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Abnormal Heart Rhythm in Dogs

3 min read



Treatment will be determined by any underlying disease that is found. Many dogs exhibit no clinical signs and require no treatment. In dogs without structural heart disease, heart rates as low as 40 to 50 bpm (beats per minute) are still generally able to provide normal cardiac output at rest. Therapeutic approaches vary markedly; they depend on what’s causing the SB, the ventricular rate, and the severity of clinical signs.


If your dog is in critical condition, it may be treated as an inpatient, where intravenous fluid therapy can be administered and the dog's health stabilized. Restrictions on activity will not be recommended unless your dog has symptomatic SB that is related to structural heart disease; then exercise restriction will be recommended until medical and/or surgical intervention can stabilize the problem.


Living and Management


Your physician will order further monitoring depending on the final diagnosis. Signs, if present, should resolve with correction of the causative underlying condition. However, the overall long term prognosis varies with the nature of the structural heart disease, if there is one present. For example, treatment of symptomatic SB with a permanent pacemaker generally offers a good prognosis for rhythm control.



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