If your dog has a fever, a cold, sneezing, difficulty sleeping or any of the other conditions that we normally treat using Nyquil, it can be tempting to try to give it relief using the Nyquil you bought for your own use. But before doing so, you will want to know whether dogs can actually have Nyquil. This article answers that question.
Can dogs have Nyquil? The simple answer is ‘no’. Dogs shouldn’t have Nyquil. Some of the ingredients in Nyquil have the potential to harm dogs.
Whether what is under consideration are Nyquil capsules, Nyquil syrup or any other formulation, Nyquil is not the sort of medication you should give to a dog.
That is unless your vet happened to prescribe it (and that can only happen in exceptional circumstances).
Nyquil for dogs is not ideal due to the potential for toxicity. The ingredients in it that are potentially toxic to dogs include acetaminophen, doxylamine succinate and dextromethorphan.
Thus if my dog ate Nyquil capsules or if my dog drank Nyquil syrup, I would have reason to worry.
As a general rule, you should desist from administering human medications to your dog.
But we first need to know what the Nyquil in question is. Then we can proceed further with our exploration of the can dogs have Nyquil subject.
What Is Nyquil?
Nyquil is medication that gives relief from the symptoms of the common cold and flu. It can also be helpful in addressing the symptoms of certain allergies.
It is particularly effective at relieving fevers, scratchy throats, coughs, sneezing and the lack of sleep that often comes with colds, flu and allergies.
The ingredients in Nyquil include acetaminophen, dextromethorphan and doxylamine succinate.
With that basic understanding on the nature of Nyquil, we can proceed with our search for answers to the can dogs have Nyquil question.
Is Nyquil Safe For Dogs?
When a person poses the can dogs have Nyquil question, what is really likely to be bothering them is a safety concern.
Thus, the deeper underlying questions include, is Nyquil toxic to dogs, will Nyquil hurt a dog and can Nyquil kill a dog.
So, indeed, is Nyquil safe for dogs? The answer is ‘no’. And that is mainly because some of the ingredients in Nyquil can potentially harm a dog. In fact at high enough doses, some of these ingredients may kill a dog.
One may then ask, what does Nyquil do to dogs? And the answer is that what Nyquil does to dogs depends on how much of it they have.
At low doses, Nyquil may indeed provide relief from fever, pain, coughing, sneezing and the lack of sleep that often comes with colds.
But at high enough doses, Nyquil may cause liver damage, red blood cells destruction and lots of other ill effects.
It is not always possible to tell how a particular dog will react to human medications, such as Nyquil.
That is why when someone asks, can I give my dog Nyquil, the answer is always ‘no’. Nyquil was not formulated for dogs. Therefore there is no way of telling how a particular dog may react to it.
The usage of Nyquil and dogs wellbeing may not always be compatible.
Therefore the answer to the can dogs have Nyquil question is ‘no’. And the main reason for that is because Nyquil is potentially unsafe to dogs.
Is Nyquil Beneficial To Dogs?
Another aspect to consider, while answering the can dogs have Nyquil question is that of usefulness. So here, we try to establish whether Nyquil is beneficial for dogs.
The truth of the matter is that some of the ingredients in Nyquil can be beneficial to dogs – but only when they are in medications specially formulated for dogs.
Dogs, for instance, do sometimes benefit from low dose acetaminophen, for pain and fever relief.
But the levels of the various ingredients in the Nyquil formulation may be too high for a dog.
That is why when you ask, can you give a dog Nyquil, the answer will usually be a firm ‘no’.
Even if there may be relief from certain symptoms when a dog takes Nyquil, the potential risks of a dog taking Nyquil are too high.
That may then lead you to ask, what cold medicine can I give my dog? What can I give my dog to calm him down? Or what can I give my dog for sleep?
And the answer is that there are lots of other useful medications, specially formulated for dogs.
You only need to talk to your vet, and the vet will then prescribe medications that are better suited to dogs’ bodies.
For instance, with regard to the sleep issue, you may ask your vet, can dogs have melatonin? And chances are that the vet will tell you that dogs can have melatonin – but only at the appropriate doses.
Thus if you ask your vet, can you give a dog Nyquil to sleep, chances are that he may point you in the direction of something like melatonin instead.
Better still, the vet may recommend addressing the deeper issues that are causing your dog to have insomnia.
Can Dogs Have Nyquil?
In answering the can dogs have Nyquil question, there are two considerations we would need to make.
The first consideration we would need to make, in answering the can dogs have Nyquil question, is that of whether Nyquil is safe for dogs.
And the second consideration we would need to make, in answering the can dogs have Nyquil question, is that of whether Nyquil is beneficial for dogs.
With regard to safety, we have already seen that Nyquil contains ingredients that can be potentially harmful to a dog.
And with regard to whether Nyquil can be beneficial to dogs, we have already seen that whereas it may provide relief from certain symptoms, the potential risks are too high.
Clearly then, if you were wondering, can I give Nyquil to my dog, then you can see that the answer is ‘no’.
That may then cause you to wonder, what can I give my dog to sleep, if Nyquil is not ideal? And the answer is that there are lots of other medications and supplements that are better suited for dogs.
You can talk to your vet about them. The vet may also help you in figuring out exactly why the dog is having sleeping problems, and how you can deal with it.
Can Dogs Have Children’s Nyquil?
Earlier, in answering the can dogs have Nyquil question, we said that dogs shouldn’t be given this medication. We further said that this is because some ingredients in it, at high enough levels, can be harmful to the dogs.
