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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 27453
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 44 years of experience
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We have a 13 week old mini australian shepherd - Ammo. We

Customer Question

Hi, we have a 13 week old mini australian shepherd - Ammo. We took him for his first vet visit and were not so impressed with the clinic. Would love a second opinion on this simple situation. Ammo tested positive for the Fecal Giardia Antigen. He does
not have diarrhea and is otherwise a healthy active puppy. He weighs 7 lbs (which the vet got wrong on his chart) and is slightly underweight. The vet prescribed Panacur C 1 gram / day for three days (we've started this) and Metronidazole 125 mg / day for
10 days (one 250mg pill split in half - we have not started this yet) In your opinion is Metronidazole safe for a puppy, necessary in addition to the Panacur and is this dosage correct for a puppy of this size? (seems high based on our research) We are always
concerned about over medicating both people and pets but primarily, the vet we saw was a bit checked out (we won't be returning) so we wanted a second option on this. Thank you kindly - Raffi and Stacy
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.

The recommended dosing of fenbendazole (Panacur) is 50 mg/kg (22.7 mg/lb) daily for 3-5 days. That's ~150 mg daily for Ammo. Metronidazole is less effective than fenbendazole but can be dosed concomitantly should I find that my initial therapy with fenbendazole alone wasn't effective. The recommended dose of metronidazole is 15 mg/kg (6.8 mg/lb) every 12 hours for 5-7 days. That's ~50 mg twice daily for Ammo.

Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you. Would you suggest I wait to see the results of the first round of fenbendazole before administering the Metronidazole? Or would you recommend giving both concomitantly at this time? Are there any side effects of Metronidazole I need to watch out for in a puppy? I assume these are both safe for Ammo's age? Thank you
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.

Yes, that would be prudent. I'm a minimalist and prefer to avoid drugs unless they're absolutely indicated and dosing with metronidazole hasn't been shown to be necessary at this time. Metronidazole is safe at 13 weeks of age, however, at the recommended dose above. At higher doses, adverse effects include neurologic disorders, lethargy, weakness, neutropenia (decreased neutrophils/one of the white blood cells), liver toxicity, blood in the urine, anorexia, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. You're quite welcome. Please continue our conversation if you wish.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thanks again. That is what we will do. While on the Panacur (started yesterday), is Ammo contagious? Should we keep him away from any other dogs and for how long? He has a puppy training class today we will consider canceling if so.
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.

Ammo's feces is contagious and so you should be prepared to pick it up quickly! Ammo isn't contagious, however, as long as another dog doesn't come along and lick Ammo's rear end. He could shed the Giardia for months but practically speaking his feces is contagious for ~1 month after being treated. I have to leave my computer for a few hours but promise to reply as soon as I return if need be.

Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.
I'm just following up on our conversation about Ammo. How is everything going?
Dr. Michael Salkin