If your pet is in pain, you want to give them medicine to feel better. It is important to be cautious of giving pets any type of medications. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, or more commonly known as NSAIDs, are common human and pet medications. Do not give your pets any medication without consulting your veterinarian first. Both veterinary and human NSAIDs can be used to treat osteoarthritis, inflammation, and pain, however, human NSAIDs can be extremely dangerous to pets. Human NSAIDs should never be given to pets. Common human NSAIDs include ibuprofen, Aleve, Advil, and more.  

Pet-specific NSAIDs such as carprofen, deracoxib, and meloxicam are generally less toxic. Always consult with your veterinarian before giving your pet any medications. Your veterinarian will provide specific instructions on dosage and administration. A NSAID overdose can be avoided if you follow the directions carefully. Poisoning is possible if your pet consumes too much or the wrong NSAID.  If you have any questions or concerns about giving your pet medication, contact your veterinarian for advice. 

Symptoms of NSAID Toxicity  

Prevent NSAID poisoning by keeping an eye on your pets and their environment. Dogs and cats are naturally curious. They will inspect your medicine cabinet for any yummy treats, and they can chew through pill bottles. NSAID poisoning can affect pets of all sizes, health histories, and ages. Toxic levels of NSAIDs can lead to acute kidney failure and severe gastric ulceration in pets. Follow directions and dosage instructions provided by your veterinarian to prevent any overdoses or harm to your pet. Symptoms of NSAID poisoning can vary widely, but may include the following: 

  • Vomiting 
  • Diarrhea 
  • Black-tarry stool 
  • Abdominal pain 
  • Lack of appetite 
  • Increased thirst and urination 
  • Seizures 
  • Lethargy 


If you suspect your pet is experiencing poisoning from NSAIDs, it is best to call Pet Poison Helpline® at (855) 764-7661 for first aid advice and get your pet to the veterinary clinic as soon as possible for treatment. Do not attempt to induce vomiting at home, as this can put your pet in further danger. At the clinic, your veterinarian may administer activated charcoal to prevent further absorption of the toxins, and IV fluids to help protect the kidneys from damage. The prognosis of this condition depends on your pet’s size and the dosage of NSAID ingested. If possible, try to bring a pack of the drug to the clinic so your vet can determine how severe the condition is. For medical advice if you suspect or can confirm your pet is poisoned, contact the experts at Pet Poison Helpline®.