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Cimetidine is an anti-ulcer drug belonging to the category of the histamine receptor- 2, (H-2) blocker. Though Cimetidine is not approved for use in animals, it could be legally prescribed by veterinarians as an extra-label drug. Cimetidine is used in dogs and cats to treat mast cell tumors, gastritis (inflammation of the stomach), esophagitis (inflammation of the esophagus), and gastric or esophageal reflux.Chronic cimetidine therapy is found to be beneficial for uremic dogs under hemodialysis, to suppress the circulating concentrations of immuno reactive parathyroid hormone. Cimetidine has a shorter action span than many other H2 blockers.
Though it is relatively safe to use under the supervision of a veterinarian, cimetidine could cause side effects in some animals. Make sure that the pet is not hypersensitive to this drug before administering Cimetidine; animals with liver or kidney disease should be treated with utmost caution. Cimetidine can interact with other medications such as antacids, metoclopramide, sucralfate, digoxin and diazepam. Be careful while administering this drug in older pets or those with blood diseases.
Cimetidine is available in 100 mg, 150 mg, 200 mg and 300 mg tablets; liquid form of 300mg per 5ml and injectable form. The normal dose is 3 to 5 mg per pound, administered orally every six to eight hours. The dosage could be changed depending on the specific condition to be treated. Make sure to complete the course to prevent relapse.
Serious side effects are generally not prevalent; however contact the veterinarian if the animal develops labored breathing or rapid heartbeat during the course of treatment with cimetidine. Cimetidine overdosage might result in tachycardia and respiratory failure, and should these symptoms persist, respiratory support and beta-adrenergic blockers should be used.
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