Advanced Pet First Aid Level 3 (VTQ)

139 videos, 6 hours and 56 minutes

Course Content

Fluid balance in dogs and cats

Video 76 of 139
2 min 18 sec
Want to watch this video? Sign up for the course or enter your email below to watch one free video.

Unlock This Video Now for FREE

This video is normally available to paying customers.
You may unlock this video for FREE. Enter your email address for instant access AND to receive ongoing updates and special discounts related to this topic.

The Significance of Water and Electrolytes in Animal Health

The Role of Water and Electrolytes

Understanding the vital role of water and electrolytes in an animal's body:

The Body's Water Composition

Water constitutes approximately 60% to 65% of an adult animal's body weight.

Water is essential for virtually all bodily functions.

Electrolytes: Sodium and Chloride

Exploring the importance of electrolytes in fluid balance:

  • Sodium and chloride are key electrolytes.
  • They combine to form table salt.
  • The delicate balance between them is crucial for normal physiology.
  • Even minor electrolyte fluctuations can profoundly affect hydration and organ function.

Roles of Electrolytes

Highlighting the multifaceted roles of electrolytes in the body:

  • Regulation of body pH
  • Muscle and nerve function
  • Vital for normal heart and brain operation

Fluid and Electrolyte Balance

Examining how animals maintain fluid and electrolyte balance:

Natural Fluid Loss and Gain

Healthy animals, like humans, experience daily fluctuations in water and electrolyte levels:

  • Loss through urination, panting, defecation, exercise, and sweating
  • Replenishment via eating and drinking
  • Regulatory mechanisms maintain equilibrium in normal physiology

Dehydration: A Critical Condition

Understanding the consequences of fluid loss exceeding intake:

  • Drop in blood pressure (hypotension)
  • Imbalance in fluid and electrolytes impairs cell, tissue, and organ function
  • Strain on vital organs like the heart and kidneys
  • Severe dehydration can lead to clinical shock, a life-threatening situation

Proper veterinary intervention is crucial in addressing clinical shock.