What Should You Do If Your Dog Faints?

Fainting also called ‘syncope’ is a loss of consciousness that is usually due to a lack of normal blood flow to the brain. Fainting is uncommon in dogs and not always caused by a lack of blood flow; there are other similar medical causes that result in fainting not just for animals, but humans also.

Collapsing isn’t that common in dogs, but the risk of it could increase due to:-

  • Dehydration
  • Heat stroke
  • Internal bleeding
  • Pregnancy
  • Seizures

Always keep your dog well hydrated and kept in shady or air-conditioned places when the temperatures begin to rise.

Frequent fainting in dogs is usually connected to conditions such as neurologic (brain or spinal cord) or cardiac problems.  Signs that it may be neurological could be;

  • Seizures
  • Abnormal brain activity

Cardiac problems may include: –

  • Abnormal heart rhythms
  • A-V block
  • Ventricular tachycardia
  • Ventricular fibrillation

What should you do?

  • Put your hands over the heart and see if you can feel a heartbeat. Try to tell if the heart rate is very, very slow or extremely rapid. This will help your Veterinarian determine if the cause of fainting is cardiac in origin.
  • Seek immediate veterinary attention

Once you get to your Vets, or the emergency Vet arrives, they will need to check the heart rate on an electrocardiogram (ECG) right away to look for the presence of abnormal arrhythmias and perform blood work to make sure that there are no metabolic causes.