Has your vet prescribed your dog Metacam for inflammation and pain?
If so, you’re probably wondering just how safe this drug is.
Read on to find out more about the safety of Metacam and the best natural alternatives to help your dog deal with pain, inflammation, and more.
Is Metacam Safe for Dogs?
Metacam is a brand of a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) known generically as meloxicam.
As the name suggests, NSAIDs are designed to bring down inflammation without the use of steroids, which as you probably know, can have a wide variety of side effects.
Metacam is traditionally used to treat pain and inflammation in humans, but vets sometimes prescribe it to dogs, too, particularly to treat arthritis pain.
Whenever their vet prescribes Metacam, most dog owners ask themselves:
Is this stuff safe?
Well, it depends.
NSAIDs are probably the safest type of painkiller out there, especially when compared to opioids or steroid painkillers.
Opioid painkillers, for example, have a high risk of causing addiction, which means they aren’t suitable for long-term use.
They can also cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, drowsiness/delusion, anxiety, behavioral changes, and other nasty side effects.
Steroid painkillers aren’t much better; they have a long list of side effects and shouldn’t be used for long periods of time, either.
NSAIDs like Metacam, therefore, are pretty safe in comparison.
Nonetheless, Metacam can produce some side effects in dogs.
Beware of the Side Effects of Metacam for Dogs
As with other NSAIDs, the most common side effect of Metacam in dogs is upset stomachs.
This usually causes diarrhea and nausea.
In more severe cases, Metacam can cause strong stomach pains, bleeding (which can show up either in vomit or feces), or stomach ulcers.
Some other side effects of Metacam in dogs include:
- Jaundice (yellowing of the gums and skin)
- Elevated thirst and urination
- Behavioral changes
How Metacam affects your dog will depend on their individual reaction to the drug.
Some dogs might have severe reactions to the drug, while others might have none whatsoever.
NSAIDs Can Cause Kidney Damage
While NSAIDs are generally considered safe, they do pose some risks for your dog’s kidneys.
That’s because they block chemicals known as prostaglandins.
These chemicals normally help to dilate the blood vessels leading to the kidneys.
By blocking these chemicals, NSAIDs can cause a reduction of blood flow to the renal area.
This can cause severe, acute damage and/or injury to the kidneys.
This, in turn, can increase your dog’s risk of developing kidney issues in the future.
Also remember that, when used over long periods of time, NSAIDs have been linked to some serious health concerns, including:
- Acute renal failure
- Heart disease
Check out this article for more information about the risks of the long-term use of NSAIDs like Metacam.
Know the Dangers of a Metacam Overdose and Allergies
This is really important:
Metacam overdoses or allergies can be fatal.
Remember, this drug was originally designed to be used with humans.
If your vet prescribes Metacam for your pet, remember to closely follow their dosage instructions.
Signs of an allergic reaction to an overdose from Metacam include:
- Fits of vomiting and diarrhea
- Fast, heavy breathing
- Poor coordination, stumbling, and delusion
Should your dog show any of these signs, get them to a vet immediately.
The Top 5 Natural Metacam Alternatives for Dogs
If you’re worried about giving your dog Metacam, I highly recommend looking into natural anti-inflammatories as an alternative.
Some popular natural anti-inflammatories that people are using with their dogs include:
Glucosamine is a really popular supplement.
It’s mainly used to treat joint issues like arthritis, dysplasias, or other forms of joint pain and inflammation.
However, some sources suggest glucosamine can also help with digestive issues.
Glucosamine supplements are usually made from the shells of shellfish or synthesized in a laboratory.
They are believed to help increase the production of cartilage and synovial fluid which, in turn, helps to protect the joints.
How effective glucosamine really is in offering relief, however, isn’t so clear.
Some studies suggest it might be more of a placebo than a legitimate anti-inflammatory and painkiller.
Nonetheless, a lot of people use glucosamine themselves and with their pets.
For more information on glucosamine for dogs and how it works, check out this article on my blog.
4. Fish Oil
Fish oil took the health industry by storm a few years ago.
Ever since, people have been using fish oil supplements to deal with all kinds of conditions, including inflammation and pain.
But, just like with glucosamine, a lot of recent research suggests that fish oil might not be as beneficial as was once thought.
In fact, some sources suggest that low-quality fish oil supplements can contain a variety of different toxins that can have all kinds of health risks for your pup.
I covered this topic in a lot more detail in a recent article on fish oil for dogs, which I recommend you read for more info on this topic.
Yucca is a plant native to Central and South America that’s believed to have anti-inflammatory properties.
That’s because yucca roots (which are edible, by the way) are rich in compounds known as saponins.
Again, some studies suggest that these compounds can help reduce inflammation.
In fact, some sources say saponins can be as effective as some prescription steroid medications.
Unfortunately, yucca can also irritate the stomach in some pets, so it’s best to use it to treat acute symptoms rather than as a long-term anti-inflammatory.
Arnica is a herbaceous plant that grows naturally in temperate climates of North America and Europe.
Arnica extracts are made using the flowers of these plants, which are believed to contain anti-inflammatory compounds.
People with arthritis, for example, use topical products like arnica gel to help treat chronic inflammation in their joints.
Arnica can also be taken orally to help with pain and other symptoms.
It’s important to note, however, that arnica contains a toxin known as helenalin which, when taken in large quantities, can be toxic.
Some pet owners, however, find it can help their pets deal with inflammation and joint problems.
CBD: The #1 Metacam Alternative for Pets
My top recommendation for a Metacam alternative is CBD.
CBD is one of the most potent anti-inflammatory agents found in nature.
By activating your dog’s Endocannabinoid System, CBD can help her body fight inflammation.
That means it can help reduce the symptoms of arthritis, dysplasias, Inflammatory Bowel Disease, gastritis, colitis, and many other conditions caused by inflammation.
Besides that, CBD has a plethora of other health benefits.
In fact, some studies suggest CBD can help prevent diabetes, aid with weight loss, and even fight the spread of tumors.
Best of all, it’s 100% safe and non-toxic, even in high doses.
Learn More About the Benefits of CBD for Your Dog
I started using CBD with my pets a few years ago when Rosie, my beloved Golden Retriever, got diagnosed with cancer and hip dysplasia.
To deal with her constant pain and chronic inflammation, my vet first prescribed Metacam.
Unfortunately, Rosie was very sensitive and suffered from a lot of side effects from the drug.
It caused her some intense stomach pains, and also left her vomiting and suffering from diarrhea constantly.
We were quick to take her off this medicine and started looking for alternatives to help improve her quality of life.
After countless hours of research together with my vet, I decided to get Rosie on CBD pet supplements.
And the results were astonishing.
CBD drove down Rosie’s pain and inflammation and helped her live a happy life for the remaining time she had with us.
Even my vet was astounded by how effective the treatment was.
Ever since I’ve dedicated myself to informing other pet owners about the benefits of CBD through this website.
Here Are Your Next Steps
Consider some recommended guides to get started with:
- The Best Pain Medication for Dogs That’s Safe and Works Wonders
- The 7 Amazing Benefits of CBD That Will Help Your Dog Feel Like a Puppy Again
If your dog is in pain right now, and you want a product recommendation, consider using HolistaPet CBD Tincture. It’s one of my top recommendations right now.
If you’re still unsure about CBD, then please download my free checklist, which will explain how CBD can help your specific dog.
The checklist covers the 7 main CBD benefits for dogs, plus gives you the proper information on specific products and dosages. It’s a great place to get started!
Look below and fill out the Free Checklist Form right now: