Fast Breathing 6 Month Old

Soly20

New Member
Hi everyone,

I have recently noticed my 6 month old male doberman has been sometimes breathing fast while lying down. I have counted the breaths a few times and it is over 100 breaths per minute. I am freaking out. He is like that now as I am writing this. Is it something normal, he is lying down on his side and eyes closed. he fast breathing osis obvious. He has been like that for the past 10 minutes. He was outside earlier, running around, doing his normal things. He drank water before coming in. I am in the UK, so not too hot yet. Otherwise, he is a normal dog.

What do you think?
 

Ravenbird

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That would be high for a resting rate, but if he just came in from running around, it might be normal. If he does this at other times of the day when there is no exercise involved, I'd get him checked out at the vet.
 

Soly20

New Member
That would be high for a resting rate, but if he just came in from running around, it might be normal. If he does this at other times of the day when there is no exercise involved, I'd get him checked out at the vet.
He was at the vet 2 days ago for an unrelated issue (foot was hurt). She listened to his heart she said all good there. She gave him an anti inflammatory for his foot pain and know he is all good after 2 doses.
 

Ddski5

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My 4 y/o black male did this in his younger years and still does sometimes. But then again, it’s hot here in Louisiana and the sun tires him out quickly. That asshat will run until his eyes pop out of his head.

Vet has never said anything of concern.

Read up on DCM. Dilated Cardiomyopathy.
 

Soly20

New Member
My 4 y/o black male did this in his younger years and still does sometimes. But then again, it’s hot here in Louisiana and the sun tires him out quickly. That asshat will run until his eyes pop out of his head.

Vet has never said anything of concern.

Read up on DCM. Dilated Cardiomyopathy.
I have read about DCM, it nearly never shows in dogs less than a year old. My guy turned 6 months a week ago. I don't know, maybe it is hot today. 21C (70F) for England is considered hot i guess.
 

Rits

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How long ago was he outside to when he was breathing fast? Is he still breathing fast?
 

Kaiser2016

Well-Known Member
He drank water before coming in.
The most I let my dog have after exercise is a sip if that. It’s probably just the heat, 20 seems to be the upper limit for my male as he definitely prefers cooler temps. Also remember that dogs body temp is higher than ours plus I think his black coat has an impact. Regardless the temperature, you will want to restrict eating and drinking before and after exercise.
 

Kswoodssue

Member
When he does that, I would wake him and see if the episode continues while awake. My pup chases bunnies in her sleep too. Make sure there is no blood in his stools or urine. Lack of oxygen can be due to dehydration, low blood volume/internal bleeding, heat exhaustion, insufficient cardiac output. After an injury in a human, I might wonder about pulmonary embolism or blood thinning effects of anti-inflammatories. All of these things require medical intervention…except for bunnies. Will pray for the best.
 

Ddski5

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Ohh….
Is he actually sleeping?? or just lying down?

If sleeping, then definitely dreaming- my two actually key off each other when sleeping, one barks then the other barks…legs start turning and jerking. They are both off to the races in dreamland.

It’s pretty hilarious….
 

Kaiser2016

Well-Known Member
my two actually key off each other when sleeping, one barks then the other barks…legs start turning and jerking. They are both off to the races in dreamland.

It’s pretty hilarious….
It’s pretty funny and sweet to watch them dream. Seems like all they dream about is barking and running, unlike human dreams lol.
 

Soly20

New Member
Thanks guys for the replies.
I just let it go for a few days as he was acting normal. Today he went out to play in the backyard for about an hour and 15 mins, he was pretty active. He looked tired at the end of it. I just put him back inside. I took this video. He is breathing very fast.

This is him 10 mins ago:
 

strykerdobe

Hot Topics Subscriber
I have read about DCM, it nearly never shows in dogs less than a year old. My guy turned 6 months a week ago. I don't know, maybe it is hot today. 21C (70F) for England is considered hot i guess.

DCM is very rare in very young pups. But Patent Ductus Arteriosus (PDA) which is a Congenital defect can. Mostly in small dogs. But have heard it happening in other large Breeds. Our Breeder in Romania who is a Vet there mentioned it she had a Doberman come in with it.
But some of the PDA Symptoms are the same as DCM.

Patent Ductus Arteriosus in Dogs​

By Malcolm Weir, DVM, MSc, MPH; Cheryl Yuill, DVM, MSc, CVH

What is the ductus arteriosus?
heart_anatomy_2021.ashx

The ductus arteriosus is an arterial shunt between the aorta and the pulmonary artery, the two main blood vessels leading from the heart. It is normally present during fetal development.

What is its purpose?​

Before birth, the developing fetus receives all of its oxygen needs through the placenta, and the developing lungs are deflated. As part of the fetal circulation, the ductus arteriosus allows the majority of circulating blood to bypass the lungs. Therefore, while the fetus is in the uterus, the ductus arteriosus is normally open, or patent.
When the newborn puppy takes its first breath, the ductus is stimulated to close down. Closure of the ductus arteriosus ensures that blood will circulate through the inflated lungs and become oxygenated.

