Educational Articles

Small Mammals + Medications

  • 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.

  • Buprenorphine is used on and off label and is given by mouth into the cheek or injection to treat pain or as a preanesthetic. The most common side effect is sleepiness. Do not use in pets that are allergic to it or other opioids, or in pets being treated with amitraz. If a negative reaction occurs, please call your veterinary office.

  • Carprofen is used on and off label and is given by mouth in the form of a tablet to treat pain and inflammation. The most common side effects include vomiting, diarrhea, and decreased appetite. Do not use this medication in pets with bleeding disorders, in pets that are allergic to it or other NSAIDs in the same class, or in pets concurrently using corticosteroids or other NSAIDs. If a negative reaction occurs, please call your veterinary office.

  • Chloramphenicol is given by mouth or injection and is used on and off-label to treat bacterial infections. Give as directed. Common side effects include vomiting, diarrhea, and decreased appetite. Do not use in pets with blood disorders, in pediatric or geriatric animals, or in pregnant or nursing females. If a negative reaction occurs, please call your veterinarian.

  • Chlorpheniramine maleate is given by mouth and is used off label to treat allergic conditions or as a mild sedative. Common side effects include sleepiness, although other side effects are possible. Do not use in pets that are allergic to it or other similar antihistamines, or pets that are undergoing allergy testing within 2 weeks. If a negative reaction occurs, please call your veterinary office.

  • Cisapride is used off label and is given by mouth to treat gastrointestinal motility disorders in cats, dogs, and small mammals. Common side effects include vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal discomfort. Do not use in pets that are allergic to it or in pets with conditions that would be made worse by increased intestinal movement. If a negative reaction occurs, please call your veterinary office.

  • Clarithromycin is given by mouth and is used off label to treat certain bacterial infections in several animal species. Side effects include diarrhea, vomiting, appetite changes, stomach pain/cramps, or skin redness in cats. Do not use in pets that are allergic to it or other macrolide antibiotics, in rabbits, gerbils, guinea pigs, hamsters, or horses greater than 4 months old. If a negative reaction occurs, please call your veterinary office.

  • Cyclophosphamide is given by mouth or injection and is used off label to treat various cancers such as lymphoma, leukemia, carcinoma, and sarcoma. Common side effects include hair loss and hair coat changes. Do not use in pets that are allergic to it or that cannot be sufficiently monitored during treatment, are pregnant or lactating, have urinary obstruction, infection, bone marrow dysfunction, or have had an episode of blood in the urine that is not associated with a bladder infection. If a negative reaction occurs, please call your veterinary office.

  • Deslorelin is injected under the skin or into the muscle and is used on and off-label in horses, ferrets, and dogs to treat reproductive and adrenal conditions (off-label use in the U.S. is prohibited). Give as directed. Common side effects include swelling, sensitivity, redness, and warmth at the injection site. Do not use in pets that are allergic to it. If a negative reaction occurs, please call the veterinary office.  

  • Dexamethasone is given on and off label, by mouth or injection, to treat various inflammatory, autoimmune, and adrenal gland conditions. It can also be used off label as a diagnostic test. Common side effects include increased drinking, urination and/or appetite, dull/dry haircoat, weight gain, pot-bellied appearance, muscle weakness, panting, vomiting, or diarrhea. Do not use in pets that are allergic to it, have systemic fungal infections, diabetes, or stomach or intestinal ulcers, or are taking NSAIDs. It should not be used in rabbits or in surgical pets. If a negative reaction occurs, please call your veterinary office.