Animal heart rates 

In our community, we have veterinary professionals that work not only in a small animal practice but also with large, exotic, and wild animals. 

We wanted to make a useful infographic that can be a quick and enjoyable reference to remember or study different animal heart rates and fun facts! 

HUMMINGBIRD

  • The heart rate of hummingbirds is 1000 bpm (beats per minute)
  • Heart weight: 0.0035 lbs
  • Female hummingbirds lay, on average, two eggs. These eggs can have the size of a coffee bean!
  • Hummingbirds have fewer feathers than any other bird species (1,000 to 1,500 feathers) due to their size. 

PIGMY SHREW

  • The heart rate of a pigmy shrew is 1300 bpm. This heart rate may vary between species. 
  • The Etruscan shrew (average weight of 1.8 grams) is the lightest mammal on earth. 
  • Heart weight: 0.001056 lbs
  • They eat three times their weight per day to maintain their metabolism

CHEETAH

  • The heart rate of the world’s fastest land animal is 120-170 beats per minute while they are resting, 200-250 bpm when they are running.
  • They can run with a speed of 120 km/h
  • Female cheetahs are solitary, but that changes when they are caring for their cubs. 

GIRAFFE

  • Giraffes have a heart rate of 150 bpm
  • Their heart weights: 11kg / 25 lbs
  • Giraffes have multiple valves in their necks and the highest blood pressure among mammals – 280/180 mm Hg

ELEPHANT

  • The heart rate of elephants is 30 bpm
  • Their heart weights: 12-21 kg / 26.5-46.3 lbs
  • The lifespan of an elephant in the wild is 70 years. 

BLUE WHALE

  • The blue whale is the largest animal of all time! 
  • Blue whales have a heart rate of 8-10 bpm
  • Their heart weights: 180kg / 400 lbs
  • How big is a blue whale’s heart? It is approximately 5 feet long and tall and 4 feet wide. 

CAT

  • A normal cat heart rate is 140-220 bpm
  • Their heart weights: about 20 grams
  • An average cat respiratory rate is 16 to 30 breaths per minute

DOG

  • A normal dog’s pulse is 60-140 bpm depending on age, breed and size.
  • Puppies can have a heart rate of 160-220 bpm
  • A normal dog respiratory rate while resting is 10-35 breaths per minute

RABBIT

  • The heart rate of rabbits is 120-150 bpm
  • Their heart weights: 3.2-10.18 grams
  • A pet rabbit can live up to 12 years or more depending on the breed

COW

  • The pulse of a cow is 48-84 bpm
  • Their heart weights: 2.2 kg / 5 lbs
  • Cows have 32 teeth 
  • The gestation period of a cow is 283 days on average

SHEEP

  • A normal pulse rate of a sheep is 70-80 bpm
  • A sheeps’ heart weights: 147 grams
  • There are around 600 breeds of domestic sheep in the US 

PIG

  • The heart rate of a pig is 60-100 bpm
  • Their heart weights: 302 grams
  • The gestation period of a sow is 114 days 

HORSE

  • The normal heart rate of a horse is 32-36 bpm
  • Their heart weights: 6.4 kg / 14 lbs
  • One of the most common equine diseases is Equine Influenza

Does every animal have a heart or circulatory system?

No, creatures such as jellyfish do not have a heart. 

Here is an infographic of the animal heart rates.

animal heart rates infographic, I Love Veterinary