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What is Fatigue and Exercise?

Fatigue and exercise in pets can be caused by any number of things. It may start with you noticing your dog is not acting like himself, or that he seems more tired and less playful than usual. While you may think he needs a little extra sleep, it actually may be caused by an underlying medical condition. Symptoms can range from mild to severe, even so severe as death. The sooner you seek medical attention for your dog, the higher his chance of a full recovery.

Exercise and fatigue occurs commonly in pets for many different reasons. It can be due to an illness or due to his lifestyle. Either way, if your dog is not acting like himself and seems more tired than usual, take him to visit his veterinarian for evaluation.

Fatigue and Exercise Average Cost

From 286 quotes ranging from $500 - $5,000

Average Cost

$2,000

Symptoms of Fatigue and Exercise in Dogs

Symptoms typically occur after prolonged exercise. Symptoms may include:

  • Panting
  • Sweating
  • Dehydration
  • Acid-base imbalances
  • Electrolyte imbalances
  • Fatigue
  • Exhaustion
  • Infection
  • Gastroenteritis 
  • Diabetes 
  • Heart failure
  • Death 

Types

Exercise fatigue is a vague term to cover a behavioral change in your dog to where he no longer plays as much as he used to or is less active than normal. Exercise intolerance and fatigue can affect young dogs differently than old dogs. Causes of the intolerance and fatigues may also vary in young and old.

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Causes of Fatigue and Exercise in Dogs

If your dog is healthy with no underlying conditions, it may be that he has been worked too hard. Dogs that experience prolonged exercise and work can experience exercise intolerance and fatigue. If your dog becomes dehydrated, metabolic imbalances can occur and can lead to death of your dog.

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Diagnosis of Fatigue and Exercise in Dogs

When you arrive at the veterinarian office, you will be asked many questions in order for the veterinarian to collect a thorough medical history. She will ask you what your dog has been doing the past few days, when the symptoms began, and how long they have been going on. She will also perform a physical exam in order to assess his symptoms and note any abnormalities of his vitals. 

Blood work will be performed to give the veterinarian an idea of how the internal organs are functioning and to rule out other possible causes of his symptoms. A complete blood count (CBC) and chemistry panel will provide the veterinarian with needed information for proper assessment of organ function. A packed cell volume (PCV) may also be performed to determine hydration status.

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Treatment of Fatigue and Exercise in Dogs

Depending what the diagnostics reveal as the cause will determine the course of treatment. If there is an actual medical condition underlying your dog’s fatigue, then it will be treated appropriately. However, if it was due simply to malnutrition, lack of water, and not enough rest, it will be entirely up to you to change his lifestyle. 

Your veterinarian will also thoroughly go over the nutrition needs of your pet and how to keep him hydrated when exercising. She will likely come up with a plan on how to safely exercise him in the future so as to prevent this from occurring again.

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Recovery of Fatigue and Exercise in Dogs

At home, you will need to keep your companion “quiet” meaning you will need to keep him calm and enclosed in a small space, such as a crate, in order to keep him less active and easier to observe. You will need to periodically take his temperature to ensure he does not have a fever. You will also need to monitor him for progression of any current symptoms and development of any new symptoms. 

Most dogs recover very well, especially once the underlying cause is determined and treated. Special steps will be taken to ensure it does not happen again and your dog should make a full recovery.

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Fatigue and Exercise Average Cost

From 286 quotes ranging from $500 - $5,000

Average Cost

$2,000

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Fatigue and Exercise Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

Need pet health advice? Ask a vet

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Ask a Vet

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Frenchton

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8 weeks

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Unknown severity

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0 found helpful

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Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Redness And Shaking

Puppy started shaking and whining. Doesn’t want to walk very far, but doesn’t seem to have a limp. Skin looks red and she’s very sleepy.

Sept. 12, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Sara O. DVM

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0 Recommendations

Hello, so sorry to hear about your dog. He may be having an allergic reaction. You can try Benadryl at 1mg per pound. If this does not help she would need to see you vet. Do not give her any human over the counter pain medications as this can make her very sick. I hope your dog starts to feel better soon.

