Answers to frequently asked questions about NexGard Chewable Tablets for Dogs

Is NexGard toxic to dogs: What everyone ought to know

If your dog is suffering from fleas and tick infestations, you’re probably Googling right now as to what is the best treatment prescribed by vets and trusted by fellow pet owners. 

I’m sure you’ve heard about NexGard, a medicine commonly available in the market today. 

When my dogs experienced their first encounter with parasites, I didn’t know what to do. Thankfully, we are one block away from the nearest vet clinic. She prescribed NexGard chews. 

Disclaimer: The contents of this blog post are based on personal experience and shouldn’t be treated as a proper consultation. All content and information on this website are for information and educational purposes only do not constitute professional advice of any kind and do not establish any kind of professional-client relationship by your use of this website. To ensure the health and wellness of your Shih Tzu, ALWAYS CONSULT YOUR VETERINARIAN before administering medications. 

What is NexGard? 

NexGard chews is a drug (prescription only) that is used to treat fleas and tick infestations in dogs. 

Each chewable tablet is red to reddish-brown in color, circular or rectangular shaped depending on the dosage. 

Is NexGard toxic to dogs: What everyone ought to know
Is NexGard toxic to dogs: What everyone ought to know
Is NexGard toxic to dogs: What everyone ought to know

What drug is in Nexgard Chews for dogs?

Each chewable tablet contains Afoxolaner. Afoxolaner has the chemical composition 1-Naphthalenecarboxamide, 4-[5-[3-chloro-5-(trifluoromethyl)-phenyl]-4, 5-dihydro-5-(trifluoromethyl)-3-isoxazolyl]-N-[2-oxo-2-[(2,2,2-trifluoroethyl)amino]ethyl.

NexGard Afoxolaner
chewable tablets for dogs 2-4 kilos (weight)11.3
chewable tablets for dogs 4-10 kilos (weight)28.3
chewable tablets for dogs 10-25 kilos (weight)68
chewable tablets for dogs 25-50 kilos (weight)136

What is the difference between NexGard and NexGard Spectra?

The difference between NexGard and NexGard Spectra is the active ingredients. 

NexGard contains Afoxolaner, an insecticide, and acaricide belonging to the isoxazoline family. NexGard is active against fleas, ticks, mites, and flea tapeworm. 

Meanwhile, NexGard Spectra has the same amount of active ingredients (Afoxolaner) plus milbemycin oxime, a type of antibiotic that kills parasites like worms and mites. 

Therefore, NexGard Spectra chews have the same benefits as NexGard plus added protection against parasites like heartworm, hookworm, roundworm, whipworm, and other tapeworms. 

Free download Shih Tzu Care Guide printable pack

How does Nexgard work? 

NexGard chews is taken orally. It is beef-flavored which can be administered with or without food. 

NexGard chews kill fleas within 8 hours and ticks within 48 hours. 

Moreover, this chewable tablet for dogs kills fleas before egg production which also prevents household contamination. 

Lastly, this chewable tablet can treat fleas’ infestation for at least 5 weeks and kills ticks for up to one month. 

What is the alternative to NexGard?

If you are looking for an alternative treatment for fleas and tick infestations with your dog, another vet-recommended prescription drug and loved by pet owners is Bravecto chews

Answers to frequently asked questions about NexGard 

Is NexGard chews safe for small dogs? 

Although there are a lot of clinical studies that show NexGard as safe and effective for small dogs, it’s always best to consult your veterinarian first. Besides, NexGard is prescription only. But from my experience, I didn’t notice any adverse reactions after my dog ate it. Ironically, in spite of being a beef lover, he didn’t like how it tastes.

Is NexGard harmful to dogs? 

According to clinical studies, there is a very small percentage of dogs who experienced serious adverse reactions after taking NexGard. But some of the most common side effects include vomiting, diarrhea, anorexia, and muscle tremors. These however are of short duration and not permanent. 

Is NexGard toxic to dogs?

NexGard is FDA-approved. In fact, it is classified to be safe and effective for dogs against fleas and tick infestation. Moreover, FDA mentioned that prevention and treatment should be discussed by a veterinarian in order for you to get the best medicine for your dog. 

Can you overdose a dog on NexGard?

