Ambroxol for Dogs - Uses, Dosage and Side Effects

María Besteiros
By María Besteiros, Expert veterinary assistant and canine/feline hairdresser.. December 1, 2022
Ambroxol for Dogs - Uses, Dosage and Side Effects

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Ambroxol is a drug with a mucolytic and expectorant effect. This means can be used to treat pathologies that cause a large amount of thick mucus as it can be difficult to eliminate it. Some precautions must be taken into account for its correct use in dogs. For this reason, it is very important that we only administer ambroxol for dogs under the strict guidance and prescription of a qualified veterinarian.

AnimalWised explains in detail everything you need to know about ambroxol in dogs. More specifically, we look at its main uses, dosage, side effects and possible contraindications.

  1. What is ambroxol for dogs?
  2. Uses of ambroxol for dogs
  3. Ambroxol dosage for dogs
  4. Precautions and side Effects of ambroxol for dogs

What is ambroxol for dogs?

Ambroxol in the hydrochloride form is the active metabolite of bromhexine, its parent drug. It has a mucolytic and expectorant effect, doing so to a greater degree than bromhexine. In other words, bromhexine is metabolized by the liver to ambroxol. For this reason, the vet may prescribe bromhexine instead.

Due to the expectorant and mucolytic effect of ambroxol hydrochloride. It breaks up mucus and reduces its viscosity, making it easier to expel and relieves the coughing a dog uses to try to expel it from their airways. It is common to find ambroxol combined with other active ingredients such as dexamethasone, meloxicam, chlorpheniramine or florfenicol. It can be found in both oral solution and injectable preparations.

The veterinarian can choose which drug is prescribed based on the pathology which causes the mucus buildup in the dog. Ambroxol for dogs comes in vials for administration as an intramuscular or intravenous injection. For this reason, it is a treatment that is usually done in the veterinary clinic. It is mainly eliminated through urine.

Uses of ambroxol for dogs

Given the effect of ambroxol, the veterinarian can prescribe it when our dog has a respiratory disease that produces a large amount of very thick mucus, a productive cough or when it has difficulty expelling mucus. This is usually in contrast to when a dog has a dry cough as not as much mucus may be present.

Ambroxol is effective in both upper and lower respiratory tract infections in dogs. These are diseases such as pneumonia, sinusitis, rhinitis, laryngitis, bronchitis or tracheitis. It also works for bronchopneumonia, whether infectious or not. In addition, it can be prescribed when the dog suffers from a viral disease that has caused respiratory complications.

Ambroxol is just one of the drugs that are used to cure these types of diseases. It is never given alone when the vet diagnoses an infection. In fact, this drug manages to increase the concentration of the antibiotic in the lung parenchyma, making the treatment more effective. It also increases the concentration of immunoglobulins at the level of bronchial secretions. In short, ambroxol makes the dog breathe better and favors its recovery.

Ambroxol for Dogs - Uses, Dosage and Side Effects - Uses of ambroxol for dogs

Ambroxol dosage for dogs

As with any other prescription drug, only the veterinarian can prescribe and guide the most appropriate dosage based on the specific circumstances of each dog. We must always respect the instructions of the professional. For example, intramuscular injectable administration of ambroxol requires intervals between 2 and 5 ml every 12 hours to ensure the dog's safety.

The weight of the dog must be taken into account to calculate the safest and most effective dose of ambroxol. It can also be administered intravenously, as long as it is done slowly. It must be taken into account that the dose can vary when ambroxol is part of a medicine in combination with other active substances.

Treatment usually lasts about five days, although it is at the discretion of the veterinarian. In addition to this drug, the veterinarian will prescribe other compatible medications according to the pathology for which they are being treated. They will explain the necessary homecare required to help the dog recover. This includes keeping them in a warm environment away from drafts, sufficient hydration or avoiding exposure to irritants such as smoke or dust.

Learn more about injectable drugs with our article on how to give a dog a shot under the skin.

Ambroxol for Dogs - Uses, Dosage and Side Effects - Ambroxol dosage for dogs

Precautions and side Effects of ambroxol for dogs

Ambroxol is a drug that is considered quite safe, as long as we follow the vet's instructions and do not administer it on our own. Although rare, irritation of the gastrointestinal mucosa has been detected in some cases after its use. It seems it can also be used during pregnancy and lactation. As always, the final decision is made by the veterinarian after assessing the advantages and disadvantages of its use.

Administration of ambroxol in dogs with pulmonary edema is not recommended. It must be taken into account that if ambroxol for dogs is part of a medication that combines several active ingredients, the precautions will change accordingly. It is very important we never medicate a dog on our own.

It must be emphasized that diseases bacterial origin require administration of ambroxol together with antibiotics for dogs, according to the veterinarian's criteria. In cases of bronchitis caused by worms, the dog must take the antiparasitic drug the veterinarian has selected before ambroxol is administered.

For all of the above, if your dog presents symptoms of bronchitis, kennel cough or any other respiratory disease, go to the veterinarian. Only they can decide the best treatment. Giving your dog ambroxol without knowing the diagnosis can significantly worsen the clinical picture.

This article is purely informative. AnimalWised does not have the authority to prescribe any veterinary treatment or create a diagnosis. We invite you to take your pet to the veterinarian if they are suffering from any condition or pain.

If you want to read similar articles to Ambroxol for Dogs - Uses, Dosage and Side Effects, we recommend you visit our Medicine category.

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Ambroxol for Dogs - Uses, Dosage and Side Effects