Enlarged Heart (Dilated Cardiomyopathy) Average Cost

From 39 quotes ranging from $2,000 - 6,000

Average Cost

$3,500

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What is Enlarged Heart (Dilated Cardiomyopathy)?

With dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) the heart muscle becomes thinner than normal, is weakened, and results in poor pumping ability, valve leakage and arrhythmia. This loss of the heart’s ability to properly contract is a common acquired disease of the heart in dogs. It is predominantly seen in male middle-aged canines. Large breed dogs are most predisposed but many other dogs are known to be susceptible. The large breed dogs are the Doberman Pinscher, Boxer, Irish Wolfhound, Great Dane, Scottish Deerhound, Labrador Retriever, Newfoundland Retriever, Saint Bernard, and German Shepherd. In addition, Dalmatians, Welsh Corgi, Tibetan Terriers, and Spaniels (specifically American Cocker, English Cocker, and Springer) are prone to acquiring an enlarged heart.

Dilated cardiomyopathy is a disease in which the heart muscle becomes enlarged and weak. Loss of ability to contract is a main component of the condition, affecting both left and right sides of the heart. The chambers of the heart (atria and ventricles) are put under great strain due to enlargement and impairment of function.

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Symptoms of Enlarged Heart (Dilated Cardiomyopathy) in Dogs

The signs of dilated cardiomyopathy can vary from pet to pet depending on the stage of the disease. If you see your canine companion exhibit any of the following symptoms, be sure to contact your veterinarian for an appointment, or if needed seek assistance at the emergency clinic.

  • Exercise is becoming difficult to manage
  • He tires easily
  • He is reluctant to partake in activity
  • He is panting excessively
  • He coughs or clears his throat often
  • He appears weak
  • There has been an episode of fainting
  • Weight loss is apparent
  • His abdomen seems enlarged (fluid accumulation can cause this)
  • His breathing is heavy

In later stages of dilated cardiomyopathy, your pet will have additional signs of discomfort.

  • Reluctance to lie down
  • Loss of appetite
  • Inability to get comfortable
  • Collapse

Unfortunately, with this condition, sudden death may occur.

Causes of Enlarged Heart (Dilated Cardiomyopathy) in Dogs

An enlarged heart is an acquired condition; the specific cause is presently unknown. Factors that are thought to contribute are as follows.

  • Breed disposition
  • Low thyroid
  • Prolonged arrhythmias
  • Ischemia
  • Amino acid deficiencies (typically taurine and carnitine)
  • Toxicity
  • Infection

As a result of these causes congestion, edema, and effusion lead to heart failure.

Diagnosis of Enlarged Heart (Dilated Cardiomyopathy) in Dogs

When you bring your canine companion to the veterinarian for his appointment, a physical examination may alert your veterinarian to the heart issue right away. Upon listening to the heart, she could hear abnormal sounds like a murmur or arrhythmia. Your dog’s pulse could be weak. 

These signs will indicate that further investigation is warranted. There are a few tests that can be ordered which are very accurate in diagnosing a condition such as dilated cardiomyopathy. Chest radiographs can show that your dog’s heart is most likely enlarged, which is a benchmark sign of this type of heart ailment. An electrocardiogram can confirm the existence of arrhythmia and irregularities with the left atrium and ventricle. The use of an ultrasound and quite possibly a 24 hour Holter monitor can give more information on the state of inflammation and blood flow of the heart.

Treatment of Enlarged Heart (Dilated Cardiomyopathy) in Dogs

If there is an underlying condition contributing to the dilated cardiomyopathy, treatment can be greatly improved with concurrent therapy. In the case of amino acid or enzyme disturbances, supplementation (for example taurine) has been shown to help improve changes that are occurring in the heart. 

Delaying the progression of the enlarged heart and the symptoms that result is key because dilated cardiomyopathy has no cure. The therapy chosen will be to give comfort to your dog and to slow the changes associated with the disease. Medication to aid in the contraction of the heart muscle, diuretics to decrease fluid retention, and drugs to stabilize heart rhythm are essential to treatment. The response of your pet to these therapies will depend on his age and how advanced the condition was at time of diagnosis.

