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Health & Wellness

If your dog has osteoarthritis, ask your veterinarian about Previcox

Pups that struggle with pain or inflammation might benefit from this medication.

Osteoarthritis can affect our dogs in many ways. Not only do they usually have less stamina during physical activities, but they can also experience chronic pain and inflammation. Luckily, though, Previcox, a drug used to help relieve those negative side effects, might help. 

But arthritis-related issues aren’t the only way this medication helps pups. Keep reading to find out how it might benefit your dog (with your vet's permission, of course!). 

What’s Previcox for dogs?

Previcox is a brand of firocoxib, a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID), that veterinarians often recommend to treat osteoarthritis symptoms by targeting enzymes that cause pain and inflammation, Dr. Elizabeth Devitt, DVM, a general practice veterinarian and veterinary consultant for Fetch, explains. 

Dr. Devitt adds that Previcox is sometimes given to dogs for pain control before surgeries or to decrease inflammation afterward. 

Previcox dosage for dogs

Your veterinarian can recommend the right serving size of Previcox based on your pet’s weight. “It’s not labeled for use in dogs under 12.5 pounds or those less than 7 months old,” Dr. Devitt says. “It’s also not recommended for use in pregnant, lactating or breeding dogs.”

The length of time your pup takes Previcox depends on their ailment and the severity of their case. Usually, though, you can expect to give your dog the medication once daily. 

“While Previcox can be given with or without food, it’ll take longer for the medication to begin working if food is in the dog’s stomach,” Dr. Devitt explains. “It’ll take about 1 hour for a dog with an empty stomach and up to 5 hours with food."

RELATED: 6 signs that your dog might have arthritis

What are some common side effects of Previcox?

Most NSAIDs, including Previcox, have similar side effects, which can sometimes negatively affect dogs’ gastrointestinal tract, kidneys and liver. Stop giving your pup this medication if you notice side effects like vomiting, diarrhea, appetite loss, itchiness, lethargy or abnormal behaviors, Dr. Devitt urges. 

It’s important to discuss your dog’s current medication regimen with your veterinarian before giving Previcox to your pet. The medication shouldn’t be administered with other NSAIDs, corticosteroids or diuretics because they increase the risk of side effects. 

And, if your dog has pre-existing heart disease or liver or kidney issues, it’s recommended that you don’t administer Previcox, as the drug can exacerbate these conditions or create a higher chance of developing side effects.

“Dogs on NSAIDs are typically monitored with blood tests to ensure there aren’t adverse effects to liver, kidneys or blood clotting,” Dr. Devitt says. “If your dog is on long-term medication, keeping up with these monitoring tests is vital.”

Are there alternatives to Previcox, and are they as effective?

If Previcox isn’t a great option for your dog, talk to your veterinarian about alternatives like Deramaxx, Metacam, Rimadyl, Rovera or Galliprant, Dr. Devitt recommends. 

“Dogs with osteoarthritis could benefit from acupuncture, cold laser therapy, specific supplements or intramuscular injections of polysulfated glycosaminoglycans (PSGAGs), which can improve joint health, instead of taking Previcox,” Dr. Devitt says.

The Dig, Fetch's expert-backed editorial, answers all of the questions you forget to ask your vet or are too embarrassed to ask at the dog park. We help make sure you and your best friend have more good days, but we’re there on bad days, too.

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