Previcox for Dogs - Uses, Dosage and Side Effects

Josie F. Turner
By Josie F. Turner, Journalist specialized in Animal Welfare. Updated: February 28, 2024
Previcox for Dogs - Uses, Dosage and Side Effects

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Dogs suffer from inflammatory issues, just as we humans do. Unfortunately, much of the medication we take to ease pain and reduce inflammation is unsuitable for dogs. This includes some of the most commonly used medicines such as paracetamol and ibuprofen. It is for this reason veterinary pharmacologists have researched anti-inflammatory drugs which are suitable for dogs and other animals. A good example of these types of drugs is Previcox, a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAID) that acts selectively on an enzyme called cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2).

If you want to know more about Previcox for dogs, keep reading AnimalWised. We look at the uses, dosage and side effects of this drug which uses firocoxib as its active ingredient.

  1. What is Previcox for dogs?
  2. Previcox for dogs uses
  3. Previcox for dogs dosage
  4. Side effects of Previcox for dogs
  5. Contraindications of Previcox for dogs

What is Previcox for dogs?

Previcox is the trade name of a veterinary drug whose active ingredient is firocoxib. It is also commonly sold under the name Equioxx. As stated in the introduction, it is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory. Currently, Previcox is available as chewable tablets for dogs, in doses of 57 and 227 milligrams. Previcox and other firocoxib medications can be found in the following preparations:

  • Oral tablets
  • Oral paste
  • Injection

It is worth mentioning that, in addition to Previcox, there are other medications for dogs that also contain firocoxib as an active ingredient. These include the brands Equioxx, Ficoxil and Firodyl. Previcox is not approved for human use. It is only used in veterinary practice, specifically for horses and dogs.

Previcox for Dogs - Uses, Dosage and Side Effects - What is Previcox for dogs?
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Previcox for dogs uses

Firocoxib, the active ingredient in Previcox, is a COX-2 inhibitor (coxib) selective Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug (NSAID). The fact this drug acts selectively on the COX-2 enzyme is particularly relevant. Its selectivity means firocoxib has fewer adverse effects than non-selective NSAIDs that act by inhibiting both the COX-1 and COX-2 enzymes.

Like other anti-inflammatories in this family, Previcox or firocoxib for dogs is used to treat pain and inflammation. According to the drug's data sheet, the main uses of Previcox for dogs are the following:

  • Relief of pain and inflammation associated with osteoarthritis in the dog.
  • Relief of postoperative pain and inflammation associated with soft tissue, orthopedic and dental surgery in the dog.

Like other anti-inflammatories for dogs, Previcox is a veterinary prescription-only medication. This means that its use requires a veterinary professional to assess the animal's health status and prescribe the medication, issuing a prescription that will be necessary for dispensing it at any pharmacy.

Previcox for Dogs - Uses, Dosage and Side Effects - Previcox for dogs uses

Previcox for dogs dosage

Previcox tablets should be administered orally, with or without food. The tablets are marked with a cross-shaped break line on one side which allows them to be divided into 2 or 4 equal parts for the most precise dosage possible.

The dosage of Previcox for dogs varies depending on the purpose for which the medicine is used:

  • Osteoarthritis: dose of 5 mg per kg of weight, once a day. The duration of treatment will vary depending on the response observed.
  • Postoperative: dose of 5 mg per kg of weight, once a day, beginning the treatment 2 hours before surgery and maintaining it for 3 days. In the case of orthopedic surgeries, it may be necessary to extend the treatment for more than 3 days.

Different dogs need different types of analgesic to mitigate their pain issues. This is one reason it is so important to consult a veterinarian.

Side effects of Previcox for dogs

As we have mentioned in previous sections, firocoxib is an NSAID that acts selectively on COX-2, which means that it presents fewer adverse effects than non-selective NSAIDs. For this reason, Previcox is among the safest anti-inflammatories for dogs from the family of NSAIDs. However, like any other medication, Previcox is not exempt from producing adverse reactions.

Among the most important are:

  • Vomiting and diarrhea: have been observed occasionally. Generally, these reactions are transient and reversible when treatment is discontinued.
  • Nervous system disorders: rare cases have been reported.
  • Liver and kidney problems: have been reported very rarely.

These side effects of Previcox are symptoms which can present with a range of diseases. Learn more with our articles on why a dog has vomiting and diarrhea and liver diseases in dogs.

Previcox for Dogs - Uses, Dosage and Side Effects - Side effects of Previcox for dogs

Contraindications of Previcox for dogs

The use of Previcox is contraindicated in the following situations:

  • During pregnancy and lactation: laboratory studies in rabbits have shown that Previcox produces teratogenic and toxic effects for the fetuses and the mother.
  • In animals under 10 weeks of age or less than 3 kg in weight.
  • In animals suffering from gastrointestinal bleeding, blood dyscrasias or other blood disorders.
  • In animals treated with corticosteroids as the combined therapy of NSAIDs with corticosteroids increases the risk of gastrointestinal ulcers.

According to the technical data sheet of the drug, special precautions must also be taken when used in animals which meet the following criteria:

  • Very young
  • Suspected or confirmed renal, cardiac or hepatic failure
  • Dehydrated, hypovolemic or hypotensive
  • Being treated with diuretics or angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors

In these cases, if use cannot be avoided, treatment will require careful veterinary monitoring, and upon the appearance of clinical signs such as diarrhea, vomiting, blood in the stool, anorexia or lethargy, treatment should be discontinued.

Learn about another type of NSAID which is suitable for canine use with our article on Onsior for dogs.

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 Previcox for Dogs - Uses, Dosage and Side Effects, we recommend you visit our Medicine category.

  • Ryan, W. G., Moldave, K., & Carithers, D. (2006). Clinical effectiveness and safety of a new NSAID, firocoxib: a 1,000 dog study. Veterinary therapeutics: research in applied veterinary medicine, 7(2), 119–126.
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Previcox for Dogs - Uses, Dosage and Side Effects