What is Diphenhydramine (Generic Benadryl)?
Diphenhydramine is an antihistamine used to relieve allergy symptoms, insect stings, motion sickness, travel anxiety, and other conditions.
Cats and Dogs
- Effectively relieves allergy symptoms and itching caused by insect bites
- Can be used as a sedative to treat motion sickness or travel anxiety
- Relieves coughing
How does Diphenhydramine (Generic Benadryl) work?
Diphenhydramine comes in 25 mg minitabs or 50 mg capsules, and is a generic version of Benadryl. As an antihistamine, it counteracts the effect of histamine, which causes symptoms like itching and sneezing.
This medication should not be used in pregnant or nursing animals. Do not use the diphenhydramine available in combination with sinus or cold medicines in your pet.
Benadryl (Warner Lambert), Histacalm (Virbac)
What is the most important thing I should know about Diphenhydramine (Generic Benadryl)?
Diphenhydramine is an antihistamine used to relieve allergy symptoms, insect bites or stings and other causes of itching. It is also used for its sedative and antiemetic effects in the treatment of motion sickness and travel anxiety. It is also used for its antitussive effect. Diphenhydramine is a non-prescription (OTC) product available as 25 mg minitabs and 50 mg capsules.
What should I discuss with my veterinarian before giving Diphenhydramine (Generic Benadryl) to my pet?
Tell your veterinarian if your pet is allergic to diphenhydramine or other antihistamines. Also tell your veterinarian if your pet is pregnant or lactating, or has history of glaucoma, prostate disease, urinary obstruction, or high blood pressure. Always tell your veterinarian and pharmacist what other medications your pet is taking.
How should Diphenhydramine (Generic Benadryl) be given?
Oral diphenhydramine is not FDA-approved for use in veterinary medicine; however, it is a commonly accepted practice to use this medication in dogs and cats. The usual dose in dogs and cats is 0.5-2 mg/lb every 8-12 hours. The slow release capsule should not be mixed or dissolved in food.
What are the potential side effects of Diphenhydramine (Generic Benadryl)?
Side effects of diphenhydramine include drowsiness, dry mouth and urinary retention. Rarely, vomiting and diarrhea can occur.
What happens if I miss giving a dose of Diphenhydramine (Generic Benadryl)?
Give the missed dose as soon as possible. If it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose, and continue with the regular schedule. Do not give your pet two doses at once.
What happens if I overdose my pet on Diphenhydramine (Generic Benadryl)?
Contact your veterinarian or veterinary emergency room. Symptoms of overdose can include seizures, extreme drowsiness, coma, respiratory depression, and death.
What should I avoid while giving Diphenhydramine (Generic Benadryl) to my pet?
Do not give other sinus or cold medicines containing diphenhydramine to your pet while giving Diphenhydramine (Generic Benadryl).
What other drugs will affect Diphenhydramine (Generic Benadryl)?
Use with caution when given with other CNS (central nervous system)-depressant drugs such as tranquilizers or barbiturates.
Diphenhydramine (Generic Benadryl) Directions:
- Diphenhydramine is an antihistamine used to relieve allergy symptoms, insect stings, motion sickness, travel anxiety and other conditions.
- It is available over-the-counter (OTC) as 25 mg tablets and 50 mg capsules.
- Diphenhydramine should not be used in dogs or cats that are pregnant or nursing.
The slow release capsule should NOT be mixed or dissolved in food. Do not use sinus or cold medications containing diphenhydramine in your pet.
Give 0.5-2 mg/lb of pet's body weight every 8-12 hours
Store this medication at room temperature, away from excess heat, light and moisture. Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed. Store this medication at room temperature, away from excess heat, light, and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom. Throw away any medication that is outdated or no longer needed. Keep medication away from children and pets.
Diphenhydramine (Generic Benadryl) Ingredients:
Diphenhydramine HCl 25 mg minitabs:
Active Ingredients (per minitab)
Other Ingredients (per capsule): Corn starch, D&C red #27, Dicalcium Phosphate, Magnesium Stearate, Microcrystalline Cellulose, Polyethylene Glycol, Polyvinyl Alcohol, Silicon Dioxide, Stearic Acid, Talc, Titanium Dioxide.
