10 Best Melatonin for Dogs in 2022 – Reviews & Top Picks!
Like humans, dogs struggle with anxiety and often have issues getting a good night’s sleep. Veterinarians offer prescription medications for canines with severe conditions, but you can also find over-the-counter products that can help calm your pet. Several manufacturers produce melatonin supplements, but which product is best for your pet?
We examined the 10 best melatonin supplements on the market and compiled detailed reviews to help you decide which brand is ideal for your furry friend.
A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites in 2022
The 10 Best Melatonin for Dogs
1. Zesty Paws Advanced Calming Bites – Best Overall
Zesty Paws Advanced Calming Bites are designed to combat everyday stress, hyperactivity, and nervousness in canines. They scored our top prize for best overall melatonin for dogs. The chewy treats contain no artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives, and they’re safe for daily use. Like many competitors, Zesty Paws includes additional natural ingredients to support calmness. Chamomile, valerian Root, Sensoril Ashwagandha, and l-tryptophan benefit pets who do not seem affected by supplements containing only melatonin.
The grain-free formula is ideal for pups with gluten sensitivities, and the natural turkey flavor is a hit with picky dogs. Supplements and medications can be problematic when dogs dislike the taste, but most dogs are happy to eat Zesty Paws before a trip to the vet or a stressful event like a fireworks display. Although we did not see any issues with the chews, some customers mentioned that their pets were unaffected by the product.
2. waggedy Calm Stress & Anxiety Relief Melatonin Dog Supplement – Best Value
The waggedy Calm Stress & Anxiety Relief Melatonin Dog Supplement is an excellent choice if you want to try giving your dog calming supplements without overspending. Dog supplements can be expensive, especially when you have multiple pets, but waggedy is affordable and effective. It contains chamomile, thiamine mononitrate, passion flower and melatonin to calm your pet during stressful events. It does not include corn, soy, or unnecessary fillers. The waggedy Calm Stress is safe for dogs at least a year old, and the tasty savory flavor makes your pet believe it’s getting a treat rather than a supplement. Customers were happy with the product’s effect on their stressed-out pets, but some mentioned the supplements worked better for reducing stress than helping with sleep.
3. Pet Wellbeing Pet Melatonin Bacon Flavored Liquid – Premium Choice
|Size:||2.0 fluid ounces|
Chewable treats are the most common form of melatonin for dogs, but some dogs dislike the flavor of supplements and cannot handle tablets. Pet Wellbeing Pet Melatonin Bacon Flavored liquid is an excellent alternative to using chews, and dogs seem to like the bacon flavoring. Unlike most supplements, Pet Wellbeing only contains deionized water, natural bacon flavor, vegetable glycerin, and animal-derived melatonin. The manufacturer claims the liquid treats sleeplessness and anxiety and promotes healthy urination and appetite.
The drops are more expensive than the competitors, but they contain more melatonin (3mg) and fewer unnecessary ingredients. Most supplements list melatonin as a minor or inactive ingredient, but Pet Wellbeing’s drops list it as the only active component. With a higher melatonin content, the liquid seems to help with sleep more than other products.
4. Nature’s Synergy Hemp Oil & Melatonin for Dogs – Best for Puppies
|Size:||1.0 fluid ounces|
Selecting a safe supplement for your puppy can be challenging. Some dogs are too young for soft chews due to the choking hazard, but you can use Nature’s Synergy Hemp Oil and Melatonin for your little friend. The liquid is produced in an FDA-registered facility, and it’s only two ingredients are hemp oil and melatonin. Hemp oil contains omega-3, omega-6, and omega-9 fatty acids to fight inflammation and soothe aching joints.
Unlike its competitors, Nature’s Synergy does not include additional savory flavors to make it more appealing. While some dogs did not like the hemp oil’s flavor, others were unaware when it was added to food. Nature’s Synergy recommends adding a small quantity to wet food and slowly increasing the dosage until you reach the desired amount. Puppies only need half of a dropper every 12 hours.
