Cardiomyopathy is particularly associated with the boxer dog breed in which any boxer dog might be influenced due to inconsistent heart beat, which can be too fatal as sometimes it causes to an unexpected and unforeseen death due to the failure of cardiac functioning. It is named as ‘Boxer dog cardiomyopathy’, which is also specified in detail as “Boxer arrhythmogenic right ventricular cardiomyopathy“). Apart from boxer dog breed, this disease is also observed in English bulldogs, however it is principally related to the boxer dogs. Cardiomyopathy have a tendency to occur in the boxer puppies aging between 1.5 – 2.5 years, however some very young boxer puppies are also recorded to be affected by Cardiomyopathy.
There are many commonalities through which we can relate the Boxer cardiomyopathy with ARVC (Arrhythmogenic Right Ventricular Cardiomyopathy), which is actually a human myocardial disease. As the unusual and irregular heart beat is considered as the primary reason of Boxer cardiomyopathy, it must be noted; sometimes such problem might also be due to caustic infections or some types of cancer as well. And if such diseases are defeated, the heart beat of such boxer dog might return to the normalization.
What are the general symptoms of Boxer cardiomyopathy?
There are certain symptoms through which Boxer cardiomyopathy can be noticed;
Variable and inconsistent heartbeat:
When a routine examination of boxer dog is done, a variable, irregular or inconsistent heart beat might be observed which can be due to Boxer cardiomyopathy.
Fainting and Boxer cardiomyopathy:
In Boxer cardiomyopathy, as the heart is not performing well so the blood is not pumped efficiently. This might result in the fainted appearance of a boxer dog. If fainting is happening to a boxer puppy, it might be due to ‘hypoglycemia’ as well which is due to the sudden drop of blood sugar level.
Boxer cardiomyopathy can be genetic as well:
Although the gene is not identified exactly but it is also believed, Boxer cardiomyopathy can also be inherited from an affected parent by a boxer dog.
Boxer cardiomyopathy and coughing:
In case of Boxer cardiomyopathy, what happens eventually, the ventricles are enlarged and become swollen and the walls of boxer dog hearts become weak. Coughing can be started by an affected boxer dog at this stage which should be noticed.
Abnormal breathing and Boxer cardiomyopathy:
Some kind of abnormal and faster breathing has also a correlation with Boxer cardiomyopathy.
Fluids gathering in abdominal and Boxer cardiomyopathy: Boxer cardiomyopathy also results sometimes the unnecessary accumulation of fluids in the abdominal parts of a boxer dog body.
Unexpected and sudden death of boxer dog: An unusual and unexpected death of a boxer dog might be the result of the development of Boxer cardiomyopathy which was unnoticed. Also related to ‘Asymptomatic dogs’ which means the unforeseen death is actually the reasoning of sudden death of a boxer dog.
How to diagnose Boxer cardiomyopathy?
A boxer dog owner should have this knowledge; its dog can be prone to different types of cardiac diseases as well. The best way is to have a regular check up and examination by a vet who can diagnose Boxer cardiomyopathy by using a stethoscope if an unusual heart beat is detected. There is also a recommended methodology known as ‘ECG’ which can assist in diagnosing of Boxer cardiomyopathy. But it is to be remembered, ECG (Electrocardiography) in which the electrical activity of heart is noted is only known to identify arrhythmias if they are very continual.
There is another methodology known as Holter monitoring in which the observation of the cardiac movement is done for 24 hours of a boxer dog and suggest better if there are symptoms of Boxer cardiomyopathy. Echocardiography is another advanced way for diagnosing the Boxer cardiomyopathy. Some blood tests and chest x-rays may also help in extracting the exact information to determine if there is heart enlargement issue or symptoms of Boxer cardiomyopathy.
Boxer dog cardiomyopathy and its treatment
In case of Boxer cardiomyopathy, the vets or heart surgeons start with bringing the normality in the heart beating. They always have the apprehension; there could be a sudden and unpredictable of such boxer dog due to heart failure. It becomes really difficult if no clear symptoms of Boxer cardiomyopathy are observed and wrong medication might result in severe damage. Most commonly, anti-arrhythmic drugs are recommended to minimize the danger of sudden heart failure and unexpected deaths. ICD (Implantable Cardioveter Defibrillator) is also used in the therapy in some cases; however this methodlolgy is although fair for humans, not found quite useful for curing Boxer cardiomyopathy.
If Boxer cardiomyopathy is not reached to an alarming stage in an affected boxer dog, the applying of anti-arrhythmic medication can be fruitful. If you are taking the affected boxer dog or puppy to a vet on regular basis and it is kept under regular observation, only in such case, there are chances; your boxer dog might survive for a longer life span. Slight negligence can be fatal in this regards. If Boxer cardiomyopathy is detected or diagnosed at the earlier stage, there is likelihood of achieving the control over this disease otherwise the consequences become unmanageable.
Boxer cardiomyopathy in a nutshell
In the nutshell, Boxer cardiomyopathy requires more research, investigations and exploration. We have explained only limited information regarding Boxer cardiomyopathy in this article. Boxer cardiomyopathy which is also called as an arrhythmia is a serious subject in dog diseases on which much experimentation is carried on.
The boxer dogs which are affected from Boxer cardiomyopathy are always at risk of sudden casualty normally leading to death. The treatment of Boxer cardiomyopathy is not an easy task due to the absence of exact and extant characteristics. Only a small number of boxer dogs are reported to survive from the severe dangers of Boxer cardiomyopathy. Boxer cardiomyopathy is also sometimes referred shortly as BCM. Boxer dog which is a unique dog breed requires due diligence and care to avoid Boxer cardiomyopathy and with maintaining a balanced diet plan.