Pet Medication Side Effects & Drug Detox


2 User Reviews

Posted by Roxane (Rocklin, California) on 12/19/2012

My six-year old Silky-Yorkie mix was put on Ketoconazole for a fungal infection in his ears. A few days later I woke up to vomit all over the house! Took him back to vet, where he spent the day having tests, including an ultra sound for his organs.

Here is what they found: Inflamed, swollen liver, pancreatitis, extremely high blood glucose levels. And other, more minor things. Now he must have insulin injections twice a day for diabetes caused by the pancreatitis. He was overweight but in good health otherwise. He is tolerating the insulin well, but I was beside myself the day he stayed in the pet hospital, as they told me I had a very, very sick dog. His name is Harry.

I thank God he made it through, but am so sorry I ever gave him that Ketoconazole. Antifungals are rather dangerous for humans, so what was I thinking when I gave it to my dog? I have good vets and don't blame them, although I wish they had told me about the liver side effects. I think that if a drug can harm the liver, it can surely harm the pancreas. Could not be a rare coincidence, come on! And now he is a diabetic for the rest of his life. It's quite a chore making sure he gets his shots twice a day, but my Harry is worth it! You all know what I mean! -- Roxane

Replied by Lovie
(Los Angeles, CA)

My dog was prescribed Ketoconazole and cefpodoxime for an ear Infection. 2 weeks later he passed away. I brought it up to the vet and he said that liver failure is a rare side effect. I asked when he prescribed the medication what side effects there were. He only said vomiting and diarrhea. If he would of told me liver failure it's possible that I would have asked for an alternative medication. I am so sorry I ever gave my dog that medication without researching it myself. Don't trust your vet or the drug companies. Do your homework. I learned the hard way.


8 User Reviews

Posted by Mskuhl (E Patchogue, NY) on 07/16/2013

My dog Bailey just died today. He was on Ketoconazole, and developed pancreatitis and diabetes. We took him back to the Vet to put him on fluids and insulin. He was at the Vet overnight, when they called in the morning to say he develope a fever of 109 and to come in because he would die soon. He was only 9yrs old and was a great companion. We should put a class action suit against the drug company that makes Ketconazole.

Replied by Laws
(Maywest, Fl)

Find a lawyer that could show that ketoconazole was the cause of death and you could have a good case.

Posted by Bruce (Cumming, Ga) on 07/27/2012

My 4 yr old 72 lb Golden Retriever Scout died today. I believe his death may have been caused by ketoconazole. My vet prescribed ketoconazole 300 mg twice a day for a yeast infection in his ears. Scout also received his annual vaccinations for rabies and bordetella the same day the prescription began.

Scout died on the 11th day after beginning this treatment. The only symptom he exhibited over this time period was a decrease in energy and on his last day, a lack of appetite.

I will never allow my dogs to take this drug in the future. I would appreciate any information about ketoconazole and others experiences with this drug.

Replied by Poes4me
(Belle Center, Oh)

Bruce, from Cumming, GA, I'm sorry to hear about your friend Scout. Because I've heard some good things about Ketoconazole I didn't hesitate to give it to my yeasty, 12-yr-old peke when my vet prescribed it. However, by the 3rd day of taking it my peke started showing signs of ataxia, and by day 5 he could barely lift his head, and could barely walk, so I discontinued the med. I don't know if the combo of it along with his phenobarbital and potassium bromide (for his seizures) caused the toxicity, but Ketoconazole will never be given to my boy again.

Replied by Daveyo
(Nakhon Sawan, Thailand)

Sorry to read about the death of your dog. 300mg of that stuff is definitely a killer. A huge overdose. Sue the VET or find another VET or report that VET to the VETERINARY BOARD and have its license be revoked. You have some options to think about.

My God, seems the VETS are getting worse.