Recovery of Enlarged Heart (Dilated Cardiomyopathy) in Dogs

The prognosis for canines diagnosed with dilated cardiomyopathy is guarded. The condition usually progresses fairly quickly but depending on the stage at time of discovery as well as the breed of your dog may determine the outcome. Dogs survive from a few months to a few years, with the average being around one year after symptoms are seen. As the disease progresses, the medications your pet is taking will need to be adjusted. Follow up appointments will be required to monitor the condition of the heart. Blood tests must be done at regular intervals to check on the effects of medication on kidney function. Keep in contact with your veterinarian, and do not hesitate to call her her or take your pet to the clinic if you feel his condition is changing, or if he is showing signs of advanced heart problems.

Enlarged Heart (Dilated Cardiomyopathy) Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

Loki
Mutt
12 Weeks
Moderate condition
1 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Weight Loss
Tired
Trouble breathing
slow
Loss of Appetite

Medication Used

Viagra

Loki was really for about a week so we took him to the hospital and they found he had a enlarged heart and lung. Loki is now on viagra.he was very sick and then the viagra kicked in and he is doing great. Will this fix him?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
3317 Recommendations
Viagra (sildenafil) has been used in the treatment of heart enlargement and pulmonary hypertension; it is not possible to determine whether treatment will be curative (given the young age) or if this would be required for lifelong treatment. If you haven’t already, you should consult with a Veterinary Cardiologist a better insight. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Milo
Shih Tzu
1 Year
Fair condition
-1 found helpful
Fair condition

Has Symptoms

Coughing

My 1 year old Shih Tzu plays a lot. He’s not weak and he eats a lot without fail. He’s very normal but lately, he suddenly coughs and makes sounds like when a human’s nose is clogged and we try to breathe in and out. Like a honk? But it only lasts for a few seconds and then after that, he goes back to playing. I’m worried.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
3317 Recommendations
Your description sounds more like tracheal collapse than anything else which would be consistent with the characteristic goose ‘honk’ and the breed. This is a condition where the airway collapses reducing airflow, it can be managed and there are surgical options too; you should have your Veterinarian take a look at Milo and an x-ray would be useful. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM https://wagwalking.com/condition/tracheal-collapse www.acvs.org/small-animal/tracheal-collapse www.cliniciansbrief.com/sites/default/files/attachments/Tracheal%20Collapse%20in%20Dogs.pdf

I am a young man of 45 years now and was diagnosed with diabetes last summer. I was having lots of symptom like weak erection, weakness of the body, dry lips and palms, and even restlessness in the legs and shrinking of my general body build ups. My head was itching very much. I was seeking something to help regain my life to be able to do things for myself. Through my primary physician i learnt about a Diabetic disease herbal formula from NATURAL HERBAL GARDENS and their success rate with the treatment, i immediately started on the Diabetes disease herbal protocol, I am glad to report the herbal formula worked effectively and there was no side effects, I had a total decline in symptoms, the weak erection, restlessness and other symptoms stopped, my Diabetes disease is totally REVERSED, Here is a link to the website we ordered from ww w.naturalherbalgardens.c om This Herbal Protocol is Incredible!!

What is the answer to change of diet? Will adding near
The helpfu?

My lovely dog has diagnosed heart enlargement and left artery dilated... Dr said his disease at level 2. They gave the enapril and vetmedin... It is said in most of articles on the web the dogs who has heart enlargement have min 6 max 24 months life span... What is the best way to keep him healthy and longer his life.. What about diets? What he should eat ? I know no salt anymore or fatty things etc... What about eating meat or getting protein? I would be so grateful if you inform me about what else or can i do the best for him?

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Soda Pop
Border Collie
11 Years
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

groaning, heavy breathing, fatigue,

Medication Used

enalpril

Hi, my 11 year old male Border Collie diagnosed with enlarged heart and now on meds. No fainting yet, but most of the other signs are present. He almost continually makes a groaning/gutteral/growly noise, especially when lying down, sleeping,resting and especially when he gets up in the morning. Should I be worried or is this just a symptom? Also, is it OK to continue walking him 2-3 miles a day or should I hold off?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
3317 Recommendations
Breathing changes are a normal course in the development of dilated cardiomyopathy, it is important to ensure that Soda Pop isn’t struggling to breathe and is comfortable. As for walking, I would reduce the distance especially if you notice Soda Pop is struggling; it is important to get exercise and fresh air but we don’t want to put unnecessary stress on the heart. You should visit your Veterinarian regularly for an examination to check for progression of symptoms and to ensure that Soda Pop is otherwise in good shape. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Lily
Miniature Australian Shepherd
8 Months
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Coughing

