Carafate for Dogs

Carafate is a medication that’s used to treat pets suffering from stomach ulcers. The generic name of this drug is known as Sucralfate. Although effective, this medication should be used with caution. You should first find out the type of ulcer your pet is suffering from before you give him carafate. Since the medication also causes certain side effects you must read and follow the instructions that are listed on the package you buy.

Stomach Ulcers in Dogs

Dogs often suffer from ulcers that develop in the stomach, the small intestine, or the large intestine. These ulcers arise when the pet suffers from some type of bacterial infection.  The dog’s stomach has protective layers that prevent him from developing ulcers. When these protective layers get damaged, the pet may develop gastric ulcers. Dogs that have been given non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications for a long period of time are also more susceptible to stomach ulcers.

Since these ulcers give your pet a lot of discomfort, you must get them treated as quickly as possible. Carafate is one such medication that’s prescribed by the vet to cure gastric and peptic ulcers.

How Carafate Works

Since stomach acids act on the ulcers and damage them even further, carafate acts as a coating to protect the ulcers.  The medication can coat ulcers that are present in the intestines, the stomach and the esophagus. Since non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are linked to the development of stomach ulcers, dogs that require NSAIDs are often given carafate for a few weeks.

Dosage and Administration of Carafate

Carafate should be given on an empty stomach. It’s best to give it to your pet 2 hours after he has eaten his meal or an hour before he eats his food, unless otherwise directed by the vet. It’s also best to crumble the tablets and mix it with the pet’s meal so that’s its easily ingested and absorbed by the body.

You must make sure you follow the dosage instructions that are given by the vet. Overdose can be dangerous and should be avoided.

Precautions and Contraindications

Carafate can cause certain drug interactions when it’s combined with other medications. You must therefore keep the vet informed about any other tablets you’re giving your dog. The medication is not ideal for use in dog’s that have been allergic to sucralfate in the past.  Besides this, the drug may not be ideal for use in pets that are pregnant or lactating. Pet owners should also avoid giving the medication to dogs suffering from constipation.

Side Effects of Carafate for Dogs:

  • Swelling of the face
  • Hives
  • Skin reactions
  • Vomiting
  • Seizures
  • Paleness of the gums 
  • Shock

What Pet Owners Need to Remember

If you notice any of these side effects in your pet, you must call for emergency medical help as your dog may be suffering from a reaction to the medication. Besides this, you must discuss the dosage and administration instructions with the vet if you’re in doubt so that you administer the medication in the right manner.

If your pet develops any other side effects than those listed above, keep the vet informed about the same, in order to safeguard your dog’s life.