Ponazuril for Dogs and Cats
General drug information and indications.
Ponazuril is a drug which is used to treat protozoal and coccidial infections in dogs and cats. Coccidia infections are relatively common in puppies and kittens and affected pets usually present with diarrhea. Toxoplasma infections are considered particularly serious because of the potential for transmission from the pet to humans. Toxoplasma infections are more common in cats than in dogs.
Clindamycin is the drug that is most commonly used to treat Toxoplasma infections, but there are occasions when your veterinarian may choose to use ponazuril. In both veterinary and human medicine, there are instances where the infectious agent (in this case the protozoa or coccidia) have developed resistance to the first line drug.
There are also instances where an animal will tolerate one drug better than another. Like many other drugs in veterinary medicine, ponazuril is not FDA approved for use in dogs and cats and is not available from a veterinary pharmaceutical manufacturer. Instead, it is compounded by a specialty pharmacy (What is compounding?)
How to Give this Medication
Give this medication to your pet exactly as your veterinarian prescribes. If you miss giving your pet a dose of ponazuril, give the next dose as soon as you remember or, if it is close to the next scheduled dose, return to the regular schedule. Do not double dose to catch up.
Wash your hands after giving your pet this medication.
Be sure to discuss any side effects with your veterinarian immediately.
The most common side effects in dogs and cats are gastrointestinal upset, including vomiting and diarrhea.
Keep this and all drugs out of reach of children. This drug should only be given to the animal for which it was prescribed. Do not give this medication to a person. Federal law restricts this drug to use by or on the order of a licensed veterinarian.
Be sure to review with your veterinarian any medications or supplements your pet may be receiving.
If you suspect your pet or another animal was accidentally overdosed or has eaten this medication inadvertently, contact your veterinarian or the A.S.P.C.A.’s Animal Poison Control Center
at 888.426.4435. Always bring the prescription container with you when you take your pet for treatment.
If you or someone else has accidentally ingested this medication call the National Capital Poison Center
Different strengths or dosage forms of ponazuril may have different storage requirements. Read the labeling or ask your pharmacist for the storage requirements of the prescription you receive.
About the Author
Dr. Barbara Forney is a veterinary practitioner in Chester County, Pennsylvania. She has a master's degree in animal science from the University of Delaware and graduated from the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine in 1982.
She began to develop her interest in client education and medical writing in 1997. Recent publications include portions of The Pill Book Guide to Medication for Your Dog and Cat, and most recently Understanding Equine Medications published by the Bloodhorse.
Dr. Forney is an FEI veterinarian and an active member of the AAEP, AVMA, and AMWA.
You can purchase books by Dr. Forney at www.exclusivelyequine.com
Wedgewood Pharmacy's compounded veterinary preparations are not intended for use in food and food-producing animals.