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Small Mammals

  • Acetaminophen, also known as paracetamol, is an analgesic (pain reliever) and fever-reducing medication. It is used to treat pain and fever in dogs. It is used “off label” or “extra label” in some avian species, rabbits, miniature pigs, and some rodent species. Acetaminophen comes in capsule, tablet, or liquid suspension form. NEVER USE in cats or ferrets as it is potentially fatal at even miniscule doses.

  • Aluminum hydroxide is commonly used off label to treat high phosphate levels in pets with kidney disease. It is given by mouth, with meals, in the form of a liquid gel, powder, or a compounded capsule. The most common side effect is constipation, and therefore it should be used with caution in pets with a gastrointestinal obstruction or pets prone to constipation. If a negative reaction occurs, please call your veterinary office.

  • Small exotic mammals are well known for hiding symptoms of illness until late in a disease course. Yearly health examinations are essential to uncover health issues before it is too late. Blood tests, radiographs and/or fecal tests may be recommended during an annual exam.

  • Aspirin is given by mouth in the form of a tablet and is primarily used off label as an anti-clotting medication. It also acts as an anti-inflammatory, pain control, and fever-reducing medication. Do not use aspirin in pets that have bleeding ulcers, bleeding disorders, asthma, pregnancy, or kidney failure. Aspirin should be used very cautiously in cats.

  • Atenolol is used off label and given by mouth to treat certain heart conditions in dogs, cats, and ferrets. Common side effects include tiredness and stomach upset. Contraindications include hypersensitivity to beta-blockers, heart failure, heart block, low heart rate, or certain lung disease. If a negative reaction occurs, please call your veterinary office.

  • Atropine ophthalmic (brand name Isopto Atropine) is an eye medication used to dilate (enlarge) the pupil. It is used off label (extra label) only, in all veterinary species of animals. Atropine ophthalmic comes in a 1% drop, solution, or ointment form, which is placed directly into the eye.

  • Azathioprine is an immune suppressing medication given by mouth or as an injection and is mainly used off label to treat immune-mediated diseases in dogs. Common side effects include gastrointestinal upset and bone marrow suppression. This medication should not be used in pets that are allergic to azathioprine or are pregnant. It should be used with caution in pets with liver or kidney disease. If a negative reaction occurs, please call your veterinary office.

  • Azithromycin is given by mouth or injection and is used on and off-label to treat a variety of infections. Give as directed. Common side effects include stomach upset. Do not use in pets that are sensitive to macrolide antibiotics. If a negative reaction occurs, please call your veterinary office.

  • Bismuth compounds are given by mouth and are used on and off label to treat diarrhea and upset stomach. Give as directed by your veterinarian. The most common side effects include discolored stools and constipation. Do not use in pets that are allergic to it or other NSAIDs, or in pets that have a stomach or intestinal ulcer. If a negative reaction occurs, please call your veterinary office.

  • Rabbits and guinea pigs commonly present symptoms related to the urinary system. At home, the owner may notice urine collecting in the hair on the inside of the rear legs, a more pungent smell to the urine, the pet straining to urinate, or hematuria (bloody urine). After a proper physical exam and a thorough palpation of the urinary bladder, the veterinarian may identify bladder stones (a firm, oval hard mass in the bladder) or "bladder sludge" in rabbits (a bladder filled with a grainy, sand-like material). X-rays of the abdomen allow the veterinarian to identify the type of bladder disease and/or the number of stones.