High blood pressure, also known as hypertension or arterial hypertension, is characterized by elevated blood pressure in the arteries. Systemic refers to entire body rather than an individual organ. Normal blood pressure of dogs is 165/95. Any measurement higher than this is termed as high blood pressure. It is the persistent or repeated increase in systolic (phase when heart contracts to pump the blood) or diastolic (phase when heart relaxes and fills with blood) arterial blood pressure.
Problem from high blood pressure arises when a blood vessel gets too small for the high pressure flow going through it. Any area of the body that is rich in small blood vessels will be damaged by hypertension. The tiny arteries in these areas are only designed to hold a specific preesure. These arteries may rupture or leak due to too high blood pressure, causing damage to the surrounding tissue.
Hypertension is classified as either primary hypertension or secondary hypertension. Primary hypertension means high blood pressure with no obvious reason. When hypertension is due to another condition, it is called secondary hypertension. Many conditions can cause hypertension in dogs such as genetics, hyperthyroidism, Cushing’s Disease, diabetes, endocrine abnormalities, administration of certain drugs, stress, pain and liver, kidney or lung disease.
Common symptoms associated with systemic hypertension include
Hemorrhage of the eye
Blood in the urine
Protein in the urine
Bleeding from the nose
Swollen or shrunken kidneys
Weakness, either on one side of the body or in the legs
Involuntary oscillation (rolling) of the eyeballs
Palpable thyroid gland (when hyperthyroid)