About Dog High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)
Systemic hypertension is an increase in the body’s blood pressure. There are 2 major types of systemic hypertension. Essential (primary) hypertension is of unknown cause. This type of hypertension is common in humans, but is rare in dogs. Secondary hypertension results from a specific underlying disease. In dogs, the most common cause of hypertension is kidney disease. An increase in adrenal gland hormones (hyperadrenocorticism), diabetes mellitus, and pheochromocytoma (a type of adrenal gland tumor) are other causes of high blood pressure in dogs. Veterinarians typically do not measure blood pressure in all dogs. However, if your dog has one of the listed diseases or evidence of hypertension, blood pressure measurement is indicated.
Dogs with extremely high blood pressure may have no signs that are visible to the owner. Sudden blindness is the most common sign. Blood tests may help with diagnosis of the cause of high blood pressure. Treatment should be started in dogs with sustained and severe high blood pressure, dogs with sustained high blood pressure and a documented underlying cause, such as kidney failure, and dogs with evidence of damage caused by high blood pressure.
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