Enalapril for Cats

Enalapril is one of many medicines that is designed to help reduce the chances of a patient suffering from heart failure due to obstruction of the blood vessels and other cardiovascular passages. It is an example of an ACE inhibitor drug, which are commonly used among humans and animals alike. If your pet suffers from high blood pressure or is otherwise at risk of developing heart failure, your vet may recommend the use of enalapril in order to help maintain his health.

Enalapril Overview

Enalapril works by limiting the amount of buildup that can occur in blood vessels. By reducing this buildup, the blood vessels do not constrict as much as they otherwise would, and the blood pressure is kept at a lower level. This in turn helps to reduce the likelihood of a heart failure episode. Enalapril is oftentimes known by its brand name drug formulation name, Enacard.

Enalapril is formulated for use in both humans and animals. However, Enacard is the only medicine of this type that has been approved specifically for veterinary use. Therefore, you'll need to speak with your vet about getting a prescription for Enacard if you're interested in treating your pet's heart failure or high blood pressure with a drug based on enalapril.

Using Enalapril for Your Pet

Enalapril is provided in tablet form. These tablets range in size and oftentimes need to be cut into smaller pieces for your pet. In order to determine the dosage that your pet should receive, your vet will use certain statistics like his weight, his overall health and other underlying conditions, his blood pressure levels and more. Generally, cats receive up to one quarter of a milligram of enalapril given orally once or twice per day. Be sure to follow your vet's instructions for dosing in order to have the best results for your pet.

Risks and Side Effects of Enalapril

Although enalapril and other ACE inhibitors are typically given alongside a variety of other medicines in order to have their effects augmented in various ways, it's important that you always operate under the careful attention of your vet. Be sure to tell your vet of any and all other medicines that your pet is taking before you begin to give him a drug containing enalapril. You should also inform your vet about other health issues from which your pet suffers, as certain conditions may preclude him from receiving enalapril.

Generally, enalapril is safe for use in cats. In some cases, it can cause a few side effects. These typically include:

  • Vomiting
  • Weakness
  • Lethargy
  • Changes in patterns of urination
  • Loss of appetite

It's important to report any and all of these side effects to your vet as soon as you notice them. It may be necessary to adjust your pet's medicine dose in these cases. Additionally, it's possible that these side effects are signs of an allergic reaction which must be treated promptly in order to keep your pet's health safe.