In addition to lowering blood pressure and treating fluid retention, Lasix is a diuretic drug. Could Lasix cause your dog to die?
My vet prescribed Lasix to my dog for 4 days because of a swollen foot. Since then, the swelling has gone down. She began having seizures within four days of taking the water pill. There were three in total.
She died from the third seizure. I held her during her last moments. This is a tragic loss that will never be forgotten. Upon learning of her death, I did some research online and found numerous people who had died suddenly while taking Lasix or were killed by it. A person reported that their dog died suddenly due to an enlarged heart caused by Lasix.
The vet prescribed this medication to my dog for years, and I trusted him. Her kidneys were deteriorating, but she was doing well up until last year. When she came back from the vet, she was sick and lethargic again. She underwent bloodwork and was prescribed a new supply of Lasix. Unfortunately, she died after about two weeks.”
Sophie, my 9-year-old Papillon, died last night. It is a very sad day for me. Despite her age, she was a very devoted dog to me. Congestive heart failure was diagnosed after she became ill suddenly last week. To help her breathe better, the vet prescribed Lasix, but it made her so tired that she just laid on the floor all day.
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Dogs’ heart failure causes
There are two main causes of heart failure in dogs: chronic valvular disease, which typically affects older, small animals, and dilated cardiomyopathy, which usually affects large and giant animals. Although there is no clear cause for these conditions, heredity plays an important role.
In the United States, approximately 10 percent of dogs whose primary care veterinarians see suffer from heart disease. There are 75 percent of dogs with chronic valvular disease – slightly more males than females.
One of the heart’s valves slowly deteriorates and is no longer able to stop blood from flowing backward. Between the left atrium and left ventricle, the mitral valve is frequently involved. Cattle breeds, miniature and toy poodles, Chihuahuas, Yorkshire terriers, schnauzers, and Cavalier King Charles spaniels are at the greatest risk of extinction.
Often, a heart murmur is the first sign. With deteriorating valves and increased blood flow backward, the sound becomes louder over time. The dog often experiences outward symptoms of this disease years before an experienced veterinarian is able to detect it with a stethoscope.
The American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine charged a panel of 10 cardiologists with developing a consensus statement due to conflicting information and unanswered questions.
Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine, November/December 2009, published a report entitled “Guidelines for the Diagnosis and Treatment of Canine Chronic Valvular Heart Disease.”. The panel divided the disease into four progressive stages and provided treatment recommendations for each stage. Ask your veterinarian to consult the report if your dog has been diagnosed with this disease.
According to Sonya Gordon, DVM, of the Texas A&M University College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, dogs with murmurs should be staged by X-ray … so that we can keep a close watch on their health and detect heart disease when it’s in its very early stages, thus preventing emergency room visits.
Lasix side effects in dogs: what are they?
When Lasix is taken at the recommended dosage, side effects are rare. Diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, and fainting may occur as a result of low blood pressure. Urination may also become more frequent as well.
In addition, if you exceed the recommended dosage or if your pet has an underlying illness, additional side effects may occur. Excessive thirst, muscle weakness, vomiting, seizures, and coma are symptoms of severe reactions. Call your veterinarian immediately if your pet exhibits any of these symptoms after taking Lasix.
The medication should not be given to pets who are allergic to it or similar medications. Furthermore, pregnant or nursing animals should only be treated under the supervision of a veterinarian.
Supporting dogs with congestive heart failure with nutrition
In order to maintain circulatory health, vitamins, minerals, enzymes, and other nutrients are vital.
The 1940s were the era of vitamins, with Drs. Wilfrid and Evan Shute, who were brothers, investigated vitamin E’s effects on the heart for 40 years. In addition to his research on humans, Wilfrid Shute was also a Doberman Pinscher breeder and judge. Vitamin E soon improved the health of dogs worldwide due to his efforts.
Wendell O. Belfield, DVM, reported many dramatic cases in his classic book How to Have a Healthier Dog. In 1945, Dr. N. H. Lambert in Dublin, Ireland, learned of the Shute brothers’ work and began giving vitamin E to dogs.
