In the mood for food: 3 ways to increase appetite in pets with cancer

April 25, 2017
Sue Ettinger, DVM, DACVIM (oncology)
Sue Ettinger, DVM, DACVIM (oncology)

Dr. Sue Ettinger is a practicing veterinary cancer specialist, international speaker and book author. She is one of about 300 board-certified specialists in medical oncology in North America and is currently practicing at the VCA Animal Specialty & Emergency Center in the Wappingers Falls, New York.

And you have these tools right there in your veterinary clinic, says Dr. Sue Ettinger.

One key for a pet to stay healthy during a fight against cancer is to make sure it is eating normally as much as possible, yet inappetence is not uncommon. At a recent CVC, Sue Ettinger, DVM, DACVIM (oncology), gave us three tips to keep your veterinary oncology patients chomping at the bit for dinner.

1. Maropitant citrate (Cerenia-Zoetis)-not just for vomiting! It can also help with nausea. Dr. Ettinger says it works at the clinic where you can give an injectable, as well as at home since it also comes in an oral formulation.

2. Mirtazapine-not just an antidepressant! Dr. Ettinger says it's another good appetite stimulant for both dogs and cats.

> Bonus: Maropitant and mirtazapine can be safely used together.

3. Don't forget corticosteroids such as prednisone, IF the pet isn't receiving a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID).

Hear more straight from Dr. Ettinger: