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I suspect Metacam side effects--other option(s)?

12 years ago

I posted a few days ago about starting my 14-year-old Husky-Shepherd, Wolfy, on meloxicam (Metacam) for his hip arthritis. He had been on Previcox for quite some time. I started the meloxicam on Thursday, and I could see strong improvement Saturday and Sunday. Then this morning he was off balance, seemed to be dizzy, had no appetite, and had loose stools.

I called the vet and spoke to a tech who said those symptoms were unrelated to the drug. She suggested that Wolfy was nearing the end. This was not an unreasonable assumption, given his age. But the onset of the symptoms was sudden, and in fact he seemed to be doing better in the hips.

So I looked up meloxicam's side effects, and sure enough, they include dizziness, nausea, loss of appetite, and diarrhea. As far as I know he hasn't vomited (another side effect).

Are the side effects likely to go away as the body adjusts to the med? Or is meloxicam not for Wolfy? If I should take him off the med, I'll of course ask the vet what she suggests. But the last time we talked about his condition we agreed that if this protocol didn't work we'd know we had done all we could.

He's also on Tramadol, and had a shot of cortisone a couple of weeks ago.

Does this really sound as though there's no more we can do?



Comments (47)

  • annzgw
    12 years ago

    I had an elderly dog that reacted to Metacam. Dr. said it was pretty uncommon but my dog was very sensitive to many drugs. I'd be surprised if your vet didn't advise you to stop giving it.
    Why was Wolfy taken off the other pain med?

  • alisande
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    Why was Wolfy taken off the other pain med?

    I brought him to the vet a couple of weeks ago to ask two things: Is there anything more we can do to relieve his hip pain? And am I keeping him going too long?

    She noted that except for his severe arthritis, Wolfy is healthy. He has a gorgeous coat, and normally eats well. He does have some of what appears to be anxiety at night, for which we tried amitriptyline with no success.

    She suggested a cortisone shot and switching to meloxicam, mostly to save me some money, I think (I'd been spending $3 per pill on Previcox for a long time, and my finances are far from unlimited these days), but also because she was having good results with it with one of her own dogs. I did notice an improvement (over the Previcox) at first.

    Ann, was your dog put on another med after the Metacam?

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  • annzgw
    12 years ago


    Since my dog had difficulty tolerating most meds the only one we found that helped my dog was prednisone. We even tried tramadol, and it worked for a few days, but then she started having all the side effects.

    She had been on the pred for a long time and the vet wanted to try some of the newer, 'safer' meds. After trying several meds (with poor results) the vet specialist and I weighed all the pros and cons and decided to put her back on Prednisone. I knew long term use of the Pred could cause other problems but I chose to go with a drug my dog could tolerate and one that would relieve her pain. We treated the stomach problems with Carafate, which worked wonders!

    By trial and error we found a dose that worked very well (1/4 pill every other day) and she lived another 4 years. She died of kidney failure and congestive heart failure.

    Here is a link that might be useful: Some more meds

  • alisande
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    Thanks, Debbie and Ann. I talked to the vet today, and since Wolfy's arthritis seemed to be better on the meloxicam than on the Previcox, she suggested that I keep him off it for three days and then give him half the dosage we started with. Since I know what to look for if he has a bad reaction, I ought to be able to spot it quickly and stop again if necessary.

    This morning Wolfy had his appetite back, and I was surprised (and delighted) to see him putting his front paws forward and his butt in the air, wagging his tail. I haven't seen him act that playful in a very long time. If we could continue to get that effect from the meloxicam without the bad reaction, it would be wonderful. Not terribly likely, I know, but wonderful if it happens.

  • cal_dreamer
    12 years ago

    Hopefully the reduced dose will keep most of the benefits without as many side effects.

    Here's wishing you both the best!

  • mazer415
    12 years ago

    When is the last time his ears were cleaned??

  • alisande
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    Thanks, Cal!

    Mazer, are you thinking the dizziness could be an inner ear problem? If that's the case, would a cleaning involve the inner ear?

    He was examined two weeks ago. I don't remember anything specific to the ears.......I'm guessing they were checked but not cleaned.

  • murraysmom Zone 6a OH
    12 years ago

    alisande, glad to here Wolfy is doing better. Nothing lifts your spirits like "a butt in the air and wagging tail"!! I hope he continues to improve.

