General Description: Metoprolol is a beta-blocker used to treat (or prevent) your pet’s cardiac arrhythmias (irregular heart rhythm) and various other cardiac conditions. Available in 50 and 100 mg tablets, or in extended release tablets as 50, 100 and 200 mg tablets.
What is this drug?
Metoprolol is a beta-blocker
Metoprolol is given by mouth
Reasons for prescribing:
Used to treat some heart diseases (ex. irregular heart beat)
Slows and regulates the heart rate and causes the heart to work more efficiently
Reduces cardiac output and lowers blood pressure
Used to treat some dogs with dilated cardiomyopathy
What dogs/cats should not take this medication?
Pets with heart block, a slow heart rate, sinus node dysfunction or congestive heart failure
Use with caution in diabetics or those with liver or kidney disease
Use with caution in animals with some types of lung disease (ex. asthma)
Safety in pregnancy has not been established
Pets known to have had an allergic reaction to metoprolol or any other beta-blocker
Give medication as directed by your veterinarian. In dogs this medication is usually given two or three times daily and once daily to cats.
This drug is seldom used in cats as it is very difficult to accurately dose them.
Give the exact amount prescribed and only as often as directed.
Ideally, give the medication at the same time daily.
Because metoprolol is often given with other drugs, a lower initial dose may be prescribed.
The duration of administration depends on the condition being treated, response to the medication and the development of any adverse effects. Do not discontinue the drug abruptly or without directions from your veterinarian, as your pet’s condition may worsen. If your pet is taken off this drug, a gradual withdrawal is advised. Reduce exercise during this period.
Periodic blood work to monitor this drug’s effect may be required.
Call ahead for refills.
What if dose is missed?
If a dose is missed, give it as soon as you can. If it is time already for the next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to the normal schedule. Do not give two doses at the same time.
What to tell/ask veterinarian before giving medication?
Talk to your veterinarian about:
When will your pet need to be rechecked
What tests may need to be performed prior to and during treatment with this drug
Risks and benefits of using this drug
Tell your veterinarian about:
If your pet has experienced side-effects on other drugs/products
If your pet has experienced digestive upset now or ever
If your pet has experienced liver or kidney disease now or ever
If your pet has experienced any other medical problems or allergies now or ever
All medicines and supplements that you are giving your pet or plan to give your pet, including those you can get without a prescription. Your veterinarian may want to check that all of your pet’s medicines can be given together.
If your pet is pregnant or nursing or if you plan to breed your pet
Storage and Warnings:
Store medication in a tight, light resistant, childproof container in a cool, dry place at room temperature away from heat and direct sunlight.
Keep this and all medication out of reach of children and pets.
Call your physician immediately if you accidentally take this product.
Potential side effects:
The most common side effects occur in geriatric patients. These include low heart rate, tiredness, depression, diarrhea, low blood sugar, worsening heart failure
Low blood pressure which would cause fainting, weakness or dizziness. Hot weather, exercise or fever may increase these effects.
May constrict the bronchi, causing coughing, wheezing or difficulty breathing
High blood pressure patients: Initially, patients may feel fatigue, but this will lessen in a few weeks. Continue the medicine unless the pet experiences other symptoms. Contact your veterinarian if this is the case.
If your pet collapses or you notice anything else unusual, contact your veterinarian
Can this drug be given with other drugs?
Yes, but possible interactions may occur with aloe, anesthetic agents, barbiturates, bupivicaine, cimetidine, dopamine, epinephrine, diphenhydramine, furosemide, hydralazine, insulin, indomethacin, lidocaine, methimazole, other heart medications (ex. digoxin, diltiazem, verapamil), norepinephrine, phenothiazines (tranquilizers), quinidine, rifampin, some SSRI’s (ex. fluoxetine, paroxetine), phenylpropanolamine, propylthiouracil and terbinafine
If your pet experiences any unusual reactions when taking multiple medications, contact your veterinarian
Contact your veterinarian immediately if pet receives more than the prescribed amount.
What else should I know?
Notify your veterinarian if your animal’s condition does not improve or worsens despite this treatment.
As with all prescribed medicines, metoprolol should only be given to the dog/cat for which it was prescribed. It should be given only for the condition for which it was prescribed.
It is likely that your veterinarian will want to monitor your pet’s condition periodically.
This is just a summary of information about metoprolol. If you have any questions or concerns about metoprolol or for the condition it was prescribed, contact your veterinarian.