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Second Life: Five Great Alternative Uses for Common Pet Drugs and Products

Posted Oct 06 2010 5:55pm
Within the annals of Madison Avenue’s market research, there are plenty of products whose second lives are credited with giving them the lift they needed to survive in the cluttered world of modern marketing. (Think, Vaseline, Tums, aspirin and Vick’s Vapo-Rub, with their myriad indications.) Veterinary products are no different.
 

Yes, even veterinary products can enjoy second lives, thereby ensuring survival within a seriously competitive marketplace of pet-specific drugs and products. Which makes me very happy. After all, I love the efficiency afforded by products that do double (or triple) duty.

Which is why I’ve drafted this brief list for you. It contains five drugs/products offering dual (or triple) indications for what could be ailing your pets. If you can think of any more examples like these, I strongly urge you to include them below in the comments section.

1. Comfortis … for fleas and ticks
Yes, Comfortis. My number one product for canine flea allergies, and/or when fleas absolutely have to "get gone," reportedly kills ticks, too. It is not yet approved for this indication in dogs (or in cats at all), but I’ve been polling all of my Comfortis users since I caught wind of this possibility and it seems to hold water. Dogs being treated with Comfortis, in addition to losing the fleas, have not suffered ticks, either. Stay tuned for more on this.

2. Revolution … for treating fleas, ticks, mange, ear mites, and intestinal parasites in cats and kittens
It’s long been held that selamectin is good for more than what it’s approved for. Trying to kill ear mites, mange, and worms in teensy little kittens for whom stronger products might prove more toxic? Try Revolution's milder approach. Though no one claims it’s 100 percent safe or effective (including me), I have been known to use this product off-label (repeatedly, even).

3. Prostora probiotics … for diarrhea and tear stains
These vanilla-flavored chews are easily tolerated by dogs. I use Iams’ Prostora to keep diarrhea episodes to a minimum of days, but did you know they also help with reducing tear stains in dogs? Please don’t use those antibiotic-based Angel Eyes! If you must use something to reduce the [purely cosmetic] tear stains, use this!

4. Adequan and glucosamine ... for swelling of the joints, bladders and corneas
I use Adequan a whole lot. It’s a mild injectable drug approved for the treatment of joint pain in dogs and horses. It may be expensive, but it does seem to work well for more than 50 percent of the cases in which I apply the stuff. And it’s not just joints — or just dogs — that it's good for. I use it for dogs and cats that are suffering from joint pain, bladder swelling (think idiopathic cystitis), and as an adjunct to cases in which corneal swelling is a factor (corneas — yes, as in eyes). And yes, glucosamine, which can be found in those oral nutraceuticals you should almost certainly be offering to your arthritis-prone pets.

5. Fatty acids … for aging brains, joints, and all things dermatological
These supplements have been shown to have some efficacy (if limited) against neural-, joint-, and skin-related inflammatory processes. It’s an "above-all-do-no-harm" approach I unreservedly subscribe to.

***

Have any more for me? I’m all ears.
 
 

 
Dr. Patty Khuly
 
 
Pic of the day: "Five uses for fat cats" by Me (via CatPaint)
 
 
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