What Are the Uses of Methocarbamol for Dogs?

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  • Written By: Drue Tibbits
  • Edited By: PJP Schroeder
  • Last Modified Date: 05 October 2019
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Methocarbamol is a muscle relaxant medication. It relaxes muscles, reduces muscle spasms, and can prevent convulsions. Typically, vets use this medication to treat inflammatory conditions of skeletal muscles, such as strains and sprains. They often prescribe methocarbamol for dogs to treat the extreme muscle spasms caused by various poisons. It can also be effective as as an adjunct treatment in cases of tetanus, a condition that causes severe muscle rigidity.

Strychnine, metaldehyde, and insecticide poisoning can cause painful muscle contractions and spasms. Methocarbamol does not treat the poisoning or provide antidote benefits, but it reduces the effects these poisons have on muscles. One of the most prevalent symptoms of tetanus is an intractability of the jaw muscles, leading to the nickname of lockjaw for this disease. While other medications are needed to treat tetanus, methocarbamol can help relax the jaw muscles and provide some relief.

This medication is available in different forms. Methocarbamol for dogs comes in either pill form or an injectable liquid. The injectable form is fast acting, while the pills can take as long as one hour to take effect. In emergency situations, such as poisoning and trauma, a veterinarian often uses injectable methocarbamol in order to get the medication working as fast as possible. Pet owners can use the pill form at home using instructions provided by the vet to give their dogs the medication several times a day.


The most common side effects of methocarbamol for dogs include sleepiness, stumbling, and drooling. Although some dogs continue to salivate excessively each time they are given the medication, the sleepiness and stumbling should diminish over time. A veterinarian should be notified if the sleepiness and stumbling are severe or if the dog is so listless that it stops eating or functioning normally. Other side effects, such as vomiting or diarrhea, should be discussed with the veterinarian; these side effects may be normal, depending on the dosage of medication given and the condition being treated.

When using methocarbamol for dogs, pet owners should be aware of any signs of allergic reactions. This includes swelling of the face, the appearance of hives, and sudden, intense scratching. Serious allergic reactions include difficulty breathing or seizures. These symptoms constitute a medical emergency, and a veterinarian should be contacted immediately. While methocarbamol is well-tolerated with most other medications, it should not be taken with other muscle relaxants or sedatives unless it is determined that the benefits outweigh the risks.


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Post 5

My dog is diagnosed with a strained tendon and muscle she is a 8.5 year old 90 pound lab. We have been giving her this drug for three days 500mg twice a day. Now she is in absolutely terrible shape. She cannot even stand without her hind legs caving in. Her hind legs were never an issue. She cannot control her bowel movements. I feel this is killing her.

Post 4

My beagle has a spinal injury. This medication along with prednisone and crate rest are his best chances of having some relief. My only problem with this medication specifically is that the tablets, while scored, are still very difficult to divide in half without crushing portions of the tablet. My prayers for other pet parents that their furry friends feel well again soon.

Post 3

Horses are given this drug when they have intervertebral disc syndrome. This happens when spinal discs put too much pressure on the nerves in the spine causing a lot of pain.

I guess dogs would be given this drug too if they have this condition right?

Post 2

@donasmrs-- So the salivation and vomiting was a symptom of poisoning? I think these are also possible side effects of methocarbamol although Cookie (my Beagle) never had them. The one side effect she did have, when she was taking this for her sprained leg, was really dark urine which was kind of weird.

Post 1
My dog was given this medication once because of poisoning. He got poisoned from a flea killing product that I had applied on his skin. I had no idea that it could lead to poisoning. I took him in to the vet because he started to drool profusely and also vomited.

The vet gave him this medication to prevent a seizure and also for muscle stiffness. My dog remained at the vet overnight to make sure he was okay. Thankfully, he pulled through just fine. But I was scared out of my mind, I don't know what I would have done if he had a seizure or something like that.

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