Can Pet Supplements Interfere with Medication?

Can Pet Supplements Interfere with Medication?

If your pet currently takes regular medications for their health, you will want to speak with your veterinarian before providing them with additional vitamins or supplements. 

Several supplements can interact with the way that the medication metabolizes within your past body. Some drugs inhibit the ability to breakdown the different enzymes and nutrients provided, creating the potential for toxic conditions. 

When toxicity problems don’t get treated immediately, life-threatening issues can result. 

Some Supplements Are Beneficial with Medication

Echinacea is growing in popularity with pet parents because of its positive outcomes on respiratory disease issues. When taken regularly, it can increase immune system cellular activity while increasing the number of individual cells.

This effect impacts how some chemotherapy drugs work, offering higher bioavailability levels that reduce the medication requirements. It can produce substantial savings without decreasing the effectiveness of the treatment plan.

The opposite outcome is also possible. When you increase the bioavailability of painkillers or fat-soluble vitamins, it doesn’t take long for toxic levels to occur. If that result is left untreated, your pet could experience an overdose.

Prescription medications also interfere with each other. That’s why the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the United States requires complete disclosure of potential interactions.


The 2019 report with this information documents 650 pages of critical information. Despite this work, over two million adverse reactions occur annually. 

How to Spot an Adverse Reaction in Pets

Your veterinarian develops a treatment plan to encourage positive health outcomes while reducing the risk of an adverse reaction. Although this goal is often met, there can be unexpected interactions or medications that interfere with each other or supplements.

Medical science is often inexact, even though we use medications based on stringent safety and testing protocols. Any animal can develop an allergy to supplements or drugs at any time, which is why it is up to you to watch for potential side effects. 

  • Stomach Problems. Your pet might take NSAID pain relievers to reduce discomfort from several conditions. This medication provides an anti-inflammatory effect initially, but it can lead to stomach problems in the future because it reduces Prostaglandin E levels.
  • Allergies. If your pet develops itching, unusual swelling, or seems to struggle with breathing, speak with your vet right away for a treatment option. Many dogs like to roll on their back to resolve itches, which can tell you if there’s something wrong.
  • Lethargy. If your active pet is suddenly always tired, it could be due to their medication.
  • Appetite Changes. Some medications and supplements change a pet’s eating habits. If your pet goes more than a couple of days without touching their food or water dish, your vet needs to get contacted immediately.

Although long-term medications can provide some unwanted side effects, the therapeutic benefits are sometimes better than the minor discomfort that periodically occurs. Your veterinarian may want to conduct blood or urine tests (and others) to know if a prescription should be continued. 

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