Clavamox for Dogs: Clavamox is a broad-spectrum antibiotic used to treat bacterial infections in dogs. It contains amoxicillin and clavulanic acid, which work together to kill harmful bacteria and fight infection.
How Does It Work?
Clavamox works by inhibiting the growth of bacteria. The amoxicillin destroys the cell walls of bacteria, while the clavulanic acid prevents bacteria from destroying the amoxicillin. This combination makes the antibiotic effective against a wide range of bacteria.
Clavamox is often prescribed for skin infections, wounds, abscesses, and respiratory tract infections. It comes in tablet form, as well as an oral suspension liquid for dogs that have trouble swallowing pills. The typical dosage is 6.25 to 12.5 milligrams per pound given twice a day, but follow your vet’s recommendations for your dog.
When Is Clavamox Prescribed for Dogs?
Clavamox is an antibiotic prescribed for dogs to treat bacterial infections. Vets commonly prescribe Clavamox for skin infections, wounds, abscesses, respiratory tract infections, and urinary tract infections in dogs.
1. Skin Infections
If your dog has a skin infection from a scratch, bite, or hot spot, the vet may prescribe Clavamox. It works against common bacteria like Staphylococcus that can infect the skin. Clavamox comes as an oral medication, so it distributes through the bloodstream to treat infections beneath the skin’s surface.
Wounds and Abscesses For infected wounds, bites, or abscesses, Clavamox helps clear harmful bacteria. It works against many types of bacteria to prevent infection and promote healing. By reducing bacteria at the infection site, the body’s natural healing processes can close up the wound. The vet may also surgically drain an abscess before prescribing Clavamox.
2. Respiratory Infections
Upper respiratory infections in dogs, like bronchitis, often require antibiotic treatment. Clavamox targets bacteria that commonly cause respiratory infections, like Streptococcus. For pneumonia or other lower respiratory infections, the vet may prescribe Clavamox along with other medications.
3. Urinary Tract Infections
If your dog shows symptoms of a urinary tract infection, like increased urination or bloody urine, the vet may take a urine sample to check for bacteria before prescribing Clavamox. It works against E. coli and Staphylococcus bacteria that frequently infect the urinary tract.
In some cases, the vet may prescribe Clavamox as a preventative if your dog is at high risk of infection from a medical procedure. They may also prescribe Clavamox for other types of infections on a case by case basis. Be sure to give Clavamox as directed for the full course to properly treat your dog’s infection.
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How to Give Clavamox to Your Dog
Giving your dog medication can be tricky, but with Clavamox it’s actually quite easy. This broad-spectrum antibiotic, also known as amoxicillin-clavulanate, comes in a tasty liquid form that most dogs readily accept. Here are some tips for giving Clavamox to your pup:
1. Shake Well
Before giving your dog a dose, shake the bottle vigorously to ensure the medication is mixed properly. Clavamox can settle over time, so shaking helps distribute the active ingredients evenly.
2. Use a Syringe
The Clavamox bottle comes with a syringe to measure out and administer the correct dosage for your dog’s weight. Withhold food for 30 minutes before and after giving the medication.
3. Place the Syringe in the Side of the Mouth
Gently open your dog’s mouth and place the tip of the syringe along the inside of their cheek. Slowly depress the plunger, allowing your dog to swallow the medication on their own. Don’t squirt it down their throat, as this can cause choking.
4. Reward Your Dog
Once your dog has swallowed the dose, provide praise, treats and belly rubs. Giving a reward helps ensure they have a positive association with the medication and look forward to the next dose.
5. Complete the Full Course
It’s important to give Clavamox as prescribed for the entire length of treatment. Only giving a partial course of the antibiotic can allow some bacteria to survive and develop resistance. Even if your dog seems to be improving quickly, continue treatment until all medication has been given.
6. Possible Side Effects
Some dogs may experience mild side effects from Clavamox like diarrhea, nausea or lack of appetite. Contact your vet if your dog shows severe or persistent side effects. Serious allergic reactions are rare but require immediate veterinary care.
By following these easy steps, you’ll have no trouble getting your dog to take this important medication. Be patient through the treatment process and continue to show your pup plenty of love and affection. If you have any concerns about how your dog is responding to the Clavamox, don’t hesitate to call your vet.
Potential Side Effects of Clavamox in Dogs
While Clavamox can be very effective in treating bacterial infections in dogs, it may cause some side effects in a small percentage of animals. As with any medication, it’s important to be aware of possible side effects and monitor your dog while they’re on the medication. Some of the more common side effects of Clavamox in dogs include:
- Diarrhea or loose stools. Clavamox can disrupt the normal bacteria in the gut, causing diarrhea or loose stools. This is usually mild and will resolve once your dog’s treatment is complete. You can give your dog probiotics to help balance gut bacteria.
- Loss of appetite. Some dogs may experience a decrease in appetite while on Clavamox. Offer your dog bland, easy-to-digest foods and make sure they stay hydrated. The loss of appetite should subside once the medication course is finished.
- Vomiting. Occasionally, dogs will vomit while taking Clavamox. If your dog vomits repeatedly, contact your vet, as the medication may need to be discontinued or the dosage adjusted. It’s best to give Clavamox with food to minimize stomach upset.
- Allergic reaction. Rarely, dogs can have an allergic reaction to Clavamox. Signs of an allergic reaction include facial swelling, hives, scratching, sudden onset of diarrhea or vomiting. Seek veterinary care immediately if your dog shows any symptoms of an allergic reaction.
While the side effects of Clavamox are usually not serious and will resolve once treatment is stopped, it’s always best to consult your vet right away if your dog’s condition worsens or if side effects are severe or long-lasting. They can evaluate if Clavamox needs to be discontinued or the dosage needs adjustment. The benefits of treatment often far outweigh the risks of side effects, but close monitoring of your dog will help ensure their safety and comfort while on this medication.