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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Adequan for Dogs: Uses, Dosage, & Side Effects

Adequan is an FDA-approved injectable drug primarily utilized for treating arthritis in dogs. It is considered a disease-modifying osteoarthritis drug (DMOAD). Unlike traditional pain relievers that merely mask the symptoms, Adequan aims to treat the underlying causes of joint distress by promoting cartilage repair and increasing joint lubrication. The active ingredient in Adequan is polysulfated glycosaminoglycan (PSGAG), which is derived from bovine tracheal cartilage. It is specifically designed to halt the destructive processes of degenerative joint disease, thus providing relief from pain and improving mobility.

Here’s what you should know about Adequan’s uses, dosage, and side effects for dogs health.

Uses of Adequan for dogs

Adequan is primarily prescribed for the treatment and management of degenerative joint diseases and conditions in dogs, such as osteoarthritis or hip dysplasia. It works by reducing joint inflammation, improving joint lubrication, and repairing damaged cartilage. Adequan stimulates cartilage repair mechanisms, thereby slowing down the progression of canine joint damage and promoting overall joint health. Additionally, the drug is beneficial in cases of traumatic joint issues and post-operative recovery.

Veterinarians may recommend Adequan for dogs displaying stiffness, discomfort, or decreased mobility associated with arthritis. It’s also considered for use in younger dogs showing early signs of joint problems as a preventive measure to mitigate the severity of joint degradation over time.

Dosage of Adequan for dogs

Male veterinarian examining dog in need of Adequan at the veterinary clinic.
(Photo Credit: aquaArts studio | Getty Images)

The following is a guideline for the typical use of the drug in dogs and must not replace your veterinarian’s advice for your individual pet.

Administering Adequan correctly is vital to ensure its effectiveness and safety. The recommended dosage is 2 mg of Adequan per pound of body weight, given as an intramuscular injection. Typically, the treatment plan starts with a series of injections spread over a specific period. The most common schedule involves administering the drug twice a week for four weeks, totaling eight injections. However, depending on your dog’s condition and their response to the treatment, your veterinarian may adjust this regimen.

Common injection sites include the quadriceps at the front of the thigh, the lumbar region in the lower back, the triceps behind the front leg, and the hamstrings at the back of the thigh. Given the presence of crucial nerves and structures near these areas, it’s essential to get proper training from your veterinarian prior to carrying out any muscle injections in your pet.

Adequan is available in 5 mL vials, each containing 100 mg/mL of the active ingredient, polysulfated glycosaminoglycan (PSGAG). Once administered, the medication starts to reach the targeted joint within two hours, and may fully penetrate the joint cartilage within three days. To observe noticeable improvements in your pet, multiple doses might be necessary.

See more: Chronic Kidney Disease in Dogs: Symptoms, Causes, & Treatments

Side effects of Adequan for dogs

While Adequan is generally well-tolerated by most dogs, as with any medication, there are potential side effects you should be aware of. Commonly reported side effects include:

  • Pain at the injection site
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Abnormal bleeding
  • Allergic reactions, such as facial swelling, hives, or difficulty breathing

Less common side effects can involve:

  • Seizures
  • Behavioral changes
  • Liver enzyme elevations

Most side effects are mild and transient. However, it’s crucial to monitor your dog for any signs of side effects, especially shortly after administration. If you notice any of these symptoms or other changes in your dog’s health or behavior, contact your veterinarian immediately.

When preparing each dose from the vial, ensure to maintain the cleanliness of both the vial and the syringe or needle to minimize the risk of infection at the injection site. Before each use, cleanse and disinfect the Adequan vial’s stopper. Use sterile needles and dispose of them properly after every use. Remember to use needles only once.

It is important to use Adequan within 28 days of the first puncture and to not exceed a maximum of 10 uses per vial for optimal effectiveness and safety. Store the drug in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight, ideally between 68°F to 77°F (20°C to 25°C). Avoid freezing the medication, and dispose of any unused portions of the opened vial following your veterinarian’s instructions.

Adequan could potentially interact with certain medications such as anticoagulants, antiplatelet agents, corticosteroids, heparin, and low molecular weight heparin, increasing the risk of bleeding. As a result, it’s vital to inform your vet about any drugs, supplements, or vitamins your dog is currently receiving.

Alva Thomas
Alva Thomas
Alva Thomas expert in training and caring for pet dog breeds. Whether he spending quality time with her own furry companions or contributing to websites such as Dogsbreed.org and Animalpet.com, dedicated to our canine.

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