Posted by Guenady (Nice, France) on 08/10/2008

For your accumulated information on adverse reactions to drugs, two of my dogs were prescribed ketoconazole for a yeast skin infection. One survived the treatment, the other died during treatment. Other than the skin infection (which was not life threatening), he had no health issues. I was not told before treatment that this medication is hepatotoxic and that it can kill, that it has been established by the manufacturer that there is a 1:10,000 risk of allergic reaction (with underreporting recognized). The vet was not aware (!) of the symptoms of allergic reaction, so when I reported them she did not stop the treatment (dark urine, extreme fatigue, skin turning black and peeling...). When I finally stopped the treatment myself, because my dog was just getting sicker and sicker (after 13 1/2 doses administered out of 30 prescribed) it was already too late. 4 days later he came down with hepititis and 34 days after starting the treatment he died (with bloody vomitting and bloody diahrrea). Although I reported all this, despite my distress) nothing was taken into consideration, everything was dismissed as being a coincidence, and I was given the classic excuse 'your dog was already sick and would have died anyway.' This is an outright lie, of course, and contradicts all the medical file of my dog. But try to get an adverse reaction taken into consideration when the 'authorities' don't want to take it into consideration! Of course there is underreporting! Normally I never give vet medicines to my animals, only homeopathy, but at the time I had no alternative therapy, as skin yeast infection is very difficult to treat. I have since gotten my second dog almost out of her condition, using probiotics and herb Robert and direct applications of hydrogen peroxide on the worst affected areas. My opinion of vets and the authorities that 'oversee' them, has descended to about 0. Would like to know if others have had bad experiences with ketoconazole.

Replied by Cindy
(Torrance, California)

I had a similar problem with Ketoconazole as my Shar Pei had a terrible case of yeast. I stopped the medication after his underbelly started spotting black. After scouring the internet I found the website It took over 1 year to completely clear up the yeast using their protocol and only feeding him a protein diet (I still cook chicken and spinach for him). I recommend anyone who has a yeast problem with with pet to start them on this protocol.

Replied by Jean
(Desert Hills., Arizona)

I would like all pet owners to not give their dogs Ketoconazole for Yeast or Valley Fever. Against my best judgment I gave this to our dog for Valley Fever and he died 3 months later from a failed liver. This is one of the side effects. It is much better to go Natural and stick with this so your dog will have a better life. And by the way they have a cure in Tucson, Arizona at the University of Arizona, but this is another drug and would have to be checked out for side effects. Many states have Valley Fever now. The states are California, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Arizona, and Utah. This problem in in the dirt. Something needs to be done. This affects humans and animals and etc.

Please beware of what I am saying for the sake of your pet!!!

Replied by Pamela
(Austin, Texas)

My 8 year old standard poodle was prescribed ketoconazole to suppress a chronic yeast outbreak in his ears. His liver would not tolerate it. I pilled him once. He vomited bile. That was the end of that.

Replied by Dana L.
(Darlington, Sc)

My pekingese mix was prescribed Ketoconozole three days ago but after her third dose today (100 mgs 2x daily) I think I'm going to stop giving it to her. She has developed a nagging cough, which she has NEVER had before since she started taking this medicine. I'm worried that the long-term side effects will be much worse than this cough we're experiencing. I don't know what I'll do about the yeast infection in her ears but we'll just have to find something else!

Replied by Lulu
(England, Uk)

Just wondering if Ketoconazole Shampoo has the same effects as the medicine? I use the shampoo for treatment of scalp psoriosis and works well. After reading the items about Ketoconazole Im just not sure if I should use it on my dog? any thoughts would be much appreciated : )

Replied by Steph
(Kennedale, Tx)

An australian shepherd or border collie mix puppy we had taken had some kind of rash so we thought after a month of it not going away after using different shampoos we should take it to the vet. He was treated for ringworm. The vet had prescribed ketoconazole and after 5 days of giving the half tab every 12 hours we noticed he stopped eating. We were told to stop giving the medicine and to try giving boiled chicken and rice. The pup became very weak and fatigued and would not eat and just lay there. Deciding not to take him back to the vet who had prescribed this treatment which was made him worse than what he was originally, we let the dog peacefully go.

I would really think twice before giving dogs medicines and found out that most cases of ringworm can disappear on their own. I should have stuck with mother nature instead of trusting a licensed professional to assist with this matter of nature.

Replied by Julie
(Coventry, England)


Replied by Jeffersonhi
(Mililani, Hi)

Our 15 year old New Zealand Light Golden Retriever was prescribed Ketaconazole on 12/10/2011 by our vet, who did a complete work-up on her since she hasn't been in to see the vet in two years. We were there just for a check-up which they "required" in order to refill our Rymadil prescription for her achy joints. They did a blood test, fecal sample exam, the works - and kept her in the small kennel cage all day long... Then charged us $480 for it all. We were gratified to hear from the vet that she's a strong dog for her age, and had a clear result from her blood and stool sample test.

