Esomeprazole, most often referred to as Nexium®, is used to treat and prevent intestinal and stomach (gastric) ulcers in both humans and dogs and& cats. The medication acts by impeding the passage of hydrogen ions, which are components of hydrochloric stomach acid. Thus, esomeprazole prevents the stomach from secreting acid and maintains a more appropriate stomach pH, which promotes healing. It is believed to be effective for a period of 24 hours.
Omeprazole (trade name Prilosec®) is another medication in the same family as Nexium. Take note of the similarities in the names of the two medications to prevent misunderstanding.
Is Esomeprazole Safe for Dogs and Cats?
Although the Food and Drug Administration has not authorized the drug for use in animals, veterinarians may lawfully administer it as an extra-label drug.
Without a prescription, esomeprazole is accessible in low-dose oral formulations. Nexium should be taken only as directed by your doctor and administered to your dog or cat only under the supervision of a certified vet.
Nexium and other esomeprazole formulations are not safe for pregnant, lactating, nursing, or allergic dogs and cats. Additionally, pet owners should use care when giving Nexium to dogs and cats that have liver illnesses.
Esomeprazole is available in a variety of formulations.
Esomeprazole is available in the following formulations that are considered safe for humans:
- Esomeprazole Magnesium is available in doses of 20 mg and 40 mg as Oral Delayed-Release Capsules.
- 2.5, 5, 10, 20, and 40 mg packages of Esomeprazole Magnesium Powder for Oral Delayed-Release Suspension.
- Esomeprazole Sodium is available in the following injectable dosage forms: 20 mg and 40 mg.
There are versions of Esomeprazole specifically for dogs and cats.
Nexium Uses for Dogs and Cats
Esomeprazole is a medication that may be used to treat and prevent intestinal and stomach (gastric) ulcers. The medication aids in the healing of ulcers and erosions in animals. Erosions are nothing but shallow depressions in the stomach lining.
The medicine may be beneficial in the treatment of ulcers produced by ulcerogenic medications like steroids such as prednisone and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as aspirin, among others.
Nexium is also beneficial in the treatment of acid reflux illness. The medication helps prevent esophageal damage by preventing stomach acid from entering the esophagus.
Esomeprazole Safe for Dogs and Cats? Dosage!
Never give medication without first contacting your veterinarian. Ascertain that the dose is appropriate for your pet’s size, breed, and underlying health problems.
Administer oral dosages on an empty stomach or a minimum of 60 minutes before eating. Esomeprazole is often dosed at 0.25 to 0.75 mg per pound or 0.5 to 1.5 mg/kg every 24 hours or once daily in dogs and cats.
The length of administration is determined by the disease being treated and the reaction of your pet to the medicine. Unless otherwise instructed by your veterinarian, ensure that you finish the full course of therapy. Even if your pet seems to be feeling better, adhering to the treatment regimen may help avoid future relapses or the development of Nexium resistance.
Is Esomeprazole Safe for Dogs & Cats? Precautions and Adverse Reactions
While Esomeprazole is usually safe and effective when recommended by a veterinarian, some animals may have adverse effects. Among the adverse effects are the following:
- Gases in excess
- Appetite Loss
Esomeprazole may interfere with other medicines prescribed to your dog or cat. Among them include, but are not limited to:
Consult your veterinarian before starting a course of esomeprazole therapy if your pet is currently on any of these medicines.
Preventing Unintentional Nexium Exposure
When it comes to your pet’s health, prevention is always preferable to treatment. Precautions to prevent an accidental overdose on medications such as Nexium include the following:
Precaution #1: Never keep bottles, carrying cases, or pills in areas that are accessible to dogs and cats. Avoid keeping them in containers or plastic bags that are readily chewed through or otherwise opened by your pet.
Precaution #2: Close handbags and bags tightly to prevent paws and snouts from entering.
Precaution #3: Ascertain that visitors and family members are aware of your pet’s safety measures.
Emergency Resources for Pet Health
If your pet consumes an unsafe dosage of Nexium and displays warning symptoms, immediately call your veterinarian. If you are unable to reach them, contact the Pet Poison Helpline or the ASPCA’s Animal Poison Control Center. Bear in mind that incident costs may apply even to pet owners who are insured.