  • ania_ca
    12 years ago

    I cannot belive the vet tech told you that was unrelated to the metecam and that he was nearing the end. How irresponsible adn mean is that?

    Have you tried cosaquin DS, adequin or Dasequin? How about DogGonePain? Those are all natural supplements that may help reduce his need for the NSAIDS and maybe even let you use just the Tramadol. Adequin is an injection from the vet.

    For the NSAIDS, your other choice is to go back to Previcox or Rimadyl. But you have to make sure the Metacam is out of his body first.


  • alisande
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    Thanks, Ania. Yeah, I was surprised at the vet tech's response. She's worked in the field a long time and is usually quite knowledgeable.

    I haven't tried any of the alternatives you mentioned. I did buy some Zyflamend, but the vet said Wolfy's hips are way beyond the point where any herbal supplement would help. I might have tried it anyway, but it's difficult enough to get the other seven pills a day into him. Thank heavens for peanut butter!

    So far so good with the half-dose of Metacam, but tomorrow is the fourth day, and it was on the fourth day that he exhibited the bad reaction to the larger dose. So we'll see. I really hope this works. We went for a short walk today, and I could tell he enjoyed it.

    Here's Wolfy:

  • ania_ca
    12 years ago

    He's beautiful! Glad he is feeling better.

    Do try Cosequin DS or Desequin if you can though. It is actually clinically proven to work and really makes a difference. It takes 6 weeks to kick in though.

    Adequin is the stronger, injectable version, but is very pricey.


  • sylviatexas1
    12 years ago

    If his ears are blocked with a build-up of ear was & matted hair, it's possible for infection to set in;
    the easiest thing to do is look & sniff.

    If you see a big glob or something disgusting or something that looks like oily dirt, & if you smell something nasty, maybe yeasty, clean his ears with a generous dollop of olive oil or baby oil (squish it down into the 'root' part of the ear), & wip out the excess with a tissue wrapped around a q-tip.

    but if the main prob were an ear infection, taking him off the meds wouldn't have made a difference.

    I'd darn sure tell the vet that the tech made a bad 'diagnosis' & that she overstepped her position when she said he was nearing the end.

    She was not only giving unqualified medical opinions but expressing a fatalistic attitude;

    if you thought Wolfy was 'near the end', I don't guess you'd need a vet until right at the last, would you?

  • sylviatexas1
    12 years ago

    You'd think that mandatory preview would prevent that sort of thing, wouldn't you?...

  • dominiqueklein_hotmail_com
    11 years ago

    My Lhasa is 14. About a week ago he had back pain, so off to the vet we went. After a shot of Metacam he was fine, but that evening, he went out for a pee and came in blowing clear fluid out of his nose. Since then he has had trouble breathing through his nose. The vet is not sure, if it's a foreign body, or a growth or an allergy. I asked the Vet could it have something to do with the Metacam, he felt it wasn't. Now it been a stressful week, not knowing, what to do next, so far he is on Quatazone, antibiotics, but he condition has remained. The next step is rather expensive a specialist to look up his nose. So I'm wondering if anyone out there has heard of a dog having a reaction to metacam simalar to my dog Toe.

  • Casanovamom
    10 years ago

    My Casanova was a 3 yr old 200lbs Healthy vibrant St.Brenard. Was prescribed metacam a week ago 3/21/2012 by the vet for a sprained front leg. After 2 days he looks as if he was going be ok then suddenly the next morning he started breathing very heavily, very thristy, lost of appetite and he couldn't even hold himself up on his hind legs they started shaking and he collapsed. And today he DIED 3/27/2012 after the autopsy. The Vet tells me his findings is consist with a heatstroke,how I asked bc he lives inside the house with my other 2 dogs and he doesn't spend large amount of time out doors........I feel as if the medication may have had something to do with his death. Can someone give information to clarify this medicine.......... Casanova's mom

  • alisande
    Original Author
    10 years ago

    How awful for Casanova and you. I'm sorry I'm no help--I don't know any more about Metacam than is contained in this post--but perhaps others will have information for you. If not, the Internet is of course a rich resource. You might start with literature from the drug manufacturer on possible side effects and recommended dosages. So sad.....

