Proin is the brand name of a drug that contains the sympathomimetic agent known as phenylpropanolamine. The US FDA approves its use in veterinary medicine for the management of urinary incontinence in dogs. As such, it is only available with a written prescription from your veterinarian. In states like Arkansas, Oregon, Louisiana, and Iowa, however, Proin is classified as a controlled substance so pet parents in these states may have to talk with their vets on possible alternative solutions to the urinary incontinence in their dogs.

proin for dogs-effects


The only approved use of Proin for dogs is the management of urinary incontinence which is defined as the loss of voluntary control over urination. Urinary incontinence occurs because of a variety of reasons. There are those that are related to the effects of stress which is the result of poor urinary bladder closure secondary to sympathetic stimulation. There are also those that are the result of an overactive urinary bladder as well as blockage of the urinary passages or even poor bladder contraction. Dogs that are suffering from a medical condition can also lead to some form of urinary incontinence.

Proin primarily works on the type of urinary incontinence that results from poor muscle tone of the urinary bladder. Because the sphincter muscles are unable to maintain normal tonicity, urine leaks out through the urethra. This is evidenced by leaking or even dripping urine. Your dog may also exhibit excessive licking of its genitals as a means to soothe the skin irritation caused by the leaking urine. You may also see soiled areas in your dog’s bedding or even ‘accidents’ in the most unlikely places.

Benefits of Proin

Since Proin for dogs specifically works to help manage urinary incontinence, you can feel confident about the following benefits.

  • Improved urinary control for your pet
  • Reduced ‘accidents’ in the house, if not totally eliminated
  • Minimized incidence of skin redness and irritation around your dog’s genitals
  • Better quality of life for your canine friend

How Proin Works

Phenylpropanolamine Proin for dogs works by mimicking the physiologic effects of the neurotransmitter Norepinephrine or Noradrenaline. This neurotransmitter is responsible for inhibiting urinary bladder emptying among other sympathetic nervous system effects. Technically what Proin for dogs does is that it increases the muscle tone of the bladder so that it is kept contracted at all times until voluntary control is established to empty its contents in a process we know as urination. Because the bladder muscles are partially contracted at all times, this helps prevent the leakage of urine through the urethra. This is what helps manage urinary incontinence in dogs.

Potential Side Effects

The side effects of Proin are associated with its sympathomimetic activity. The most common side effects include the following:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Excessive salivation
  • Increased thirst
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Vocalization such as barking, whining, howling, and the like
  • Confusion
  • Weakness
  • Excessive panting
  • Agitation or restlessness

In more severe cases, the following have also been reported:

  • Tremors or seizures
  • Abnormal gait
  • Elevated liver enzymes
  • Blood-tinged urine
  • Urinary retention
  • Kidney failure

If you notice in your dog swelling of its tongue, lips, or face or perhaps even skin rashes or hives, call your vet immediately as these often indicate an allergic reaction. Labored or difficulty breathing is also another sign.

Things You Should Know about Proin

Proin for dogs is the only phenylpropanolamine that is duly approved by the FDA in the management of canine urinary incontinence secondary to hypotonic urethral sphincter. It comes in 3 preparations of liver-flavored tablets for ease of administration. Because it is essentially a sympathomimetic, Proin for dogs can cause aggression, irritability, loss of appetite, or even restlessness among other things.

What You Should Tell Your Vet Before He Prescribes Proin

Before your vet prescribes Proin for your pet, make sure to inform him of any pre-existing medical condition in your pet. These can include liver disease, heart disease, hyperthyroidism, diabetes, high blood pressure, glaucoma, kidney insufficiency. If you intend to breed your dog or your pet is already pregnant or is lactating, inform your vet, too.

How to Give Proin to Your Dog

The current recommendation for Proin for dogs is between 0.4 and 0.8 milligrams for every pound of bodyweight. This should be given every 12 hours. Proin for dogs comes in 25-, 50-, and 75-milligram tablets specially formulated in delicious liver flavor. However, it is best to adhere to the dosage recommendation of your veterinarian.

What to Do If You Miss a Dose

Missing a dose should not be interpreted as a sign that you can double the next dose. Instead, administer the missed dose immediately the moment you remember it. However, if it’s only a couple of hours away until its next dose, forget the missed dose and just proceed on giving the next scheduled dose as if you didn’t miss anything.

What to Do in Case of Proin Overdose

We mentioned above that in some cases the dog may actually present with more serious side effects such as rapid heart rate, high blood pressure, tremors or seizures, or even coma. These are also signs of Proin overdose. Don’t waste any more time. Bring your pet to the nearest emergency veterinary facility at once.

Some Drug Interactions

Inform your vet if your pet is taking any of the following medications for dogs: amitraz, digoxin, aspirin, anipyrl, rimadyl as well as other NSAIDs, reserpine, tricyclic antidepressants, monoamine oxidase inhibitors, and ganglionic-blocking agents. If your pet is also taking another sympathomimetic drug, this might also potentiate the action of Proin leading to more adverse or serious side effects.

proin for dogs

Proin for dogs is a great solution for canines that have difficulty controlling their urination, leading to urinary ‘accidents’. It is duly approved by the FDA and is available with prescription except certain states in the US where it’s classified as a controlled substance. While it does have the approval of the FDA it should not automatically mean that you can give it to your dog wantonly as it can also bring about a variety of serious side effects. Your veterinarian’s guidance is a must.


Olivia Williams
Olivia is our head of content for, mum of one and a true animal lover. With 12 different types of animal in her family, it's never a dull moment. When she isn't walking the dogs, feeding the cats or playing with her pet Parrot Charlie, you will find her product researching and keeping the site freshly updated with the latest products for your pets!


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