Dexamethasone is a cortisone-like medicine used to treat inflammatory conditions involving the joints and to treat nonspecific skin conditions.
Dogs, Cats, and Horses
Dexamethasone is used to treat allergies, inflammation and arthritis.
This medication does not have an FDA approved indication for use in animals, but it is a common and acceptable practice for veterinarians to prescribe this human medication for use in animals. Live vaccines should generally not be given to animals receiving dexamethasone. Make sure to tell your veterinarian what other medication you are giving to your pet. Quite often your veterinarian may prescribe two different medications, and a drug interaction may be anticipated. In this case, your veterinarian may vary the dose and/or monitor your pet more closely. The following lists examples of medicines that can potentially interact with dexamethasone: bacteriostatic antibiotics, amphotericin B, furosemide, thiazide diuretics, salicylates, phenytoin, phenobarbital, rifampin, insulin, cyclosporine, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory agents, estrogens, and mitotane. Live attenuated-virus vaccines should generally not be given to animals receiving dexamethasone. Contact your veterinarian if your pet experiences any unusual reactions when different medications are given together.
Allergic reactions to medications may occur. Be sure to inform VetSource and your veterinarian if your pet has any known drug sensitivities or allergies. If your pet displays symptoms of an allergic reaction, call your veterinarian immediately or go to a veterinary emergency clinic. Symptoms may include but are not limited to: swollen lips, tongue, face, airways; difficulty breathing; agitation; profuse salivation; vomiting; widespread hives and itching.
Side effects may include upset stomach, excessive thirst, excessive urination, excessive ingestion of food, panting, drowsiness, weakness, hair loss, weight loss, lack of appetite, diarrhea. If these effects continue and become troublesome, contact your veterinarian. Other side effects may occur. If you notice anything unusual, contact your veterinarian.
Dexamethasone should be given orally as directed by your veterinarian. Do not stop giving the medication unless advised by your veterinarian.