  • laurief_gw
    10 years ago

    I am so, so sorry about your loss of Casanova. Such a tragic loss. I hate to have to ask this, but did you have the necropsy performed by the same vet who prescribed the Metacam? If so, and if you want to lay your mind at rest about his cause of death, you may want to consider taking his body to another clinic for a second necropsy to verify the first vet's findings.

    Again, you have my deepest sympathies for your loss.

  • Casanovamom
    10 years ago

    I know that's what I'm going about doing right because it just dnt sit well with me and thank you both for your input....

  • mboston_gw
    10 years ago

    We had a Brittany with Hip dysplaysia. She got to the point where she didn't want to play or swim, which was one of her favorite things to do. We started her on Metacam and within a week, she was running and playing like a puppy. We didn't have any side affects from it with her and it gave her a couple more years of quality life. She lived to be 14.

    Good luck - hope it has helped your guy and that he is not having problems with it now.

  • bella1313
    10 years ago

    I am sitting here waiting to talk to the emergency vet docs while my 9 yr old Rottie Bella comes out of surgery for a perferated ulcer. She was placed on usual dose of metacam around 15 days ago. At about 10 days into the meds, she suddenly went weak, was throwing up all her meals. I took her to the vet who took more bloodwork (liver enzymes were elevated at outset of giving her these meds but he says go ahead and we will check in two weeks). Well, my poor Bella was admitted to emergency with life threatening peritonitis. She went into shock. They stabilized her, called it "Hermorraghic Gastroenteritis" and sent her home then called me back to say the fluid they took out of her abdomen indicated peritonitis and she needed emergency surgery. Aside from the emotional rollercoaster of the last two days (twice thought we had to "put her down"), the bill is $10k + at this point. The only factor introduced into her life was METACAM (an NSAID related ulcer caused this). I went against my usual holistic bent in search of something to get her feeling better in the hips. NOT a good choice! I think with all the postings, the drug company and the vets need a good wake up to the serious side effects (and possibly not as RARE as the drug company claims!)

  • pkimball1
    10 years ago

    I learned this only from the drive-by-Euthanasia vet last night after unknowingly hurting my most beloved for 2-1/2 years with this stuff; no one told me & I thought it was my fault--maybe I wasn't feeding her well enough or right--and someone--like a vet, for example--should have.

    If you're shocked about what a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (Metacam) does, wait to you see what a STEROIDAL anti-inflammatory (Prednisone) does: caused internal bleeding & ulceration of the GI tract & the dead-givaway "tarry stools" (the internal bleeding which is dark like black crude).
    Problem is, there's nothing like Metacam against arthritis...Just, we now learn (but the vets have to know this, right?) the 'cost' is possible pain & damage to the GI tract.
    And what else are you going to do for arthritis?
    And there's nothing like Prednisone against tumors.
    (I had to let my darling go not just because of arthritis & GI stuff but cancer...)

    My heart breaks for my dog & yours their suffering.
    I did not put my darling through even a biopsy and I would urge people to SPARE YOUR DARLING the invasive & painful & scarey & horrible tests, procedures, treatments...
    They have to go, so why torture them on the way out?

    I don't know what the answer is: stay aware & tuned (not like me) to what they're ingesting & what reactions you're seeing, don't be sold a bill of goods by the Medical-Industrial Complex (they will see YOU the same bill of goods, by the way).
    And minimize the suffering & make them suffer more because you want to hold on...

  • pkimball1
    10 years ago

    Dizziness? Definitely one of the possible side effects of Metacam.
    A few people have said they had luck with lowering the dose by up to half.

  • gschloff55
    9 years ago

    I have an 11 1/2 year old Smoothcoat Chow Chow that has to take prednisone for an autoimmune disease. I give him 1/2 tablet every 3rd day.

    But his hips are getting so bad it's painful watching my poor baby lay down and he is limping.

    After reading the side effects of Meloxicam I'm afraid to give it to him.

    I've been using OTC Glucosemine/Chondroiton . He's on his 6th bottle of that, so 6 months, but it has not helped him at all. Can I safely wean him off ? Isn't there anything *natural* that I could give him without having to have a prescription? My vet is about 35 miles away and I don't know if I could even get him into the car at this point.

  • lzrddr
    8 years ago

    WEll, first of all, if you want to stop Glucosamine (why stop?) you can do it cold turkey without any consequences... it may not be helping much, but it is harmless, and can make the joints feel better.

