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July 2018

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Appetite Stimulant (Systemic Drug)

Prescriber Highlights

  • FDA-approved to stimulate appetite in dogs
  • Ghrelin receptor agonist that stimulates hunger
  • Diarrhea, vomiting, polydipsia, or hypersalivation may occur
Uses, Indications
  • Indicated for stimulation of appetite in dogs; experiential data is limited mostly to clinical study patients
  • In a laboratory setting, capromorelin (compared with placebo) increased food consumption and body weight in healthy cats, but capromorelin is not yet FDA- approved for use in this species
Contraindications, Precautions, Warnings
  • Contraindications

Patients with hypersensitivity to capromorelin or its components

  • Precautions

Patients with renal insufficiency or hepatic dysfunction

  • Warnings

Capromorelin use has not been evaluated in breeding, pregnant, or lactating bitches

Side Effects
  • GI distress (nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, hypersalivation, flatulence, abdominal pain)
  • Polydipsia 
  • Lethargy
  • Potential increases in BUN and serum phosphorous concentrations
Drug Interactions
  • No interactions are currently reported 
  • Capromorelin is metabolized by CYP3A4 and CYP3A5, so interactions with CYP3A4 inducers (eg, phenobarbital, rifampin) and inhibitors (eg, diltiazem, erythromycin, cimetidine, amiodarone, ketoconazole, itraconazole) may increase or decrease metabolism
  • Clinical efficacy, adverse events
  • Body weight
Client Information
  • Gently shake the bottle before use; rinse the syringe between doses
  • Drooling and vomiting may occur shortly after administration
Dosage Forms
  • The following product is labeled for veterinary use: 
    • Capromorelin flavored solution: 30 mg/mL in 10 mL, 15 mL, or 30 mL bottles

Compiled and summarized from Plumb’s® Veterinary Drugs by Shannon Palermo, VMD

Information about this drug was adapted from Plumb’s® Veterinary Drugs. Further details and more therapeutics can be found with a subscription at

For global readers, a calculator to convert laboratory values, dosages, and other measurements to SI units can be found here.

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