We dutifully gave her the Ketaconazole twice a day... But stopped after she refused to eat anything. We went online and discovered this (and many other) threads documenting the terrible and awful reaction to Ketaconazole... And are worried sick. We are giving her Pedialite to get fluids into her (she licks the bowl clean), but don't want to give her food yet... Since she was vomiting everything we gave her earlier. It's been 12 hours since she last ate. We have no alternative but to take her back to our vet (who has otherwise been a good friend and shown kindness in every respect to our dog and us). We will be sure to print out this thread for his enlightenment on Ketaconazole.

Replied by Cheryl
(Stockton, Ca)

To the December 2011 poster - how is your dog doing?

Replied by Carly
(Raleigh, Nc)

My 10 year old Jack Russell began allergic reactions to, what we thought and were told by vets, flea bites. The itching and chewing to the point of seeping sores has driven him (and us) crazy for nearly 6 years. We spent ridiculous money on one remedy on top of another, injections, steroids... You name it. We became a stressed out, worn out, broke and vet-leary bunch embarrassed to be seen in public with our patchy smelly dog that appeared to be neglected and abused. Our dog was miserable and we were clinically depressed of the whole issue... And (can't believe I'm saying this) considered other options to relieve his suffering, and ours.

Then came the day when I was faced with what I thought were earmites and a severe ear infection. This was a first for my dog and I was confused because it didn't LOOK like earmites but was red, crusty and he was scratching it raw.

Finally, at my wits end, I was reading a homeopathic site and the article mentioned the smelly, itchy stench of a yeast infection in dogs. Frankly, never having had one, I was under the impression this was only a human and female ailment. WRONG! I began treating him immediately for a yeast infection. I started him on Blue Buffalo food (duck) and half a tab of acidophilus and filtered water. I rinsed out his ears with an earwash and bathed him in Nazirol (ketoconazole) shampoo every 2 days. I currently use only hydrosol for fleas and ticks.

My dog, in just over a week, has become a different animal. He is the dog we originally brought home. His eyes are clear and alert, he is energetic and keen and he sleeps like a rock, no scratching, no anxiety and we are sleeping disturbance free.

I am posting this because I can't even imagine giving ketoconazole orally. I am deeply disturbed that for so long and from so many of what were touted to be the best veterinarians in our area, not one of them suggested that Yeast might be the problem. I have decided to seek out a holistic Veterinarian because I no longer trust the expensive drug-pushing establishment.

Nutrition is a best weapon for many ailments. While I am in no way suggesting medicine has no place in treating animals, I will say that owners should be cautious.


1 User Review

Posted by Cristy (Hammond La.) on 11/19/2016

If anyone is able to help I have a 55 pound golden retriever with really bad seasonal allergies she's 6 and had the same problem last fall lost all her hair on her chest cut herself up. When I brought her to the vet he gave her Medrol pills starting her off with 8 mg two times a day I'm thinking that's too much but I gave it to her 4 hrs. ago now she's getting really aggravated growling and snapping every time her brother gets near her she's even trying to bite me she's usually the sweetest, happiest, most playful dog you ever want to meet. Anyone know what could be wrong. I hope the vet didn't give her tpo strong of a dose.

Replied by Theresa
(Mpls., Mn)

Hey Christy,

Changes in behavior is one side effect of the Medrol - you might tell your vet right away of the changes you are seeing in your dog. Possible remedies to counteract the steroid might be bentonite clay and activated charcoal - find it in the health food store and dose as for an adult human, and provide plenty of fresh water.


6 User Reviews
1 star (2) 

Posted by Heather (Fayetteville, Ga) on 06/18/2013

My cat Limpy was given one Metacam injection after having a few bad teeth pulled. She came home and was eating and feeling good but with in a week she stopped eating. The vets found Fuild all in her chest but no signs of cancer. Sadly she passed a few days later. I had no idea there were so many reports about the side effects of Metacam. There is a web site called Metacam I will always believe this drug killed my cat. The vets are so misguided by the drug companies and seem to be more interested in padding their wallets. I lost the best cat I have ever known because of the vets and this drug Metacam.

Posted by Palhuc (Edmonton, Alberta, Canada) on 04/19/2013

I took my 5.5 month old ragdoll kitten for spaying this week. After 2 of the 4 doses of metacam given to her for pain I noticed she was so hyper, jumping up walls and nonstop climbing. She also appeared to be watching the ceiling and I could not get her attention (possibly hallucinating). She responded very well after surgery, ate , drank and went to bathroom almost immediately after coming home from surgery.