    Old Chows and other larger breeds can have severe arthritis OR(and) myelopathy, which is a condition that does not tend to respond to anti-inflammatories (like Metacam)... this condition tends to make dog's rear legs weak and WOBBLY (as opposed to arthritis which usually makes them seem weak but are also quite painful). But if your pet is having balance problems or is dragging his rear legs a bit, chances are it is more myelopathy that is the problem and not necessarily arthritis. Myelopathy is not that treatable a condition, but the prednisolone you are on already is far likelier to help than any non-steroidal is (though you may have to up the dose some). But even the positive effects of prednisolone are short lived for older big dogs with myleopathy.

    Meloxicam CAN have side effects, though in almost all the above circumstances, I can tell with near certainty most symptoms were NOT due to the Meloxicam. Problem is non-steroidals are usually used on very old dogs ... and LOTs of other completely unrelated problems occur in very old dogs, though we are so fast to blame some drug they are on rather than the much more likely possibility things have degenerated or suddenly occured for unrelated reasons. But there is no arguing this point to most owners, and I always recommend stop any 'suspicious' drugs... just in case.

    But on the other hand Meloxicam, as great a drug as it is for many dogs, it has a pretty narrow margin of safety (in other words, getting the dose wrong can cause serious problems), so picking another drug that has a much better safety record and dose margin safety (like the much maligned carprofen) might be a better choice anyway.

    Another comment, though... prednisolone has hundreds of side effects, many quite debilitating and damaging, compared to the very few a non-steroidal can cause. So if you are not scared of giving your pet prednisolone I am not sure why you are more afraid of giving another far safer drug...?

    But one thing is for sure, giving BOTH prednisolone AND a non-steroidal is far more likely to result in a lot of nasty side effects than giving either alone. Best stop one before starting the other, if you decide to try a non-steroidal.

  • RickAbrams
    8 years ago

    Our 14 year old Belgium Shepard mix was placed on Metacam about one year ago. We gradually and unwittingly increased his dose and he was fine. Our other dog a young German Shepard got diarrhea and we followed the rice chicken diet with antibiotics, and shortly after that the Belgium Shepard got diarrhea and we followed the same regime.

    A few days after that, his stools turned black and tarry, about 8 days later, he lost his appetite, and walking was extremely arduous. We thought that was because his chiro had retired and missed a week before starting with a new one.

    Then, my mind recalled something about black stool with Metacam overdose and I found his site. I stopped the Metacam this morning. His appetite is back (but then I made sirloin hamburger). His walking is very labored and his stool is still black.

    It aggravates me that I had forgotten abut the black stool, but then he started on Metacam over a year ago and it had done so great that I was slow to suspect it. I guess the stomach virus with the antibiotics overwhelmed him.

    If there is a lesson, perhaps it should to be careful if a dog on Metacam needs to take antibiotics - but I am guessing that was a co-factor. I could have slashed his Metacam dosage for a while and kept him on rice longer.

    At almost 16, he is too old for any more operations.

  • elisenthompson
    7 years ago

    My sweet angel, Hunter, is a 15 year old mixed Terrier weighing 50lbs. His arthritis has progressively gotten a lot worse over the last few months. The vet had him on Previcox every 2 days and tramadol along with the Cosaquin DS that I was giving him. He has been in so much pain. At night he cannot get comfortable and pants all night long. It breaks my heart! When I took him back to the vet 2 weeks ago she switched him to 1/3 pill of Meloxicam daily from the Previcox, upped him tramadol, and told me to switch his Cosaquin to Phycox one Max because it has a much higher dose of glucosamine. She also told me that if this doesn't work there is nothing more she could do for him. I asked her to please tell me if its time then because I don't want to prolong his pain. I was told that she can't tell me that and I have to decide on my own, but to try these new meds first. I'm not a vet and all I know is that he is in pain. This is my baby!

    He seemed to be feeling better the last two weeks and all of a sudden he has terrible diarrhea the last two days along with being very lethargic, wobbly on his feet, and back to the panting all night long. I know the panting is a sign of pain, but could there be more going on? I believe the diarrhea is due to Meloxicam so I will discontinue use. Reading these post is very upsetting because my vet told me that the Meloxicam is a lot safer than Previcox and she has found it helped many dogs more than the Previcox. I'm at a loss and just want to make him comfortable. Back to the vet we go on Monday unless he worsens and we will go to emergency vet.

