Atenolol Drug Handout

What is Atenolol?

Atenolol is a beta blocker. Its main purpose is to block receptors on the heart that respond to stress or excitement. This drug helps control heart rate, decreases rhythm problems, and is commonly used to treat cats with a thickened heart muscle (hypertrophic cardiomyopathy). Its overall effect is to improve oxygen use by the heart muscle.


  • Feline hypertrophic cardiomyopathy
  • Canine subvalvular aortic stenosis (SAS)
  • Ventricular premature beats and ventricular tachycardia
  • Atrial premature beats and supraventricular tachycardia
  • Systemic hypertension (high blood pressure)
  • Hyperthyroidism

Possible Negative Effects

Please contact CVCA if your pet shows any of these signs

  • Low heart rate – could cause signs of low blood pressure such as weakness.
  • Only used with caution in patients with decreased heart muscle strength and/or congestive heart failure.
  • Only used with caution in patients with airway disease or asthma.
  • May have some effect on blood sugar control in diabetic patients.

Client Information

  • Can be given with food.
  • Can be given with other medications to treat heart disease.
  • Dosing is usually once or twice daily.
  • Can be given in pill form or reformulated into a flavored liquid.
  • Do not skip doses or stop giving this medication to avoid a rapid rise in heart rate.
  • Please contact CVCA if your pet requires anesthesia. We may need to adjust the dose for that day.

Interactions with Other Drugs

Dosage Forms