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Lincomycin for Dogs and Cats

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General Drug Information and Indications

Lincomycin is an older antibiotic from the same family as clindamycin. It is commonly used in dogs and cats to treat bacterial skin infections, dermatitis, pyoderma and soft tissue infections. There are also some anaerobic bacteria that are susceptible to lincomysin. Lincomycin is particularly useful in animals that are allergic to penicillins and cephalosporin antibiotics. Lincomycin may be administered orally or given by injection in a hospital situation. Lincomycin is FDA approved for use in dogs and cats. When the appropriate form or dose of this drug is not available through a veterinary pharmaceutical manufacturer, it may be compounded by a specialty pharmacy.

How to Give this Medication

Give this medication to your pet exactly as your veterinarian prescribes. If you miss giving your pet a dose of lincomycin, give the next dose as soon as you remember or, if it is close to the next scheduled dose, return to the regular schedule. Do not double dose to catch up.

Food may decrease the absorption of lincomycin. If the animal will tolerate it, absorption is more reliable on an empty stomach. (See side effects)

Wash your hands after giving your pet this medication.

Side Effects

Be sure to discuss any side effects with your veterinarian immediately.

Side effects in dogs and cats are primarily gastrointestinal. These may include vomiting, diarrhea, and, rarely, bloody diarrhea.

Precautions

Keep this and all drugs out of reach of children. This drug should only be given to the animal for which it was prescribed. Do not give this medication to a person.Federal law restricts this drug to use by or on the order of a licensed veterinarian.

Lincomycin should absolutely not be used in pocket pets (rabbits, hamsters, guinea pigs, etc.) or in horses or ruminants.

Lincomycin should be used with caution animals with kidney or liver disease.

Lincomycin crosses the placenta and is found in maternal milk. It may cause diarrhea in nursing puppies or kittens.

Drug Interactions

Be sure to review with your veterinarian any medications or supplements your pet may be receiving.

Anti-diarrheal products that contain kaolin may decrease the absorption of lincomycin. Separate the doses by at least 2 hours.

Lincomycin should not be combined with erythromycin or clindamycin. It should not be used with cyclosporine or neuromuscular blocking agents.

Overdose

If you suspect your pet or another animal was overdosed accidentally or has eaten this medication inadvertently, contact your veterinarian or the A.S.P.C.A.'s Animal Poison Control Center at 888.426.4435. Always bring the prescription container with you when you take your pet for treatment.

If you or someone else has accidentally ingested this medication call the National Capital Poison Center at 800.222.1222.

Storage

Different strengths or dosage forms of lincomycin may have different storage requirements. Read the labeling or ask your pharmacist for the storage requirements of the prescription you receive.

About the Author

Dr. Barbara Forney

Dr. Barbara Forney is a veterinary practitioner in Chester County, Pennsylvania. She has a master's degree in animal science from the University of Delaware and graduated from the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine in 1982.

She began to develop her interest in client education and medical writing in 1997. Recent publications include portions of The Pill Book Guide to Medication for Your Dog and Cat, and most recently Understanding Equine Medications published by the Bloodhorse.

Dr. Forney is an FEI veterinarian and an active member of the AAEP, AVMA, and AMWA.