Understanding Librela Injections for Dogs: A Comprehensive Guide

May 15, 2024

Understanding Librela Injections for Dogs: AComprehensive Guide


Arthritis pain can often be an overlooked health condition in dogs. Most people think that if their dog is not actively limping or yelping, they are not in pain but this is actually not true. Signs of arthritispain in dogs include slowness to lay down or stand up, gait changes such as swaying hips while walking, panting, decreased appetite, not wanting to go for long walks anymore, and the list goes on. Even younger dogs can developarthritis pain for various reasons. In the past, we have had to manage this pain with oral medications that can have effects on the liver, kidneys and stomach after long term use. Thankfully, we now have a new option for arthritis pain management in dogs with an injection called Librela.


Librela injections have emerged as a promising treatmentoption for managing pain and inflammation in dogs. As a pet owner, ensuring the well-being and comfort of your furry companion is paramount. In this blog, we will discuss Librela injections, exploring what they are, how they work, their benefits, potential side effects, and considerations for usage.


Librela, also known as capromorelin, is a novel therapeutic agent primarily used for the management of pain associated with osteoarthritis in dogs. It is a monoclonal antibody that helps to block pain signals from sources of arthritis to the brain. This means that the underlying disease process (arthritis) is still present, but the dog no longer perceives it as asource of pain!


Librela has very few side effects and is considered safe for most dogs after a thorough examination with a veterinarian. Unlike NSAIDs that we currently use for pain, we do not need to check bloodwork as frequently for dogs that are consistently on Librela since we do not see the same kidney and liver changes with this medication. A single injection of Librela can provide pain relief for up to one month, reducing the frequency of medication administration and veterinary visits. Librela must be given every 30 days to be fully effective. In most patients, a series of 2-3 injections must be given, each 30 days apart, before we see the maximum benefit of this treatment. This means that a lapse in giving injections may bring pain to the patient again for up to 1 month even after the injection is given again.


We currently have several patients on Librela, some young, some old but all with the same report from the owners: their dogs are feeling much better. In some patients, we have even seen the need for oral pain medications drastically decreased. There have been very few side effects reported other than general injection site pain and the potential for an allergic reaction (which can happen with any injection). We have seen a few patients that do develop mild stomach upset for 1-2 days after the injection but this is usually self-limiting and does not require treatment.


Before administering Librela injections to your dog, it is essential to consult with your veterinarian to determine if it's the right treatment option for your pet. Factors to consider include:

1. The severity of your dog's osteoarthritis and overall health status.

2. Any concurrent medications or medical conditions that mayinteract with Librela.

3. Monitoring for any signs of adverse effects following administration.


Librela injections offer a promising alternative for managing pain and inflammation in dogs with osteoarthritis, providing effective relief with minimal side effects. By understanding how Librela works, its benefits, potential side effects, and considerations for usage, pet owners can make informed decisions regarding their dog's healthcare. Please speak with our veterinarians or technicians if you think Librela will help your fur baby!



This assessment tool can be used and the report provided tous to help determine if your pet is developing arthritis pain: https://www.zoetispetcare.com/checklist/osteoarthritis-checklist