Informative article from: Drs Foster and Smith Pet Education dot com
Antacids/Phosphate Binders (Maalox, Milk of Magnesia)
Veterinary & Aquatic Services Department, Drs. Foster & Smith
Generic and Brand Names
Aluminum Hydroxide: AlternaGEL, Amphojel
Aluminum Magnesium Hydroxide: Maalox
Calcium Acetate: Phos-Ex, PhosLo
Magnesium Hydroxide: Milk of Magnesia
Calcium Carbonate: Tums
Type of Drug
Form and Storage
Powders, suspensions, and capsules
Store at room temperature unless otherwise specified by the manufacturer.
Indications for Use
Prevention and treatment of stomach ulcers and esophageal reflux (heartburn), reduction of hyperphosphatemia (increased amount of phosphorus in the blood) in patients with kidney failure.
FDA approved for use in large animals in veterinary medicine. It is an accepted practice to use these medications in small animal medicine. Available over the counter, but should always be used under the direction of a veterinarian. Because of the newer, easier to dose medications available such as cimetidine, aluminum magnesium hydroxide is not used as frequently for stomach ulcers and esophageal reflux. It is still used to reduce phosphorous levels in the blood in patients with kidney failure. Before use, consult with your veterinarian and carefully check over-the-counter (nonprescription) medications for ingredients that may be deadly to pets.
Usual Dose and Administration
Consult your veterinarian. Duration of treatment depends on reason for treatment and response to treatment. Pets generally do not like the taste making it difficult to get the pet to take the products.
Depending upon the product, may see lack of appetite, constipation, or diarrhea. May see electrolyte imbalances in some patients due to the levels of magnesium, aluminum, sodium, and potassium in the products.
Do not use magnesium containing products in animals with kidney failure.
Use with caution in patients who need restricted amounts of sodium or potassium in their diets.
Use aluminum containing products with caution in patients with an obstruction in the stomach emptying disorders or obstruction.
Use calcium or aluminum containing products with caution in patients with kidney disease.
Do not use in pregnant or nursing animals.
Long-term use can damage the kidneys; aluminum-containing products can cause muscle weakness and thinning of the bones.
Drug or Food Interactions
Due to changes in the acidity of the stomach, emptying time of the stomach, or by chelation of the drugs, all oral medications may be affected. If must give multiple medications, separate dosages by at least 2 hours.
Tetracycline antibiotics may not be absorbed if given with antacids.
Antacids may decrease the absorption or effects of chlordiazepoxide, captopril, chloroquine, cimetidine, corticosteroids, digoxin, iron salts, indomethicin, isoniazid, ketoconazole, nitrofurantoin, pancreatic enzymes, penicillamine, phenothiazines, phenytoin, ranitidine, and valproic acid.
Antacids may increase the absorption or effects of aspirin, dicumarol, flecainide, quinidine, and sympathomimetics like ephedrine.
Do not use calcium containing products in patients using digoxin/digitalis as abnormal heart rhythms may result.
If using to decrease high blood phosphorus levels, give with meals.
May see electrolyte imbalances which can cause weakness and heart arrhythmias. Long-term use of aluminum-containing products can cause muscle weakness, thinning of the bones, and aluminum toxicity. Long term use of other products can damage the kidneys.
Antacids should be used under the direction of a veterinarian for the treatment and prevention of stomach disorders and to lower high phosphorous levels in animals with kidney failure. Consult with your veterinarian if your pet experiences muscle weakness, constipation, diarrhea, or lack of appetite while taking antacids.
I’m a newbie to these forums, but am no novice to raw feeding – been doing raw in some form, either 100% or as a supplement for about 15yrs now. Since 2014, its been an all raw, prey model type diet consisting mostly of chicken quarters pork meat and neck bones, a variety of organ meats (but mostly beef liver), ground beef, egg yolks, turkey necks and occasional meats like lamb ribs, fish or ground turkey. They also get “extras” and leftovers that amount to a small portion of the diet.
That aside, I’ve been noticing all summer that Toby, an intact male Beagle who will be 11yrs in October, hasn’t seemed in the greatest health, but there was nothing specific I could point my finger at, so I chalked it up to age. Fleas have been plaguing him, which made me further suspect something was wrong, especially after treatment did very little to help.
Over the past few days, the fleas have been back with a vengeance untold, and this morning, out of the blue, Toby came back in from the yard, lay down in a corner, and wouldn’t get up. There were no other symptoms, just a sudden lameness that seemed to pass in a few minutes. But it was very worrying, and he seems to have lost some weight in the past few days, so I decided it was Vet time. That, and in May, he had a partial obstruction from a pork neck bone, and the Vet told me then the only abnormality of the blood test results was “elevated liver enzymes”. So of course, my first thought is possible liver failure going on here :/
It was no fun finding a Vet on Labor Day, let me tell you, but we seemed to get a competent one, for once. I did NOT mention Toby is raw fed, btw. Another CBC was done, and like before, everything came back smack in the middle of normal – except, his ALP levels (alkaline phosphatase) were once again high (@ 228). But with no other signs of liver abnormalities in the blood results, this Vet was as stumped as the first one was as to why it should be elevated, unless it was osteomalacia, which he said was odd in a dog Toby’s age.
When I asked what precisely that was, the Vet told me I already knew it by a more common name. Rickets. Or rather, it’s technically called rickets before the growth plates close, and osteomalacia is the adult version.
I may have emitted an expletive, because how else can a dog get rickets, save for a home made diet that has been lacking in Vitamin D? I haven’t had the greatest luck with Vets in my life, but I was grateful that when I did mention raw feeding, all I got was the Knowing Look, an admonition that Toby would not be the first raw fed dog he’d seen with rickets (!!!), and a prescription for Vitamin D tablets for dogs. He did not try to push kibble on me or say another word about raw… he didn’t need to 🙁
Don’t have the faintest idea where we’re going from here, but Toby is on his Vit D and does not seem to be holding the incident against me. I’ve had my stumbling blocks with raw in the past, which is why I usually limited it to supplementation, but this has to be the worst problem I’ve ever had diagnosed. And honestly, if not for the strain put on his health with the fleas, I would never have noticed anything out of the ordinary with this dog. He seemed perfectly healthy otherwise.
So. Just blowing off some steam at the day’s events, my own stupidity, and thought this might be interesting fodder for other raw feeders. And btw, I am told that bad teeth can be a dead giveaway symptom of rickets, as well, and yet, Toby has the best teeth out of everybody…
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