Pet Health: What You Need to Know

Pet Health: What You Need to Know

Signs Your Dog May Need Vet Care For A Heart Problem

Connor Hawkins

Dogs, not unlike humans, are prone to a number of heart conditions. However, dogs cannot talk and tell their owners that something feels wrong with their hearts. So, as an owner, it is important for you to be on the lookout for these signs of heart trouble so you can get your dog the necessary vet care.

Frequent Exhaustion 

Some dogs have more stamina than others, but it is unusual for a dog to get tired after just walking across the room or playing in the yard for a few minutes. If your dog seems to get tired easily or seems like they are always fatigued, this could be a sign of a heart problem. The dog will feel tired if their lungs and muscles are not getting the oxygen they need through blood flow.

Swelling of the Belly and Extremities

Sometimes when dogs' bellies suddenly become large and distended, owners assume they've put on weight. But when the belly swells this quickly, it is generally because it is full of fluid. You may also notice fluid accumulation in the extremities. For example, your dog's legs and paws may swell much larger than their usual size. This generally means the heart is not pumping enough to draw fluid back into the veins. It's accumulating in the tissues instead. Congestive heart failure is a likely culprit, and a vet can diagnose it with some blood tests and imaging.


Coughing may seem like a strange sign of heart trouble, but it's actually quite a common one. If your dog is coughing without having other signs of a cold, it may be because fluid is building up in their lungs due to poor circulation and a weak heart. This, again, is often due to congestive heart failure.


Has your dog ever collapsed suddenly? They may have rested for a few minutes and then gotten back up, but the collapse is nevertheless a cause for concern. It could have been caused by a seizure, but it could also have been due to a heart attack. Either problem really deserves a vet's attention.

Heart problems are more common in older dogs, but they can truly affect dogs at any age. If you think your dog may have a heart problem, make a vet appointment ASAP. Seeking prompt care may make all of the difference in your dog's ability to recover in the long run.

Contact a local vet to learn more about pet care.


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Pet Health: What You Need to Know

Whether you have had a pet cat for years or you just bought a new fish tank filled with fish for your children, you likely enjoy learning more about your favorite animals and how you can help keep them in good health. We created this website to help pet owners like you learn more about their beloved pets healthcare needs. We plan to post the answers to many of your pet health-related questions on this website, such as how to choose the right food for your fish, how to encourage your indoor cat to exercise when they need to lose a pound or two, and how to know when your dog's strange behavior may signal an illness. If you cannot find the answers to your pet health questions here, we hope you can use our resources to find the answers elsewhere.