The first dog, a nine-year-old Griffon, had an inflammatory uterine condition and was dying from heart disease. There had been no success with conventional treatment. Dr. Belfield reports that she made a spectacular recovery once placed on vitamin E. “Lambert reported that she lived for another six years once she was on vitamin E.
According to him, one of the benefits of vitamin E in the prevention of excessive scarring.
Another important nutrient for heart health is vitamin C, which supports collagen, elastin, and other connective tissue production and helps stabilize blood vessel walls. Congestive heart failure is considered by some doctors to be a type of scurvy caused by a lack of vitamin C. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant and speeds wound healing throughout the body, including small lesions and wounds within blood vessels.
Vitamin C is also a cofactor for enzymes (biological catalysts) which improve cholesterol and triglyceride metabolism.
Among all the health-promoting vitamins, vitamin B compounds are perhaps the most important, especially vitamin B4, which has never been recognized as essential for human health, despite animal studies showing it produces congestive heart failure if it is withheld. Wheat germ, yeast, and liver contain vitamin B4.
Bruce West, DC, has treated thousands of patients with congestive heart failure with nutrition instead of drugs for the past 20 years. His explanation of how congestive heart failure develops is applicable to both humans and dogs. In most cases, he says, the cause is beriberi of the heart or American beriberi.
A deficiency in B vitamins can cause nerve conductivity problems, weakness, and muscle paralysis. A congestive heart failure occurs when the nerves that conduct impulses to the heart are compromised, and the heart muscle becomes almost paralyzed, cutting off its ability to pump blood.
He recommends eating foods rich in nutrients such as B-vitamins and nutrients that are essential for a healthy circulatory system. The benefits of these supplements are different from prescription drugs because they provide the nutrients whose deficiency caused the damage in the first place.
It is not impossible for canine patients to stop taking their prescription drugs or diuretics within a year if they follow Dr. West’s protocols. He points out that heart drugs can prolong life when they are no longer needed, but they can also cause serious damage to the heart and kidneys and should be discontinued.
According to the prescriber’s philosophy, dosage recommendations can vary greatly. Orthomolecular medicine practitioners treat heart disease and other conditions with very high doses of synthetic vitamins.
Among the supplements recommended by Pat Lazarus in Keep, Your Pet Healthy the Natural Way to treat canine heart disease are 400,000 International Units (IU) of water-soluble vitamin A, 20 to 25 grams of vitamin C, and 4,000 to 6,000 IU of water-soluble vitamin E. High doses of synthetic vitamins have a drug-like effect and should be administered under professional supervision.
Supplements containing whole foods rather than synthetic vitamins or isolated nutrients are at the opposite end of the spectrum. Even though they contain only minute amounts of individual nutrients, whole-food supplements like those made by Standard Process and Wysong offer a complete range of vitamins, including vitamins C, B, and other families. Supplements derived from foods are readily absorbed and utilized, do not have side effects, and repair damaged tissues synergistically.
A popular supplement is a taurine (an amino acid) or L-carnitine (an amino acid). Both are known to help strengthen the heart muscle, increase its output, and reduce swelling. For CHF, these amino acids are usually prescribed at doses of up to 10 mg per pound of body weight when combined with high-quality protein.
CHF is treated with Coenzyme Q10. Holistic practitioners use Coenzyme Q10 for many heart ailments. CoEnzyme Q10 (generally written as CoQ10 and pronounciated “coe-cue-ten”) is a vitamin-like compound that strengthens the heart muscle and increases immune function.
Stephen Blake, a veterinarian in San Diego (see “Holistic Veterinarians Propose Other CHF Causes and Treatments” sidebar at end of story), prescribes one milligram of oil-based CoQ10 per pound of body weight per day, or two milligrams of powdered CoQ10 per pound of body weight per day for his canine CHF patients.
