Flovent (Fluticasone propionate): Inhaled Steroid for Dogs and Cats with Asthma, Bronchitis, and Other Obstructive Airway Diseases
Like humans, many dogs and cats suffer from airway diseases of the lungs. Several examples of this include: chronic bronchitis in dogs and cats, feline asthma, and tracheal collapse in canines. Common signs of airway disease are coughing, shortness of breath, and gagging. For short-term relief, Albuterol (ProAir, Proventil, Ventolin) is considered first line in managing symptoms. For long-term maintenance, corticosteroids (e.g. Flovent) are typically prescribed for daily use.
Flovent (Fluticasone propionate) is currently available in 3 dosage options: 44 mcg, 110 mcg, and 220 mcg per actuation. Each inhaler contains 120 metered actuations and displays a dose counter to keep track of the number of remaining doses. A typical dosing for both cats and dogs is one puff twice a day. Your pet’s veterinarian will prescribe the appropriate inhaler(s) and dose.
Flovent must be administered with the use of a spacer and mask; such as the AeroDawg or AeroKat. The mask should be fitted snugly around the muzzle, including the corners of the mouth, and the dog or cat should breathe through the spacer for 7-10 seconds for each actuation. This technique allows for the medication to properly reach the lungs.
While rescue medications that contain Albuterol are used to treat acute symptoms of airway disease, inhaled corticosteroids like Flovent are used to help prevent symptoms from reoccurring. This is the reason why Albuterol products are indicated when patients are symptomatic and Flovent is recommended for daily use. Once therapy with Flovent is started, it usually takes 7-10 days for the full effect of the drug to be seen in the patient.
Long-term Flovent use is well tolerated since the inhaled steroid is absorbed into the lungs but not the bloodstream.
If a patient is prescribed the 44mcg twice daily dose, a single inhaler should last 60 days and runs $122.99, or $2.05/day. An additional 10% discount is also available for pet owners who choose to purchase an AeroDawg or AeroKat spacer with one of the above inhalers.
Let us know if you have any questions by leaving comments below.
Have a great day,
Robbie Schwenker, PharmD