Congestive heart failure is a life-threatening health problem. When something is wrong with the structure or function of the heart, this condition occurs. This article will discuss congestive heart failure in canines.

Forms

Failure comes in two forms. In some cases, the walls become thicker. This leads to reduced pumping efficiency. In other cases, the heart muscles become thinner. This causes the heart to enlarge.

When your dog’s heart enlarges, the left side starts pumping blood less efficiently. The heart will have to work harder to make up for reduced blood pumping efficiency. Heart failure results when the heart can no longer work hard enough to compensate.

Symptoms

While your dog’s heart is still able to compensate for reduced efficiency, he will show no signs of a problem. The early stages can last for a few months or years. Dogs with this condition get tired quickly and drool excessively. Your dog may also start to cough or pant excessively. Heart failure in canines also causes a bluish tongue and gray membranes in the mouth.

Diagnosis

The main method of diagnosis is an electrocardiogram. Any abnormalities in the heart will be detected through the electrocardiogram. Dogs with this disease may have an enlarged heart. An ultrasound can easily detect this. An x-ray of the chest is also commonly done.

Treatment

You will need to limit your dog’s sodium intake and exercise if he is diagnosed with congestive heart failure. Medications will also need to be given to increase the amount of calcium available to the muscles in the heart. The purpose of the calcium is to lower the heart rate and increase efficiency.

Diuretics may also be given to treat this disease. Diuretics will help reduce accumulation of fluid in the abdomen and lungs. ACE inhibitors will also help increase efficiency by tightening the blood vessels.

Your precious pet can be susceptible to canine illnesses. Fortunately, dog-illnesses.com provides a wealth of information on a range of these conditions. So, stop by today to learn about a wide range of these conditions.

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