Canine Low Blood Pressure Symptoms

Low blood pressure also known as hypotension is a condition that may be idiopathic, but may also be caused by severe blood loss or trauma. The normal blood pressure in canines is 133/75 mmHg on average. As you may not have the means to measure your pet’s blood pressure, you should know how to recognize low blood pressure symptoms that require veterinary attention.

What Causes Low Blood Pressure in Dogs

Dogs may have a decrease in the blood pressure due to several factors ranging from trauma, blood loss to kidney problems. Thyroid issues as well as a weak heart muscle may also cause hypotension.

There are specific medications that may decrease the blood pressure.

In some cases, the decrease in blood pressure has unknown causes.

Symptoms of Canine Low Blood Pressure

The low blood pressure will result in less oxygen and nutrients carried to the internal organs and there will be specific symptoms; some symptoms may be subtle, while others may be more severe. Some dogs may show no symptoms and the low blood pressure may be detected during a routine checkup.

Sudden Fainting or Collapse

When a dog has a low blood pressure, the brain cells don’t receive enough oxygen and the dog may experience sudden fainting or collapse.

It may also happen that the dog will lose his balance when standing up.


A dog with hypotension will be lethargic; this is due to the fact that the body doesn’t receive enough oxygen and nutrients.

Pale Gum and Mucous Membranes

Normally, the gums and the mucous membranes of the dog should be pink. When the dog has low blood pressure, the gums and the mucous membranes will be paler. This is due to the fact that there is not enough blood pumped in the dog’s body.

Heart Problems

The dog may experience chest pain and even a heart attack, which is due to the fact that the pressure of the blood is too low to pump sufficient blood to the coronary arteries.

Increased Thirst

The dog will drink more water than usual, due to the fact that the toxins in the blood will be eliminated at a slower rate, as the kidneys won’t work properly (due to the lack of sufficient blood). Consequently, the kidneys and the liver will not remove the toxins efficiently and the dog will drink water attempting to flush out the toxins.

Low Blood Pressure Treatment

The vet will measure the dog’s blood pressure and establish the severity of the condition. The vet will also look for additional symptoms that may point to an underlying cause.

If the dog has lost blood, he should receive blood transfusions. Fluid therapy may also be recommended.

If the condition is not severe and the vet doesn’t detect any underlying causes, treatment may not be necessary. However, if the blood pressure is very low, the condition should be treated as it may lead to anemia and organ failure.