Side Effects of Xanax for Dogs

Xanax for dogs has gained a lot of attention among the pet owners in the recent past. Xanax is a very popular drug used for treating panic attack disorder and general anxiety disorder in human beings. The active medication present in Xanax is known as alprazolam. Veterinarians prescribe Xanax or alprazolam for the pet dogs for treating many conditions including post-traumatic stress disorder, extreme grief and even panic during thunderstorms.

Major Effects of Xanax

The most commonly found side effect observed in dogs after the supplementation of Xanax is sleepiness and the related clumsiness. If your dog is showing these behaviors, you must alert your veterinarian so that the dosage can be reduced. The idea behind alerting the veterinarian is to make your dog consume minimal amount of Xanax and avoid the related side effects. There are numerous serious side effects of the administration of Xanax including sudden onset of panic or anxiety, an upset stomach and breathing problems.

Precautions to be Taken

It is advised not to give human Xanax to dogs. It is a known fact that the consumption of human Xanax will make the dogs seriously ill or even result in death. Xanax for human beings are manufactured for bodies having mass between 150 and 200 lbs and more. Dogs have low body mass when compared to the human beings. This is the reason why dogs require only a fraction of the dosage required by the humans. The normal Xanax dosage for a dog is 0.01 milligrams per lb of the mass of the dog.


It has also been found that the regular administration of Xanax for a considerable period in dogs can make them addicted to it. The fact that makes the recovery from this condition difficult is that the withdrawal symptoms are quite painful. The withdrawal symptoms include sensitivity to shaking, vomiting etc. The dogs are only kept on this medication for two months in a row and in minimal doses too, so that they will not become addicted.


Most of the people are unaware of the fact that the anti-anxiety medications including Xanax cannot be used as a substitute for the training of dogs. These drugs are often utilized as the last option for putting a dog with dangerous nature to sleep.  However, this drug is used for calming down a dog for making it pay attention during training sessions. Xanax is mostly used by the vets to keep dogs from showing excessive signs of agitation.

Expert Insight

The pill form of this medication is normally administered for dogs. The extreme small size of these pills will make it very difficult to handle them without dropping some of them down. Sticking the pills into food items like cheese, ham and such will help you make your dog accept the pill without failure. After administering the pills, observe the dog for a few minutes so that you can make it sure that the pills are being properly digested. For those of you still worried about the side effects of Xanax in dogs, being careful is the only way to avoid negative occurrences.