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At a Glance
Pimobendan strengthens dogโ€™s heart muscle and decreases blood pressure
Treats dogs with congestive heart failure or asymptomatic heart disease issues
Supports the heartโ€™s work to pump blood around the body
Administered every 12 hours orally


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At a Glance
Pimobendan strengthens dogโ€™s heart muscle and decreases blood pressure
Treats dogs with congestive heart failure or asymptomatic heart disease issues
Supports the heartโ€™s work to pump blood around the body
Administered every 12 hours orally

Ultimate Guide to Vetmedin

Meet the Champion of the Heart: Vetmedin!

Vetmedin is the veterinarian-approved and FDA-approved medication that champions your dog's heart after congestive heart failure or as a preventative for asymptomatic heart failure in dogs. Vetmedin is an oral pill or tablet that can be administered every 12 hours. Vetmedin ensures that it is an effective part of your pup's therapeutic heart and health process.

How does Vetmedin work?

Pimobendan* for dogs is an inodilator, which means that it is a drug with positive inotropic effects and as a vasodilator. Commonly, this means that Pimobendan decreases blood pressure and strengthens the heart muscle. This combination reduces pressure on the heart and supports the heart to pump blood around the body.

Vetmedin treats dogs with congestive heart failure (CHF) caused by two kinds of heart disease, or dogs with asymptomatic heart disease. The two types of heart disease that Vetmedin tablets treat are mitral valve disease (MVD) and dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM). Vetmedin delays the onset of heart failure and extends life expectancy in dogs.

*Active ingredient Pimobendan is the generic name for the brand Vetmedin.

How is Vetmedin administered?

Vetmedin is a cardiac drug that is administered orally every 12 hours on an empty stomach, one hour before food. Vetmedin's scored pills come in 1.25 mg, 2.5 mg, 5 mg, and 10 mg. Each bottle comes with 50 counts of pills.

Note: Vetmedin can come in chewable tablets, hard capsules, or liquid suspension.

What are the potential side effects of which you should be aware?

Vetmedin for dogs only is tolerated very well.

Vetmedin's (Pimobendan) most common negative reactions reported are vomiting, diarrhea, and decreased appetite. Lethargy, incoordination, weakness, and difficulty breathing are also common for dogs to experience.

For as long as your dog is responding well to treatment. This is likely to mean for the rest of his or her life. During this time Vetmedin may be given alone or alongside other medication.

Frequently Asked Questions
What Is Vetmedin Used for in Dogs?

Vetmedin helps treat your dog's heart post CHF or congestive heart failure. You may also see its use for the preventive treatment of asymptomatic heart failures. It is an FDA - approved medication for pets with a heart condition.

Your veterinarian prescribes Vetmedin if your dog has CHF because of

  • Mitral valve disease or MVD
  • Dilated cardiomyopathy or DCM

Veterinarians can also recommend Vetmedin to treat

  • Dogs with asymptomatic conditions. Vetmedin increases the chances of survival of a dog with an enlarged heart by delaying the onset of heart failure.
  • Dobermans with asymptomatic dilated conditions.

Consult your vet if you have queries about your dog's condition or their treatment with Vetmedin.

What Does Vetmedin Do for Dogs?

Vetmedin treats dogs with heart disease resulting from MVD or DCM. It functions in two ways:

  • It opens up the blood vessels carrying blood, thereby reducing the heart's work.
  • Increases the strength and efficiency of the dog's heartbeat, resulting in an improved pumping action.

Your veterinarian can also prescribe additional medication if the heart condition of your dog is critical.

How Is Vetmedin Administered?

You can administer Vetmedin to your dog orally. The time gap between the two doses should be 12 hours. It should be given on an empty stomach, an hour before meals.

Is There an Alternative to Vetmedin for Dogs?

The active ingredient present across Vetmedin chewable tablets, capsules or liquid suspension is the same, i.e., Pimobendan. An FDA-approved alternative to Vetmedin is currently not available.

What Are the Side Effects of Vetmedin for Dogs?

Though dogs tolerate Vetmedin well, a few side effects may include:

  • Vomiting, or Diarrhea,
  • Weakness,
  • Lethargy,
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Decreased appetite,
  • Incoordination
Can You Crush Vetmedin for Dogs?

Crushing the medicines helps to administer them to your pet easily. Vetmedin chewable tablets for dogs often have meat flavor, so chances are your dog will take them without a fuss.

However, if your dog does not like the taste of Vetmedin, you can try giving the medicine with some food.

Is Vetmedin Safe for Dogs?

