Can I give my Morkie Benadryl?

Can I give my Morkie Benadryl?

yorkie-puppy-photoThere are two answers to the question Can I give my Morkie Benadryl?

1.  Yes.

2.  Ask your Vet.

Benadryl is an over-the-counter drug used for allergic reactions in people… and pets. It’s just one of the many antihistamines available on the market although it’s probably the best known. The non-trade name of this antihistamine drug is Diphenhydramine Hydrochloride (HCl)1.

Benadryl for allergies to insects

For small dogs, Benadryl is often used to treat insect bites and stings when the dog has had an allergic reaction. Depending on where the sting or bite is, and how much swelling results – Benadryl can literally be a lifesaver.


Because they often snap at insects, most dogs get bitten on the muzzle or in and around the mouth. Not all stings or bites require treatment; but if your Morkie has an allergic reaction and swells up, that swelling can be quick and quite alarming, and it may be very itchy for your Morkie.  Extreme swelling can even prevent proper breathing and eating. That’s where Benadryl comes in.

Benadryl for motion sickness

Many Morkie owners say that a small amount of Benadryl can help calm motion sickness.

Reactions to vaccinations 

Benadryl is also helpful in treating your Morkie’s (mild) reactions to vaccinations. Again, it can help reduce swelling and itching to make your Morkie more comfortable.

Using Benadryl

For small dogs like Morkies, Yorkies and Maltese, the dosage is low. Start with the children’s version of Benadryl, in liquid form, since tablets contain too much medication.  DO NOT USE “Benadryl Elixir,” a liquid product for adults – it contains alcohol, very dangerous for dogs. Don’t use sugar-free – it contains Xylitol, another poisonous ingredient for dogs.

Benadryl dosage chart

Click to download this handy reference sheet now.


pet’s weight in pounds divided by 2.5 = ml’s to be given

So an  8 lb. dog would get 3.2 ml (8 ÷ 2.5 = 3.2 ml’s)

Please be sure to review this with your Veterinarian.

Drug Cautions

While fairly safe, Benadryl does have potential side effects and is not for every pet. And if your Morkie is on other medications, be sure to check with your Vet about using Benadryl.

TIP: For under $10 invest in a baby set of medicine applicators, to help you accurately measure small amounts of liquid.  You can buy one at your drugstore or order from Amazon

Be Prepared

benadryl for kids

Use regular Children’s liquid Benadryl – not sugar free  and not with  any pain meds like acetaminophen and don’t use if those ingredients are present

Talk to your Vet about Benadryl and whether he/she would recommend it for your Morkie, and also ask about a safe dosage.  Then have it on hand, along with a measuring syringe.

Potential side effects

According to, there can be some potential side effects to Benadryl but they are usually minor, and can include:

  • Drooling
  • Excitability
  • Drowsiness
  • Rapid breathing
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Depression

For severe side effects, contact your Vet immediately.

Benadryl® is the registered trademark of Johnson and Johnson. The non-trade name of this antihistamine drug is Diphenhydramine Hydrochloride (HCl)1.

Is Benadryl safe for dogs?

Is Benadryl safe for dogs?

Benadryl® – is a popular allergy and itch medicine for adults and children.

The good news: It’s also OK to give to dogs.

Can a dog have Benadryl®? Yes!

In the proper dosage, Benadryl is safe for dogs and can help relieve:

  1. dog allergies
  2. the after-effects of vaccinations
  3. reactions to flea bites, bee stings or hornet and wasp stings
  4. ‘hot spots’ on the skin or itching
  5. motion sickness for dogs – so it’s perfect for that long car ride
  6. sometimes your Vet may recommend a daily low-dosage to treat anxiety problems


The active ingredient in Benadryl is diphenhydramine.

Always check with your Vet

Although many websites recommend Benadryl as an important part of your dog first aid kit, others say you should ask your Vet before you give it to your pet.  So why not make this a must-ask at your next Vet appointment and get your Vet’s advice on when and how much Benadryl to give, should the need ever arise.

Benadryl dosage for dogs

The rule of thumb for Benadryl for dogs, is 1 mg, per pound of the dog, every 8 hours.  However, Benadryl comes in tablet form, in a 25 mg dosage. For a small dog like a Morkie you might need just 4 or 5 mg and it would  be impossible to accurately divide a pill into 5 pieces…. So the liquid form is recommended

Children’s BENADRYL® Liquid does not contain any dyes or alcohol and can be accurately measured with a special eyedropper or syringe without the needle.

For dogs under 10 pounds:    ½ tsp. (2.5 mL) every 4 to 6 hours

For dogs over 10 pounds:   1 tsp. (5 mL) every 4 to 6 hours

To measure accurately, get an eye dropper, or syringe without the needle, with measurement markings.

Here’s a handy Benadryl dosage chart for dogs, that you can download free


Benadryl dosage chart

Do NOT use these types of Benadryl

They are not safe for your dog.

Generic or no-name Benadryl

Benadryl tablets

Congestion Relief

Sugar-free Benadryl

Children's Cough Relief

Side effects of Benadryl

Your dog will get sleepy and may be more thirsty than normal.  Some food before the Benadryl is a good idea. Other less-common possible side effects include:

  • vomiting
  • diarrhea
  • loss of appetite
  • hyperexcitability
  • sedation effect

Do Not Use Benadryl IF:

  • your Morkie has:
    • hyperthyroidism
    • glaucoma
    • high blood pressure
    • chronic lung disease
    • bladder disorders
  • your dog is on other medications
  • your Morkie is under 4 months old
  • your dog is pregnant or nursing

Use these only - Children's Genuine Benadryl liquid

These packages are all sugar-free, children’s liquid Benadryl


This site provides general information and should not be considered medical advice. You should always check with your Veterinarian prior to choosing a treatment option for your pet.


BENADRYL® is a registered trademark of Johnson & Johnson

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