Sept. 12, 2020

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Golden Retriever

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3 years

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Unknown severity

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Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Need Of Rest On Walks Now

I used to walk my dog an hour without need for rest. He has started needing to stop for rest, and so I have shortened the walks. But even now he needs several rest stops of walks of just a half hour. Even when weather is cooler.

Aug. 7, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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0 Recommendations

Thank you for your question. That is unusual in such a young dog. I think it would be best to have him examined by a veterinarian, as they can listen to his heart and lungs, see if he has a problem or if he is overweight, and give you advice on how to manage whatever is going on with him. I hope that everything is okay for him.

Aug. 7, 2020

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Pit Bull

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Four Years

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Unknown severity

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Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Tires Easily

Lately when I bring my Benjamin for walks or a run I notice he gets noticeably more tired faster and a lot of panting when we get home he drinks / eats ok his personality is the same always but he’s laying down panting exhausted after even short walks and I’m concerned. But he eats and drinks normally acts perfectly normal it’s just I notice he gets like exhausted really easy now. He’s only 4 , he had a moment 2 months ago where there was like reddish in his stool for a day but then it went away completely so I didn’t get alarmed too bad. Hasn’t come back he poops normal ever since...

July 27, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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Thank you for your question. Benjamin may be overweight, or he may have a heart or lung condition. Since you are noticing a change in him, it would be a good idea to have him seen by a veterinarian, as they can assess his body condition, listen to his heart and lungs, and let you know if there is a problem. If there is something wrong, they can help you treat him. I hope that all goes well for him!

July 27, 2020

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Thor

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German Shepherd Dog

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6 Months

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Moderate severity

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Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Lethargy

My husband said that our 6 month old German Shepherd puppy was acting strange earlier, stumbling around, and unable to walk right. So my husband picked him up and brought him inside and said he started acting normally again. Since then, he's been very lethargic and not his usual playful self. He did eat some peanut butter and some food. He's also been drinking water. He doesn't seem to be in any pain.

May 1, 2018

Thor's Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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I'm not sure if Thor may have gotten into something toxic or may be having some other kind of problem. If he is continuing to act lethargic, it may be a good idea to have him seen by your veterinarian, as I cannot examine him or assess his neurologic status.

May 1, 2018

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Donny

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Boxer

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7 Years

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Moderate severity

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0 found helpful

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Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Fatigue

Fatigue and weekness

July 26, 2017

Donny's Owner

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0 Recommendations

Fatigue and weakness is a common symptom for many different conditions including hormonal disease, poisoning, liver disease, kidney disease, cancer as well as other conditions. Given the vague nature of fatigue and weakness, it would be best to have your Veterinarian examine Donny to determine the underlying cause of the weakness. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

July 26, 2017

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Utah

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Australian Kelpie mix

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2 Years

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Moderate severity

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Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Lethargy

I have a highly active dog that wont stop chasing his ball unless I end it myself. At what point should I stop the play? Usually I'll throw the ball far and we'll do that for maybe an hour and when we get home he'll drink a bunch of water and then pass out. Am I overworking him? How do I tell if he's being overworked while we're playing?

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Athena

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Whippet

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2 Years

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Moderate severity

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0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Panting
Wobbly

I have a 2 year-old whippet and she has on occasion (only has happened 3 times and we go to the park quite often) acted very strange after running hard and fast at the off-leash park. She will be very wobbly and will pant a lot. Most recent time she couldn't jump into the back of the car and I had to lift her. It's scary to witness. But then after she drinks and rests for a short while she seems fine. I feed her the Big Country Raw dinners. She doesn't get many other treats - so basically her diet consists of meat and organs, kale and blueberries. She is very lean but I know as a breed whippets are lean.

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Chance

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Border Collie x Queensland Heeler

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2 Years

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Moderate severity

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0 found helpful

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Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Stumbling
Excessive Panting

My dog has pretty bad exercise intolerance which is weird for his age and breed. He loves to run and chase frisbees and balls but gets exhausted to the point of stumbling after a few minutes and it takes him a long time to stop panting.

Fatigue and Exercise Average Cost

From 286 quotes ranging from $500 - $5,000

Average Cost

$2,000

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