Today my almost 8 month old mini Aussie was seen by her vet. We took her in because of cough we could control with antibiotics. He performed an X-ray and found that her right atrium and ventricle are enlarged. What might the etiology be? We are heartbroken.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
3317 Recommendations

The etiology of right-sided heart enlargement in an eight month old puppy is hard to say, this type of condition usually occurs in older dogs. Congenital deformities are the usual suspects, but at times the cause is unknown and treatment is concentrated on supportive care of the heart. As the heart gets larger, its muscle wall weakens making it less effective at pumping blood which leads to the heart increasing in size yet again. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

how do i ask for advise? i have a very sick puppy and i need some hope or advise

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Kado
Bichon Frise
12 Years
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

Coughing

Hello- Kado is 12 Years old and was just diagnosed with having an enlarged heart and he also has a little bit of liquid in his lungs- we are waiting on the results of the echogram to give us more information- he is still full of energy eats all his food and drinks water- we take him on a 3 walks a day. Any and all advise would be great. He had an x-ray done and his heart is larger then they would like. is their anything we can do as far as diet or anything else to help with this diagnoses. We are all very upset over this.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
3317 Recommendations
In these cases it is important to ensure that all results come back before starting a treatment plan; generally treatment may consist of ACE inhibitors and diuretics but any treatment would depend on the severity of the symptoms and how Kado responds, for dilated cardiomyopathy your Veterinarian may also prescribe Vetmedin (pimobendan) if Kado is presenting with symptoms of congestive heart failure. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Moose
Pomeranian
10 Years
Serious condition
1 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

Coughing

Medication Used

Pimobendan
Enalapril

Our 10 yr old Pomeranian was taken in for routine teeth cleaning, Vet said she had a stg 3 murmur, negative for heart worms. (was not noticed on last vet visit 1.5 years ago). They did xray and said she has an enlarged heart and needs medication the rest of her life. The only symptom she has had is coughing, she has had an occ cough all her life, but has increased the last 6+ months. She doesn't cough everyday and has had no other symptoms. She is very active and can hike several miles, better than our big dogs, and never seems tired or sob. She doesn't have any wheezing, or crackles, or swelling. She has never passed out. She does occ get a reverse sneeze(what vet called it) when excited, but again this has been all her life. She was started on enalapril 1.25mg qpm and pimobendan 0.625mg twice daily. She was also given antibiotics for inflamed trachea. she weighs 7 pounds. Everything we get look up online gives a dismal prognosis. She rarely gets treats, and her dog food is Blue Buffalo small breed. We did not get to speak to vet except on phone. Does this diagnosis truly this dismal, and is there anything we can do to extend her quality of life, and what symptoms we should be looking for. Our whole family is devastated. Thank you,
Kristy

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1607 Recommendations
Thank you for contacting us about Moose today. Her diagnosis of an enlarged heart may not be as bad as you are reading - there is a lot of information on the internet! That is actually one of the benefits of having regular veterinary visits, to pick things up while we can still do something about them. It isn't uncommon for small breed dogs to develop thickening of their mitral valves, and develop a murmur and and heart enlargement. Many small breed dogs can live normal lives without the heart condition affecting their lives. Moose isn't showing signs, and your veterinarian started her on preventive medications to help her heart work more effectively. Without an ultrasound, your veterinarian can't be sure of the actual diagnosis, but the therapy she is on is very appropriate. If you see signs of heart disease or heart failure, that will change the situation, of course, but there are many dogs with heart murmurs that end up passing many years later of unrelated causes.

Thank you for your quick response. This information does help us relax a little. Moose has a f/u appointment in one week, so hopefully we will get more answers then.
thank you,
Kristy