  • dwarrenroach2013
    7 years ago

    I had my little baby spayed and the vet put her on Metacam for pain. I ended up taking her back this morning because her left paw was drawn up to her ear and she was having problems standing, and on the way she threw up. She only weighs about 3lbs. And the dose is .02ml once a day. When I got her there she was doing better, but running a temp. He checked her out and said he could not find anything wrong but temp. And gave her some antibiotics and told me to keep giving her the pain med. I got her home gave her some pain med. And she ate a little bit. A few hours later she was throwing up, not walking and standing with her head between her legs. I looked up the med. and it said Do not give to dogs under 5 lbs directly in mouth because of the chance of over dose and side effects. She is still just laying looking like she is out of it. I feel so bad for her. How long does it take to get out of the system and is there anything I can domto help her along?

  • katelw
    6 years ago

    First time poster, here! As a certified vet tech and owner of a dachshund who took metacam (before eventually passing away at age 16), I thought I might throw in my two cents. First of all, I'm not a huge fan of the dosage syringe. Our hospital has a more specific dosage calculation for dogs or cats. We simply provided 1, 3, 5mL, etc syringes and a pill bottle to transfer the Metacam into. Most pets did well with this. The only complaint I've gotten is that the medicine simply wasn't helping ease the pain.

    Always always always give Metacam with food! I feel as though this is not emphasized enough at some practices. Also, follow-up bloodwork is essential to check kidney and liver values, ensuring that the medication is not harming these organs over time.

    It is important to note that, just like us humans, not all animals react the same to medications/treatments. It's all about finding the right course of treatment for you pet as an individual. I commend you for working with different meds to find out the best way to help your dog.

    Metacam provided my dachshund, Lucy, several months of a much higher quality of life than she had been experiencing before starting the drug. It took some time and much frustration finding the right med for her, and I work for a great, knowledgeable veterinarian!

    Never, ever give up. If that means trying a bunch of meds before finding the right one(s), do it. And make sure you are comfortable with your veterinarian and that they are willing to work with you and your pet long term.

    Good luck, and please keep us posted!

  • emmylou91
    5 years ago

    Hi, I just wanted to tell about my experience with Matacam. I have a 5 yr old Morkie, she had a problem with her right back leg a couple of years ago but it's been fine up until Jan of this year. I took her out for a walk and she ran and played in the snow, loves the snow, and anyway the next day she was limping. I didn't have the money to take her to see the vet up until 2 week ago, I got her there and she wasn't limping because I guess she was so excited he said. Sent me home with a bottle of glucosamine and that was it. I took her back this week after taking a video of her limping so he could see for himself. This time he gave her Matacam, 14 drops a day with food. It's been 5 days on it and she seems worse than she was before she went on it. It seems she has no strength in her back side, walks a few steps and sits down. I'm wondering if I should give her less a day. Has anyone had this problem?

  • annztoo
    5 years ago
    last modified: 5 years ago


    I suggest you first call the vet and let him know she's worse. If mg/lb dosage is not written on the bottle, ask the vet the actual dosage of 14 drops. In this link you'll see there's usually a starting dose on the first day, then less daily after that. Personally, since she's worse since starting the med, I would stop giving it and let the vet know it's not working.

    Did your vet give a good exam and check her joints & back when he saw her? Did he mention a luxating patella (this usually does not require pain meds)? Were there any X-rays & blood tests? It's possible something else is going on, even neurologically, so if you don't have confidence in your vet, ask for a referral to a specialist.

  • SaltiDawg
    5 years ago
  • Kenny Courville
    5 years ago

    A vet gave my mom Meticam 7.5, 1/2 pill once a day for her 7 year old Chihuahua that was on steroids, within 4 days we rushed the poor boy back to the vet with all the bad side effects. The vet kept him & put him on an IV that day. It's so sad. When he was well he always cried & howled when we would leave him to go anywhere & never stayed gone for more than a few hours. Now he gets sick & we had to leave him in another town (about 85 miles away) with a vet in a cage. I wanted so bad to go see him.
    Well I tried to take mom to go see scooter yesterday & my car
    had a blowout in Cash (about 30 miles out) so we came back home. I took off work today cause
    nothing was going to stop me from seeing him today cause I didn't want
    scooter thinking we just abandoned him. He passed away last night. Good
    bye my little Scooby Doo. God I wish I hadn't had that blowout so we could have atleast seen him one last time just to let him know we didn't abandon him. We started the year off with three dogs. Now
    we only have baby. My little boy is feeling lonely. Losing him so fast because of this drug is just killing me.