She did not appear to be in pain but I did not want to take a chance so that is why I gave her the pain meds. Today did not give pain meds but she is very calm and not hyper like on metacam. I believe this was not a good med for her. I will continue to monitor for any changes in behavior and changes.

Replied by Andrea
(Hobart, Tasmania, Australia)

My cat Sam-Panda has a serious heart condition, and has lately developed a throat irritation. He was prescribed Metacam for the irritation, but just as I was about to give him his first dose I read that it is contra-indicated in animals with cardiac disease. Reading about other animals experiences with this drug, I have no doubt my precious boy would be dead now if I had followed the ve'ts careless advice.

Posted by The Doob (Truro, Cornwall, England) on 10/25/2011

Took my healthy, normal old english sheepdog 6yrs old to vet with small scab. Removed it, gave metacam jab after op. Swelling at op site few days later, gave more metacam to reduce swelling. Then started with side effects of metacam, ie bloody stools/bloody vomit. 3 day stay in vets with gastric ulcer. They said he was fit to collect him, bring home.. But I could see he was sick, fluids on abdomen, rushed him to another vet's, referral centre. Severe advanced peritonitis, ulcer had perforated. Major op. Complication after complication, because the perforation was not detected/treated early. Feeding tubes.. 2 failed oesophagus tubes, abdomen reopened to place gastric tube, that worked. Came home, food and meds through tube for three weeks..liver/pancreas now recovered. After three months, all tests now normal. £12,000!! Couple weeks ago one of my other dog had a lesion.. Wet eczema, new vet wanted to stick him with steroids, NO WAY!

Replied by Anneg
(Portsmouth, Hampshire, Uk)

My 16 month old Portuguese Water Dog Dylan was castrated on 12th March and sent home with Metacam. I dosed him with 24ml (dog weight 24 kgs) as directed on 13th and that night, all night, he had horrible yellow explosive diarrhea - I thought it was a reaction to the op and Metacam was supposed to make it better so give him another dose on morning of 14th - by the afternoon he was lethargic and couldn't/wouldn't eat so phoned the vet who told me to take him off the Metacam - he had diarrhea all that day and night and very little to eat. Yesterday he just lay around and had nothing to eat but we did manage to get some water in to him - last night I was only up 3 times with him and today 16th he has not had to 'go' since about 8 hours ago and has eaten a little chicken so seems to be on the mend.

Having now researched this drug on the internet I would not touch it again with a barge pole!!

Posted by Godsgal (Santa Clarita, Ca) on 12/20/2010


My late Bichon Frise was prescribed Metacam (meloxicam) 1. 5mg oral suspension for arthritis. He did not show any symptoms of arthritic pain and was a bouncy, youthful little guy until he was given this medication. After only one dose, he became disoriented, started walking in circles and kept "crying". I immediately took him off these meds and did a search on line about this medication. There were so many side affects that I called the vet to discuss this. He refused to take my call. My little guy lived another 2 years but his quality of life was gone after just 1 dose! Please beware of this drug!

Posted by Norma (North Vancouver, BC) on 06/07/2009

I had a 11 year old Rough collie with very bad arthritis. I had had him on Recovery for a year and a half but he was getting worse with age. I decided to try Metacam even though I had been very nervous about it. Within 10 days he became very ill - and I rushed him to the Vet. His heart rate was a way up and his gums were very pale. He ended up in the Critical Care unit and was diagnosed with ulcers and he had vomited and ingested and had pneumonia and partial bloat which they had to wait out because of his condition.

My Collie came home with many meds and he did recover. I had him on something to coat his stomach but within 2 months he had bloat again and had to be put down. I will never again put a dog on Metacam. I do not recall the measurement for Metacam but it was whatever was recommended for his weight.

Posted by Dalia (Winchester, United Kingdom)

Re: Metcam (allergic reaction). I had Teddy, a 2 year old pekingese who put his back out. The vet injected him with Metacam and within hours he had breathing problems and the next morning he died. The vet admitted the death was caused by an allergic reaction to the Metacam and he did what he could to counter balance the reaction but to no avail. Has anyone else had this problem?