Diphenhydramine HCl 50 mg capsules:
Active Ingredients (per capsule)
Other Ingredients (per capsule): Colloidal Silicon Dioxide, Croscarmellose Sodium, D&C Red #28, FD&C Blue #1, FD&C Red #3, FD&C Red #40, Gelatin, Lactose, Magnesium Stearate. May also contain Polysorbate 80 and iron oxide.
Diphenhydramine (Generic Benadryl) is rated
Rated 1 out of
Not only sneezing, but now drooling!
The product help Annabelle with a seasonal allergy/cold, but getting it down, forget it! Why can these be gel caps that can be syringed and shot in the back of her mouth. Because of her size I can't giver her the entire pill, so has to be crumbled in laxitone which never helps! The taste is apparently so bad she salivates and spits out whats left for 20 minutes!! What a mess and then she won't eat for a day b/c the taste is still in her mouth!
Date published: 2016-08-24
Rated 4 out of
It does the job.
This product does seem to help relieve the allergy problems my dog was having and it does calm him down and makes him a little sleepy. I don't like the capsules though, I have to open them and put the powder in a spoon with a little water to give them to him, he is wise to all the other tricks. All in all, I would purchased this product again.
Date published: 2015-06-10
Rated 3 out of
This medication is not helpful in my dog's itching, so I have found big relief in Piriton and Zyrtec.
Date published: 2015-03-04
Rated 5 out of
For cats, place it far back in throat
Giving Benadryl to my dogs has always been easy---just hide it in a spoon of peanut butter, and it's gone down the hatch, easy peasy. But cats don't believe in gulping down a glob of peanut butter, and Benadryl apparently tastes pretty horrendous to a cat. After some trial and error, I have deduced that it is taste-induced nausea which leads to vomiting (and of course the foaming).
So I experienced the same thing as many of the other cat owners here when giving Benadryl---the result is lots of foaming and vomiting. I switched to Zyrtec, since it doesn't seem to taste as bad to a cat, but after Zyrtec failed to help with her symptoms, and by this time having had lots of practice pilling my cat, I decided to give Benadryl another try.
I have found that I CAN dose my cat with Benadryl without making her sick. The trick is to place the pill far back in the throat. With the cat's head back and the mouth open, drop the pill in---aiming for the back of the throat---while trying to avoid the tongue altogether. If it lands on the tongue (even the back part) rather than in the throat, quickly push the pill back with a finger. Getting it as far back as possible without ever hitting the tongue keeps the cat from being able to eject the pill back up into the mouth, and thus never tastes the pill.
Now that I am preventing her from tasting the Benadryl, there has been no more vomiting, no more foaming, and best of all, no more chewiing off her fur and sneezing fits (at least so far).
Date published: 2015-01-04
Rated 5 out of
Buster takes one 50mg pill before bed. His sleep cycle had been disturbed but he now sleeps his regular hours and is more active when he wakes up. If I notice his breathing during the day indicates some congestion when the wind is blowing dust and pollen around, one pill relieves it within 30 minutes. His vet has examined him and agrees he has occasional allergies and diphenhydramine is the perfect solution.
Date published: 2014-12-23
Rated 3 out of
Not as Effective As I Thought!
When I purchased this product, I was hoping for it to be a little more effective. It really hasn't helped with his constant itching, but it stopped my dog from constantly biting on his paws. It does somewhat have a calming effect on him though, and I find that they help him sleep.
Date published: 2014-11-14
Rated 4 out of
We started to give Lily the pills about two weeks ago and she is much better now. She was constantly sneezing. Now it is only occasionally. Appeared to work. Didn't do anything for her itching and scratching. Will work on that one
Date published: 2014-11-05
Rated 2 out of
Disappointed with effectiveness
My lab mix has terrible skin allergies and her vet suggested giving her generic Benadryl. It worked marginally for awhile and then it eventually didn't seem to help. I was hoping this product was stronger or different from Benadryl, but it is not. It has exactly the same ingredients and dosage as the Benadryl. It was a waste of my money.
Date published: 2014-09-27