Ketoconazole For Dogs: Uses, Dosage, & Side Effects

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Ketoconazole is a drug used to treat fungal infections in dogs. It can also be used to treat Cushing’s disease. The drug works by blocking cortisol formation in the adrenal glands and inhibiting production of the fungal cell walls. Ketoconazole is a generic form of Nizoral. There are other forms of this drug that have been created to reduce the number of side effects associated with Ketoconazole. Itraconazole and Fluconazole are two of these drugs. When giving Ketoconazole to your dog, you should always follow strict veterinary instructions and talk to your veterinarian if you notice any concerning side effects. Here’s what you should know about the uses, dosage, and side effects of Ketoconazole for dogs.

Uses Of Ketoconazole For Dogs

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Ketoconazole is used to treat both external and internal fungal infections in dogs. Infections of the lymph nodes, skin, nails, respiratory system, bone, and other parts of the body may be treated with this drug. There is also a shampoo that mixes Ketoconazole with another drug, Chlorhexidine. This shampoo can be used to fight fungal and bacterial infections of the skin. Because Ketoconazole is able to block the formation of cortisol in the adrenal glands, it is also a treatment option for dogs with Cushing’s disease.

Dosage Of Ketoconazole For Dogs

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The usual dosage of Ketoconazole for dogs depends on the condition being treated and can range from 2.2 to 13 mg per pound of body weight given every 12 to 24 hours. Ketoconazole is available in 200 mg tablets that are administered orally. It is only available with a veterinarian’s prescription. Follow your vet’s instructions closely for giving it to your dog.

Side Effects Of Ketoconazole In Dogs

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There are a few side effects of Ketoconazole in dogs that you should be aware of. One side effect is that it blocks cortisone in the adrenal gland, which can be harmful in some cases, but is a benefit when treating Cushing’s disease. Here are a few other side effects that might be seen in dogs that take Ketoconazole.

  • Dizziness
  • Abdominal pain
  • Fatigue
  • Itching and rashes
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Loss of appetite
  • Bleeding in the mouth
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Liver damage
  • Blood disorders

If any of these side effects become concerning, contact your veterinarian, as they may wish to alter the dosage or seek an alternative for of treatment. Make sure your veterinarian is aware of any other medications your dog is taking, especially antacids, as these can react badly with Ketoconazole. Some medications may even have fatal side effects when mixed with this drug. Ketoconazole should not be given to any dogs that are pregnant or nursing. As with all medications, there is a chance that a dog will have an allergic reaction that can lead to anaphylaxis, a potentially life-threatening condition. If you see the signs of an allergic reaction in your dog, including swelling, itching, hives, and other symptoms, contact your veterinarian immediately.

Has your dog ever taken Ketoconazole? Was it effective? Let us know in the comments below!