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Dr. John
Dr. John, Small animal veterinarian, ER vet
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Experience:  significant surgical and medicine background, currently working as emergency clinic veterinarian
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What is the safe liquid benadryl dosage for cats?

Resolved Question:

What is the safe liquid benadryl dosage for cats?

My vet gave me a dosage a couple of years ago for long distance traveling and I did not save it.

It sure did help keep my cat safe and quiet for many hours.

Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. John replied 5 years ago.

Thank you for your question concerning your cat.

What concentration benadryl do you have?
JACUSTOMER-cq5o8qvf- :

baby benadryl

Dr. John :

Okay, just want to make sure we are on the same page--- does it say 12.5mg/5ml anywhere?

JACUSTOMER-cq5o8qvf- :

I do not have the bottle with me as I am currently at work. If need be, I can purchase additional supply.

Dr. John :

Okay sounds good. I want to go through a few tidbits with you quickly then

First, benadryl makes strict benadryl (only active ingredient diphenhydramine) and then some other formulas that have various cold remedies and other drugs involved

MAKE SURE it is active ingredient diphenhydramine only, which is standard benadryl. No cold and sinus or any other varied forms

JACUSTOMER-cq5o8qvf- :

Yes, I am aware of this.

Dr. John :

Okay, just trying to be thorough :-)

JACUSTOMER-cq5o8qvf- :

I am very appreciative. My girl is special to me

Dr. John :

Also, liquid benadryl has a bad taste and cats usually hate it. So up to you if you want to try the liquid again or use a 12.5mg tablet instead

Finally - it's good you have already done this and it worked well, but you can always consider a "test" dose a few days before traveling to see how she responds to it before the actual trip

Okay, tidbits are done :)

So if you use the 12.5mg/5ml liquid, a typical dose given her weight would be:

JACUSTOMER-cq5o8qvf- :

I remember her foaming at the mouth and it was most unpleasant for her.

I did a testing before traveling before to ensure it would not have an opposite effect on her.

Dr. John :

Approximately 1cc, if you get a baby benadryl tablet (12.5mg)---

1/4 tablet would be appropriate
JACUSTOMER-cq5o8qvf- :

That's good news. Thank you for your assistance. I will do another test before travel day to make sure it will be good for her.

Dr. John :

You are welcome!

Now benadryl isn't the heaviest duty calming/sedation medication we have...

So if you want to try that dose a few days before to see if it is enough, that might be a good idea

We can typically safely to 3-4x higher on those doses I gave you

Keep that in mind

So she could get up to 3cc of the liquid and 3/4-1 pill of the 12.5mg

JACUSTOMER-cq5o8qvf- :

Is there another medication that would be better

Dr. John :

Well this is the only over the counter drug

So if you are wanting to avoid a vet visit yes.

But my personal favorite is acepromazine (more sedation)

Both drugs are very safe, but benadryl is definitely the safest - so since she did so well with it before, perhaps it's not a bad idea to just stick with it. But up to you!

JACUSTOMER-cq5o8qvf- :

No, I don't think that is necessary as I have had success with the benadryl.

Thank you. I'll stick with the Benadryl and I appreciate your further comment regarding its safety.

Dr. John :

Okay sounds good and thank you. Any other questions?

JACUSTOMER-cq5o8qvf- :

No. That will do for today.

Dr. John :

Okay, good luck with the travels!

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