  • Anneka Perry
    3 years ago

    I know this post is old but I lost my beloved dog Olly on Sunday. He had dental surgery On Thursday and was fine for the rest of the day. I gave him meticam on Friday as told to do by the vet and by early hours Saturday morning he had diarrhoea with quite a bit of blood in it. we took him to the vets and they Said it was nothing to worry about only come back if he started having black type blood come out. He was given an injection and some medication to help ease his symptoms. my partner stayed downstairs with him and he seemed ok He then passed away in the lounge. I honestly think that the meticam poisoned him the vets have basically said it’s not that but reading what someone said here I’m seriously beginning to doubt what they said. I’m devastated I wish I had never given that medication to him. I gave the correct dose I honestly don’t understand how this has happened.

  • eccentric
    3 years ago

    Our dog gets Cartrophen injections for his arthritis. He was on Metacam for only one month before starting the Cartrophen shots - basically it was for testing reasons - started 4 years ago. While he was on Metacam he also first had a vet prescribed dose of Pepsid - just in case he had issues with the Metacam.

    We were told that the Cartrophen shots do not have as many side effects as the Metacam. The bad news of course is that it is by injection.

    I am sorry for everyone who lost their pets due to the Metacam.

  • branny2282775
    3 years ago
    last modified: 3 years ago

    I wish I had read this last week. My Sasha may still have been here. My 14 year old Lab had to be put to sleep on Wednesday and I am now starting to think her reaction to Metacam was the catalyst.

    Two weeks ago on the Saturday evening she was at the front door with my Wife when she spotted next doors cat so she jumped up and over the threshold and two doorsteps and landed heavily hurting her front right paw. She was limping but still able to put pressure on. On the Sunday we tried to get her to our vet but they wouldn't see her due to the nature of the injury and the fact that she was still walking so we took her to an emergency vet. She gave Sasha a thorough examination. Her foot wasn't broken but she feared that she had aggrevated her arthritis so she gave her a morphine shot, three days worth of tramadol and a weeks dosage of metacam. On the Monday morning she was up and about and walking quite well but I decided to cut her usual 20 walk until her foot was better.

    On the Wednesday she had improved further so we took her for a 10 minute walk so as not to overdo it. No adverse reaction so on the Thursday we went a bit further but she started to pant heavily so we turned back. I decided to let her rest on the Friday and gave her last dose of Metacam with her food on the Saturday morning. As the day went on she was finding it harder to get her back end up off the floor. I started having to lift her.

    Unfortunately, I had to work on the Monday and as my Wife had recently had surgery she was unable to bend to lift Sasha. The longer she stayed down, the more unstable she became when she stood. On the Tuesday she managed to stand by herself but fell again. When I came home from work I noted her front right leg had swollen again and she was unable to stand. Wife said she was still eating but only her wet food. I soon noticed that this was down to several ulcers that had appeared on her tongue. She was drinking excessively but we put that down to the warm weather and she was sleeping during the day but restless at night. Her usual happy Labrador personality had gone. Her tail was normally like a metronome but by this point, she only slightly wagged it when our 11 yo daughter was around. She just looked so sad.

    On the Wednesday I left work at 11am so that we could get her back to the emergency vet. We had arranged an appointment with our vet but couldn't get her in until the Thursday. She had to be carried to the car and stretchered in. The Nurse asked the history of what had happened. The vet called us in after examining her. He never got past her front leg injury. He said she probably had micro fractures which had no guarantee of mending. Her age and weight were against her (45kg) for surviving surgery and that if he did a full scan the chances are he would find more problems so we made the heartbreaking decision to let her go.

    Something I read on another forum about a drug causing a death triggered my curiosity and I did some research. Casanova's situation struck a chord because it sounded very similar. I then started reading up about Metacam. The vet that administered it only mentioned to stop if there was any diarrhoea or vomiting. The paperwork that came with the drug didn't mention any side effects relating to muscles. I found a comprehensive list of side effects on Honest paws, including muscle weakness, exhaustion, lack of co-ordination. The vet said that Sasha had lost muscle mass at the back end due to her arthritis so it clearly looks like she wasn't aware of these other side effects. If I had read this last week there is no way I would have given her the Metacam because I think the tramadol would have been sufficient and she may have still been here.