For dogs fed grain-based commercial diets, essential fatty acids (EFAs) can be a valuable supplement. EFA supplements that provide fish oils (marine lipids) correct deficiencies and balances of EFAs in the body, which improves heart function.
Minerals: The most important minerals for maintaining heart health are found in raw bones. Raw bone diets provide dogs with these minerals on a daily basis. In addition to supporting the contraction of muscle cells in the heart, calcium contributes to the conduction of nerve impulses that trigger heartbeats.
Calcium and magnesium work together to strengthen the heart, and magnesium helps normalize an irregular heartbeat. It is also crucial to have trace elements like zinc, manganese, copper, selenium, chromium, molybdenum, and boron, but these are needed only in smaller quantities.
There are many supplements that contain all of these essential nutrients, including Calcifood, Min-Tran, Organic Minerals from Standard Process, or Wysong’s Orgamin and Chelamin. For additional support, powdered kelp and liquid colloidal minerals can be added to food (12 teaspoons per 30 pounds of body weight).
Wobenzym and Nutrizyme, for example, are systemic oral enzyme products which can be used to repair damage to the heart and other organs, especially when inflammation plays a role. An enterically coated digestive enzyme, taken on an empty stomach between meals, is known as a systemic oral enzyme.
According to Green, instead of staying in the stomach to digest food, enzymes circulate through the body to reduce inflammation, break down scar tissue, and restore healthy tissue.
This therapy reduces inflammation quickly, within a matter of days or even hours, while scar tissue is removed more slowly. Even at large doses and over a long period of time, these products have been proven safe.
Dogs with dilated cardiomyopathy
Having dilated cardiomyopathy, a progressive weakening of the heart muscle is the second leading cause of heart failure. It is common for both right and left ventricles to be affected, but the left-sided disease is usually more severe. When a heart chamber grows in size, its walls are thin. During contraction, the chamber slowly loses its elasticity, just as a rubber band does when stretched too much.
As a result, fluids back up, which exacerbates heart failure symptoms, which typically appear between 4 and 10 years of age. Doberman pinschers and boxers are the most susceptible dogs, followed by those weighing more than 50 pounds. Newfoundlands, Irish wolfhounds, and Great Danes are also at risk.
Several environmental factors influence the age at which dilated cardiomyopathy begins and how quickly it progresses, according to Dr. Cunningham. There is still a lot we don’t know about the genetic basis for the disease. There’s also no way to tell, often, what causes one dog to get it at the age of 2 and another to get it at the age of 10.”
The reason dogs don’t show easily recognizable symptoms for months or years despite having dilated cardiomyopathy and valvular disease is that their bodies compensate in other ways, such as constricting blood vessels, quickening heartbeats, and instructing the kidneys to hold on to salt and water to expand blood volume. As a result of these physiological tweaks, blood pressure is kept constant so that vessels will keep coursing with blood and supply blood to the organs.
As a result of increased blood volume, fluid accumulates and the workload of the heart increases, ultimately making it more difficult for the heart to pump blood. A dog’s condition generally worsens as a result of short-term fixes.
CHF in dogs: Diagnosis and Treatment
Veterinarians listen for irregularities in your dog’s lungs and heart with a stethoscope, as well as check his blood pressure, which may be too low or too high, to diagnose CHF.
An X-ray of the chest will help to check for fluid accumulation in the lungs, an electrocardiogram to measure the electrical activity of the heart, blood tests to monitor the progress of the disease and the effects of medication on the body, and an echocardiogram to examine the heart’s structure and performance using sound waves.
In a new blood test, a protein known as NTproBNP can be detected. This protein is released into the bloodstream in the presence of significant heart disease and in greater amounts in heart failure. Diagnosing heart failure and detecting early asymptomatic dilated cardiomyopathy is possible with this test.
It may not be necessary to perform these tests or others at the same time, but expenses can add up. The cost of an echocardiogram at Cummings School is about $250 and of an X-ray about $180. There is a $2000 charge for dogs who go to the emergency room already in heart failure.
