A black and white dog eating a pill.

Carprofen is a pain reliever often prescribed for dogs who just got out of surgery or who experience moderate to severe pain due to old joints or even inflammation. If you suspect your dog is in pain, call their veterinarian for a treatment consultation, as some pain relievers may not be safe to administer to your dog based on their individual health needs.

What is carprofen?

Carprofen is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) used to treat the following in dogs:

  • Pain
  • Joint issues and pain
  • Inflammation

In some cases, veterinarians may prescribe carprofen after a surgery to reduce pain.

Is carprofen safe for dogs?

Various brands of carprofen are FDA-approved for veterinary use. You should still talk to your pet’s veterinarian before they start treatment with this drug and alert them to any present medical conditions your pet has, as well as any medication(s) they take.


For specific dosing instructions for your dog, talk to their veterinarian.

Side Effects

According to Chewy, your dog may experience side effects during treatment with this pain reliever, including but not limited to:

  • Appetite changes
  • Behavior changes
  • Seizures
  • Yellowing of gums, skin and/or eyes
  • Skin breakouts
  • Aggression
  • Digestive problems, including vomiting, diarrhea and/or bloody stool

Please note this list is not exhaustive, and you should always call your pet’s veterinarian immediately if they experience any side effects during treatment with any medication, including carprofen.

Final Thoughts

Remember to communicate openly with your veterinarian about potential risks of administering carprofen to your pet. You want your pet’s pain symptoms to go away, but you also do not want them to experience serious side effects. Always prioritize your pet’s safety and health, especially during treatment with prescription medication.

Disclaimer: This article does not constitute professional medical advice, nor can it replace the advice of a licensed professional.

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