Thursday, February 26, 2009

Benadryl and its Doggie Benefits

Bailey is now 9 days into her CCL post-op recovery and she's doing well. As part of the healing process though, her incision has started bothering her... it's getting itchy. I thought about trying some kind of hydro-cortisone cream, but was worried she'd ingest it through licking and I didn't want to interfere with the healing of the incision either. I also considered just leaving on her BiteNot collar to prevent her from trying to scratch it, but I didn't want to leave it on her 24/7. And while I prefer not to give her drugs if I don't have to, I eventually decided it would be a good idea to at least try giving her Benadryl (based on the recommendations from my trusty Yahoo Orthodogs group).

I researched this for awhile, to make sure there weren't any possible serious side effects (I couldn't find any) and to make sure I gave her the correct dosage for her size. The generally accepted dosage (found on various veterinarian sites) was 1-2 mg per pound, twice daily. Bailey is around 62 pounds, so I decided to start with 2 pills twice a day to see how she did, knowing that I could up the dosage if needed. Thankfully, it seems to be doing the trick. I'm sure she's much happier without being so itchy and I'm relieved to have found an easy solution.

As an added benefit (at least in how it pertains to keeping her quiet during her recovery), it also has a calming and sedative effect. She's sleeping through the night and her restlessness has tapered down quite a bit. If giving her the Benadryl can help us get through the next 8-10 weeks without her reinjuring herself, it will be worth it.

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