5. ThunderWunders Melatonin Calming Dog Chews
Fireworks displays, thunderstorms, and other loud noises can raise anxiety levels in dogs, but ThunderWunders Melatonin Calming Dog Chews are designed to relax your pet. The wheat-free formula contains passionflower, thiamine, and l-tryptophan to calm your dog and melatonin to help regulate sleep. Stress can disrupt your dog’s appetite, and ThunderWunders includes ginger in its recipe to help settle an uneasy stomach. It’s safe for all breeds that are at least 12 weeks old. Most customers with nervous or aging pets were happy with ThunderWunders, but some mentioned the supplement did not affect their pets. Compared to other brands, Thunderwunders has less melatonin.
6. PetHonesty Calming Hemp+ Max-Strength Duck Flavored Soft Chews
PetHonesty Calming Hemp Max-Strength Duck Flavored Chews use an all-natural recipe that does not contain wheat, soy, GMOs, or chemical preservatives. Its formula contains hemp, melatonin, chamomile, valerian root, and Suntheanine to help your pet when environmental stresses take a toll on its mental health. Some melatonin supplements take several hours or days to work, but PetHonesty Chews only take 30 to 45 minutes. The chews are safe for dogs of all ages, but dogs under 25 pounds only require half of a chew. Dogs seem to like the duck-flavored chews, and most owners are satisfied with the product, but it does not calm all dogs.
7. Lignans for Life 6 mg Melatonin
Lignans for Life 6 mg Melatonin is the only product that is safe for dogs and humans. It’s composed of melatonin, vegetable cellulose, microcrystalline cellulose, and magnesium stearate. Since it’s made for multiple species, Lignans does not include a savory flavor that appeals to canines. Rather than a chewy treat, it’s a tablet that must be hidden in a pill pocket or crushed and added to food. Lignans for Life contains the highest dosage of melatonin of any product we reviewed, and we suggest using the tablets only on dogs with severe anxiety. Customers are happy with the powerful supplement, but some were concerned that it’s not designed for daily use.
8. Zesty Paws Hemp Elements Calming OraStix
|Size:||12 ounces (12 sticks)|
Zesty Paws Hemp Elements Calming OraStix are designed to calm your nervous pup and support healthy teeth. The grain-free recipe includes suntheanine, melatonin, valerian root, chamomile, and magnesium citrate to relax your pet. Zesty Paws include peppermint oil, kelp, and rosemary extract to support healthy teeth and gums. The sticks are safe for dogs of all ages, and the recipe contains no artificial flavors or colors. They’re the only product reviewed that uses dental sticks rather than chews or liquid, and most dog owners seem pleased with the results. However, we thought the dosage requirements for large dogs were too much. If your dog weighs over 75 pounds, the recommended dosage is three sticks. Also, some customers reported that the Zesty Paws did not affect their pets.
9. Dr. Oscar Dog Sleep Aid
While most melatonin products for dogs focus more on treating anxiety than sleeplessness, Dr. Oscar Dog Sleep Aid is designed to improve your dog’s sleeping habits. It contains lemon balm, ashwagandha, valerian root, and passionflower to treat agitation and relies on 3mg of melatonin to help with sleep. The manufacturer also claims that melatonin supports hair growth and can help treat pattern baldness and alopecia. However, Dr. Oscar’s pills are not designed to be used to keep animals calm during stressful events. The pills can take a long time to work, but the biggest concern is the consistency of the product’s color. Some customers would receive brown pills with one order but would get white ones on the next.
10. NaturVet Senior Advanced Calming Aid with Non-GMO Ingredients Dog Supplement
If you have a mature dog that scares easily and suffers from nervousness, you can try NaturVet Senior Advanced Calming Aid. The soft chews are designed for aging teeth, and the chamomile, thiamine, passionflower, l-tryptophan, and melatonin in the recipe help nervous dogs remain calm in stressful situations. NaturVet chews are made with non-GMO ingredients, and they’re safe for everyday use. Although the chews have beneficial components, they also contain unnecessary fat and starches such as canola oil and dried potato. The product’s biggest drawback is the flavor; several dogs could not benefit from the calming effects because they disliked the taste.
Buyer’s Guide – How to Purchase the Best Melatonin for Dogs
Dog owners have had success with melatonin as a sleep aid and anxiety reliever, but which product is right for your pet? Let’s look at some of the factors that may influence your decision.
We reviewed over-the-counter products, but you can also try prescription medication if your pet requires a pure dosage of melatonin. Each commercial melatonin product contains a message near the nutritional information that recommends visiting a veterinarian before administering the hormone to your dog. Because of the expense, many consumers purchase melatonin online without seeing a doctor.
