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Clindamycin for Dogs

By | Last Updated: 22nd February 2023

What is clindamycin

Clindamycin is a broad-spectrum lincosamide antibiotic used to treat bacterial infections [2].

Can dogs take clindamycin

Clindamycin can be used safely in dogs to treat various bacterial infections. It works by preventing the bacteria’s ability to produce the proteins that are necessary for them to survive [3, 7].

Quick Information

Clindamycin for Dogs

Generic name: Clindamycin hydrochloride

Brand names: Antirobe, Cleocin [3, 6]

FDA Approved: Yes [5, 8]

Type: Lincosamide antibiotic [2]

Who can take it: Dogs, cats

Availability: Prescription [5]

Available forms: Oral liquid, tablets (25 mg and 150 mg) [5]

What is clindamycin used for in dogs

It is effective in the treatment of infections stemming from wounds, skin infections, bacterial pneumonia [9], bone infections (osteomyelitis), ear and tooth infections, as well as respiratory tract infections. It is also prescribed in cases of bladder or urinary tract infections (UTI), but only if the culture shows that the bacteria are sensitive to this antibiotic. It can also effectively treat protozoal infections like toxoplasma. The medication works best on anaerobic bacteria, i.e. bacterium that does not need oxygen to survive [3].

Dosage: how much clindamycin to give your dog

You should never administer this medication to your dog unless prescribed by a veterinarian. Vets usually prescribe a dose of 5 mg/pound (11 mg/kg) at a 12-hour interval. This can go up to 10 mg/pound (22 mg/kg) at 24-hour intervals. Give the dog some water after giving the pill to wash it down. For how long the medication will continue depends upon the condition being treated. Ensure that the course of the dosage in the prescription is met [3].

Clindamycin side effects in dogs

Clindamycin can cause the following side-effects, so make sure to keep an eye out for them [5]:

  • Labored breathing
  • Hives
  • Vomiting
  • Bloody diarrhea
  • Appetite loss
  • Constipation

Reactions with other drugs

Make sure to inform your vet of any medication your dog may already be on. Clindamycin should never be administered concurrently with drugs like:

  • Opiates
  • Erythromycin
  • Chloramphenicol
  • Loperamide [5]

Contraindications: When not to give

This antibiotic is usually not prescribed to:

  • Pregnant dogs.
  • Dogs with kidney and liver diseases [5]

Signs of a clindamycin overdose

Weight loss, behavioral changes, and seizures are signs that a dog is overdosing on clindamycin. Take it to a veterinarian as soon as possible or call the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center Helpline (1-888-426-4435) [1].


    1. Side Effects of Clindamycin for Dogs – Cuteness.com
    2. Clindamycin for Dogs – Veterinaryplace.com
    3. Clindamycin (Anitirobe® Cleocin®) for Dogs and Cats – Petplace.com
    4. Using Clindamycin for Dog and Cat Oral Infections – Petcarerx.com
    5. Clindamycin – Petmd.com
    6. Antirobe – Drugs.com
    7. Clindamycin – Drugs.com
    8. Clindamycin – FDA.gov
    9. Bacterial Pneumonia – CliniciansBrief.com

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