is melatonin safe for dogs

Can I Give My Dog Melatonin?

Melatonin is a supplement which contains vital minerals and vitamins and is prescribed to treat various physiological disease conditions as well as neurological problems and anxiety disorders in dogs. In recent times Melatonin has gained popularity amongst vets and is widely prescribed for dogs mainly due to the fact that it is a safe and drug free alternative to conventional medicines.

And while melatonin is an over the counter supplement that does not need a prescription it is always essential to take your vets advice before using it for your pet.

Melatonin – A Safe And Natural Supplement For Dogs

Since Melatonin is a natural supplement and not a synthetic drug it’s completely safe for your pet when administered in the right dosage.

That said every dog is different and it is advisable to look out for any abnormal indications in your pet if they are being treated with Melatonin. Symptoms such as excessive lethargy, dizziness, disorientation or any digestive problems should be brought to the immediate attention of your vet.

Melatonin should not be given along with any other drug without notifying your vet, especially aspirin as it may cause serious health issues. This supplement should also be avoided if your dog is pregnant or lactating, suffers from liver or kidney disorders or has a history of seizures or bleeding problems.

Curative Effects of Melatonin on Dogs

Melatonin is primarily known as a natural sleep inducer but it has a wide range of positive effects on dogs:

Regulates Sleep Patterns – It is used for the treatment of the sleep disorders as Melatonin helps in regulating irregular sleep patterns in dogs without causing drowsiness.

Resolves Stress Issues – If your dog suffers from chronic noise anxiety, has gone through a traumatic accident or is vulnerable to prolonged separation anxiety the vet might put your pet on melatonin to treat such stress issues effectively.

Re-Growth of Hair – The use of melatonin in treating canine alopecia which causes varying degrees of bald patches in dogs has also proven to be very effective.

Healthy Weight Gain – Melatonin also aids in healthy weight gain in dogs that have lost weight due to surgery, prolonged illness or trauma as it regulates appetite naturally.

Suitable Melatonin Dosage for Dogs

Before we talk about how much Melatonin is right for dogs it’s very important to understand that only a vet can determine the suitable dosage based on their size and the condition that is being treated.

Now just as a point of reference dogs that fall in the weight range of:

  • Less than 10 lbs are given 1 mg per dosage
  • 10 lbs – 25 lbs are given 1.5 mg
  • 26 lbs to 100 lbs are given 3 mg
  • Above 100 lbs are given upto 6 mg of Melatonin

To Summarize

Being a natural supplement, Melatonin is a safe and effective treatment for dogs. From curing sleep disorders and anxiety issues, Melatonin is also proven to be effective against baldness and anorexia. But even though this is an over the counter supplement, Melatonin should never be given to dogs without a thorough diagnosis and dosage directive from the vet.

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