Major Uses

Metoclopramide is a GI prokinetic agent that is used to treat gastric stasis disorders and gastroesophageal reflux. It can also be used to allow intubation of the small intestine, as a general antiemetic, and as an antiemetic to prevent or treat chemotherapy-induced vomiting.

Common Precautions

Metoclopramide should not be used in patients suffering from GI hemorrhage and obstruction or perforation. It should be used cautiously in patients with seizure disorders, head trauma, or pheochromocytoma. Metoclopramide should not be used in dogs with pseudopregnancy.

The most common side effects of metoclopramide experienced by dogs are changes in mentation and behavior, most often displayed as aggression, involuntary spasms, hyperactivity, or drowsiness. Cats have been known to experience frenzied behavior or disorientation. Both dogs and cats may suffer from constipation caused by this drug. Horses can experience severe CNS effects, alternating periods of sedation and excitement, behavioral changes, and abdominal pain caused by metoclopramide.

Metoclopramide should not be used in animals with a known allergy or hypersensitivity to the drug. A veterinarian should be contacted immediately if an overdose is suspected, the symptoms of which can include ataxia, sedation, agitation, nausea, vomiting, extrapyramidal effects, and constipation.


Metoclopramide should be kept at room temperature in a tight, light resistant, childproof container. It is photosensitive and should always be kept away from light.


A typical dose of metoclopramide for dogs is between .1-.5 mg/kg every 6 to 8 hours. For cats, a typical dose is between .2-.5 kg/mg 3-4 times a day, or every 8-12 hours. For stimulating the gastrointestinal tract in horses, a typical dose is .04 mg/kg. For treating reflux esophagitis in horses, a typical dose is .02-.1 mg/kg every 4-12 hours. Should a scheduled dose be forgotten, it should be administered as soon as possible. If it is almost time for the next scheduled dose, the missed dose should be skipped and the regular administration schedule should resume. Two doses should not be given at the same time.

Doses may vary in different species, when the drug is given by a different route or concurrently with other medications, and with regards to a patient's age, breed, and health status. A veterinarian's dosing instructions and/or those printed on the medication label should be followed closely.

This information is for general reference only and should not be used for the diagnosis or treatment of any condition of your pet. It's intended as a general reference, this information may not include all possible uses, precautions, directions, reactions (including allergic), drug interactions, or withdrawal times. Always consult your local veterinarian and have your pet examined for any advice concerning the diagnosis and treatment of your pet, including which products and doses are most appropriate. Any trademarks are the property of their respective owners. VetDepot is not a pharmacy. All prescription products are dispensed by our Pharmacy Partner. Article last updated 2/2014.