This study investigated doxycycline-related side effects in a large population of dogs. Data from 386 dogs that had received doxycycline for the treatment of various infectious diseases were analysed retrospectively. Potential side effects that developed during treatment were documented, and correlations with signalment, dose, duration of treatment, frequency of application, doxycycline preparation and use of additional drugs were investigated. Vomiting was reported in 18.3 per cent of dogs, 7.0 per cent developed diarrhoea and 2.5 per cent developed anorexia. While being treated with doxycycline, 39.4 per cent of dogs showed an increase in alanine aminotransferase (ALT) activity and 36.4 per cent showed an increase in alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity. There was a dose-related risk of an increase in ALP activity (P=0.011, odds ratio [OR]=1.27, 95 per cent confidence interval [CI] 1.06 to 1.53), and older dogs treated with doxycycline were more likely to develop an increase in ALT activity (P=0.038, OR=1.23, 95 per cent CI 1.01 to 1.50) and vomiting (P=0.017, OR=1.11, 95 per cent CI 1.02 to 1.21).
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