Causes of Canine Heartbeat Arrhythmias
Cardiac arrhythmias involve abnormal electrical activity in heart muscle. They can be caused by congenital heart abnormalities, genetic factors, environmental stresses, infections, injuries, ingestion of toxins, underlying heart disease, breed predisposition and many other contributing factors. Arrhythmias happen in dogs of all ages and breeds, including mixed breeds, and in males and females alike.
Preventing Heartbeat Arrhythmias
Because the potential causes of heartbeat irregularities are so varied, there is no simple way to prevent them. Good dietary management, regular exercise and annual veterinary check-ups will go a long way to keeping companion dogs fit and sound.
It is important for owners to remember that, as with murmurs, heartbeat abnormalities often go undetected for years, and many dogs never show signs of discomfort or distress. Moreover, heart arrhythmias often can be managed with medication and lifestyle changes.