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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Board Certified Veterinarian
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 22584
Experience:  General practice veterinary surgeon with extensive experience in a wide range of species.
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Is Nisamox a suitable drug to treat meningitis in dogs?

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Is Nisamox a suitable drug to treat meningitis in dogs?

Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you with your wee one today.


Has Walter's meningitis been diagnosed as bacterial in origin?

What tests were done?

What were the findings?

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi - Walter has slightly raised white blood cell count but no spinal tap has confirmed he has the condition. The vet has not been very helpful in advising what the symptoms are so have done web research and they pretty much confirm the vets probable diagnosis. The vet has put him on a course of Nisamox but I can not see if it is the correct course of action. I was not aware that the condition can be both viral and bacterial and assume this can only be determined with a tap. However, if it is bacterial would this drug be most appropriate and how long should Walter be kept on it and at what dose?

Many thanks,


Thank you David,

As you have noted, meningitis can be induced by a wide range of agents. Still it is not just the bacteria and viruses (herpes, parvo, adenovirus, etc) we have to worry about. We can also see meningitis caused by protozoa (Toxoplasma,Neospora, etc), fungal (less common in the UK), and even immune based/idiopathic causes (ie steroid responsive meningitis). And as you noted, a tap (+/- a neurological work-up by a veterinary neurologist) would be indicated to determine which is the trigger and therefore how a dog should be treated to address a meningitis.

Now in regards XXXXX XXXXX question regarding appropriate antibiotic use for a bacterial meningitis, without a tap, we tend to aim for broad-spectrum antibiotics that have the ability to get past the blood-brain barrier. Examples of this would incldue ampicillin, metronidazole, tetracyclines, fluoroquinolones, and cephalosporins). In regards XXXXX XXXXX this will vary by which of the above drugs we were to use. Furthermore, it is worth noting that in some cases we do sometimes need to use high doses to root out bacterial agents (which using Nisamox (which is Amoxicillin + Clavulanate --More Info/Dose Rates) we would want a high dose). Therefore, again culture of spinal fluid is often advisable and beneficial as it can tell us what is there in the first place, whether it is actually bacterial, and if so then which drug would be most effective. And in regards XXXXX XXXXX of treatment time, we often will treat for a few weeks but the total length of time will depend on treatment response in the patient (since we may just need to treat for a few weeks if this is a bacteria sensitive to this drug, longer if its only partially sensitive, and even longer if you have to change to another drug along the way). So, in regards XXXXX XXXXX duration, this is fully based on the dog's signs settling with treatment.

I hope this information is helpful.

If you need any additional information, do not hesitate to ask!

All the best,

Dr. B.


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