Fortekor is the name of a medication that occasionally is used for the management of heart failure in canines. Benazepril hydrochloride is the medication's active ingredient. Fortekor is permitted for use in dogs living in Europe. Studies regarding possible future use of the medication in pets have been conducted in the United States as well.
Fortekor is categorized as an ACE inhibitor -- an angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor. As an ACE inhibitor, the main operation of the medication is to widen the blood vessels. Heart failure in dogs triggers the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system, which functions as a vasodilator, targeting the blood vessels. This, as a result, raises blood pressure and permits higher amounts of blood to concentrate on organs such as the kidneys. With time, the extra pressure can be extremely taxing on the heart, potentially speeding up the progression of disease. Because of those things, Fortekor aims to block the actions of the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system, minimizing the burden on the fatigued heart. It also lessens the blood pressure.
If a dog has heart failure that was triggered either by dilated cardiomyopathy or mitral regurgitation, a veterinarian might prescribe Fortekor for him. This medication is used alongside other basic forms of cardiac management. Only a veterinarian can assess a dog and determine which specific modes of heart failure treatment are safest and most compatible with your dog's individual needs.
If your vet suggests the use of Fortekor in your pooch, ask her about the possibility of side effects to the medication. Although not common, some dogs who take Fortekor might experience symptoms such as problems with lightheadedness and exhaustion. Both of these things signify hypotension -- low blood pressure. Diarrhea or throwing up also might occur. If your dog experiences side effects to Fortekor, inform your vet immediately. Note that it isn't advisable for pregnant and nursing dogs to use Fortekor.
The basic aim of Fortekor use in dogs is to minimize some of the uncomfortable symptoms that are associated with heart conditions. Another key goal of the medication is to help its canine users enjoy longer lives. If your vet recommends Fortekor for your pet, make sure you're extremely well-versed on how exactly to offer it to your dog. Fortekor comes as a tablet that dogs generally need to take once per day. It's optimal to be consistent with the timing. Some dogs take it with food, while others do not. The medication works both ways.
- Novartis Animal Health Canada: Frequently Asked Questions About Fortekor
- Drugs.com: Fortekor Flavor Tabs
- PetPlace.com: Benazepril (Fortekor)
- Veterinary Pharmacology and Therapeutics; Jim E. Riviere and Mark G. Papich
- Dog Owner's Home Veterinary Handbook; Debra M. Eldredge, DVM, Liisa D. Carlson, DVM and Delbert G. Carlson, DVM, et al.
- PetMD: Top Ten Signs of Heart Disease in Dogs
- Drugs.com: Fortekor 5 Tablets
- Comstock Images/Stockbyte/Getty Images