Cardiopulmonary arrest (CPA) occurs when normal blood circulation ceases due to the heart’s inability to contract (heart failure). Like many other body systems, the respiratory and cardiovascular systems work in a coordinated fashion. Cardiac arrest can occur in dogs and cats of any age, sex, or breed. Cardiac arrest can occur due to many circumstances. From end-stage disease, to arrhythmias, to different types of cancer, cardiopulmonary arrest is an unfortunate complication of many injuries and illnesses.
Cardiopulmonary resuscitation, commonly known as CPR, is an emergency procedure that combines chest compression with respiratory ventilation in an effort to manually preserve intact brain function until the animal reaches emergency veterinary care or the animal revives, referred to as ROSC or return to spontaneous circulation. CPR needs to begin within 10 minutes
after becoming unresponsive.