Rimadyl Vs. Tramodol

Rimadyl Classification and Uses

Rimadyl is the brand name for the drug carprofen, which belongs to the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug class. Rimadyl is commonly prescribed by veterinarians for pain relief in their canine patients.

Released to the market in 1997, Rimadyl was the premier veterinary nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug product formulated to block the effects of pain and inflammation that are produced by cyclo-oxygenase 2 enzymes without inhibiting the production of cycle-oxygenase 1 enzymes, which are necessary for the regulation of various bodily functions. Rimadyl is prescribed for short-term and long-term use, and is commonly used in the following situations:

  • Recovery from sprain and strain injuries.
  • Post-operative recovery and healing periods.
  • Relief from chronic pain and inflammation due to canine degenerative joint disease.

Rimadyl is available in oral caplets, chewable tables and injectable form.

Rimadyl Side Effects and Contraindications

Patients who are prescribed Rimadyl for long-term use must undergo periodic blood screenings to monitor liver and kidney function. The onset of kidney or liver disease during long-term use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs is one of the main concerns of such medications. Some potential side effects that have been noted in dogs who are taking Rimadyl include:

  • Decreased appetite.
  • Nausea or vomiting.
  • Diarrhea.
  • Gastrointestinal ulceration.

Rimadyl should not be used in patients who have kidney disease or liver disease. It should not be used in dogs who are pregnant, nursing or dehydrated. If your veterinarian prescribes Rimadyl, be sure to remind him or her if your dog is taking corticosteroid drugs, ACE inhibitor medications or phenobarbital.

Tramadol Classification and Uses

Tramadol is an opioid drug that veterinarians prescribe for pain relief. It works by targeting the pain receptors in the brain. Tramadol is not approved for use in animals by the Food and Drug Administration, but it is legally prescribed by veterinarians as an extra label drug. Tramadol may be used alone or in conjunction with a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug, such as Rimadyl. Tramadol is available only in tablet form. Unlike Rimadyl, it is a safer choice for use in cats than most nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. Tramadol has been prescribed in these situations:

  • Post-operative pain relief during the recovery period after orthopedic surgical procedures.
  • Relief from chronic pain of degenerative joint disease.

Tramadol Side Effects and Contraindications

One of the advantages of Tramadol use is that it poses less frequent potential side effects than most nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. An owner whose dog or cat is taking Tramadol should watch for these rare side effects:

  • Gastrointestinal upset.
  • Excessive panting.
  • Constricted pupils.
  • Decreased heart rate.
  • Lethargy.
  • Seizure activity.

Tramadol should be used with caution in patients who have liver or kidney disease, patients who are taking L-Deprenyl, certain other psychoactive drugs or those who are using flea and tick control products that contain amitraz. Unlike Rimadyl, Tramadol is considered an acceptable analgesic for use in patients who are nursing.

If your veterinarian prescribes Rimadyl or Tramadol for your furry friend, be sure to follow the dosing and administration instructions carefully. Do not change the dose without first consulting with your veterinarian. If you observe any of the side effects, or any other unusual behaviors or symptoms in your pet, report them to your veterinarian at once.