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21 Things To Give Your Dog For Pain After Shots (2023)

What Can I Give My Dog For Pain After Shots

Your pooch hurting after vaccines can be alarming…

And it’s hard to watch your dog be in pain. 

Naturally, you’d want to do something to ease them. 

So what can you give them after shots? 

Let me tell you everything you need for your pooch. 


Continue reading to find out:

  • 21 things to give Fido for pain after shots.
  • Dangerous side effects of some dog medications.
  • The difference between NSAIDs and natural remedies.
  • And so much more…

What can I give my dog for pain after shots?

You can give NSAIDs or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs to your dogs after shots. These are drugs used for pain relief. Examples are aspirin, carprofen, meloxicam, and such. But, not all NSAIDs are safe for your pooch, so only stick to the vet recommended ones.

21 things to give your dog for pain after shots

#1: A massage

It may be surprising to know this… 

But your dog can enjoy a little bit of a massage too. 

Now, you might be thinking: 

“What does a massage have to do with pain after vaccines?”

As stated by vets, it’s common for your furry friends to feel sore after shots. 

And this also explains why some dogs start limping after vaccination.

So in that case, a little massage can relieve their pain. 

But of course, it can be tricky if you’ve never tried this method before. 

And many fur parents can feel nervous about hurting Fido by accident. 

So as a solution, you can try hiring a dog therapist. Or you can also inquire if your local vet knows how to. 

If none of these are available, you can always try to learn this on your own. 

For starters, here’s an idea of what to do:

  • Gently rub the sore areas of your pooch. 
  • Make sure not to press too hard to keep them relaxed. 
  • Apply enough pressure on areas like their legs and their back. 

Addressing the last on the list…

To know how hard you should press, pay attention to Fido’s reaction. 

If they’re trying to move away, that tells you that they’re hurting. With that, your pooch’s massage needs to be lighter.

These two spots are where they commonly feel sore after shots. 

Moreover, you can do this for at least 3 to 5 minutes. 

But in case your dog is refusing a massage, then just move to the following options.

Note: Never force your dog to cooperate with this. They’ll only end up stressed if you do. 

Suggested read: 7 Surprising Reasons Why Dogs Like Massages

#2: Benadryl

Some vets will recommend antihistamines for dogs after shots.

They’re medicine used for treating allergies.

A good example of this would be Benadryl, a.k.a diphenhydramine.

The AKC states that it’s a helpful drug against inflammation in dogs.

So if your furry friend is showing signs of itchiness

Then using Benadryl can be a good remedy.

With that said, it does have a minor side effect: drowsiness.

So, always ask your vet how much dosage is safe for your pooch.

After all, the amount can be different depending on every dog.

Check out: Help, My Dog Is Constantly Scratching And Biting Himself!

#3: Zyrtec

Also known as “cetirizine,” this brand is another antihistamine.

You can use Zyrtec the same way as Benadryl.

With this, you’ll have another option for your pooch. 

So, let’s say they’re scratching a lot after vaccines. This will lead to aching and injuries. 

With that, don’t underestimate skin allergies. 

And that’s because in severe cases, some dogs can scratch to the point of bleeding. 

So, to prevent this, consult the vet about using Zyrtec.

#4: Aspirin 

Give Your Dog Aspirin For Pain After Shots

You’ve probably used aspirin to relieve your pain before. 

But, can you use the same thing for your dogs? 

Yes and no. Confusing? I know, so let me explain. 

Fido can use aspirin, but not the same one made for humans. 

You see, there are dog aspirins that vets can prescribe. 

And these products are much safer for your furry friends.

Plus, you can also try to buy them something over-the-counter. But, most clinics won’t provide them unless it’s approved by a vet.

And there’s a good reason for that. 

No matter how effective aspirin can be, it still has its risky side effects. 

For one, it can slow down recovery for your dog. It’ll only relieve the pain for a while. 

Vets also state that an incorrect dosage of aspirin can lead to many risks, such as:

  • Fever.
  • Cancer.
  • Diarrhea.
  • Lethargy.
  • Vomiting.
  • Appetite loss.
  • Liver damage.
  • Bleeding issues.
  • Kidney problems.
  • Aspirin poisoning.
  • Walking difficulties.

Warning: If you notice any of these threats, take your dog to the clinic immediately.

#5: Claritin

Now, here’s another antihistamine for irritated skin after shots.

And that’s Claritin or loratadine.

It’s among the few drugs that can be safe for your furry friends. 

Plus, Claritin can help with alopecia caused by vaccines. It’s a condition that causes hair to fall out. 

According to vets, this disease can be painful and irritating for your furry friend.

So, in case your pooch has alopecia, then experts will prescribe Claritin.

