Benefortin for dogs and cats



Active ingredient

Benazepril Hydrochloride


Heart / Kidney / Blood Pressure

What is Benefortin?

Benefortin is a brand name for a drug with the active ingredient benazepril hydrochloride, marketed by Boehringher Ingleheim. It is a flavoured tablet. It is an ACE inhibitor, a type of drug which widens blood vessels, helping the heart to work more effectively.

What does Benefortin do?

Benefortin (Benazepril Hydrochloride) is a medication known as an angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor. It works by widening blood vessels, which has several benefits for pets with heart or kidney conditions.

Benefits for heart conditions: When Benefortin relaxes blood vessels, it allows blood to flow more freely throughout the body. This lowers blood pressure, making it easier for the heart to pump blood. This reduction in workload is crucial for pets suffering from heart failure.

Benefits for Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD): Benefortin can also be beneficial for cats and dogs with CKD. In these cases, abnormally high blood pressure in the kidneys can cause excessive protein leakage into the urine, leading to a poor prognosis. Benefortin helps by lowering the pressure within the kidney’s tiny filtering units (glomeruli), thereby reducing protein loss and potentially slowing the progression of CKD.

What is Benefortin used for?

Benefortin is used for various conditions in dogs and cats, including:

  • Congestive Heart Failure (CHF): Benefortin is prescribed for dogs with heart failure due to a number of heart conditions including mitral valve disease (MVD) and dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM).
  • Benefortin is also used to reduce the proteinuria associated with Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) in cats and dogs

What are the possible side effects with Benefortin?

While generally well-tolerated, Benefortin can have some side effects, like:

  • Changes in appetite: Some pets may temporarily lose interest in food, while some cats may experience increased appetite and weight gain.
  • Lethargy: Pets might exhibit weakness, especially during the initial stages of treatment.
  • Vomiting: Some pets may not tolerate the medication well and experience vomiting.
  • Elevated blood creatinine: This is a marker of kidney function, and a temporary increase can occur in both cats and dogs. However, it’s important to note that this is a potential consequence of lowered blood pressure when starting Benefortin and not necessarily a cause for immediate concern. Your veterinarian will monitor your pet’s creatinine levels alongside other factors (history, physical exam) to determine if it requires further action.

Remember, this list is not exhaustive, and some pets may experience other less common side effects. If any symptoms persist or worsen, always consult your veterinarian.

How to give Benefortin safely

  • Follow vet instructions: Give Benefortin as instructed by your vet. Do not change the dose without consulting them. If you feel that your pet will do better with revised instructions for Benefortin, please discuss your concerns with your vet and they will advise accordingly.
  • Administer with or without food: Benefortin can be given with or without food, but consistency is key. Contact your vet if you have missed a dose.
  • Keep regular veterinary check-ups: Monitor your pet’s response and attend scheduled veterinary appointments.
  • Storage and Handling: Keep Benefortin in a cool, dry place below 25C, and out of reach of children and pets. Take particular care when storing half-tablets.
  • Contact your vet in case of overdose: benefortin overdose can cause the blood pressure to become too low, which is dangerous. If you accidentally overdose your pet by giving too much medication at once or giving more frequently than prescribed, please contact your vet immediately for advice.
  • Wash hands after use: To avoid accidental oral intake of Benefortin, you should wash your hands after giving this medication to your cat or dog. Pregnant women should take particular care not to accidentally take Benefortin, as it can have effects on the foetus. 

Benefortin FAQs

Can Benefortin be used in cats and dogs?

Yes, Benefortin is formulated for both cats and dogs. Benefortin comes in three tablet sizes. The smaller tablets (2.5mg and 5mg) are designed for cats and dogs, and the larger tablets (20mg) are just for dogs.

Can Benefortin be crushed or split?

Benefortin tablets are scored to allow easy splitting into half. They can be crushed, but you need to make sure they still get the correct dose. Talk to your vet if you are having trouble giving Fortekor, as they may be able to offer advice.

Are there any alternatives to Benefortin?

There are several other brand names of benazepril tablets (such as Fortekor, Nelio and Benazecare) that are available if you are struggling to get hold of Benefortin. However, your vet will need to prescribe the replacement drug.

Benefortin Datasheet

All drugs have a manufacturer’s datasheet, which gives information about the drug’s use and possible side effects. There is usually one in your Benefortin box, but if you have lost it you can click on the button below to be taken on an online version.

Courses related to Benefortin

Please note that the information contained herein is provided for informational purposes only. Although it has been written by a vet, we cannot consider the individual nature of your pet’s problems so it does not constitute veterinary advice. If you have questions about your pet’s medication or their health you should contact a vet, who will be able to help.