Rimadyl and Otomax.
Breed: German Shepherd
Age: 11-15 years
I have a two part question. The first is Rimadyl dosage for an older dog. My fellow is 12 years old but tests of his liver and kidneys have been described as completely normal. He has some serious arthritis and back end issues that had previously responded very well to prednisone, but was put on rimadyl more recently because he had surgery. His prescription is 75 mg once per day. It definitely helps but he is still having major issues getting around, and I am wondering why the dose is so low given his liver and kidney tests are normal. Can a dog his age safely take the usual dose which I had heard is 2 mg per pound? He weighs 85 pounds. Seems he would really benefit from the full dosage. He does not have degenerative myopathy, by the way.
The second part of my question also related to rimadyl is can a dog take otomax at the same time as they are on rimadyl safely. He has an ear infection from yeast/fungus and some bacteria in both ears. The vet kind of freaked me out when otomax was prescribed because it was accompanied by a warning to watch out if he stops eating because of the steroid in otomax which his vet said could be absorbed. Is this really that much of a risk? What about Baytril? It would seem if its risky a non-steroidal ear drop would be prescribed. What about over the counter substances like Lotramin AF which has the one of the medicines in otomax? Thanks
Dr. Marie replied:
Hi and thanks for your question.
You're right, the dosage that is written on the label for Rimadyl is indeed 2mg/lb of body weight once a day (or 1 mg/lb twice daily). Your best bet here is to check with your vet as to whether or not it is safe to increase the dosage. It's possible that your vet wanted to see if 75mg would do the trick and if not, then increase it.
Another possible reason for your vet to be cautious on the Rimadyl dosing is that every now and then we can see labs who can have a strange and serious reaction to Rimadyl. Your vet may be cautious in its use with labs, for this reason. However, I'm thinking that if this was the case, they would have prescribed something else like Metacam or Deramaxx or Previcox.
I can't legally advise you over the internet about making dose changes with your medication, so the best thing here is to give your vet a call and ask what they think about upping the meds.
Regarding the Otomax, yes there is steroid in the Otomax and a small amount of it can be absorbed in the system. Generally, I am quite comfortable having an animal on Otomax at the same time as an NSAID like Rimadyl. I would have more of a concern if an animal was on Otomax for months and months but really that would be unlikely to happen.
You're right that Baytril has no steroid, but we tend to reserve Baytril for infections that really need it. It is a drug called a fluoroquinolone and if we use it really frequently there is a possibility for antibiotic resistance to form. And, in most cases for ear infections some steroid is necessary as they usually are very uncomfortable and the steroid helps with the discomfort. I would never recommend an OTC drug as they are likely not strong enough to treat an infection.
It does sound like your vet is doing the same things I would. I would give them a call and ask if they feel it is safe to increase the Rimadyl dosing. If your vet has concerns with doing this, feel free to respond to this question and let me know what he/she said and I'll give you my thoughts.
Hope Jake is feeling better on all fronts soon!
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