Health and Wellness

What Over-the-Counter Medications Are Safe for Pets? (and What’s the Dose)

Nice cat sitting on the table

While veterinary care, lots of love, and a healthy lifestyle is the absolute best way to keep your pet feeling great, all cats will experience at least some form of injury or illness in their lifetime. Did you know that there are many over-the-counter human medications that can be safe and effective for pets, when used correctly?

Benadryl, or another branded antihistamine, can be incredibly useful for treating allergies, bug bites, or other causes of itchy skin. Even Dramamine can be used for cats with motion sickness, and Immodium can treat diarrhea in dogs. However, dosages for animals are much different than for humans. And, some medications that are safe for dogs are absolutely NOT safe for cats!

Use the information in this article to determine if your OTC medication is dog and cat safe and how much should be administered. Always check with your veterinarian that understands your pet’s health and history before giving any medications. Additionally, be certain that you’re using only the medication listed, not other ingredients. Many antihistamines, for example, include added decongestants that can be lethal for your pet. Check labels very carefully and when in doubt, don’t use.

View the medications that are safe for your pets (and their doses!):


allergy medicine

Treats allergies and itching.

Canine Dose: 1/2-1mg per pound of body weight. Maximum dose 2mg/lb.

Feline Dose: 1/2 mg per pound every 8 hours. Can cause excitability.

Buffered Aspirin

Aspirin in Jar

Pain relief and anti-inflammatory.

Canine Dose: 5mg per pound of body weight every 12 hours.




Used to reduce motion sickness.

Canine Dose: 12.5 – 50mg every 8 hours.

Feline Dose: 12.5 mg every 8 hours.

Hydrogen Peroxide

hydrogen peroxide

Used to induce vomiting after accidental ingestion of poisons. Seek a veterinarian’s advice first.

Canine Dose: 10ml by mouth. Repeat in 15 minutes if not vomiting. Do not exceed 3 doses.

Feline Dose: 10ml by mouth. Repeat in 15 minutes if not vomiting. Do not exceed 3 doses.

Immodium AD


Relieves diarrhea.

Canine Dose: 1ml per pound of body weight or 1mg per 20 pounds every 8 hours.




Relieves diarrhea.

Canine Dose: 1ml per pound of body weight every 2 hours.

Feline Dose: 1ml per pound of body weight every 2 hours.

Mineral Oil

Eliminates constipation.

Canine Dose: Up to 4 tablespoons daily.

Feline Dose: Up to 2 tablespoons daily.

Canned Pumpkin


Relieves diarrhea, and eliminates constipation. (Note: use only 100% pumpkin, NOT pie filling).

Canine Dose: 2-3 teaspoons every 8-12 hours.

Feline Dose: 1-2 teaspoons every 8-12 hours.

Pepto Bismol


Relieves diarrhea, vomiting, and gas.

Canine Dose: 1 teaspoon per 5 pounds of body weight or 1 caplet per 20 pounds every 6 hours.


Robitussin DM


Relieves coughing and hacking.

Canine Dose: 1 teaspoon per 20 pounds of body weight every 8-12 hours.


Ibuprofen and Tylenol: DO NOT USE



Canine Dose: DO NOT USE!

Feline Dose: DO NOT USE!

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