What is patent ductus arteriosus?​

Patent ductus arteriosus (PDA), is a heart defect that occurs when the ductus arteriosus fails to close down at birth.

What happens if the ductus arteriosus does not close at birth?​

In the normal heart blood flows from the body into the right side of the heart, and then is pumped through the pulmonary artery into the lungs to be oxygenated. From the lungs it flows through the pulmonary vein into the left side of the heart. The left side of the heart then pumps the blood through the aorta, distributing oxygen-rich blood to the body. The muscles in the left side of the heart are normally thicker and stronger than those in the right side of the heart, and the pressure within the left side of the heart and the aorta is higher than the pressure in the right side and the pulmonary artery and veins. This is because it is harder to pump blood to the entire body than it is to pump blood through the lungs.
If the ductus arteriosus fails to close properly after birth, the difference in pressure between the pulmonary artery and the aorta means that it blood will ‘take the path of least resistance’ and flow from the aorta through the patent ductus arteriosus into the pulmonary artery. The pulmonary artery then needlessly recirculates this oxygenated blood back to the lungs. Since less blood is now being pumped into the main circulation through the aorta with each heartbeat, the left side of the heart is forced to work harder to meet the demands of the body.
The size of the patent ductus arteriosus defect will determine how much harder the heart must work. If the defect is small, the left side of the heart becomes mildly enlarged (mild left ventricular hypertrophy). If the defect is medium-sized, the left side of the heart becomes moderately enlarged. As the heart enlarges, it is forced to work harder and harder and ultimately this increased work can lead to congestive heart failure (see handout on “Congestive Heart Failure in Dogs”).
In some cases when the PDA is large, a significant amount of blood will shunt into the lungs, forcing the pulmonary artery, the pulmonary vein, and the right side of the heart to become thicker (called right ventricular hypertrophy), in order to deal with the excess load of blood. This leads to pulmonary hypertension (elevated blood pressure in the lungs) and may ultimately cause the direction of the shunt to reverse.

What are the signs of a PDA?​

A dog that has a small PDA defect may not show any obvious signs of disease at all. As the PDA increases in size, more blood will be shunted through it, causing more significant signs. These may include difficulty breathing, a loud heart murmur, abnormal pulses, and exercise intolerance. The puppy with a PDA may sleep more than usual, may be stunted in growth, or may be thinner than average.
"As the PDA increases in size, more blood will be shunted through it,
causing more significant signs."​

As blood continues to shunt through the PDA, it will cause irreversible changes in the heart muscle and eventually may lead to congestive heart failure. If the PDA is significant enough to cause congestive heart failure, signs may also include a heart arrhythmia (abnormal heart beats), increased lung sounds when listened to with a stethoscope, and accumulation of fluid in the lungs and/or abdomen.
When the shunt is very large, the pressure in the pulmonary circulation may continue to increase until it exceeds the pressure in the aorta. If this happens, the shunt may reverse, so that blood returning from the body shortcuts through the aorta before going through the lungs to receive oxygen. If the dog develops this “reverse PDA”, the heart murmur will disappear, and the signs will become severe and debilitating, including abnormal heartbeats, cyanosis (blueness) of the foot pads on the hind legs, collapse of the hind legs when the dog exercises, and weakness or lethargy.

Are there any breeds that are affected more often than others?​

Patent ductus arteriosus is more common in female dogs. Although any breed of dog can be affected by this heart defect, PDA does appear to have a heritable component in smaller breeds of dogs. Breeds that are reported to have more problems with this defect include Maltese, Pomeranian, Shetland Sheepdog, English Springer Spaniel, American Cocker Spaniel, Keeshonden, Bichon Frise, German Shepherd Dog, Collie, Irish Setter, Kerry Blue Terrier, Labrador Retriever, Newfoundland, Miniature and Toy Poodles, Chihuahua, and Yorkshire Terrier. When this defect is inherited, it appears to run in families. Affected dogs should not be bred, even if the condition is successfully treated.

How is PDA diagnosed?​

A PDA will usually be diagnosed when your veterinarian hears a ‘continuous’ heart murmur during a routine physical examination of your puppy. A continuous murmur means that the murmur is present continuously through the entire heart cycle. It is often described as a ‘machinery murmur’ or a ‘washing machine murmur’ because it sounds like water being agitated through the wash cycle. The murmur will be graded on a scale of either 1 to 4, or 1 to 6. If the murmur is pronounced, you may be able to feel a buzzing when you touch the puppy’s chest – this buzzing is called a thrill.
Your veterinarian will recommend chest radiographs (X-rays) to assess the heart and lungs, and an electrocardiogram (ECG) to assess the heart rhythm. Blood tests will show whether other organs are being affected by the abnormal blood flow, or if there is evidence of abnormal red blood cell values.
Echocardiography, or cardiac ultrasound, will be needed to definitively diagnose a PDA. The ultrasonographer will examine a moving image of the heart to assess the degree of enlargement of its walls and the efficiency of its pumping ability. Doppler echocardiography, which evaluates the direction and speed of blood flow, will be used to help pinpoint the location and size of the shunt, and to determine the amount of turbulence associated with the shunt.