  • Ninapearl
    3 years ago

    i will never use metacam again. my heart dog, a 9 year old great dane was in very good health except for some arthritis in her hips. my vet suggested metacam and it did help her with mobility. she developed a UTI and was given an antibiotic. it seemed to clear up but was back about a month later. this time the vet decided to bring out the big guns and get it taken care of once and for all. i don't recall the name of the antibiotic she prescribed but i do know it was some sort of sulpha drug.

    after about 3 or 4 days on this new antibiotic, she began to act ill. she went off her feed (which was highly unusual for her), she became lethargic and only wanted to sleep. took her in for an exam and the vet said it might be a reaction to the antibiotic but that i should try it for another couple of days. two days later, she could barely get up and i noticed some jaundice in her eyes and mucus membranes. this was on a saturday afternoon so i rushed her an hour away to the ER vet. she was put on iv fluids and pain reliever. her blood work showed liver values off the chart. an xray showed her liver being twice the size it should have been. she stayed on the iv fluids saturday night and all day sunday. by monday morning, she was much worse. any place i touched her left a bruise. the ER vet wanted me to take her to my regular vet immediately and try another day of iv fluids. i lost hope that she would recover. when i got to my vet's office monday morning, she took one look at my girl and said (through her tears) that she was just too far gone and it would be a kindness to end her suffering.

    during her stay at the ER, 2 vets did some research and found that metacam will interact with any sulpha drug and cause irreversible liver damage and the combination, given for more than 1 or 2 days, would very likely cause death.

    had i known (and my vet said the same), i never would have given her the supha drug given the fact that it would cause a fatal interaction with the metacam. this was a needless loss for me and i will never forgive myself. swee' pea was so healthy, other than the occasional UTI, she should have lived another few years. to this day, years later, i think about her every single day and miss her so so much.

  • SaltiDawg
    3 years ago
    last modified: 3 years ago


    So sad to hear this story. Why focus on the metacam when it was contraindicated when taken with some particular antibiotics and this info was available to your two ER Vets?

    I'm not arguing a case for metacam - never used it - but it's not clear why the focus on metacam.

    Isn't metacam simply an NSAID?

  • Ninapearl
    3 years ago
    last modified: 3 years ago

    Why focus on the metacam when it was contraindicated when taken with some particular antibiotics and this info was available to your two ER Vets?

    salti, that's just it, the information wasn't available to either my regular vet or the ER vets until they researched the possibility of a drug interaction and by then, it was too late.

    i guess i should say that the information was available, it simply wasn't known by my vet who prescribed that antibiotic.

  • SaltiDawg
    3 years ago
    last modified: 3 years ago

    I do not see a suggestion of such an interaction at the metacam page even now

    Seems quite odd that an NSAID has an interaction with an antibiotic...

    Thanks for the reply. As I said, I've never used the stuff...

  • Ninapearl
    3 years ago

    that's been at least 5 or 6 years ago so maybe formulas have changed or something.

  • Allison Engelland
    2 years ago

    My dog just had RCL surgery on Mar. 26/20. It helps with her going at her dressing/stitches (even w/a cone on!) & seems a lot more agile (with a knee brace)

  • HU-652163501
    last year

    I am deathly allergic to Meloxicam which is Metcam. I almost died form

    it on the second dose after being given it by my surgeon after major knee surgery. It is the strongest anti- inflammatory on the market. I recently started giving it to my 6 yr old Labradoodle on vets advice for pain. She reacts aggressively to Tramadol. this is for blindness and eye swelling. on day two she vomited everywhere. I was told to never give it to her for more than 3 days and always with food. Anytime I have given her a dose ( only have been for 3 months approx 3-4 doses per month needed) she vomits, drinks uncontrollable amounts of water, has loose stool coming out of her bum when she stands up, lies down. I have an excellent vet. I have and horrible ones. I looked up side effects and everything that has been stated in this thread are accurate. I as of tonight will n longer be giving it to her again. You can buy magnetic collars for dogs for arthritis. My parents GSD who had hip surgery as she was born with no ball joint from the worst case of hip dysplasia that the only orthopaedic bet surgeon had seen in England. My dad thought the collar was bogus when the vet suggested it. It worked!!!! From surgery at 6 months of age to age 11 Ziggy did not require any meds for her surgery or pain. She was a new dog. The collars work wonders.

