The nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) meloxicam is a very popular anti-inflammatory, analgesic, and antipyretic agent used in veterinary medicine. To determine the pharmacokinetics of this NSAID in rabbits following a single dose and 10-day period of dosing, eight clinically normal, 8-mo-old New Zealand white rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus) were administered 0.2 mg/kg meloxicam p.o. daily


Anesthetic and analgesic pharmacokinetic studies are continually helping us to revise our dosages and protocols for exotic species. A recent example is Meloxicam use in rabbits; while earlier formularies suggest a dosage of 0.2 mg/kg PO, a 2013 pharmacokinetic study suggested clinically useful dosages are likely much higher. See the following article for more information     Pharmacokinetics of meloxicam in rabbits after oral administration of single and multiple doses. Our current dosage recommendation for short-term use of Meloxicam in well-hydrated, normovolemic rabbits without evidence of renal dysfunction is 0.8-1.0 mg/kg PO. The authors of the study conclude:

“Plasma concentrations of meloxicam for rabbits in the present study were proportionally higher than those previously reported for rabbits receiving 0.2 mg of meloxicam/kg and were similar to those determined for animals of other species that received clinically effective doses. A dose of 1 mg/kg may be necessary to achieve clinically effective circulating concentrations of meloxicam in rabbits, although further studies are needed.”1 Likes Share

Uses/benefits of Meloxicam For Rabbits:

Meloxicam is a non steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID), which reduces pain due to its anti-inflammatory effects. It is widely used both short term, eg after surgery, and long term, eg for arthritis etc.

Metacam is used to reduce inflammation and pain associated with arthritis.

  • – An easy-to-administer osteoarthritis pain management drug for dogs
  • – This oral suspension has a palatable honey taste dogs easily accept
  • – Used safely worldwide for more than 10 years


Metacam is an oral product to be given by mouth. Shake the oral suspension well before use and measure the dose using the syringe provided by the manufacturer. To prevent accidental overdosing of small dogs, administer drops on food only, never directly into the mouth. For long-term treatment, use the lowest dose needed to provide relief. For arthritic conditions, it may need to be given periodically for the animal’s lifetime.

Risks and concerns:

Liver disease can lead to reduced metabolism of the drug, and it can build up to dangerous levels as a result. Dehydrated or shocked animals, or those with other reasons for reduced blood flow to the kidneys, can suffer kidney damage with drugs of this class. It’s therefore important to make sure rabbits are hydrated during treatment, and vets may opt to give it at the end of surgery when normal blood pressure is restored. Durgs of this class can also cause gastrointestinal bleeding. It’s unclear how much of a concern this is in rabbits as they do not vomit, and blood is difficult to see in the faeces, but this concern should be borne in mind. Very importantly, it should not be given with other anti-inflammatory drugs or steroids.


Small mammals: Rabbits: 0.3 – 0.6mg/kg subcutaneously (underneath the skin) or by mouth every 24 hours; (this equates to 0.2 – 0.4ml/kg ie millilitres of liquid per kilogram of your rabbit’s bodyweight, if using the dog liquid.) Studies have shown that rabbits may require a dose exceeding 0.3mg/kg every 24 hours to achieve optimal plasma levels of Meloxicam over a 24-hour interval. Doses of 1.5mg/kg per day (1ml per kilo of the dog liquid) subcutaneiously or by mouth were well tolerated in healthy rabbits in good hydration for 5 days.

Prices of Meloxicam For Rabbits

$34.99 – $92.99

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