6 User Reviews
1 star (3) 

Posted by Ayre (Wi) on 05/17/2016

Metronidazole -Warning- We feel our dog was hyper sensitive to this drug. Became suddenly blind-

Investigate side effects before allowing your dog to have any drugs- We wonder why the vet doesn't provide a warning sheet.? Why doesn't the FDA require this with pet meds? Our loving 7 yr old welsh terrier- we believe had a toxic reaction to this drug- our vet had prescribed this- and gave her another dose of this as she was being released from an overnight stay-when we arrived home and placed her in the house- she immediately was having a bad reaction, going in circles under the table, along the wall-we picked her up-and held her she seemed to calm down, she then rested-So we thought she was o.k.- the next morning took her out to relieve herself-she acted like she was blind!!! . Now totally confused, wobbly, -took her for a 2nd opinion they confirmed that she was now blind- due to optic neuritis inflammation- and that we should see a specialist at the emergency clinic-Went to the ER clinic- they briefly looked at her-and the tech decided she wasn't serious enough-and that the earliest appt was the next day- by the time the specialists were able to see her-it was now 2 days later. This new clinic ran lots of blood work- for $1200.00- We found out she tested positive for Lymes Disease. As we began to investigate her conditions and symptoms on line- Under METRO we saw the warnings- which she had now developed-sudden blindness, Neurologic symptoms, head tilt, confusion. 1)Our first vet administered this on a empty stomach-suppose to be given with food- we now learned 2)Not to be given when Lymes disease is present-which we later found she had 3) she now also had new liver damage due to the steroids she was given too. We feel our dog was poisoned, and mis- diagnosed, in error. Looking back (too late)We wondered why she wasn't put on emergency iv's to flush this out of her system?

To make a long story short- we had to put our sweetheart to sleep.

After looking online-We also brought these printouts of warnings in to the emergency clinic-neuro Dr's attn-at our first appt- she dismissed all of our concerns- and said "Not Likely"

As a final note- We never had to take a pet for advanced care before-(and hope we never do again)-for we have lost faith in professional vet medicine. They instead insisted we restart this drug- and they wanted a liver biopsy, MRI and spinal tap-(that next night when our dog was crying out in pain (it was suggested she was actually not in pain??? perhaps instead- out of her mind- and not coherent?)We weren't going to allow her to be a lab rat-anymore- we knew we must take her back to our new local vet and put her down- For Ayre- No more sorrow no more pain- but we feel this was really botched up.

Replied by Janice
(New York)

Ayre, I am so sorry for your loss! I am just finding this information about reactions to Metronidazole. I am currently experiencing the same frightening thing to my dog, a German Shepherd, except for blindness. He had diarrhea and the vet prescribed this Metro, 500 mg 2 x day. On day 5 he collapsed, had a convulsive seizure, couldn't use his back legs, was confused, starting urinating in the house which he never has done. I stopped the drug immediately, had them do that valium IV drip - the antidote. I am so angry and afraid I may lose him. Worst thing, my vet says she is sure it is not this med. What upsets me is it can be toxic even if given recommended dose. The vets prescribe this drug like it was candy.

Posted by Ingrid (Geneva, Ohio) on 06/06/2009

My dog was on metronidazole last year for colitis. The vet put her on two meds. I don't remember the other off hand but another vet was surprised she was put on both at the same time. She also was given a higher dose than my other dog who is a bit bigger than her. She became incontinent. After searching the internet I found this was a side effect. It took a while but it finally passed. I believe it was the medicine and it had to completely leave her system for her to get back to normal.

Replied by Casperc
(Casper, Wy)


My 5 yr. Old OES dog was prescribed 1500mg of metronidazole 2 times a day for 10 days initially because of vomiting and diarrhea. With the first vet visit a blood workup was done with good results, just a little dehydration. The second vet visit was 7 days later because the vomiting was still happening (stools were a bit better). They did x-rays on the second vet visit that revealed thickened intestines (maybe a foreign body present also???) and he was prescribed an additional 10 days of 1500 mg 2 times a day of metronidazole.

I came home last night (17 days into taking meds) to a dog having a seisure and not being able to get up afterwards. When I tried to move him he had another seisure and again was unable to stand afterwards. The vet came to the house and as they tried to move him he had another seisure. They administered valium to calm him. After some time he was able to get up and was wobbly. They kept him overnight and apparently he had more seisures this morning. They are trying to keep him sedated and hydrate him and will keep him for another day at least. We're suspecting the Metronidazole.

