How can cardiovascular conditions impact the health and well-being of my dog?

Cardiovascular conditions can seriously impact a dog's health. The heart is responsible for pumping blood throughout the body, so if it is not functioning properly, it can affect the overall health and activity level of your dog.

Dr. Amanda German
Loch Haven Veterinary Hospital

What is a veterinary cardiologist?

A veterinary cardiologist is essentially a heart doctor for your pet.

What are some signs and symptoms of a cardiovascular condition in my dog?

Signs and symptoms of a cardiovascular condition in a dog can include coughing, exercise intolerance, lethargy, loss of appetite, and even collapse.

How soon should I bring my dog in to see a veterinarian if I suspect they have heart issues?

It's crucial to bring your dog to a veterinarian as soon as possible if you suspect they have heart issues. Early detection and treatment can potentially save their life.

Why is early detection and diagnosis of cardiovascular disease in dogs so important?

Early detection is important because it allows us to start treatment sooner, which can help keep your dog as healthy as possible.

How will a veterinarian diagnose cardiovascular disease in my dog?

A veterinarian can usually diagnose cardiovascular disease in a dog using a stethoscope to listen to their heart and lungs. However, in some cases, other tests such as an echocardiogram, an ECG, or chest x-rays may be required.

What kinds of treatments are available for dogs with heart problems?

There are several different medications available to treat heart problems in dogs. The specific prescription will depend on the nature of the heart condition.

What types of preventative care can help my dog avoid cardiovascular issues?

Maintaining a healthy weight for your dog is important to avoid putting unnecessary pressure on the heart. Good dental hygiene can also play a role in preventing heart disease. Regular check-ups with a veterinarian, at least once a year, can also help detect any potential issues early.

Dog Cardiology - FAQs 1

Dr. Amanda German
Loch Haven Veterinary Hospital

What are the most common heart diseases in dogs?

Most of the time we're seeing dogs for valvular diseases, but sometimes it can even be something like a dilated cardiomyopathy.

What is a dog heart murmur?

A dog heart murmur is when you have a valve that's not working appropriately, which causes a little bit of blood flow to back up into the heart.

What is dog cardiomyopathy?

Cardiomyopathy means that the heart muscle itself is not working appropriately.

Can diet affect my dog's heart health?

Diet can affect a dog's heart health. You don't want anything too high in salt, but even then, some studies have shown that certain foods can actually cause dilated cardiomyopathy.

What is an enlarged heart in dogs?

An enlarged heart means that the heart is larger than it should be on x-ray. This can either mean that there is a valve disease issue or that you do have dilated cardiomyopathy.

How do you treat an enlarged heart?

We usually put dogs with an enlarged heart on medications, but it depends on what's causing the enlargement.

What is heart failure in dogs?

Heart failure is when your dog's heart is not pumping enough blood throughout their body. They have more blood going back up into the heart than going out.

Dog Cardiology - FAQs 2

Dr. Amanda German
Loch Haven Veterinary Hospital

What is the first sign of a heart issue in dogs?

Sometimes you'll see some exercise intolerance or just coughing.

How do I know if my dog has heart issues?

You'll need to come to the veterinarian so that they can diagnose it.

How are heart murmurs in dogs diagnosed?

Usually, just by us listening through a stethoscope.

What does an echocardiogram show that an x-ray doesn't?

An echocardiogram is actually an ultrasound where they're going to put that up to the heart so they can see the internal structures of the heart, whereas the x-ray is just showing the external structures.

What is the prognosis for dogs with heart issues?

Well it depends on how quickly we get to them, but usually the prognosis is fairly good, but it depends on what's causing it.

What is a board certified cardiologist?

It means that they've gone through the extra schooling and extra testing to make sure that they know exactly what they're doing.

Do I need a cardiologist to diagnose heart issues in my dog?

You don't need them to diagnose it, but they're going to be the ones that are going to give you the best outcomes and the best medication recommendations.

If you still have other questions and you'd like to reach out to us, you can call us directly at (407) 896-0941, or you can email us at [email protected]. But please do reach out, and we'll get back to you as fast as we can. Don't forget to follow us on social media Facebook, Instagram