How to make your dog’s heart happy with herbs
Some of the herbs known to support heart health can be used with dogs.
It is gentle, non-toxic, effective, and nonaddictive. Hawthorn’s flavonoids increase coronary blood flow while slightly increasing heartbeat force; they stabilize the pulse, increase the heart’s tolerance to oxygen deprivation, and enhance cerebral blood flow.
In order to maximize its effectiveness, hawthorn should be taken over a long period, such as a few months or years. In every animal species tested, hawthorn has shown extremely low toxicity when used for extended periods. The label instructions for hawthorn preparations sold for humans can be adapted to fit the weight of dogs.
Garlic is another herb that’s extremely beneficial for the heart. Antioxidants and cholesterol balance are improved when garlic is consumed. Every type of garlic preparation (fresh, dried, cooked, raw, aged, or extracted) has its supporters, and there is much debate about what type of garlic is the best.
Despite its rarity, garlic thins the blood and shouldn’t be used by dogs with bleeding disorders due to its effects. Otherwise, you can take it in “courses” of five days per week with two days off, stopping for a week, then returning with occasional breaks of a month or more.
Another culinary herb with cardiotonic properties is cayenne pepper (Capsicum annuum), which aids in stopping internal bleeding, relieving pain, strengthening tissues, and improving circulation. It is easy to administer cayenne capsules in food and they are widely available.
In addition to ginkgo, gotu kola, rosemary, and bilberry, there are other tonic herbs that benefit the circulatory system.
Dandelions (Taraxacum officinale) and milk thistle seeds (Silybum marianum) provide liver support, which is very important in congestive heart failure.
The best way to ensure the best results for your dog is to work with a veterinary herbalist to determine which herbs will benefit him, adjust the dosages, and monitor his response.
You may be able to reduce your dog’s conventional medications if you are successful in providing nutritional support or herbal medicines. You must consult your veterinarian before doing this. Find a holistic veterinarian in your area by contacting the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association.
How to treat congestive heart failure in dogs
Veterinary professionals focus on alleviating symptoms and delaying the progression of heart failure by eliminating excess fluids from the body.
These medications are usually combined. Furosemide, for example, blocks the kidneys from retaining salt and water, causing dogs to urinate more frequently; ACE inhibitors such as enalapril, which reduce blood vessel constriction and enhance furosemide’s effectiveness; and pimobendan, which increases the force of heart contractions and dilates blood vessels.
Dog owners and breeders, including Barb Hoorman of Plano, Texas, who breeds Cavalier King Charles spaniels, have hailed pimobendan a “wonder drug” since it was approved for use in 2007 by the Food and Drug Administration. Both Stormy and Midori, ten-year-old spaniels at the time, went into heart failure two weeks apart in 2002.
As part of her breeding protocol, she has them screened every year at Texas A&M. Dr. Gordon was conducting the first pimobendan clinical trial in the United States and asked her if she was interested. Hoorman says her dogs started acting like puppies again after 36 hours. She says, “It was just amazing.”. The drug saved her life.
Several large retailers, including Walmart and Target, offer drug programs that allow prescriptions for four dollars at their pharmacies for generics such as furosemide and enalapril. The only reason Pimobendan is more expensive is that it is sold under a different name, Vetmedin.
For furosemide and enalapril combined, owners can expect to pay about $12 a month, and for pimobendan they can expect to spend about $60 a month. Every three or four months, veterinary visits cost $200 to $300.
Beta blockers may also be recommended by the veterinarian. Dogs have not been tested for their effectiveness, despite the fact that they improve heart failure prognoses in people. As well as natural supplements such as amino acids or omega-3 fatty acids, veterinarians may prescribe them, since they have been shown to benefit dogs.
There are currently few surgical options for dogs with heart failure. Previously performing heart bypass surgery at Cummings School and other universities have ceased. For the procedure and hospitalization alone, the cost can range from $10,000 to $15,000. Many dogs are simply too small for the operation, and the mortality rate may range from 20 to 30 percent.
