What Does Furosemide Treat in Vet Medicine?

by Betty Lewis
    Furosemide is commonly known as Lasix or Salix.

    Furosemide is commonly known as Lasix or Salix.

    David De Lossy/Photodisc/Getty Images

    Occasionally a dog will have a condition such as heart failure that causes fluid to build up in his lungs or abdomen. If Sparky has a fluid-retention condition, the vet may prescribe a loop diuretic, which decreases signs of congestion and circulating blood volume. Furosemide, one of the most effective loop diuretics, is a popular veterinary go-to for treating fluid retention.

    About Furosemide

    Furosemide works by preventing a specific portion of the kidneys from absorbing nutrients such as sodium, potassium, chloride and water. Keeping those nutrients from part of Sparky's kidneys removes excess fluids from his body, minimizing the fluid buildup he's been experiencing from his condition. Furosemide is an effective treatment option, but it does have side effects including dehydration, increased thirst, lethargy, diarrhea, loss of appetite, restlessness and increased sensitivity to light. As well, Sparky will need more bathroom breaks because the medication increases the amount and frequency of urination, as the excess fluid is removed from his body. Furosemide is available in pill, liquid or injection and reacts with other drugs, such as insulin, other diuretics and muscle relaxants. Make sure you provide the vet with a list of Sparky's current medication to ensure no adverse reactions occur.

    Photo Credits

    • David De Lossy/Photodisc/Getty Images

    About the Author

    Betty Lewis has been writing professionally since 2000, specializing in animal care and issues, business analysis and homeland security. Lewis holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from West Virginia University as well as master’s degrees from Old Dominion University and Tulane University.

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