#6: Meloxicam

An NSAID you can use for pain in dogs is meloxicam

It’s also known as Metacam, Loxicom, oroCAM, and Rheumocam.

According to VCA, it can be used for other issues such as:

  • Fever.
  • Inflammations.

If your pooch has gone through a surgery, this can also help with the pain.

Moreover, you can give meloxicam to Fido in different ways. 

And that’s because it’s available in various forms such as:

  • Pills.
  • Injectable.
  • Oral liquid.
  • Mouth sprays.
  • Chewable tablets.

In most cases, vets will offer the injectable one. 

And that’s because that method is more efficient. 

Now, you can try finding meloxicam in general stores. But most of them are only available in animal clinics. 

Then again, it’s also not a good idea to buy any kind of medicine without a prescription. 

And that’s because this can possibly harm your furry buddy. 

To show you, here are some side effects of meloxicam in dogs:

Tip: You can give this drug at the same time as feeding your pooch. That’ll help prevent stomach-related side effects.

#7: Carprofen 

Here’s another NSAID used for dogs. 

Carprofen is available under many brand names. 

A few examples would be:

  • Novox.
  • Rimadyl.
  • Vetprofen.
  • Carprodyl.
  • Aventicarp.

And many more. These are only the most popular ones. 

Now, like meloxicam, Claritin, and aspirin… 

This drug can also be hard to find on your own. 

The best way you can get one is by asking the vet.

And if you use this without an expert’s prescription… 

Then you’ll risk facing these 9 side effects:

  • Skin allergies.
  • Behavioral changes.
  • Mental disorientation.
  • Yellow skin and eyes.
  • Diarrhea and vomiting.
  • Seizures and paralysis.
  • Liver and kidney damage.
  • Blood in vomit and stools.
  • Severe changes in their appetite.

So, let’s say you’ve gotten the vet’s approval. 

Then, how do you give this to Fido? There’s only one method. 

And that’s by giving carprofen tablets to your pooch. They can take this whether they’ve already eaten or not.

But to prevent an upset stomach, it’s best given at the same time with food.

Related topic: (11 Vital Tips) Dog Behavior Change After Vaccination

#8: Deracoxib 

Also known as “deramaxx,” this is another NSAID for dogs.

While it’s commonly used after surgeries…

Some vets will also recommend it for any type of pain.

And it’s available as a chewable tablet. Moreover, it’s also best given with food to avoid gut problems. 

Plus, like other NSAIDs, this one also has similar side effects.

But it’s important to know that this drug isn’t safe for all dogs. 

According to the VCA, you should avoid deracoxib if your Fido:

  • Is allergic to NSAID.
  • Has an appetite loss.
  • Is prone to dehydration.
  • Has bloody stools or vomit.
  • Is in heat, pregnant, or nursing.
  • Has a kidney or a liver problem.
  • And sensitive to sulfonamides (an ingredient inside deracoxib).

These 7 conditions make some dogs sensitive to this product.

So before giving this to your pooch, always consult the vet.

#9: Previcox 

Firocoxib is the generic name of this NSAID. 

Like the others on this list, it relieves aching and inflammation for dogs.

Moreover, it’s also effective in treating cancer cells, as stated by vets.

In most cases, it’s given orally to your pooch. And after 1 to 2 hours, it’s expected to take effect and show improvements. 

Furthermore, this drug should also be given with precaution. 

So, don’t let your pooch take it without a vet’s approval. 

#10: Amoxicillin 

Some dogs can have sniffles after shots. 

This is when your pooch has a runny nose, is coughing, and also sneezing. 

As stated by PetMD, it’s a common reaction after intranasal vaccines

And these are shots given to your furry pals to prevent respiratory viruses.

So when your pooch catches sniffles…

Most doctors will recommend antibiotics to fight it off. 

And a common example of that is amoxicillin

But like aspirin, you can’t give this to your dog without a prescription.

All in all, vets do agree that amoxicillin can be safe. But only if it’s used moderately.

#11: Ginger and turmeric

As stated by the VCA, ginger is helpful for treating inflammation. 

And the same thing applies to turmeric.

So if your pooch has been vomiting, these two items can help.

As herbal medicines, they’re believed to be much safer for dogs.

Now, you can give ginger to Fido as a fresh root. But it’s also available as:

  • Tablets.
  • Capsules.
  • Powdered food.
  • Liquid concentrations.

Turmerics are given the same way.

And despite the effectiveness…

There are still instances of when you should avoid these.

So, here are some examples of dogs that can’t use them:

  • Has a bleeding problem.
  • Pregnant or nursing dogs.
  • Has a gallbladder disease.

So before giving them to your pooch, ask the vet first.

#12: Boswellia

Another natural product you can try for your pooch is Boswellia.

It’s a popular herbal extract for treating joint pain and even asthma.

