Can Dogs Sense Heart Attacks

We’ve all heard stories about dogs that detected cancer in their owners. Or dogs that knew that a person was about to go into labor. Some of those stories amaze us, and some of them make us wonder whether or not they’re true. What is interesting about all of them is the capacity that dogs have to detect disease and even save their owner’s life. Heart attacks, for instance, are one of the most dangerous things that can happen to you. Some people even claim that dogs can sense an oncoming heart attack.

So, can dogs sense heart attacks? Dogs can sense heart attacks, but it’s unknown whether it is due to an odor change or a behavioral change in the person minutes before having a heart attack. What you can do is to learn to train your dog to alert you or other people that you need help immediately. The first thing is to learn to see the cues that your dog is giving that something is wrong.

Now, it’s not always easy to see those things. Dogs may act out the same way they do when there’s a cat in the yard. They just bark at you, giving you no other clue that something is up. This leaves you puzzled with nothing else that lets you know that you have a problem.

So, what you do need to do is to teach your four-legged friend to not only better communicate with you but also let other people know. Teaching your dog to go get help for you may well save your life in the future.

It May Be A Change In Odor

Although not scientifically conclusive, studies have shown that there’s a strong possibility that dogs do sense heart attacks due to an odor change. There would be an odor signal that alerts them about the inevitable heart attack. This is likely caused by hormones that the body is releasing, trying to fight this off. This would be the first cue that sets them off and lets them know.

Now, what your dog will do is try to alert you. The problem is that dogs can’t speak. Still, the point is that the secret may lie in the smell they can detect. Dogs rely a lot on their ability to sniff things, unlike humans that rely more on sight to navigate in the world. This puts them at a certain advantage in detecting things like this.

So, a simple change in your odor a few hours or minutes before a heart attack may be enough to alert the dog that something is wrong. If your dog can not only detect this but also alert you, it may save your life.

It Can Be About Behavior

Another possibility is that dogs can sense heart attacks due to a change in behavior. There are small cues that our bodies give off that even we don’t realize. This lets them know that something is wrong. Your dog doesn’t know what you’re about to have a heart attack since he doesn’t know what that is. But your dog knows that something is wrong and that your life is in danger.

Now, the behavioral change is in your body language and how you move around the room. This can be enough to set your dog off. If we’re talking about an untrained dog, he’s likely to only bark with you having no idea of what it means. Still, it doesn’t mean that they don’t know.

So, besides the odor cue, they may also catch up on the behavioral cues that you might give off. It’s not clear whether or not it is a combination of both or only one, but dogs can sense heart attacks. This is why they can be life saviors in these situations.

Train Your Dog For These Situations

A great idea is to train your dog for these situations. Some professionals know how to train dogs to go get help in case you are faint or need help. This is important since you don’t know if there’ll be someone else to help you when you lose consciousness. What the dog will learn is how to alert other human beings, so they can go get a doctor to save your life.

Now, you can and should try to train your dog by yourself. It’ll strengthen the bond that you have and will make it easier for the professional to teach more complex stuff to your dog. Still, for this training, you should get a professional. It’ll ensure that it’ll work and that your dog will learn what he needs to.

So, make sure to teach basic stuff to your dog 5 minutes every day after you’ve taken him for a walk is perfect. Remember to give them treats every time they perform a task well. Link words and hand gestures to what you want him to do. For dog training, the Rachael Ray Nutrish Soup Bones is the best dog treat. Take a look at this great item here.

Always Pay Attention To Odd Behavior

While your dog is untrained, you should pay attention to odd behavior. If your dog is sensing a heart attack, it will try to alert you somehow. That’s why it’s important to pay attention to odd behavior. Especially if your dog insists on barking at you for no reason non-stop. It doesn’t mean that you’re having a heart attack, but something is wrong. Never ignore it.

Now, what you can do is to pay attention to odd behavior and always investigate it further. Make sure it’s nothing. Don’t try to punish the behavior when you don’t know why it’s happening. If there’s no apparent reason, look for one. Dogs are usually barking at something even it’s a bug.

So, never ignore odd behavior. It could be an important message that can save your life. Now, it can also be something silly. You don’t need to be in high alert every time that your dog does something odd. Sometimes it can be just a weird behavior with no deeper meaning.

Dogs Know When They Or You Are Sick

Dogs have great sniffing noses. This means that they’re great at smelling things even if it’s a disease. They know when they’re sick themselves. They also usually know when humans are sick as well. They can sense the hormonal change and other things that our bodies produce when we’re sick.

Now, this doesn’t mean that communication will always be effective. This is why the best you can do is to try and interpret the behavior without going crazy and obsessing over it. Still, the point is that they know when you’re sick. That may be why they present odd behavior sometimes.

So, understand that they do know when they or you are sick. Now, even a simple cold is enough for them. This means that it doesn’t have to be something serious as a heart attack for them to notice.

Dogs Can Be Trained To Recognized The Breathing Pattern

Another interesting thing is that you can train your dog to recognize breathing patterns. This would make him able to know when you’re having a heart attack or is about lose conscience. The idea behind it is that when you’re having a heart attack, your breathing becomes heavier. The dog would then be able to tell what’s happening and would go get help.

Now, this is a very complex training that can only be done by professionals. Your dog would have to be able to understand that difference of breathing heavy when you’ve just arrived from a run and are having a real heart attack.

So, as much as you may feel tempted to do this yourself, it’s better to try with a professional. What you can do is try basic training, but instead of trying with treats you try with toys. You can use them as a reward. For this, you’ll need a toy pack. The LEGEND SANDY Squeaky Plush Dog Toy is the best option. Check it out here.

Medium-sized Dogs Are Better For This Training

Medium-sized dogs are usually better for this type of training instead of large and small ones. They have the intelligence and the size of their favors. That’s why they use Labradors, golden retrievers, and other medium-sized dogs to do this job.

Now, what you can do is to make sure to train your dog no matter his size. This is especially important if you live by yourself. Dog training is one of the best things that you can do for you and your dog. Plus, providing a good environment for them to live in is beneficial.

So, make sure to train your dog no matter his size but know that medium-sized ones do better at this. Also, make sure to give them a good environment with good food and a great bed. The Furhaven Pet Dog Bed is the best dog bed in the market, in case you’re looking for one. Take a look here.

Final Thoughts

So, dogs can sense heart attacks. How they do it is still unclear, but they can do it. The best that you can do is to train your dog to not only sense but alert you and get help for you. This can save your life and the lives of everyone that lives in the house.


As a kid, J. Cesar has always dreamed of becoming Dr. Dolittle. When he isn't writing, you can find him supporting his favorite football team or eating ice cream with his best dog-friend by his side. Linkedin Profile, My Website

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