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Desmopressin For Dogs

desmopressin for dogs


Desmopressin is a synthetic vasopressin drug prescribed by veterinarians for the treatment of central diabetes insipidus in cats and dogs. It is also included in therapy techniques used to treat Von Willebrand's Disease in dogs.

Desmopressin for dogs, also known by the brand names DDAVP and Stimate, is a drug primarily used to treat central diabetes insipidus. It is a synthetic replacement for vasopressin, also known as antidiuretic hormone or ADH, which is a hormone produced by a dog’s pituitary gland that helps regulate urine production by the kidneys, as well as the amount of water that the body retains. Desmopressin is one of the most common drugs prescribed to treat diabetes insipidus. Though it is not approved by the FDA for veterinary use, it can be safely and legally prescribed by veterinarians, and it is only available through a prescription. If your veterinarian prescribes desmopressin for your dog, follow their instructions for administering the drug closely. Here is what you should know about the uses, dosage, and side effects of desmopressin for dogs.

Dosage Of Desmopressin For Dogs

The usual dosage of desmopressin for dogs with central diabetes insipidus is 1 to 2 drops administered to the eyes or nostrils twice a day. The drug is available in tablet form, though it is less common for desmopressin to be given to dogs orally, so it is most often prescribed in the form of a 10 microgram solution that can be administered nasally or through the eyes.

Desmopressin is also available in an injectable form, which is given at doses of 1 to 2 micrograms per dog for central diabetes insipidus or 0.5 micrograms per pound of body weight for dogs with von Willebrand’s disease. The treatment for von Willebrand’s disease lasts for about 4 hours.

Side effects

Side effects of desmopressin for dogs are uncommon, and the drug is usually safe and effective when prescribed by a veterinarian. There are, however, some uncommon side effects that may appear. If these side effects become concerning, you should consult your veterinarian, as they may wish to alter the dosage or seek an alternative form of treatment. Here are some of the side effects that may be experienced by dogs that take desmopressin.

  • Eye irritation
  • Fluid retention

Make sure your veterinarian is aware of any other medical conditions your dog has, as well as any medication they may be taking, especially epinephrine, heparin, and fludtrocortisone, as these may interact poorly with desmopressin. As with almost all medications, there is a risk of allergic reaction that can lead to anaphylaxis, a potentially life-threatening condition. If you see the signs of an allergic


Keep this and all drugs out of reach of children. Desmopressin acetate is a prescription drug and should be used according to your veterinarian’s directions. It should only be given to the animal for which it was prescribed. Do not give this medication to a person.

Desmopressin acetate should not be used in animals that are prone to forming blood clots. This includes most animals with underlying heart disease.

Desmopressin acetate has not been studied in pregnant dogs or cats. Large doses have been given to pregnant laboratory animals without apparent harm to the fetus. It should only be used if the benefits outweigh the potential risk. 

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