The combination of medicines and a diet with moderate sodium, as well as regular veterinarian visits, allowed Stormy to live until he was 12 and Midori to live until she was 13 – considerably longer than the reported six-to-nine-month survival time for dogs with heart failure.
According to Dr. Cunningham, a lot of the factors affecting survival in dogs are dependent on the owner. “There are some dogs that live for 12, 15, 18 months after diagnosis,” he said. They have owners who are very committed to their dogs.
Can Lasix kill a dog?
A dog can die from Lasix. Lasix (the active ingredient) can be toxic when given in large amounts accidentally. Severe toxicity may cause severe dehydration and damage to vital organs such as the heart, kidneys, and brain. In the absence of supportive care, these problems may result in death. Lasix is typically prescribed by veterinarians to treat conditions such as congestive heart failure, pulmonary edema, and other cases in which fluid buildup might be dangerous to their health or lives.
What are the last stages of congestive heart failure in dogs?
This is the final stage of CHF in dogs. They have difficulty breathing even at rest. Fluid can accumulate in various body parts, leading to swollen legs or belly, causing difficulty walking. Vomiting is also possible.
Should I put my dog down if he has congestive heart failure?
In the case of a pet with congestive heart failure or brain cancer – diseases that, left untreated, will lead to a painful death – euthanasia may be recommended sooner rather than later.
Do dogs suffer when they have congestive heart failure?
The symptoms of congestive heart failure may include coughing, difficulty breathing, fatigue, loss of appetite, or sudden death. The underlying cause of congestive heart failure can be reversed with treatment, and medications can relieve its symptoms.
How can I make my dog comfortable with congestive heart failure?
Reduce fluid build-up in your dog’s body with a commercial or prescription low-salt diet. You should limit your dog’s activity to keep her weight under control without overworking her heart.
How do dogs act when they’re dying?
The way they act when they’re dying often changes. Dogs will experience different changes depending on the breed, but as long as there is change, it is a good thing. In some dogs, restlessness causes them to wander around the house and appear incapable of settling down. In others, they will remain motionless for long periods of time.
Is dying of congestive heart failure painful?
The heart stops pumping blood, and hence oxygen, to the brain within an hour after an attack, resulting in death in more than half of those with heart disease. A slower, more painful death is caused by chronic congestive heart failure.
Will my dog know he is being put to sleep?
My dog had lymphoma really bad so we had to put him down. According to our veterinarian, he was close to death. Dogs are unconscious during the process of being put to sleep, so they do not know that they will be put down and what will happen to them afterward.
Can I take my dog off of furosemide?
Once your patient starts to breathe comfortably, don’t discontinue furosemide and then taper down. Furosemide is always required for dogs with heart failure. Two milligrams of furosemide per kilogram per day is usually sufficient for maintenance.
Can furosemide cause kidney failure in dogs?
The drug may temporarily increase the amount of blood flowing to the kidneys, but it doesn’t improve kidney function and may put the animal at risk for dehydration or electrolyte imbalances.
Can furosemide cause coughing in dogs?
Furosemide (also known as Lasix or Salix) may worsen a worsening cough in dogs with heart failure who are on the drug.
How often can I give my dog furosemide?
Usually, Furosemide Tablets are taken at a dosage of 1 to 2 mg/lb body weight (about 2.5 to 5 mg/kg). Generally, Furosemide Tablets are taken at a dose of 1 to 2 mg/lb body weight (2.4 to 5.5 mg/kg). A quick diuresis usually results from the initial treatment. Take once or twice daily at intervals of six to eight hours.
How long do dogs live after being diagnosed with congestive heart failure?
Many affected animals are likely to die of an unrelated disease since degenerative mitral valve disease is a progressive disease with a slow onset of clinical signs. The survival time for patients with congestive heart failure is expected to be between six and fourteen months once they have developed the condition.
Does furosemide make dogs thirsty?
