Why Is Rimadyl Not Safe for Dogs?

Written by nicole trawick
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Why Is Rimadyl Not Safe for Dogs?
Dealing with old age (Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Jose Roberto V. Moraes)

Rimadyl is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAID) used to reduce pain and inflammation in dogs. There are, however, side effects and precautions when giving this medication.

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The main use of Rimadyl is for arthritis, a degenerative joint disease. It is the most prevalent source of chronic pain in older dogs.


Rimadyl comes in two pill forms: caplets and chewables. The chewables are highly palatable and if a dog consumes a large quantity, it can lead to toxicity.


Rimadyl intolerance can include appetite loss, vomiting and diarrhoea, or a change in behaviour. Change in drinking and urination or yellow skin could indicate a serious problem.

Side Effects

Rimadyl can adversely affect the stomach, and bleeding ulcers can be apparent if there is bloody stool. Acute kidney failure or liver damage are also possible with long-term Rimadyl ingestion.


There are some dogs which should never take Rimadyl. If a dog has ever had an allergic reaction to carprofen (the main ingredient), is currently on another type of NSAID, or is taking steroids it cannot safely take this medication.


Though relatively safe, any medication can be harmful if not closely monitored. Only a veterinarian can prescribe Rimadyl after blood tests and discussing side effects. If any of the above signs are noted, discontinue the medication and contact a veterinarian immediately.

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