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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

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Average Cost

$2,000

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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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Golden Retriever

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Twenty Months

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Unknown severity

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Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

My dog gets tired easily compared to other dogs. She often takes breaks and gets back up and plays. Not sure this is normal

March 9, 2021

Owner

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Dr. Linda S. MVB MRCVS

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0 Recommendations

While this may be normal for her, it is important we rule out any underlying issues. A vet visit is sensible to check for potential issues such as hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia or heart disease. Hopefully it is nothing but it is a good idea to look into it.

April 5, 2021

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Labrador Retriever

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Eleven Months

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Unknown severity

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2 found helpful

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My dog normally doesn’t do much, but she went to doggy daycare 2 days ago and played all day long. She’s been sleeping a lot since then and started walking funny. Should I be worried?

Nov. 29, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Linda S. MVB MRCVS

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2 Recommendations

I'm sorry to hear this. The walking funny is a concern and given her breed and age I would want her checked for issues such as hip dysplasia. I would want her assessed by a vet right away as she may be in some discomfort.

Nov. 29, 2020

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German Shepard

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Seven Months

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Unknown severity

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3 found helpful

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Unknown severity

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Sleepy, Walking Funny

Our 7 month old German Shepard played a lot this morning and took him home. I noticed his hips started wattling and he’s been weak and tired all day. And he won’t play like he usually does, he jumped up twice today after a mid afternoon nap but it seems he’s having trouble getting up on the couch.

Oct. 4, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Sara O. DVM

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3 Recommendations

Hello, your dog may have pulled a muscle playing too hard. Allow him to rest for a few days. If he is not better in a day or two, it would be best for your dog to see your vet. There are hip issues and other joint issues that are commonly seen in german Shepards that your dog may be experiencing. Good Luck. I hope your dog improves soon.

Oct. 4, 2020

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Frenchton

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8 weeks

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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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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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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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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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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

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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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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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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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