Melatonin Dosage For Dogs Chart
Natural supplements are taking the world by storm. With so many people turning to melatonin for their sleep struggles, it makes sense that it is being explored for use in dogs. So what is melatonin, and how can it be used in our beloved companions?
In this article we will discuss everything you need to know about melatonin for dogs, and introduce you to our melatonin dosage calculator and chart. You can find both the melatonin dosage chart and calculator towards the bottom of this article.
Before getting started, it is important to remember that melatonin is not approved by the FDA for use in dogs, and should always be approved by your veterinarian before use. Melatonin may not help every dog, and can interfere with some prescription medications. This makes it even more important to seek your veterinarian’s advice before offering this supplement to your dog.
What Is Melatonin?
Melatonin is a naturally occurring hormone that is created in the pineal gland in both humans and dogs. This hormone is produced in effort to regulate the body’s circadian rhythm, and transition easier into a sleep state. In a regulated human or dog, the pineal gland is stimulated by darkness to produce this hormone, while light causes the production to stop. This results in a restful night of sleep, and helps to synchronize their sleep schedule as a whole.
Why Would You Give Melatonin To A Dog?
Since melatonin is responsible for the same functions in our furry friends, it can be used as a supplement for similar purposes as well. Melatonin in dogs can act as an additional supplementation to the naturally occurring melatonin in the body, and offer extra sedation and relaxation.
Some dogs are offered melatonin to help bring relief to behavioral disorders and anxiety. Many pet owners state that melatonin relieves the symptoms of certain phobias, and promotes relaxation during stressful periods. This can include noise anxieties, stress of being in new situations, as well as separation anxiety.
Another popular use of melatonin is for dogs that struggle with restlessness at night or falling asleep. This is extremely common in senior dogs, as they can suffer from a condition known as cognitive dysfunction disorder. Since this issue can make it challenging for a dog to sleep at night, some experts believe that melatonin can offer the extra sedation they require.
The last condition that melatonin has been used to combat is alopecia in dogs that is not a result of allergies. While the details of this are not fully understood, some dermatologists are beginning to rely on this method.
Is Melatonin Safe For Dogs?
Generally speaking, melatonin is a safe for use in dogs. In being a naturally occurring hormone in our furry friends, melatonin is a natural way to combat many sleep and behavioral disorders. While melatonin is safe for dogs, there are some potential safety hazards to be aware of.
Because melatonin is not yet FDA approved for use in dogs, there are not any regulations that must be followed when creating these products. This means that there is no one testing the efficiency of these products, as well as their overall safety. This is why it is so important to have products approved by your veterinarian before offering them to your pup.
You should also ensure that your melatonin product of choice is made specifically for dogs. So many people struggle with sleep disorders and restlessness, meaning there are hundreds of products on the market. Melatonin for humans may include herbs that can be toxic to dogs, as well as artificial sweeteners like xylitol. Giving these supplements can be extremely dangerous to our canine companions if they contain any of these ingredients.
To ensure your dog’s safety and make sure they have the maximum benefit from the use of melatonin, you must approve all products with your veterinarian.
How Much Melatonin Can You Give A Dog?
Melatonin can be used to relieve many issues in our pets, meaning each dog may require a different dose for maximum benefit. Because of this, we suggest running any doses by your veterinarian before offering melatonin to your dog. While you should always get any medication doses from your veterinarian, we will still discuss the standard dosing rates of melatonin for use in our canine companions.
The standard dosing rate for melatonin in dogs includes:
- Dogs under 10 pounds: 1 mg
- Dogs 10 to 25 pounds: 1.5 mg
- Dogs 26 to 100 pounds: 3 mg
- Dogs more than 100 pounds: 3 to 6 mg
The effects of melatonin typically last for about 8 hours, leading most pet parents to give their dog a dose right before bed or before a stressful event. These instructions can of course vary for dogs that suffer from chronic behavioral issues. To better understand your dog’s recommended dose, you can refer to our melatonin dosage calculator for dogs.
Melatonin Dosage Calculator For Dogs
Simply slide the bar to your dogs weight. The amount of melatonin you can give your dog will be calculated.
Select Dog's Weight
Recommended DosageBased on the weight of your dog, they can take 1.5 mg
How Is Melatonin Given In Dogs?
Melatonin for dogs can come in a few different forms. Most pet owners choose to stick with pill or capsule form, as it is easiest to give to their furry friends and keep track of the exact dose they are receiving each day. You can easily slip these pills into your dog’s favorite treat, and offer extra relaxation for hours to come.
Melatonin for dogs may also come in the form of treat chews. These chews may just contain melatonin, or even other ingredients that are known to promote relaxation in our furry friends. You can also find melatonin in the form of liquid, often coming in a small vial with an eye dropper for administration. You can offer these treats or liquids on their own, or on top of their normal diet.
If your veterinarian is suggesting melatonin for alopecia or other medical conditions not related to behavioral disorders, they may turn to injection or prescription forms of melatonin. These will of course be regulated by your veterinarian, and often administered in a vet’s office.
Are There Any Side Effects Of Melatonin With Dogs?
Melatonin is a generally safe medication, but it still comes with a list of potential side effects. The chance of these symptoms increase with larger doses, but should always be on your mind when offering this supplement to your beloved pup.
Side effects of melatonin in dogs include:
- Gastrointestinal upset such as diarrhea and vomiting
- Itchiness or skin irritation
- Increased heart rate
It is especially important to speak with your vet about using melatonin if your dog is already taking other medications. Melatonin can interfere with other prescription meds, and result in serious complications in some cases.
Melatonin can be a wonderful addition to your pet’s routine if they struggle with chronic sleep disruptions or behavioral struggles. Be sure to review the information we discussed above, and always discuss the use of melatonin with your veterinarian.
My name is Amber. I am a dedicated animal lover that turned my passion into my career. I am a Licensed Vet Tech with 10 years of experience in veterinary medicine, but I recently took my career online to help spread accurate information on animal care. With how vast the online world is, I have a strong desire to ensure that the reader always walks away with helpful pet advice. With the experience I’ve gained from my time in this field, I have been able to travel the world, offering my services to as many animal rescues as I can find. If I am not at my laptop, or back home visiting family, you can find me somewhere in the world, cuddling every furry friend that I can find! Read more about us here.