Replied by Planetheart
(Los Angeles, Ca)


Holy crap I was just reading that your dog was put on 1500 mg of metranidazole. No wonder your dog was having seizures. That's way tooooo much of a dosage. Even if your dog was 100 pounds, the dosage should have not been more than 500 mgs twice a day. Someone really screwed up big time. We rescue special needs dogs and many of them are actually on metranidazole, never had an issue and if a dog needs to stay on it long term, after a week or so they usually keep them on it once a day, not twice a day. A 5 pound dog, only gets 25mgs twice a day. I'm so sorry this happened to your dog.....

Replied by Gyna

My Vet put my 19 lb dog on 250mgs of Metronidazole And 250mgs of Amoxicillin both 2x a day for diarrhea, after fecal exam said my little guy has Giardia and has now added Panacur(Fenbendazole) 4ml 1x a day. After became lethargic and dehydrated. I began subq 125ml of Lactate Ringer fluids and stopped the drugs. What can I give my dog to get rid of these worm parasites(giardia)?? Have inherited some 20-25lb beautiful westie-jack russel mixes that vet said all should be treated but x 10 I cant afford, uncle had heart of gold for these rescues but no insurance. Does anyone know if I can give liquid fenbenzole to all even if sold at feed store it says its for goats. Only ml listed no strength. I would need approx 5ml ea for 5 days along with Metronidazole and this scares me because of my dogs reaction. Better with fluids but need to treat giardia. Anyone have any ideas?

If so u can email me. Or post here. Again, thank you.


Cina is a homeopathic remedy for parasites I believe that the one for giardia is called giardia I can't find it here but you may be able to where you are

Replied by Theresa
(Mpls., Mn)

Hey Gyna,

We prefer replying in the forum vs private e-mail so everyone can benefit from this exchange :-)

I had a dog experience the same symptoms on metronidazole also; with a heavy parasite load symptoms can get worse before they get better.

As to your question, yes you can give liquid fenbendazole for goats to dogs - it is the same product that dogs get, but you would use a different dose. Use an oral medication syringe and give 1 mL (equal to 1 cc or ¼ teaspoon) per each 5 lbs. of your dog's weight. Source:

You can also try a nutritional remedy. Choose the remedy that you are most drawn to from this list. I have had good success with carrots, sunflower seeds and brown sugar all used together; echinacea and vitamin C combined, and used separately or combined kelp, oregano oil and olive leaf extract.

  • Astragulus - 1 twice daily for 5 days
  • Bilberry -1 capsule twice daily for 5 days
  • Blueberries-1 tablespoon twice daily for 5 days
  • Broccoli - 4 flowerets twice daily for 5 days - raw or slightly steamed
  • Carrots - 2 baby raw organic carrots (or the equivalent in size) twice daily for 8 days
  • Cat's Claw - 1 capsule twice daily for 2 days
  • C&H brown sugar -1teaspoon twice daily for 8 days
  • Celery - 1 raw stick of celery twice daily for 7days
  • Dandelion Root - 1 capsule twice daily for 5 days
  • Garlic - 1 capsule twice daily for 5 days
  • Green Pepper half - dollar size piece twice daily for 2 days
  • Kelp -1 capsule twice daily for 5 days.
  • Lemon juice – ½ teaspoon twice daily for 5 days
  • Licorice - 1 capsule twice daily for 5 days
  • Milk Thistle - 1 capsule twice daily for 5 days
  • Olive Leaf extract - 1 capsule twice daily for 5 days.
  • Oregano oil -1 pill or ¼ tsp twice daily for 5 days·
  • Oregon Grape root - 1 capsule twice daily for 5 days
  • Pau D'Arco- 1 capsule twice daily for 3 days
  • Pumpkin seeds-1 tablespoon twice daily for 8 days
  • Schizandra - 1 capsule twice daily for 5 days
  • Spinach-1 tablespoon twice daily for 5 days
  • Sunflower seeds-1 tablespoon twice daily for 8 days
  • Turmeric - 1 capsule twice daily for 5 days
  • Tuna fish - 1 can daily for 2days
  • Yellow Dock - 1 capsule twice daily for 5 days

Posted by Christina (Ashburn, Va) on 11/29/2008

our dog was was put on a long term dose of metronidazole for irritable bowel syndrome a few months ago. unfortunately the medicine caused severe neurological issues in our 12 year old lab/husky. shortly after taking his morning dose one day, he wasn't able to walk straight and lost all control of his limbs. he's mostly recovered, but i think he has had some side effects from this medicine. he was experiencing some arthritis issues prior to this but it's gone down hill rapidly since (the neurological episode occurred this past june, and now our pup can't nearly walk as far as before, despite herbal treatments and acupuncture). i think the use of a long term dose of metronidazole should really be studied further.