Could the signs be caused by something else?​

Other complex heart defects can also cause a continuous heart murmur. Echocardiography will usually differentiate the type of defect, helping to determine the appropriate treatment options.

What is the treatment for a PDA?​

The goal of treatment for a forward flowing PDA is to stop the blood flowing through the shunt. Your veterinarian will refer you to a veterinary cardiovascular surgeon, who will determine the optimal treatment for your dog. In some cases, the ductus will be tied off during heart surgery. In other cases, a less invasive surgical treatment may be an option. The less invasive procedure involves occlusion (blocking) of the ductus arteriosus with either a transarterial coil or a ductal occluder device, which is placed by means of cardiac catheterization.
"The goal of treatment for a forward flowing PDA is to stop the
blood flowing through the shunt."​

Surgical repair should be performed as soon as possible. The longer the surgery is delayed, the more likely that irreversible heart damage will occur. If the dog is showing signs of heart failure, pre-surgical stabilization will be necessary.
There is no surgical treatment for a reverse PDA. Medical treatment will help manage the symptoms, but a cure is not possible for dogs with a reverse PDA.

What is the success rate for surgical treatment of PDA?​

Provided that the condition is treated before heart failure develops, the success rate associated with surgical closure is very high and the prognosis for a normal life after surgery is excellent.
If irreversible heart damage was already present before surgery, the dog may require heart medication in the future.

What is the success rate for medical management of a reverse PDA?​

If the signs of disease are able to be controlled with medications, the dog may live comfortably for several years.
Prompt and appropriate diagnosis and treatment of this congenital, hereditary cardiac disorder is associated with an excellent long-term prognosis. Both standard surgical and minimally invasive transcatheter techniques can successfully treat the condition.
Contributors: Malcolm Weir, DVM, MSc, MPH; Cheryl Yuill, DVM, MSc, CVH

Symptoms

The opening may be large or small and the symptoms may accordingly vary from mild to severe. If the opening is very small, there may be no symptoms. Common symptoms include:
  • Heart murmur
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Breathlessness
  • Fast breathing
  • Poor feeding
  • Slow growth
  • Low weight
  • Cardiomegaly (enlarged heart)

Better Picture of Heart​

1654873839222.png
 

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Soly20

New Member
I don't know if i am worrying too much (which is in my nature). I think i will show the vet the videos next week and see what they say.
 

Kaiser2016

Well-Known Member
I don't know if i am worrying too much (which is in my nature). I think i will show the vet the videos next week and see what they say.
I think this is a good idea to show the videos. In fact, can you send the videos to him sooner so he can think about it and maybe consult with others at the vet clinic? I remember when Kaiser was a puppy everything made me worry, so you're not alone there. Hopefully it is nothing, but after 10 minutes, I would have expected him to be 'all rested' - breathing normal, ready for the next thing - whereas he seems like he's still out of breath. Now if it would be super hot, like 30, maybe Kaiser would need another 10 minutes to get back to normal, but at just 20, this seems a bit too much for my peace of mind.
 

Soly20

New Member
I think this is a good idea to show the videos. In fact, can you send the videos to him sooner so he can think about it and maybe consult with others at the vet clinic? I remember when Kaiser was a puppy everything made me worry, so you're not alone there. Hopefully it is nothing, but after 10 minutes, I would have expected him to be 'all rested' - breathing normal, ready for the next thing - whereas he seems like he's still out of breath. Now if it would be super hot, like 30, maybe Kaiser would need another 10 minutes to get back to normal, but at just 20, this seems a bit too much for my peace of mind.
Yeah I will send the video over tomorrow morning.
 

Soly20

New Member
Update:

So I finally took him to the vet. She checked his heart out (listened to murmurs etc..) she said everything is normal. I showed her the video, she said that's because it has been hot lately (which it has to English standards). She said, if you I wanted, for my reassurance, she can do a blood test to make sure the heart is OK. I agreed to go for the blood test cause i want to be 100% sure. Results back in a week.

On another note, he has a skin infection from his allergies. He is on a 3 week course of antibiotics. Nothing too serious but it is gonna take time to get it resolved. Going back for a check up in 2 weeks. She also gave him a shot of steroids (maybe i should take him to the gym ;)) for the allergies to relieve him from the itching (seems to have worked superbly).

Thanks for all your help and support.
 

Doberman Gang

Hot Topics Subscriber
I have read about DCM, it nearly never shows in dogs less than a year old. My guy turned 6 months a week ago. I don't know, maybe it is hot today. 21C (70F) for England is considered hot i guess.
DCM is typically more of a fast heart rate and labored slower breathing.
My dog is always breathing fast and going 90 miles an hour for when I hit him at 5 months to now 5 years. It can drive one insane
 

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