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Buddy
Golden Retriever
10 Years
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

tired easily
winded
Lethargy
Panting
Coughing

Medication Used

Theophylline
Enalapril

I have a golden retriever we estimate is 9-10 years old (he is a rescue). My dog has not been himself. He is usually clingy and stays by my side. He has been distant and laying around. He struggles to go for walks and tires easily. He gets winded very easily. We have noticed his tongue turning purplish and his gums becoming pale. He also has a cough that ends with a gag like he tries to clear his throat. He had a chest X-ray and his right atrium looked enlarged and his lungs looked streaky. Medications haven't been helping much. How do you know what steps should be taken next or when there isn't anything you can do? Does he have DCM? Thanks.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
3317 Recommendations
Generally we look at the symptoms and the results of x-rays and echocardiogram, I would be looking at doing an echocardiogram to get a better picture of the condition and to make some measurements of the heart size, function of the valves among other parameters. Treatment starts off with ACE inhibitors (enalapril) if there is evidence of hypotension, diuretics (furosemide) if there is evidence of fluid accumulation and Vetmedin (pimobendan) if there are issues with heart contractility with symptoms of congestive heart failure from dilated cardiomyopathy. Without examining Buddy I cannot confirm the diagnosis. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Barney
Medium
9 Years
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

short of breath
Coughing

Medication Used

Enalapril, Vetmedin , Lacix

My lovely dog has diagnosed heart enlargement and left artery dilated... Dr said his disease at level 2. They gave the enapril and vetmedin... It is said in most of articles on the web the dogs who has heart enlargement have min 6 max 24 months life span... What is the best way to keep him healthy and longer his life.. What about diets? What he should eat ? I know no salt anymore or fatty things etc... What about eating meat or getting protein? I would be so grateful if you inform me about what else or can i do the best for him?

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1607 Recommendations
Thank you for your email. Without seeing Barney, Im not sure that I can offer much advice, but the heart medications that your veterinarian has put him on are quite effective in treating certain kinds of heart disease. There is a prescription diet that is made for heart disease, and that may help prolong his comfortable life. Your veterinarian can help you with these decisions. i hope that he is okay.

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Doodles
Maltese Bichon Frise
12 Years
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

Fainting
Murmur
Enlarged heart
Coughing

My dog has always had a heart murmur since she was a puppy, but in the last 24 hours she has fainted twice briefly following a cough (she used to cough occasionally but never fainting). We took her to the vet and they told us her heart is enlarged thus pushing on her trachea, but no fluids in her lungs. We have an appointment with a cardiologist in a couple days but until then we can only monitor her closely. Is this a serious condition or is it likely something more manageable?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
3317 Recommendations
Fainting generally occurs in these cases due to a lack of blood flow to the brain and once a dog faints, the blood flow goes to the brain and they get back up again. There are options for medical management to help improve contractility of the heart and improve the pumping efficacy of the heart but this would be best discussed with the Cardiologist. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Paco
Pomeranian
One Year
Fair condition
0 found helpful
Fair condition

Jul 12, 2018 the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said in a warning to pet owners:
"Pet food containing peas, lentils, other legumes and potatoes might be causing heart disease in dogs". I'm very concern about this news because my baby Pom Paco is a little over a year now and he has eaten this kind of food since very young... https://wagwalking.com/condition/enlarged-heart-dilated-cardiomyopathy

His vet suspected enlarged heart six months ago. Paco was sent to the cardiologist but besides an enlarged heart she couldn't find anything else. She attributed it to the amount of exercise he was doing. She said "athletes have enlarged hearts". Please advice I'm heartbroken!

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
3317 Recommendations
For now we cannot say for certain, the FDA has advised this based on a trend that has been seen in non predisposed breeds on diets containing peas, lentils, other legumes or potatoes as their main ingredients (note it says main ingredients in the full statement) developing dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM); the instructions are: “We encourage pet owners and veterinarians to report DCM cases in dogs who are not predisposed to the disease.” You should discuss this with your Veterinarian further. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM www.fda.gov/newsevents/newsroom/fdainbrief/ucm613355.htm www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-07-12/dog-food-with-legumes-tied-to-pet-heart-disease-fda-says

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J
Labrador Retriever
9 Years
Serious condition
1 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

Loss of Appetite

Medication Used

Pomibenden

Hello, Our 9 year old male Labrador 58kgs (127 pounds), was diagnosed with DCM in novemver 2017. He has been on Pomibendan 1(tab), Lasix (2 tabs) and envas (2 tabs) twice daily for 9 months now. But this week he has been having loss of appetite and having shivers. He refuses to walk more than few yards. i am scared as I am writing this.... Tried giving renal diet and urgent care food, he is still dull and breathing heavily. Please suggest your opinion..