This may lead someone to wonder whether the dogs can then have children’s Nyquil – which presumably has lower levels of the various ingredients.
The answer is that even the children’s Nyquil may be harmful to a dog. True, it usually has lower levels of the various ingredients. But even those ‘lower’ levels of the various ingredients may be enough to harm a dog.
Can Dogs Have Nyquil Syrup?
Nyquil is usually available in both capsule and syrup form.
There are people who opt to be more specific and seek to know whether dogs can have Nyquil syrup. So this is just another way of posing the can dogs have Nyquil question.
But the person asking it in this case focuses specifically on the syrup formulation.
Indeed, can dogs drink Nyquil syrup? Or, as someone may put it, can I give my dog Nyquil for cough in syrup form? The answer is ‘no’. Dogs shouldn’t have Nyquil syrup – or Nyquil capsules or Nyquil in any other form.
This is because some of the ingredients that go into the making of Nyquil may harm the dogs.
Examples of the ingredients in Nyquil include acetaminophen, doxylamine succinate and dextromethorphan.
Now you just have to ask, can dogs have acetaminophen? Or can dogs have dextromethorphan? Or yet still, can dogs have doxylamine succinate? For each of those questions, you find that the answer is mainly ‘no’.
And inasmuch as the dogs shouldn’t have the various ingredients when they are on their own, so should they not have a medication like Nyquil – which has all of them together.
Thus the answer to the can dogs have Nyquil question is no. That is whether the Nyquil is in capsule form, syrup form or any other form.
In all cases, when you ask, can my dog be given Nyquil, the answer will usually be ‘no’.
That applies even if you ask, can you give dogs Nyquil medicine at low doses? Or can you give a dog Nyquil to sleep at a very low dose?
The long and short of it is that you should desist from giving your dog Nyquil or any other human medications.
What Will Happen If Your Dog Eats Nyquil?
Quite often, alongside the can dogs have Nyquil question comes this one: on what happens if I give my dog Nyquil.
Here, one may want to know, will Nyquil hurt the dog? Or will Nyquil kill a dog?
So, indeed, what happens if a dog eats Nyquil?
What happens if a dog eats Nyquil depends on the amount of Nyquil it takes.
If a dog eats just a little Nyquil, it may suffer no major harm. At worst, it may get a stomach upset.
But if a dog eats lots of Nyquil, there may be liver damage, red blood cells destruction and other scary effects.
The symptoms that the dog may have, if it takes too much Nyquil, would include the likes of vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, difficulty breathing and seizures.
The size of the dog matters too. Generally, if a small dog takes lots of Nyquil, the effects will tend to be worse than those for a bigger dog that takes the same amount of Nyquil.
Therefore if you ask, can you give a small dog Nyquil, the answer will normally be ‘no’. But then again, that is also what applies for a big dog as well.
Generally, the answer to the can dogs take Nyquil question is ‘no’. And that is regardless of the dogs’ sizes.
That is always the answer you get, when you pose the question, can you give your dog Nyquil?
So what happens if a dog has more Nyquil than its body can handle is basically poisoning. That may be acetaminophen poisoning. It may also be the poisoning from doxylamine succinate and/or dextromethorphan.
A single Nyquil capsule may not cause all this. But if your dog accidentally eats lots of Nyquil, then such poisoning is possible.
My Dog Ate Nyquil – What Should I Do?
Sometimes, the person posing the can dogs have Nyquil question will be someone whose dog has already eaten Nyquil.
So in that case, the real concern is on what to do if your dog eats Nyquil.
Now what to do if your dog eats Nyquil mainly depends on how much of the Nyquil it has eaten.
If it is just a single Nyquil capsule, chances are that the dog will just be alright. But you still need to observe it, for any of those rare adverse reactions which sometimes occur even at very low Nyquil doses.
But if the dog took lots of Nyquil – like where a dog accidentally ate a whole pack of Nyquil – it is best to rush it to the vet. Or at least call the pet poison hotline in the meantime and explain the situation.
Remember, Nyquil usually contains acetaminophen. And it only takes 40 mg per pound of dog weight, for acetaminophen poisoning to occur.
You may be advised to induce vomiting, if it is not too long ago since when the dog took the too much Nyquil.
If it is somewhat longer since the dog took the excess Nyquil, you may be advised to administer activated charcoal.
But if the poisoning symptoms are already manifesting clearly, the vet may have to put the dog on IV fluids. The vet may also need to administer medications to halt or slow liver damage, among other measures.
Final Verdict – Can Dogs Have Nyquil
Nyquil shouldn’t be given to dogs.
At high enough doses, Nyquil may cause liver damage, red blood cells destruction and a host of other adverse effects to a dog.
If your dog has a fever, cold, sneezing, sleeping difficulties or any other issues along those lines, don’t give it Nyquil. There are other medications that are specially formulated for dogs, and which can be helpful for these issues.
You can get a vet to prescribe the appropriate medications for those symptoms, while also treating the underlying diseases. But you should desist from giving your dog Nyquil or other human medications.
If your dog takes too much Nyquil, the right course of action will be to rush it to the vet straightaway. At the very least, you should call the pet poisoning hotline, and ask for guidance.
Welcome to Learn About Pet. My name is Rajkumar Ravichandran and I love all pets, travel, and amazing food. I write about my passion and personal experience caring for multiple pets in this blog! ❤️
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