Although the products are safe and produced in FDA-registered facilities, some brands contain additional substances that may be foreign to your pet’s diet. Checking with your vet first can prevent an adverse reaction to a previously unknown allergy. Your vet spends less time with your pet than you, but they know more about how a drug reacts with a canine’s body.
Image Credit: ESB Professional, Shutterstock
Each manufacturer seems to use a different quantity of melatonin in their products, and some of the marketing language on the product’s label and website can obscure the facts. The word “melatonin” is usually highlighted on every calming chew, liquid, and tablet, but sometimes, melatonin is an inactive ingredient with a tiny amount measured in micrograms.
The highest dosage we reviewed was 7mg, and the lowest was 20 mcg (Thunderwunders). According to Veterinarians.org, most vets prescribe dosages of 1.5 mg to small dogs under 25 pounds, 3mg to medium dogs under 99 pounds, and 6mg to dogs over 100 pounds. Since several commercial brands contain additional herbs and natural components, it may be challenging to determine which substance is helping your pup. However, the quantity of melatonin is less critical if the supplement helps your dog relax and sleep without interruption.
Active and Inactive Ingredients
Pet parents have had success with melatonin products that use the hormone as an active and inactive ingredient, but if your doctor recommends a melatonin regimen for your pet, look for brands that list melatonin as the active ingredient. Otherwise, the supplement may only contain a trace of the hormone that’s unlikely to have a profound effect on your pet’s behavior.
Milligrams vs. Micrograms
When you’re examining the supplements’ ingredients list, pay close attention to the units of measurement used. Five hundred micrograms (mcg) may sound like a lot, but it’s only 0.5 milligrams (mg). Although some manufacturers may seem like they’re being too stingy with the melatonin, it’s safer, legally and morally, to use a hormone sparingly until more testing has confirmed its effectiveness as a safe treatment for all breeds and ages.
Melatonin has helped many canines with anxiety and insomnia, and we hope you and your furry friend have success with one of the products from our reviews. Our top pick of the melatonin supplements was Zesty Paws Advanced Calming Bites. They’re one of the few brands that appealed to dogs’ taste buds and helped calm their behavior, and the grain-free formula is safer for dogs with allergies. Our next top choice was Pet Wellbeing Pet Melatonin Bacon Flavored liquid. Although this one is a bit pricey, dog owners were pleased with the results.
Lead Pet Expert & Pet-ditor in Chief
Nicole is the proud mom of Baby, a Burmese cat and Rosa, a New Zealand Huntaway. A Canadian expat, Nicole now lives on a lush forest property with her Kiwi husband in New Zealand. She has a strong love for all animals of all shapes and sizes (and particularly loves a good interspecies friendship) and wants to share her animal knowledge and other experts’ knowledge with pet lovers across the globe.
Melatonin for Dogs: Uses, Benefits and Dosage
Melatonin, a naturally occurring neurohormone, has long been thought to work as a sleeping aid in humans. Now there’s some evidence it may be useful for several canine conditions. Its sedative properties have been helpful in treating separation anxiety in dogs, as well as stress from noise like fireworks, thunderstorms or other noise phobias. According to Linda Aronson, DVM, who published a study in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, she has seen successful results in about 80 percent of canine patients treated with melatonin. Other evidence suggests that melatonin successfully treats some forms of hair loss in dogs (canine alopecia).
Is Melatonin Safe for My Dog?
While some pet owners like the natural properties of melatonin as opposed to chemical medications, you should talk to your veterinarian before deciding on a melatonin regimen. There has not been much study of its side effects and safety, nor has it been approved by the FDA for use in animals.
Side effects of melatonin in dogs, although rare, include:
- Changes in fertility
- Increased heart rate
However, if you and your vet determine that melatonin is a good option for your dog, you may find it treats a range of anxieties and phobias, as well as sleep problems.
How Much Melatonin Should I Give My Dog?
Even though melatonin is available over the counter, you should always confer with your veterinarian to determine the correct dosage. He may want you to use a specific prescription.
None of us like to see our canine pal suffer from having stress, fear, or anxiety. If you and your vet decide melatonin is worth a try, it may be just the thing to calm your dog and ease his fears.