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
3317 Recommendations
If J is having breathing difficulties you should return to your Veterinarian regardless; being treated with Vetmedin (pimobendan), Lasix (furosemide) and Envas (enalapril) shows that J has congestive heart failure caused by dilated cardiomyopathy and it may be that he requires an adjustment to treatment. However, without examining him myself I cannot say for certain. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

Thanks Doctor Callum, We took him to the vet. He took his temperature and it was 104.5 in the morning. IV fluids with Cefotaxime inj was given , I think some fever medicines were given too.Only after 10-15 ml of IV he developed shivers and it was stopped. Then we brought him back and have been force feeding with urgent care food. he had 1/2 a can .
By evening the temperature was 102.3. He is showing very slow movements and unable to walk properly. My heart aches so bad, i've been unable to work or do anything. Please suggest how we can get him to eat and become normal.. Its almost 2am he is sleeping in one same position for hours. then I shifted him a bit , then he walked a few yards. Showing lack of strength and appetite.Please suggest your opinion..

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Jack
Shih Tzu
10 Years
Fair condition
0 found helpful
Fair condition

Has Symptoms

Sounds congested.
Sleeps alot
snorting
Sounds congested
Rattling heard in his breathing

Medication Used

Lasix/Furosemide 12.5mg
Enalapril, 5mg

Our dog Jack, 10 yr old Shih Tzu was diagnosed yesterday with a murmur, enlarged heart and fluid around the bottom of his heart. No prior history. Vet said he felt condition was caught early. We were given heart med and diuretic. Will meds fix this issue, will meds reverse condition? How long realistically, does our baby have if this condition isn’t reversed. He is not overweight and as of now is eating and drinking water normally. Just abnormally sleeping a lot.

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1607 Recommendations
Thank you for your email. If the diuretic effectively clears the fluid from Jack's lungs, and he responds well to the heart medications, he may live a life unaffected by his heart disease. Enalapril is an effective medication for heart disease, and if caught early, he may be fine. Heart disease isn't reversible, but the medications can help his heart work more efficiently so that it doesn't affect his life. It would be a good idea to have frequent rechecks with your veterinarian to make sure that everything is working as it should. I hope that he is okay.

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Cooper
Pomeranian
9 Months
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

Head Tilt

I think my dog pomeranian named cooper has this disease,i am so sad to read about this because he is so young about almost 9 months pls give me some advice and treatments ..

I was really shock because in just past 2 mins he was very normal and suddenly he collapse
His head was tilted and he cannot barely move his feet pls give me suggestions im very thankful if you could reply :)

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
3317 Recommendations
First it is important for you to visit your Veterinarian as any medication is prescription based and would need to be done after a physical examination. If it is dilated cardiomyopathy, there are some management options available which may include pimobendan or ACE inhibitors; there are other cardiac causes and non-cardiac cases which would need to be investigated. Your Veterinarian will want to take blood tests, x-rays (to see the size of the heart and other organs) and echocardiography. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

My 16 year old diabetic dog has this enlarged heart and has been diagnosed the medication prescribed furosemide 40mg 1/2 tablet is causing him to cough and choke up more than he did when he was diagnosed how do we keep him more comfortable prior to losing him? We decided against the other medication that was long term and could not take him of it based on side effects like this one?

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Romeo
Shih Tzu
12 Years
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Coughing

My 12 year old Shihtzu was diagnosed with severe heart failure. I asked the Vet if it was last stages and he said it's not quite there yet but anything can happen. Currently he's on water pills and benazapril, and takes hydrocodone for his cough. The Vet is going to prescribe Vetmedin for him as well. My question is, how long do dogs live with this realistically? His heart failure seemed to progress fast, it was only a year ago that we found out he had mitral valve insufficiency but it was compensated. I guess I always knew that heart failure would eventually develop but was not prepared for this. He seems happy but rests a lot, and coughs a lot at night. Vet said to limit his walks, keep him out of the sun, and don't let him climb stairs. Is there anything else I can do to prolong his life? I'm so scared this is all I can think about. He's part of our family and we love our little Romeo so much.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
3317 Recommendations
It is difficult to give a specific time frame for life expectancy as there are many variables, however as I started to read your question I was thinking why isn’t Romeo on Vetmedin (pimobendan) then I saw that your Veterinarian is going to prescribe it. Dog do typically well on Vetmedin, ACE inhibitors and diuretics; but I cannot give you any assurance on life expectancy. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Kira
Cairne terrier
13 Years
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

tired easily and weak

My 13 year old cairne terrier has just been diagnosed with irregular heartbeat and enlarged heart. She is on Pimobendan 5mg. She has been treated for thyroid for few years. My vet has said we could see a cardiologist says our decision. Does seeing a cardiologist make sense to you? I just want someone elses opinion. Thank you, Russell.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
3317 Recommendations
Without examining Kira myself, I cannot give an opinion on the severity of the condition or whether the treatment given is appropriate at this time; a visit to a Cardiologist would be useful for the second opinion and to get another Veterinarian’s view on the condition. Heart conditions can be asymptomatic for years then suddenly present out of the blue, it would be useful for a Cardiologist’s input. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Buster
Boarder collie
13 Years
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