It can make your pet feel weak and cause increased thirst and urination. Symptoms may go away in a few days if they’re mild. A veterinarian should be consulted if the symptoms are severe or do not go away.
Can furosemide damage the kidneys?
Some medical conditions can be treated with furosemide, but it can cause serious side effects, including kidney damage. There are several factors that influence how severe the damage will be, including how healthy the dog is, the dosage, and the duration of use.
Can Lasix cause pancreatitis?
Furosemide, like other diuretics, can cause acute pancreatitis, dehydration, and electrolyte imbalance. Pancreatitis may be caused by other factors in addition to furosemide.
Does Lasix decrease appetite in dogs?
Dogs do not lose their appetite while taking Lasix. In addition to making the dog urinate more frequently and drink more water, Lasix does not reduce the dog’s appetite.
Is my dog suffering from fluid in his lungs?
The following symptoms can help you determine if your dog is experiencing fluid in the lungs: Persistent cough, Rapid breathing, Gagging or wheezing, difficulty breathing, increased heart rate, and Lethargy/depression.
In dogs, the most likely cause of fluid in the lungs is heart disease, followed by cancer and infections. Dogs who cough frequently have fluid in the lungs. A persistent cough in your dog should be evaluated by a veterinarian.
Is Lasix hard on dogs kidneys?
It is not recommended to treat kidney disease with furosemide. Although it temporarily increases blood flow to the kidneys, it does not improve kidney function and may increase the risk of dehydration or electrolyte imbalances in the animal.
Is there an alternative to Lasix for dogs?
The treatment of advanced congestive heart failure in dogs and cats could be improved by the use of torsemide, a novel, and more potent diuretic than furosemide. As with furosemide, torsemide targets the thick ascending loop of Henle to promote renal excretion of sodium, chloride, and water.
How much Lasix can a dog take?
For dogs, furosemide should be administered one to four times a day at a dose of 1 to 3 mg per pound (2 to 6 mg/kg). A dose of 0.5 to 2 mg per pound (1 to 4 mg/kg) one to three times a day is recommended for cats. It depends on how the medication is responding, how long it needs to be administered, and if there are any negative effects that occur.
What are the side effects of too much Lasix?
In addition to dehydration, low blood volume, low potassium, and severe electrolyte depletion, Lasix overdose can cause severe dehydration. Excessive thirst, extreme weakness, sweating, hot or dry skin, muscle cramps, altered heart rhythm, nausea, vomiting, and fainting are all symptoms of an overdose.
Will Lasix help my dogs breathing?
Lasix seems to have some bronchodilator effects as well. Even if the dog is not suffering from heart failure, Lasix may improve their respiratory signs.
Does Lasix make dogs sleepy?
Furosemide is a diuretic drug and is effective in treating kidney problems. Similar to other diuretics, the drug can cause hypokalemia, low potassium levels in the blood, which can affect nerves, muscles, and the heart. Hypernatremia is caused by low sodium levels in the blood, which can cause lethargy, fits, and brain damage.
Does Lasix remove fluid from lungs?
Furosemide (Lasix) is a diuretic prescribed to decrease the pressure caused by excess fluid in your heart and lungs.
Reviews of Lasix
Dogs suffering from heart failure can benefit from Lasix, an effective diuretic. For years now, veterinarians have used this medication for treating congestive heart failure, pulmonary edema, ascites, cirrhosis of the liver, kidney disease, and hypertension.
It is a crucial part of their dog’s treatment plan, according to Lasix reviews. It is likely that this is the first drug prescribed for your dog if it has been diagnosed with congestive heart failure. Even though there are other drugs that can treat fluid retention as well, Lasix is so effective that it can be taken along with or without those other medicines.
According to reviews of Lasix, the drug stops frequent urination and symptoms of incontinence in dogs. As well as curing hypoproteinemia, edema, and ascites, they claim it is also effective.
Most reviewers said their dogs enjoyed the taste of the medication, so they had a much easier time administering it.
When used incorrectly or for too long, this medication reduces fluid retention but can cause dehydration.