Heart failure in dogs: symptoms

Heart failure or heart failure can be associated with various symptoms in a dog. These are caused by the fact that the dog's heart pumps too little blood into the circulatory system, so that there is an undersupply of oxygen in the body. Dogs with heart failure can show different symptoms - Image: Shutterstock / Arman Zhenikeyev

The symptoms of heart failure in dogs do not usually show up overnight, but appear as gradually as the disease develops. You should pay attention to these signals.

Heart failure: fatigue and poor physical condition

If a four-legged friend suffers from this dog disease, its general condition deteriorates. His resilience decreases and he is quickly out of breath when playing. Even on walks you notice the bad condition: instead of romping around, the dog often stops and can hardly be persuaded to continue.

It may be that he coughs during and after exertion or breathes unusually quickly (hyperventilated). He lies and sleeps a lot, looks constantly tired and probably eats worse than usual. The further the disease progresses, the more drastic the exhaustion becomes.

Physical symptoms of dog sickness

A dog with heart failure often shows bluish mucous membranes due to the lack of oxygen. Fainting spells, sometimes lasting only a few seconds, are also part of this. The reason for this is poor blood flow to the brain. Due to the lack of appetite, the dog with heart failure may lose weight. Accumulation of water in the legs and under the belly can increase the size of the body at the same time.

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Veterinary examination for heart failure

If you suspect heart failure, you should see a veterinarian as soon as possible. He can recognize a possible heart weakness from changes in the heart murmur before external symptoms become visible. If there is already an insufficiency, the veterinarian recognizes other symptoms such as water in the lungs or jammed veins. In addition, he will probably notice quieter heart sounds with background noise and a flat pulse.

The four-legged friend is first listened to for an accurate diagnosis; ECG (electrocardiogram), X-ray or cardiac ultrasound are then used. An early diagnosis and a quick start of treatment are extremely important for heart problems in order to avoid organ damage and to maintain the quality of life of your favorite.

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