Panting winded some coughing
winded
Panting
Coughing

My 13 y/o was diagnosed with enlarged heart last week. We went for ultra sound which both my reg. vet and one doing ultra sound said they expected to find a tumor or some growth to cause the enlargement but nothing was found. Sent him home on antibiotics for some fluid found in lungs, but no heart medications. Should I be asking for something to help him stay more comfortable? At this point he seems good, but gets winded easy and pants more.

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1607 Recommendations
Thank you for your email. If Buster has fluid building up in his lungs and an enlarged heart, many veterinarians would have him start on heart medication. It would be worth a phone call to your veterinarian to let them know that he is still having some trouble and ask if they think heart medications would be appropriate, as they have examined him and know the results of his ultrasound. I hope that all goes well for him.

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Snow
Maltese
12 Years
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

Severe coughing

How can i slow down my dog’s cough. She was diagnosed with enlarged heart, murmur,congestive heart failure. She was taking the furosemide half pill 3xday and her cough slowed down for a month but now again it started again so we increased the dose of furosemide to a whole pill 2x day, she still plays, has good appetite, she’s drinking a lot of water and going to the bathroom normal, so I see the diuretic works fine, but she hasn’t slowed down on her cough and we can tell how uncomfortable she feels when it happens. She usually doesn’t cough at night but now she does towards the morning.

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1607 Recommendations
Some dogs benefit from a cough suppressant with an enlarged heart, but it is important to make sure that the coughing isn't due to an increase in fluid buildup. Your veterinarian will be able to listen to her, take repeat x-rays if needed, and prescribe a cough medication if it is appropriate. I hope that she is okay.

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Bailey
Golden Retriever
4 Months
Fair condition
0 found helpful
Fair condition

Has Symptoms

Normal

Hi
Is Heart enlargement hereditary?
If yes, is it mother to litter or could be either parent?
If the mother has not been diagnosed with heart enlargement, but few of her puppy's have been, are rest of the litter also susceptible to this condition?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
3317 Recommendations
It is suspected that there may be a genetic component in some breeds (Doberman, Boxer among others) but Golden Retrievers are no on the list; the details of a possible genetic link are unclear and there isn’t much information on the subject. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Elvis
jack russell and italian greyhound mix
17 Years
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

restless at night.

I have a 17yr jack russell/italian greyhound mix. He has had a 3 hack, 1 gag at end cough consistently for 5 mths. First given 3 wks antibiotics for kennel cough, with 1/2 pill of tramadol 2x a daily. no change. after xray, diagnosed with enlarged heart. Now on Pimobendan 10mg 2x daily. He has a great appetite, great poops, does small walks, no labored breathing nor shortness of breath. He gets multi vitamins, greens, milk thistle, vetri cardio, curcumin, dasuquin joint, fresh pumkin, baby oatmeal and fresh cooked meat everyday. The Pimobendan seems to make him ill, and unbalanced. He vomits on it. I am concerned. Is this heart failure or a respiratory thing? He walks where many other dogs hang out and do their business. I know he is at the end of this life span. Just want him to be comfortable and not ill feeling during it. Should I stop anything I am giving him? Is there anything I could do differently?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
3317 Recommendations
Without examining Elvis I cannot say whether the current symptoms are related to his heart or to a respiratory issue; plus without examining him I cannot recommend you take him of any prescription medication prescribed by your Veterinarian. Medicines like pimobendan shouldn’t be just stopped without consultation with your Veterinarian, but if you are feeling that it is causing side effects you should visit your Veterinarian to discuss. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Beauty
Cocker Spaniel
Nine Years
Fair condition
0 found helpful
Fair condition

Has Symptoms

some panting; sleeps a lot.