Replied by Crysgrits
(Charlotte, Nc)

I had an incredibly similar experience with the metronidazole, although our dosage was not long-term, it was a typical 10 day dosage. My 7 year old terrier mix was put on metronidazole as a precaution because she was sick and they were using it as an antibiotic. After about 2 days of being on the drug, she was unable to walk straight, a few hours later, she was unable to operate her hind legs. The vet we were using kept her for the day, flushed her system, put her on iv's, etc. However, I would not let them keep her overnight, as they did not have anybody there overnight. I picked her up and intended on keeping her for the evening. A few hours later, I couldn't take it. It was clear that she was completely unaware that I was sitting right beside her, and her eyes began shaking (shifting right to left) uncontrollably. I had to take her to an emergency vet (different vet), and he warned me that this is a rare side effect, but known, and can even happen in humans as well as dogs. He told me it essentially attacked her brain. Luckily she turned out to be OK, after 2 days in the hospital hooked up to fluids to flush her system of the drug, but apparently most dogs with the reaction are not as lucky. None of my dogs will ever be given this drug again.

Replied by Lblibris
(Slc, Utah)


My 15 year old cocker developed nuerotoxicity to this drug and unfornately passed away within one of week of taking it. Please view this website that tells about our experience and more information, including where to report adverse reactions to medications.


2 User Reviews

Posted by Stacey R (West Hartford, Ct) on 08/04/2016


I am sharing a recent experience we had with our puppy - by pasting a letter I sent to our vet practice. Thanks for sharing your stories. I am angry at myself for not researching this medication before giving it to our dog. The good news is that Sammy is improving every day and we have seen no further seizures.


RE: Sammy R

August 2,2016

Dear Office Management,

I am writing in follow-up to express concern about the care of our dog, Sammy, in your urgent care clinic. As discussed, Sammy was seen by Dr. U. on 7/24/16 for diarrhea and Dr. Y. for seizure on 7/25/16.

I have the following concerns:

Sammy was given a medication, Metronidazole, for treatment of diarrhea. Dr. U. did not discuss treatment options nor shared information about potential side effects of this medication. Of most concern, is the fact that this medication is known to have neurotoxic side effects, even at low doses. No potential side effects of this medication were listed on the “Home Care Instructions” I received at discharge.

2) When your medical team is prescribing any therapy, risks and benefits should be explained thoroughly so that pet owner can make an informed decision. Dr. U's failure to do this is simply unacceptable and substandard care.

3) Metronidazole is not recommended for use in young puppies. Sammy is 7 ½ months old. Given his age, why was this medication used as a first line approach for treatment of Sammy's diarrhea? Why weren't other treatment options offered and discussed with me?

4) I informed Dr. U. that I had given Sammy Loperamide during the night and that his diarrhea seemed improved the next day. Ironically, Dr. U. “scolded” me for giving Loperamide without calling to discuss first. Loperamide has few known side effects for Golden Retrievers. In effect, it is a much safer option than an antibiotic with known neurotoxic risks. I have consistently read in the literature “antimicrobial therapy and routine use of antibiotics in cases of acute uncomplicated diarrhea is strongly discouraged.” Antibiotics are specifically indicated only in animals with: confirmed bacterial infection, predisposition for bacterial translocation, and increased risk for sepsis. It would seem that prescribing Metronidazole as a first line approach for Sammy's uncomplicated diarrhea was completely unnecessary.

5) When Sammy had a seizure within 24 hours of initiating this therapy, I again took him to your urgent care center. Dr. Y. agreed that the medication should be discontinued, but felt that the seizure was an unlikely to be a side effect. As such, she focused on investigating possible toxins and liver disease.

6) I now know that neurotoxicity and CNS symptoms (including seizure) are well-documented side effects of Metronidazole. Dr. Y's decision to disregard the seizure as a possible medication side effect (despite the recent initiation of the medication within the preceding 24 hours) also resulted in a missed opportunity for Valium treatment. The literature states that it can take up to 2 weeks for neurological side effects from Metronidazole to resolve. This time frame is significantly reduced through the use of Valium therapy. I feel certain that Dr. Y did not even consider Valium as a treatment option for possible neurotoxicity/neuro side effects. Instead, Sammy spent the next week with lethargy, pacing, panting, confusion, and had TWO more seizures within the next 24 hours.

