What are the side effects of oral Valley Fever drugs (ketoconazole, itraconazole, and fluconazole) in dogs?
Ketoconazole (Nizoral) has the highest incidence of side effects. Loss of appetite is the most common and may be severe in some dogs. Others include lightening of the haircoat (may grey in blacks), vomiting, diarrhea, elevated liver enzymes, and reduced fertility of males. Giving the drug with food may reduce gastrointestinal side effects as well as improving absorption of the medicine. The coat color effects reverse with discontinuation of the medication (with the exception of a few black dogs this author has heard about that have remained grey). Liver enzymes are monitored by routinely testing your dog’s blood. If your veterinarian determines that they are significantly elevated, the medication may be stopped or the dose decreased. Itraconazole (Sporanox) may also cause lack of appetite and GI signs, though with less frequency than ketoconazole. It may increase liver enzymes. Occasionally, itraconazole can cause ulcerated lesions of the skin. If this happens, a reduction in dose may