Dogs tolerate Vetmedin well. If your dog responds to treatment without any severe ailments, it is likely to be continued.

A veterinarian may recommend only Vetmedin for a prolonged period or along with other heart-related medicines too.

How Does Vetmedin Work?

Vetmedin has Pimobendan as the active ingredient.

The drug has a positive inotropic effect and acts as a vasodilator. It decreases blood pressure, thereby strengthening the heart muscles. It leads to a reduction of pressure on the dog's heart and supports it in pumping action.

Does Vetmedin Help With Cardiac Support for a Dog?

Vetmedin builds a dog's life expectancy as a therapy for congestive heart failure.

Vetmedin helps treat heart failure, asymptomatic heart disease conditions and can act as a preventive medication for heart disease.

All put together, Vetmedin tagged with any other medication as prescribed by your veterinarian can act as a Cardiac support system, leading to improvement in a dog's quality of life!

How to Calculate Vetmedin Dosage for Dogs?

Vetmedin pills are available in 50 pill bottles, ranging from 1.25 mg to 10mg. The daily dosage for dogs is 0.23 mg/lb of body weight.

Please consult your veterinarian before alteration or change of dosage of the prescribed amount.

Is a Bigger Dosage of Vetmedin Bad For Dogs?

Please follow the exact dosage and specifications as recommended by the veterinarian. Your dog's body weight determines the dosage, so administering a quantity more than prescribed is not recommended.

Is It Safe to Split Vetmedin Tablets in Half?

Yes, you can split Vetmedin tablets in half. Since the tablets are scored, creating two accurate doses is easy.

How Long Does Vetmedin Take to Work?

Each animal is different, and the responsiveness to the medicine depends on their health condition. After a week of Vetmedin administration, you should start seeing improvements in your dog's health.

Noticing any changes in an asymptomatic MVD or DCM dog after starting medications is less likely. The disease is silent in the asymptomatic phase and does not show any signs of illness.

Be rest assured that Vetmedin is working inside your dog's system and helping him/her cope with the disease progression and extending their symptom-free time.

In case of concerns for your dog's heart disease during medication, contact your veterinarian.

What Are the Most Common Signs of Heart Disease?

When your dog starts coughing and getting tired post-exercise, book an appointment for a veterinarian. Regular vaccinations and check ups will help track any changes in your dog's heart.

Concluding Thoughts

The most important thing that you should know about Vetmedin is that it builds a dog's life expectancy as a therapy for congestive heart failure, treatment of asymptomatic heart disease, and a preventative for heart disease and heart failure.

Therefore, Vetmedin improves a dog's quality of life!

DISCLAIMER: FDA law restricts Vetmedin only on order or prescription of a licensed veterinarian for the best pet health care advice. Ask your veterinarian or consult with one of our pet care specialists at 1-800-844-1427. This informative article is not meant to substitute for the diagnosis, treatment, and professional advice from your veterinarian or other qualified professionals regarding a medical condition. Ask your veterinarian if it's a good idea to treat all of the animals in your household to control a home flea infestation.


Side effects may include loss of appetite, lethargy, diarrhea, difficulty breathing, weakness, incoordination, fainting, cough, and sudden death. Consult your veterinarian if any side effects occur or worsen.

Notify your veterinarian of any additional medications, including vitamins and supplements. Interactions may occur with pimobendan and verapamil, propranolol, theophylline, and pentoxifylline.

To learn more about this heart medication for dogs, talk to your veterinarian or consult with one of our pet care specialists at 1-800-844-1427.

This information is for informational purposes only and is not meant as a substitute for the professional advice of, or diagnosis or treatment by, your veterinarian. Always seek the advice of your veterinarian or other qualified professional with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard or delay seeking professional advice due to what you may have read on our website. Our medications are FDA approved and/or EPA regulated when and as required by law.

Follow the exact specifications prescribed by the veterinarian. Dose is based on body weight, divided into 2 portions to be given every 12 hours.

Store at room temperature away from moisture and light.

Vetmedin is manufactured by Boehringer-Ingelheim

How to Order Prescriptions Online

1. Find the Right Product

Make sure it matches your pets prescription. Donโ€™t forget to compare the dosage for pills/capsules!

2. Add to Cart

Just like any other online store. Make sure the quantity matches whatโ€™s been prescribed by your vetinarian.

3. Tell Us About Your Pet and Vet

Answer some questions during checkout and weโ€™ll contact your vet and verify the prescription for you. You can also mail us the written prescription.

4. Thatโ€™s It!

If the prescription has any refills, processing your future orders for that medication can be expedited.

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