This experience has been extremely stressful for Sammy and our family. I have learned to never unquestioningly follow the recommendation of a vet without first doing my own research. Although it remains to be seen if Sammy's seizures and behavior changes were indeed a side effect from this medication, he is improving daily. Whatever the outcome, it does not excuse Dr. U's obligation to discuss risks of a therapy he prescribed.

Please use our experience as an opportunity to make changes to your urgent care practice.

I encourage the vets in your practice to review literature on the use of this medication and it's risks. All vets should also be aware of the recommendation for treatment of neurotoxic side effects with Valium which has been shown to facilitate a quicker resolution of symptoms.

“Most canines who develop neurologic signs secondary to metronidazole administration have received weeks to months of therapy, but toxicity after short-term therapy at relatively low dosages (<60 mg/kg/day) has been reported.”

Diazepam as a Treatment for Metronidazole Toxicosis in Dogs: A Retrospective Study of 21 Cases Jason Evans, Donald Levesque, Kim Knowles, Randy Longshore, and Scott Plummer

J Vet Intern Med 2003;17:304–310

I would also encourage the urgent care vets to use a more conservative approach to treatment of uncomplicated diarrhea.

Most importantly, the vets in your practice should always discuss possible side effects and risks associated with a recommended therapy. The neurologic adverse effects of metronidazole are well documented in humans and companion animals. I can assure you if Dr. U. informed me that neurotoxicity and seizure were know (albeit rare) side effects, I would have opted for another treatment. I cannot overstate this point.

Replied by Janni
(New York)

Great letter! I may use some of your points to write to my vet. My Sammy, an 11 year old German Shepherd suffered a toxic reaction also to this drug and my vet also says she doubts it was this drug. I know it was. My poor boy is still recuperating, I stopped the drug on day 5 when he had seizures, was panting, confused, lost back legs, wobbly. I also was not warned about neurological possibilities- and I did read reviews before I gave it to him but he was only going to be on it 5 days so I didn't think he'd be in danger. I never imagined what bad effects could come from a drug. He started urinating in the house, which now I learned is a side effect. We always said he had kidneys like no other- but this is not his fault. I did my own research and insisted on the Valium drip. This morning he is showing signs of being more alert. He won't eat still, can't stand on his own, and is still very weak and lethargic. I am so angry.

Replied by Elouise

My 8 yo mini schnauzer was recently a day patient at the local ‘holistic' vet having IV fluids as she was stage 3 CKD and also had an ultrasound to confirm if any other organ damage. Following the ultrasound at 3pm she was given IV Metronidozole (without neither my consent or any diagnostic test to confirm bacterial infection) “in case she has an infection”.

At 4.15 the vet called me to say that my bubba had to be monitored for BP and fluids overnight by a specialist emergency vet and to pick her up straight away.

I didn't know about the IV antibiotic until I picked her up, it was only when I later read the invoice that I saw Metronidazole and when I looked it up was horrified to read that it is contraindicated in renal deficiency as it is high in sodium, causes hypertension and acute kidney injury which leads to azotemia. The invoice also had an amount for another item I was unfamiliar with - cystocentisis ( needle into bladder to extract urine). I was not informed of this either or had given consent for any treatment other than fluids and the ultrasound.

Things went from bad to worse at the emergency vet, my bubba was there for 3 days and when I finally found out the exact drugs she was being pumped with I brought her home. She died in my arms at home on 07/10/18 from severe toxic and fluid overload that caused pulmonary edema, brain hemorrhage and heart failure.

After extensive research into every drug she was given I have determined that the vet punctured her bladder during the cystocentisis so gave her IV metronidazole “in case of infection” without consideration of kidneys but it caused BP to significantly elevate and and acute kidney failure hence the urgency for “overnight monitoring of BP and fluids by specialist”.

The toxic side effects from Metronidazole in renal deficiency caused severe headaches, nausea, dizziness, confusion, gastric pain and lack of appetite. The emergency vet did not take this into consideration and did not do any diagnostics prior to pumping IV PPI's (esomeprazole & omeprazole) and giving her other highly potent nephrotoxic drugs to stimulate appetite/anti nausea (Mirtazapine - anti depressant used in humans for major depressive disorder & Ondansetron - used for chemo related symptoms in humans).
She didn't stand a chance 😭

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