Heart Disease in Dogs: Dilated Cardiomyopathy

DCM

Dilated Cardiomyopathy (DCM) is a common heart disease that affects your pet’s health.  DCM is a blanket term for any dilation noted in the heart chambers (ventricles or atria). To better understand DCM, one must visualize what is actually happening to the heart.  This image … [Read more...]

Heart Disease in Cats: Symptoms

Cats spend much of their time sleeping

  Cats frequently have heart disease without clinical signs for months to years. Cats are private and elusive creatures by nature choosing solitude often.  Unsurprisingly, cats are not let on that they are sick until they are often at the point of severe illness.  … [Read more...]

Congenital Heart Disease in the Dog: Diagnosis and Treatment

Puppy at the Vet

During your puppy's first examination by your veterinarian it is routine to carefully listen for abnormal heart sounds that may suggest the presents of a congenital heart defect. The normal sound is a series of “lup Dub” sound. A murmur is an abnormal sound heard through a … [Read more...]

Comparing Congenital Heart Disease in Dogs and Children

Maltese puppy

Puppies can be born with virtually the same birth defects of the heart that affect human babies. Treatment of some congenital abnormalities is possible in dogs however it pales in comparison to the sophistication that is available for treatment of children with congenital … [Read more...]

Heart Disease in Dogs: Endocarditis

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Bacterial infection of heart valves (bacterial endocarditis) is thankfully an uncommon disease and is unlikely to affect the health of your pet.  Bacterial endocarditis in the dog can develop on any of the four valves of the heart however it typically occurs on the left side … [Read more...]

Heart Disease in Dogs: Tricuspid Valve Disease

Labrador Retriever

The tricuspid valve separates the right ventricle from the right atrium. Click here to learn about normal heart functioning of the dog. The same process that causes mitral valve disease  also causes the degeneration, thickening and eventually inability to tightly seal the … [Read more...]

Comparing Acquired Heart Disease in Dogs and Humans

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Acquired heart diseases are those that develop over time rather than conditions that are present from birth (congenital). Though limited similarities exist between heart disease in dogs and people, there are key differences that affect how and when to treat. Dogs do NOT … [Read more...]

Heart Disease in Dogs: Diagnosis and Treatment of Mitral Valve Disease

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Diagnosis of mitral valve disease in the dog The rapid, turbulent blood flow created by mitral regurgitation (think of the force and sound created when placing your thumb over a garden hose) can be heard through a stethoscope.  When your pet is examined by your … [Read more...]

Heart Disease in Dogs: Mitral Valve Disease

mitral_valve

MMVD (acquired myxomatous mitral valve degeneration) accounts for about 3 in every 4 cases of heart disease in dogs.  It generally affects older, small-breed dogs most commonly, though any dog may be affected.  Predisposed breeds include miniature and toy poodles, Cavalier … [Read more...]

Heart Disease of the Cat: Treatment Options

Sleeping Cat

Therapy of heart disease in the cat is highly variable and can be controversial.  HCM, the most commonly diagnosed heart problem, has some theories of therapy.  Because the main issue is the heart not having time/space to fill, there is a school of thought that gives … [Read more...]