Amitriptyline is a human anti-depressant drug that is used in cats and dogs for behavior problems, and occasionally in animals with itchy skin. The human drug is known as Elavil. Amitriptyline is used in cats to treat social anxiety, urine spraying or other inappropriate elimination behaviors. It is used in dogs for separation anxiety, and occasionally for itchiness and chronic pain. Like many other drugs in veterinary medicine, this drug is not FDA approved for use in animals but is commonly prescribed by veterinarians.
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It is important to give Amitriptyline to your pet exactly as your veterinarian prescribes.
If you should miss giving your pet a dose go ahead and give the next dose as soon as you remember or, if it is close to the next scheduled dose, return to the regular schedule.
It is important that you do not double dose or give both doses as the same time to catch up. It is possible that it may take up to 7-10 days before the benefits of this medication are seen. Do not stop giving this medication abruptly. Usually medications such as amitriptyline are tapered off slowly to prevent withdrawal symptoms.
Amitriptyline is very bitter-tasting, and giving your pet this medication can sometimes be a challenging.
Wash your hands after giving your pet this medication.
Possible Side Effects:
The most common side effects are sedation, constipation and difficulty passing urine. Less common side effects include excitability or aggression, change in heart rhythm, bone-marrow suppression, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, staggering and disorientation.
Keep this and all drugs out of reach of children.
Amitriptyline is a prescription drug and should be used according to your veterinarian&rsquos directions.
It should only be given to the animal for which it was prescribed.
Do not give this medication to a person.
Amitriptyline may lower the seizure threshold.
Tell your veterinarian if your pet has a history of seizures or epilepsy.
Amitriptyline has been shown to cause birth defects.
It should be avoided during pregnancy unless the benefits outweigh the possible risks. Contact your veterinarian if your pet becomes pregnant while taking amitriptylline. Amitriptyline is used with caution in animals with diabetes, abnormal thyroid function, liver disease, kidney disease, eye problems KCS or glaucoma and abnormal heart rhythm.
Discuss with your veterinarian any medications or vitamin/supplements your pet may be receiving. Your veterinarian will be familiar with possible drug interactions so it is important to discuss with them what you give your pet.
Especially if your pet is taking: MAO inhibitors including amitraz found in some flea/tick collars and dips and selegiline, buspirone, isoniazid, pentazocine and selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors such as fluoxetine.
Other potential drug interactions include: cimetidine, diazepam, cisapride, thyroid medications, heart medications, drugs that change heart rhythm, drugs which slow the GI tract, sedatives and any drug that lowers the seizure threshold.
If you suspect your pet or another animal was overdosed accidentally or has eaten this medication inadvertently, contact your veterinarian or the A.S.P.C.A. Animal Poison Control Center at 888.426.4435. Always bring the prescription container with you when you take your pet for treatment. Read the labeling or ask your pharmacist for the storage requirements of the prescription you receive.