Giving Your Dog or Cat Cortisone (Prednisone/Prednisolone)

One of the most commonly prescribed drugs in veterinary medicine is cortisone in various forms. As a powerful anti-inflammatory, cortisone has many clinical uses from reducing symptoms of skin allergies to alleviating symptoms of digestive tract, urinary, musculoskeletal and central nervous system inflammation.  Cortisone is also used in various autoimmune diseases, as well as a part of managing many cancer cases. And while cortisone is often quite effective in alleviating symptom discomfort, side effects often make cortisone an undesirable choice for long term use in many cases.

Cortisone injections are used for long-term treatment, and cortisone tablets are popular for short-term use

However, if cortisone is judiciously and appropriately used, most pets can indeed be maintained on long-term cortisone with minimal ill side effects in many cases. When managing such cases it is also desirable to check periodic blood work and urine to monitor for side effects of cortisone.  One of the initial most important factors to consider from a safety perspective is the form of cortisone that is used in treating a patient. Long acting injectable formulations such as Depo-Medrol or Vetalog (generic triamcinolone) often have much more powerful negative side effects than short acting oral formulations such as medrol or Prednisone/Prednisolone.

Another benefit of using the oral formulations is that the lowest effective dose can be used in controlling symptoms , tapering doses to as little as every other to every third day dosing.  When used in such a fashion many of the undesirable long-term side effects of cortisone can be minimized, and many chronic conditions can be more safely managed long term.

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  1. How can I order and pay for Depo-Medrol?

  2. Dr. Michael Dym, VMD veterinarianMay 17, 2012 at 1:38 pm

    Check with 1800petmeds pharmacist.

  3. Like the post above, how can I order and pay for Depro-Medrol? My 19 year old cat has been prescribed this RX through my Vet at Animal Kingdom Veterinary Hospital for a number of years. I have moved from the area, my cat is getting old and and would like to have the medication for her without traveling the long distance for a general exam just to provide our cat with the injectables.

  4. Dr. Michael Dym, VMD veterinarianSeptember 12, 2012 at 11:42 am

    Dont know how you can get this injectable medicine without going to vet or at least getting a written script from your vet.

  5. Can I get the injections for my dog of Depro-Medrol
    without a Vet script?
    How do I order ? What’s the cost ?

  6. How do I get the injections of Depro-Medrol for my dog
    without a vet’s script ? And how much does it cost ?

  7. Dr. Michael Dym, VMD veterinarianJuly 13, 2013 at 5:49 am

    Dont think available without script. Check with 1800petmeds pharmacist Eddie

  8. My Gordon Setter can’t stand on his back legs he is
    Suffering now 3 weeks and we have tried everything.
    Nothing has shown on X rays he is loosing weight rapidly
    Please help.

  9. Please Reply

  10. My pug was itching excessively and the Vet put her first on Temaril (which had no effect) and now on Prednisone (reduced to 5 mg every third day) and Hydroxyzine (25 mg twice a day). The latter two have relieved her itching but I am concerned about how long she will have to take these meds. Your thoughts?

  11. Dr. Michael Dym, VMD veterinarianJune 27, 2014 at 4:29 pm

    Some allergic pets only need to be on drugs certain times of year, while others need more long term allergy management. Every case different. I would try and wean her to lowest effective dose that controls her signs, hopefully weaning her off over time, but this should be done under supervision of your vet

  12. My dog was put on vetalog injection for reverse sneezing allergic reactions after the second injection it started lasting less and less Now it only lasts about two weeks before it all starts again she is miserable and sounds very bad how soon can I get her another injection safely?

  13. Check out utube videos on reverse sneezing and other options at home you can do for this. I would not continue to get vetalog injections for this mild condition. Ask your vet about other options such as antihistamines and/or low dose temaril p. Also consider holistic options for this condition, which is often a consequence of chronic reactions to rabies vaccinations. learn more at

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