Melatonin for Dogs
Previous research indicates melatonin is effectively used by veterinarians to help pets that are fearful, or exhibit signs of anxious behavior during a time of stress.
Articles written in the Journal of American Veterinary Medical Association JAVMA dating back to 1999 in July illustrate that melatonin can be used for example with dogs that fear the noise from fireworks or thunderstorms.
Some easily scared dogs go through debilitating reactions to lightening and loud thunderstorms where they will shake, or cower under a bed or closet.
The normal melatonin tablet is used and works best and not the sublingual form of melatonin. With humans melatonin aids in sleep but this effect is not experienced by dogs so they will not fall asleep, it acts most like a sedative to reduce fear, anxiety and calms them down.
Dr. Linda Aronson DVM has used melatonin with over 1,000 dogs with good results for months or years without side effects. One owner reported the her aggressive dog became less reactive during obedience training classes.
Also reported is the fact that melatonin was given at nighttime to epileptic dogs and it was effective in reducing pet seizures during the night.
The melatonin dosage was as follows:
1.5 milligrams for dogs 10 to 25 pounds
3 milligrams for dogs 25-100 pounds.
For dogs under 10 pounds the 1.5 milligram tablet portion would be cut in half.
How Long does Melatonin take to work?
Melatonin will take effect in your pet in 10 to 15 minutes and is safe to use as long as necessary.
If you have an anxious dog you can ask your veterinarian for a prescription for your pet and discuss how melatonin can help your dog naturally.
The melatonin is given before the expectation of your dog becoming fearful so that it may have a chance to get into its system to work properly. Usually 30 minutes before the anxiety becomes evident is a good timeframe to use for a dose.