  • HU-377158510
    last year
    last modified: last year

    We almost lost our 15 month old Cockapoo and we fear it was due to this drug 'Metacam'.

    We brought our dog to the vet with a slightly sore paw, nothing we were overly concerned about as he was putting weight on the foot and in good spirits. Reluctantly we agreed to our dog being given an antibiotic and an injection of Metacam (we felt this was a bit unnecessary but we trusted the vets opinion and that we were doing the best for our dog). That same day the dog was groggy and lethargic.

    By that same night our dog was groaning with pain so we gave him half a painkiller prescribed by the vet. The next morning our poor dog couldn't move, he lay unresponsive and couldn't lift his body weight upright. He wasn't eating or drinking a thing! If we touched any part of his body he was in severe pain. Our dog is very energetic with a great appetite and we were very worried!

    We returned to the vet and found our dog was running a very high temperature. The vet was adamant that this was as a result of his sore paw and possible bone infection and was very critical of the dog breed. Our dog was kept in over night and medicated with paracetamol and an IV antibiotic. Within 24hours our dog was returning to normal. The vet insisted we do an x-ray and nothing showed up. Thankfully we were able to discharge our pet after two nights but found the vet very reluctant to talk about what and how much medication he had prescribed our dog.

    We have no way to ever know for sure the reason our dog fell unresponsive within a couple of hours but we can't shake the feeling that it has a strong connection with the Metacam he was administered on first meeting the vet. We have also noticed our dog's weight is not correct on his medication label - it is double his weight! Finally, when leaving the vet practice with the prescribed medications, the vet had to call us back as he has prescribed double painkiller doses. The vet carried out a blood test without our knowledge and still has not disclosed the result of this blood test. When asked to discuss our concerns the vet became extremely defensive and condescending towards us. We would love to put our minds at ease and find out if any other dog owners experienced this reaction to Metacam or if it sounds like a over dosage of Metacam?

  • Rosie Martinez
    last year

    This drug killed my 14 year old yorkie Cody Codt had already been in kidney failure and had bladder cancer. Other pain remedies did not work so well as he had a sensitive stomach. In August 28 he came in from a walk with my husband. He was limping. the bet had given me this drug a week prior for any pain Cody might have but i had nit given it to him. On this night I felt that I

    wanted Cody to have a good rest so I gave him the required dosage. An hour later he was walking into walls. He was restless and extremely confused. Then the massive seizures began. At 3 am we wrapped our Codynin a blanket and drove to the emergency vet. Cody could nit even stand up. The vet denied that it was the medication and though the cancer had traveled to Cody’s brain or he had a stroke. An hour later after calming down somewhat, but drooling and uncontrollable urinating, Cody was euthanized. The vet said he would never be the same had we kept him alive This drug killed my Cody

  • Michael Striff
    7 months ago

    I think we put too much trust in veterinarians and doctors in general. They’re not as knowledgeable as we’d like to think. My boxer was prescribed Meloxicam for arthritis on Feb 15th. On Feb 22nd she had full blown acute pancreatitis. There are numerous studies linking the use of Meloxicam (and other Cox 2 inhibitors) to the onset of acute pancreatitis in humans. The symptoms for Meloxicam toxicity and acute pancreatitis are identical. For the sake of my dog’s safety I have no problem making the leap. My vet says it’s diet related. Do your own research. You know your animal. Ask questions. Lots of them. Don’t be afraid to challenge your doctor. If they’re offended see someone else.

  • Stax
    7 months ago
    last modified: 7 months ago

    Interestingly I have found it very difficult to find any pet medicine site that lists pancreatitis or pancreatic cancer as a side effect of Meloxicam.

    I did find this on a (human) medicine site.

    "There are 525 drugs that have been identified by the World Health Organization (WHO) as having the potential to cause pancreatitis. The most well-known drugs include mesalamine, azathioprine, and simvastatin, all of which have been well described in the literature."

    I certainly am not suggesting that your dog was not harmed by the drug, it just seems this is not as common as you seem to suggest, and not sure that it follows that the Vet was not knowledgeable about something of which he/she should have been aware.

    I'm terribly sorry about the tragic loss of your dog!

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