Vetmedin (Pimobendan) for Dogs

Vetmedin containing the active ingredient ‘Pimobendan’ is a crucial veterinary drug administered to dogs diagnosed with CHF (congestive heart failure). Dogs suffer congestive heart failure as a result of dilated cardiomyopathy or valvular insufficiency.  USFDA or the US Food and Drug Administration has strictly recommended and approved Vetmedin for the treatment of CHF in dogs.

Pimobendan is marketed under the brand name Vetmedin and is available in the form of chewable tablets, chews, and capsules. Laboratory tests on veterinary Vetmedin have demonstrated the drug’s ability to slow down CHF symptoms which in turn aids in boosting the average lifetime or lifespan of dogs.

Vetmedin at a Glance

Brand Name


Generic Name


Drug Type


Is it FDA approved?





Only through prescription

Available forms

Chewable tablets


Is Vetmedin Safe for Dogs?

Clinical researchers have already ascertained that administering Vetmedin to dogs with congestive heart failure can help relieve symptoms. At the same time, this medication also enables dogs suffering from CHF to lead a better quality of life as well as live longer. However, giving Vetmedin to dogs with a preexisting heart condition such as aortic stenosis or hypertrophic cardiomyopathy may not be safe.

Also, Vetmedin is not recommended for dogs younger than 6 months or who have been diagnosed with diabetes mellitus or a congenital heart defect. Vetmedin may not be safe for lactating or pregnant bitches or dogs suffering from a grave metabolic disease.

How Does Vetmedin Work in Dogs?

Vets prescribe Vetmedin for dogs afflicted with CHF that is caused either by MVD (mitral valve disease) or DCM (dilated cardiomyopathy). This veterinary medicine is also administered to dogs suffering from asymptomatic MVD; the drug acts by delaying the occurrence of heart failure which eventually lets the dog live longer.

Vetmedin delays the onset (of CHF) by opening up the arteries and veins transporting blood to the heart and away from the organ. This medication by pumping blood to and from the heart helps ease the stress on the dog’s heart. Secondly by boosting the siphoning action, Vetmedin aids in enhancing and maintaining the vvigourand consistency of the dog’s pulse or heartbeat.

How Much Vetmedin to Offer to Your Dog?

The normal dosage of Vetmedin is 0.23mg/lb (0.5mg/kg) of the dog’s weight twhichis to be given orally every day. The most effective to administer this dosage is bto reak the tablet into two sections (not exactly half),and offer the portions maintaining a gap of 12 hours. The veterinarian or the pharmacist will help you in understanding the directions given on the label if yyou havea problem understanding them.

Vetmedin works best when you offer the drug to your dog on an empty stomach. The drug works very slowly as it usually takes about a week before you can distinguish a noticeable improvement in symptoms. In case you miss a dose, just make sure that you administer the next dose at the scheduled time.

Do not try to compensate tfor he missed dose by giving a bigger dose.

Side Effects of Vetmedin

If you notice any of side effects mentioned below, stop offering the medication, and get in touch with your vet immediately:-

  • Abrupt diarrheal onset, shock, vomiting, pale gums, and coma (allergic symptoms)
  • Other signs indicating the dog’s hypersensitiveness include urticaria (hives), swelling of the face, tongue or lips, difficulty in breathing
  • Reduced appetite
  • Lethargy (unwilling to go on walks and losing interest in activities)
  • Cough
  • Incoordination

Contraindications: When Not to Administer Vetmedin to Dogs

If you’re already offering medications to your dog for some health issue note that Vetmedin may interact with certain drugs. These medications include Propranolol (Inderal), Verapamil (Isoptin, Verelan, and Calan), Pentoxifylline (Trental), and Theophylline (Theo-Dur).

Keep in mind that Vetmedin is not safe for dogs that suffer from a heart ailment like hypertrophic cardiomyopathy or aortic stenosis that increases the heart’s output. Also if your dog is a pup less than 6 months old, then you should avoid administering the medication. Vetmedin is not at all recommended for lactating or pregnant dogs.

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