Benazepril for Dogs

If your dog is suffering from heart failure or is at a great risk for a condition like heart failure, benazepril may be one of the best ways to help address this issue. Benazepril is an example of an ACE inhibitor drug. These medicines are responsible for limiting the production of those chemicals in your pet's body which constrict the blood vessels. By preventing the blood vessels from being constricted, benazepril helps to protect your pet from high blood pressure, hypertension, and a variety of other conditions that are linked to heart failure and other cardiac problems.

Benazepril Overview

Benazepril is available as a human formulated drug. This means that the medicines which feature this particular active ingredient have been tested on and approved for use in humans only. However, vets routinely prescribe medicines containing benazepril to dogs that are suffering from heart conditions as well, as the medicine can be recommended as an extra label drug. One of the most common brand name formulations of the medicine is called Fortekor.

Benazepril works as a vasodilator, meaning that its effect is one of relaxation and expansion of the blood vessels. In addition to its benefits for the heart and cardiovascular system, benazepril can also help to reduce the levels of certain toxins in the blood, and therefore help to slow down the progression of kidney malfunction as well.

Using Benazepril for Your Dog

Oftentimes, vets recommend combining benazepril along with other medicines in order to provide a holistic control of your pet's heart failure or other issues. In many cases, benazepril will be combined with a diuretic in order to help flush dangerous toxins from your pet's system.

Benazepril is available in tablet form. It is usually administered along with food or treats and given around the time of meals. The standard dosage of the medicine is typically between .1 to .3 milligrams per pound. Therefore, the exact amount of the medicine that you'll need to give to your pet at each dosing is dependent upon his:

  • weight
  • size
  • health condition
  • other drugs in his system

Most benazepril administrations are given once per day.

Risks and Side Effects of Using Benazepril

Benazepril is generally safe in dogs when prescribed by a veterinarian. It's important, however, to inform your vet of any and all other medicines which are in your pet's system before you give him benazepril. Benazepril can interact negatively with drugs like non steroidal anti inflammatory medicines, so it's necessary to be sure that no such negative reaction will occur.

The most commonly noted side effects associated with benazepril include the following:

  • Changes in urination schedule
  • Increased thirst
  • Low blood pressure
  • Lethargy
  • Weakness
  • Vomiting

The most serious of these concerns is usually an overdosing of the medicine, which can lead to dangerously low blood pressure. Be sure to have your vet regularly check up on your pet while he's taking benazepril in order to be sure that the dosage is the correct amount.