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FDA approves cheaper medicines for dogs with resolution of anxiety

Owners of anxious dogs will soon have a common option for soothing pets with separation anxiety.

On Wednesday, the Food and Drug Administration announced the approval of clomipramine hydrochloride, generic for the drug Clomicalm, for dogs 6 months and older who have fears or major anxiety about being left alone. It is intended to be used in conjunction with behavioral training. Separation anxiety is one of the most common behavioral problems in dogs and is diagnosed in up to 40 percent of dogs listed in behavioral practices in North America, according to the American Veterinary Association.

Separation reactions are normal in young puppies, says AMVA. However, in older dogs, separation anxiety can be problematic. Symptoms may include inappropriate urination and bowel movements, vocalization and destructiveness. The less common signs of resolution anxiety are excessive licking or chewing of the tail and aggression.

Another FDA-approved drug, Reconcile, is also used for separation anxiety in dogs. The active ingredient in Reconcile is fluoxotine hydrochloride, the same ingredient in the antidepressant drug Prozac.

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