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Fort Wayne, IN 46835

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Arrhythmias in Boxer

Arrhythmias in Boxers

Cardiomyopathy is a general term for disease of the heart muscle. Boxers are a breed with a higher chance of developing a cardiomyopathy, specifically Arrhythmogenic Right Ventricular Cardiomyopathy (previously referred to as Boxer Cardiomyopathy). ARVC is a genetic disorder but it is not apparent until adulthood (usually 4 years of age or older).

ARVC is characterized by an abnormal accumulation of fibrous (scar) tissue and fat in the heart muscle. This disturbs the electrical system of the heart and results in frequent arrhythmias. Changes in heart strength can also occur but is less common.


Symptoms vary depending on the stage of disease. It is important to remember that Boxers with ARVC are at risk for passing away suddenly even without previous symptoms. Symptoms can include:

Diagnostic Tests:

ECG Image

Can my Boxer be treated?

The cornerstone of treatment for ARVC is anti-arrhythmic therapy. Some boxers require intravenous anti-arrhythmic therapy for immediate control of the arrhythmias while others can be started on oral medications as their initial treatment. In either situation, the goal of therapy is to decrease the frequency and severity of the arrhythmias. Multiple drugs can be used depending on your pet's needs and most of the drugs will be continued throughout his/her life. Many dogs enjoy years of quality life with medication and monitoring; however, the disease can also be so severe that sudden death occurs even with treatment. If your boxer has been diagnosed with ARVC then it is important schedule regular rechecks in order to adjust medications and provide optimal care.


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P: (260) 426-1062

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