Melatonin For Dogs - Dosage And Tips
Is there anything worse than when our beloved pup is anxious or depressed, and there is nothing we can do for them? Before you decide to try medications or drugs, think about a supplement called melatonin. But before you decide to give your dog any supplement, ask your vet for advice and go for a consultation.
If you are worried about your dog and you are thinking of introducing melatonin to them, there are some things you should know first.
What is melatonin?
Melatonin is a naturally occurring hormone that the body synthesizes on its own. The pineal gland produces it, and both humans and dogs have it. Melatonin helps us regulate our sleep and manage stress and the feeling of anxiety.
There are potential situations where our bodies, or the bodies of our dogs, do not produce enough melatonin, and we encounter sleeping problems, elevated anxiety, and stress.
Is melatonin safe for dogs?
This is a crucial question you have to ask yourself before you decide to give your dog melatonin. The answer is - it depends.
Most dogs can take melatonin and have no health problems or side-effects. It will help your dog regulate and manage any issue that is causing them to take melatonin. However, there are some cases when your dog shouldn’t be taking this supplement, and your vet should have told you that.
You should never medicate your dog without consulting your vet.
When is melatonin unsafe for dogs?
Although melatonin is mostly safe for your dog, there are some situations where you should avoid giving your dog this supplement. Here are some of the cases where you shouldn’t give your dog melatonin;
- Pregnancy - if your dog is pregnant, she should not be taking melatonin because it can harm her and her future puppies.
- Already on supplements - if your dog is already taking other supplements, it shouldn’t be taking melatonin. Melatonin, combined with other supplements, can cause your dog to have different unexpected side-effects.
- Medication - if your dog takes medication, melatonin should be avoided for the same reason, it should not be mixed with other supplements.
When should you give your melatonin?
Experience has taught us that melatonin can be very beneficial for our dogs. Vets often decide to try melatonin before prescribing your dog with medications that contain unnatural chemicals.
Melatonin is often prescribed when;
- Cushing’s disease - this disease affects your dog’s cortisol levels, and some of the side-effects are frequent urination, weakness, and low energy. Melatonin proved as a successful supplement for this disease.
- Alopecia - it is interesting that melatonin is often subscribed for dogs with seasonal flank alopecia, even though there is no evidence that it helps them. Mostly it gives the owners a feeling of actively helping the dog.
- Anxiety - Melatonin is a great ally for all dog owners whose dogs suffer from anxiety. It doesn’t matter if it is situational anxiety or separation anxiety; melatonin will help.
- Insomnia - melatonin is most known for being a supplement that helps regulate our dogs’ sleeping schedules. It is the best natural supplement when used as a sleeping aid.
What is the right melatonin dosage for dogs?
Dosage is not the only thing you need to decide if you decided to put your dog on melatonin. Think about what brand of the supplement you will buy, how you will administrate it to your dog, and the right dosage for your dog. Like with most things on an open market, there are various brands to consider, and the best way to make a decision is to consult your vet.
Generally, the right melatonin dosage for your dog will be determined by their weight. The usual dosage looks something like this;
Depending on your dog’s weight
- 0 - 10 pounds - 1 milligram of melatonin
- 10 - 25 pounds - 1.5 milligrams of melatonin
- 25 - 50 pounds - 2 milligrams of melatonin
- 50 - 100 pounds - 3 milligrams of melatonin
- 100+ pounds - 3 - 6 milligrams of melatonin (depending on the weight)
This is just to give you a general idea of what dosages a dog might use, and you should never give your dog any supplements without consulting your vet first.
World Dog Finder team