While it’s more known among homeopaths…

A study supports the claim that it’s effective against inflammation in dogs.

And with this, you can consider trying it to relieve your Fido’s discomfort.

Dogs can take a dose of 0.4 grams (400mg) per 22 pounds (10 kg) of body weight.

But for safety, check first with a professional. Find out whether your dog can take Boswellia, and how much dosage.

Want to know more home remedies for dogs? Check out this helpful video by a vet: 

#13: Fish oil

If you’re looking for something you might already have at home…

Then you can try fish oil

According to PetMD, it’s a supplement that can help with itchiness. 

Now, some skin issues can hurt after shots. 

Thus, the omega-3 content inside fish oil can help reduce that. 

But still, too much is never good. So, always only give a small amount. 

For the best accuracy, just ask your vet over the phone about the dosage.

#14: Capsicum

Another healthy ingredient for your dog is capsicum, a.k.a red peppers.

Experts say that this is great for treating different kinds of pain. And if Fido is swelling after vaccines, this can also help reduce that.

“But are red peppers safe for my dog?” 

Yes, as answered by the AKC, they’re not toxic for your pooch.

In fact, it also offers a lot of health benefits. Thus, you can add it to their regular snacks. 

But of course, the amount should always be balanced. 

So, to introduce this to Fido, do it at a slow pace. 

Give them small, bite-sized amounts first. And then see how they’ll react. 

If your dog likes it, then you can keep it up. But if not, then there’s no need to force them.

Warning: Vets at AKC say that you shouldn’t add any seasoning to the peppers. And never give chili peppers as well. These can badly affect your dog’s digestion.

You’d also want to avoid cayenne peppers. They can irritate Fido’s eyes. 

Moreover, they can cause intoxication if your dog eats them.

#15: Calamine lotion

Calamine Lotion

More itchy skin problems that lead to aching in your pooch? 

Then you can also try calamine lotion.

It’s used as a topical cream to soothe irritations. 

With this, you can apply small amounts to Fido’s affected areas. 

It’ll only take a few minutes before it shows its effects.

“But what if they lick it?” 

Don’t worry. This product is safe even if consumed. 

But, once again, too much can be dangerous. 

So if your pooch is persistent in licking it… 

Then you can consider using a dog cone to prevent their habit.

#16: Quercetin 

Wanna know why some people are switching to natural remedies than NSAIDs? 

That’s because…

Research revealed that quercetin greatly reduced pain and inflammation among dogs.

It showed superior results when compared to meloxicam, an NSAID.

With this, it earned the title “nature’s Benadryl.”

But what exactly is quercetin? 

It’s a pigment found in many kinds of plants and foods. 

And a few good examples of where it comes from are:

  • Seeds.
  • Apples.
  • Grains.
  • Onions.
  • Berries.

Vets that believe in homeopathy will recommend this to you.

But if you’re uncertain of how much to give, you can always ask the experts.

#17: Devil’s claw

Have you ever heard of this plant before? 

Well, don’t let its scary name drive you away. 

Devil’s claw is a plant used for many conditions. 

Based on a study:

This herb is known for its anti-inflammatory properties. With this, it’s great for relieving aches, even in dogs. 

In fact, it can be so effective, that even bigger animals like horses can use it. 

#18: Thuja

Another remedy that you might be familiar with is thuja. 

This product is popular for its medicinal properties. 

And while thuja is more prevalent in homeopaths… 

One research already supports its efficiency.

Moreover, thuja is great for treating skin disorders which can help relieve pain. 

And since it’s common for dogs to get allergies after shots…

Then this can be a great option for Fido.

Suggested read: Does Thuja Work For Dog Warts? Is It Safe For Dogs?

#19: Organic coconut oil

Some people love using coconut oil for many things.

But did you know that you can use it for your pooch too? 

The AKC says that coconut oil can help with inflammation that causes swelling. All in all, it can reduce discomfort in Fido. 

And while it’s more popular for senior dogs with arthritis…

Coconut oil can still be used for general pain-related concerns.

Aside from that, it’s also great for improving your dog’s fur.

Check out: Does Coconut Oil Really Help With Dog Shedding? The Truth

#20: Yucca extract

Another natural product that can relieve pain is yucca extract.

It’s made from a plant that’s used for other medical concerns. 

Moreover, it’s popular for treating arthritis, even in dogs. 

But like the other products here, it’s mostly used for aching caused by skin irritation.

#21: Digestive enzymes 

Diarrhea is one of the common side effects of vaccines in dogs. 

So, to relieve your pooch from suffering…

Then you can try using digestive enzymes

These can help relieve gut-related concerns. And this is available in many types. 

They’re namely: protease, lipase, and amylase.

These products can be helpful for Fido’s diarrhea.

And remember, when you’re in doubt, always ask the vet.