Arthritis Treatment Using Deramaxx for Dogs

When canine osteoarthritis strikes, one of the medications commonly prescribed is Deramaxx for dogs. Osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint disease that while more common in older dogs, can strike at any age. Osteoarthritis not only causes damage to cartilage in the joints, but creates inflammation and pain. While Deramaxx® doesn't cure osteoarthritis, it is one of the drugs used to alleviate the pain and inflammation associated with the condition.

Using Deramaxx to Treat Osteoarthritis

Deramaxx is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) recommended for use in dogs with osteoarthritis or having undergone orthopedic surgery to control inflammation and pain. The dosage is given once per day in the form of a chewable tablet. Dosing is based upon your dog's weight, often starting at a lower minimum dosage and increasing the dose if indicated. Tablets are scored and dosing can be increased by half tablet doses while the dog's status continues to be monitored. Once the effective dose has been established, the veterinarian will also indicate the frequency of dosing as long-term daily dosing of Deramaxx is not recommended.

Deramaxx Side Effects

Deramaxx has been known to cause a number of side effects. Most are minor side effects, but if your dog exhibits any negative effects while taking Deramaxx, contact your veterinarian to discuss treatment options. Possible side effects include:

  • Vomiting or other gastrointestinal discomfort
  • Soft stools, diarrhea or a change in stool color
  • Dehydration indicated by changes in drinking and urination habits
  • Extreme weight loss caused by lack of appetite
  • Changes in behavior, typically depression or restlessness

Precautions When Using Deramaxx

As with other NSAIDs, Deramaxx is not recommended for extended or prolonged daily use. Prolonged NSAID use has been linked with kidney and liver damage, complications that could be potentially deadly. Once the initial inflammation and pain has been controlled, the dosage is typically reduced to a lower maintenance level to be given at determined intervals in order to control the pain and inflammation. The lower dosage given at specified intervals helps to prevent the onset of kidney or liver damage while keeping control over your dog's pain. Dogs who are dehydrated also experience the onset of kidney and liver problems faster so it is important to keep fresh water available for your dog and to encourage them to drink throughout the day.

While osteoarthritis can be a painful condition for your dog, his discomfort can be controlled through the use of NSAIDs like Deramaxx and Rimadyl. Tramadol or other pain relieving opiates can be used in place of Deramaxx, but they carry their own set of side effects such as possible seizures and potential addiction to the medication. It is best to discuss options with your veterinarian to determine the best treatment for your dog. Because of its impact on the kidney and liver, Deramaxx may not be the best option for your dog if he already suffers from impaired kidney or liver function. Controlling the pain and inflammation will help your dog live out his years being active and relatively pain-free.