited most of it up. I took him home, and during the check-up the next day his levels were worse, so he was admitted for nearly 48 hours. After about 24 hours home, his kidney levels STILL did not look great. They aren't sure if the numbers just aren't adding up or if he's really sick, and I couldn't afford to admit him again. Has anyone had a similar experience? Is my dog going to be okay? He is active and happy, but not peeing a lot and having some diarrhea and vomiting (which could be due to the food he had at the vet - he's got a sensitive tummy)

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Max

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Boxer

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3 Years

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Fair severity

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0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Fair severity

Has Symptoms

No
No Symptoms
No Symptoma

My 3 yr old Boxer Max (around 80 lbs) got into my other dog Sammy's Rimadyl. He ate 28 100mg tablets. He ate them around 20 mins before I caught it. I immediately gave him peroxide and he did vomit alot. Poison control said he needed GI protection and kidney protection immediately. He is at the vet right now ( We got him there within 1 1/2 hours of his ingesting and 40 mins after induced vomiting). They are giving him a big dose of charcoal and on an IV to flush out this kidneys. I am worried that I got it out of him in time and also that my vet does not have anyone there at night to monitor his condition. What are his chances of living through the night and being OK?

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Hunter

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Labrador Retriever

dog-age-icon

8 Years

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Fair severity

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0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Fair severity

Has Symptoms

None

My dog hunter must have eaten his last 3 doses of rimadyl while me and my girlfriend were at work. He was given these pills along with antibiotics and ointment for a hot spot on his back. He's a big dog. Weighs over 120lbs. The vet gave us 10 total tablets at 100 mg. Directions were to give 1 every 12 hours. We got all the medication this past Monday and if im guessing correctly he at the last 300 mg. Which would be a day and a half left of dosage. I have to wait till Monday to bring him to the vet. Is there anything i have to look for for any symptoms or any side effects? He is acting like his normal self and i can't tell if he has any symptoms. He's half lab half newfoundland so as stated before he is a BIG dog.

Carprofen Poisoning Average Cost

From 34 quotes ranging from $300 - $2,500

Average Cost

$500

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