According to NexGard, there are no adverse reactions observed in a study where healthy Beagle puppies were treated 5 times the maximum dose at intervals of 2-4 weeks. 

How to give NexGard to dog

NexGard is a chewable tablet. Therefore, it can be administered as a treat. Dogs love it because it’s an easy chew, and beef flavored. 

Can you split Nexgard Chewables? 

Yes. Ironically, my dog doesn’t like the beefy smell. So, I split it in half and placed it inside a piece of boiled chicken breast.  

NexGard side effects for dogs

This prescription-only medicine is known to have the following side effects: mild gastrointestinal effects, pruritus, lethargy, anorexia, and neurological signs like convulsions, ataxia, and muscle tremors. 

Most reported side effects are known to be self-limiting and of short duration only. 

If your dog has experienced any of these side effects, or those not listed, consult your veterinarian right away. 

Do you need a prescription for Nexgard Chewables for Dogs?

Yes, you need to consult your veterinarian as soon as you noticed fleas and ticks with your dog. He/she will prescribe NexGard, or other prescription-only treatment available in the market. 

What happens if I miss giving a dose of Nexgard Chewables for Dogs?

Monthly administration of this medicine may be required based on the clinical assessment by your veterinarian. However, you must take into consideration that the efficacy of this prescription-only medicine lasts up to one month only.

Therefore, if your dog has been in contact with a fleas and ticks infected dog, most probably, these parasites will transfer to your dog which will incur egg production. 

How fast does Nexgard Chewables work? 

NexGard (Afoxolaner) kills fleas within 8 hours and ticks within 48 hours. From my experience, it took 3 days before I noticed that the fleas and ticks are finally gone. 

Can my dog still get fleas with NexGard?

If your dog has been in contact with another dog infested with fleas and ticks, these parasites can migrate to your pet as their new host. However, they won’t thrive because they are protected by NexGard.

However, the effect of this medicine lasts for one month only. Therefore, if your dog has been in contact with an infested dog after that timeframe, most likely, he/she will be the new host for these parasites.

if this happens, consult your veterinarian so he/she can prescribe another dose of this medicine.

How long does NexGard last? 

NexGard is a temporary treatment against fleas and tick infestation. Treatment against fleas will last for up to 5 weeks, while treatment against ticks will last for up to one month. 

Why is my dog scratching so much although he gets his NexGard?

If your dog is still scratching too much after taking NexGard, he’s probably suffering from dermatitis caused by the infestation. For this, your veterinarian may prescribe additional medicine (oral or topical treatment) to heal the skin. 

Why do dogs act weird after flea medicine?

Aside from mild side effects from the medicine, dogs may act weird after their treatment because the fleas and ticks feel “poisoned” and are slowly trying to get away from their host. Therefore, your dog may feel uncomfortable, his skin is a lot itchier, or he may experience vomiting. 

if this persists, do not hesitate to consult your veterinarian. 

Are there clinical studies about the efficacy of NexGard in killing ticks and fleas?

If you want to know more about this drug, its active ingredients, or you just want to be educated and be a responsible pet owner, listed below are clinical studies about the efficacy of Afoxalaner as a treatment against fleas and ticks. 

Afoxolaner against fleas: immediate efficacy and resultant mortality after short exposure on dogs

European Medicines Agency 

Six-month field efficacy and safety of the combined treatment of dogs with Frontline Tri-Act® and NexGard Spectra®

Nexgard Technical Alert

Efficacy of afoxolaner (NexGard®) on the treatment of myiasis caused by the New World screwworm fly Cochliomyia hominivorax (Diptera: Calliphoridae) in naturally infested dogs

Final thoughts 

I hope this article helps answer some of your questions regarding NexGard Chewables for Dogs. If you have any further queries, always consult your veterinarian. 

Moreover, parasites can be found everywhere. Unfortunately, fleas and tick treatment are temporary. Therefore, you need to take safety measures so that your pet can prevent serious illnesses from these parasites.  

Stay away from fleas and ticks-infested dogs as much as you can. 

A final reminder, NexGard is NOT for cats. 

If you are looking for treatment against fleas and ticks for cats, NexGard Combo is an alternative. 

Again, always consult your veterinarian so he/she can prescribe the best treatment for your pet. 

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