Medication Used

Vetmedin

My 9 year-old cocker spaniel, Beauty, has been diagnosed with stage 4 heart enlargement. Can you tell me what these levels are; I can't seem to find information, such as is level 3 better or worse than level 4? Beauty pants more now, but is still a great walker and eater. She has been prescribed Vetmedin twice a day (2.5 gr. each).

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
3317 Recommendations
There are different methods of monitoring dilated cardiomyopathy; the two links below reference both commonly used methods; I don’t know if your Veterinarian was referring to a heart murmur as being grade IV but for dilated cardiomyopathy staging generally goes 1-3 with 3 being the most severe. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM http://vetspecialists.co.uk/factsheets/Cardiology/DCM.html www.cliniciansbrief.com/sites/default/files/attachments/Heart%20Disease%20Diagnosis%20&%20Treatment.pdf

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Bella
Pomeranian
8 Years
Fair condition
1 found helpful
Fair condition

Has Symptoms

Cooughing

My 8 year old Pomeranian has a stage 4 heart murmur. The vet said the left side of her heart is enlarged but her lungs are not affected and are functioning well. She is on medication now. She is active, barks, plays with her toys, eats regularly, sleeps through the night, does not throw up or have diarrhea. Sometimes she coughs like she needs to cough up a hairball. She has never fainted and her gums have a little bit of dark coloring on some parts but the rest look normal and pink like always. She is my little baby girl & princess and I love her so much! so I worry. I keep reading different things like they could still live normal lives but I also read other things that say it can lead to congestive heart failure and other negative scenarios which scare me. My veterinarian is great! but always talks about worst case scenarios. I understand some doctors just are that way. I just want to get more opinions based on her symptoms.
With the symptoms and conditions listed, will she be able to continue to live a normal happy live for several years!?
please advise!

Thank You.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
3317 Recommendations
It is really case dependent, it is good that the lungs are functioning well but the heart enlargement is concerning; depending on overall severity and Bella’s condition, medical management may help her later in life but would be down to your Veterinarian’s discretion. If you have concerns, it may be worth visiting a Cardiologist for another opinion to make sure that you are getting the best care for Bella. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Saimon
Pomeranian
5 Years
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Laziness
abdomen swelling
Coughing

My dog is 5 years old and she is suffering from coughing since November and no doctor is able to find out any cure for it. She also has heart enlargement. Can you please give a home remedy for the cough

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1607 Recommendations
Thank you for your email. Without examining Saimon, listening to her heart and lungs, and evaluating her cardiovascular system, I cannot recommend any treatments, as there can be many factors behind a cough. If her heart is enlarged and putting pressure on her trachea, your veterinarian can prescribe a cough suppressant for her that should help. If the cough is related to heart disease, there are medications that can help with that. If the cough is related to a fungal or bacterial infection, there are medications for those conditions as well. It would be best to have her evaluated by your veterinarian, find out the cause of the cough, and get the appropriate medication. I hope that you are able to get resolution for her cough.

we have consulted many doctors but they are not able to diagnose the exact problem and their medications are also not being useful

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Sancho
Shih Tzu
15 Years
Moderate condition
1 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Heart murmor
Short breaths
caughing
Gurgling
Lethargy
Lethargic

Medication Used

Vetmedin
Furosemide
Benazepril

Sancho, My 15 year old Shih Tzu his everything to me. Please help? August 10th year before last was the first time he started dry coughing, hacking, gagging. Bouts would last a minute or two and then stop for days or weeks or even months. Took him to the vet yesterday because coughing got really bad. X-ray showed enlarged heart and he is breathing had and still has a sound between each breath like girdling. They said he has fluid in his lungs. I was sent home with the diuretic Furosemide, pimobendan and benazepril. He hasn't urinated any more than usual. In fact possibly less. And he hasn't pooped once since then. He is struggling to breathe with short rapid breath and a violent cough attack once an hour or so. Last one resulted in a little foam at the mouth. There's got to be something that can be done?? TAlso are these medications safe together? Only an x-ray was taken and a diuretic shot given at the vet. At what point should I rush into the emergency overnight vet? Can I remove the fluid? Give him oxygen?

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1607 Recommendations
From your description, Sancho may benefit from oxygen therapy tonight, until he is more stable. Those medications can be given together, but dogs in heart failure walk a very thin line between 'ok' and 'not ok', and often oxygen therapy just makes life easier for them until the medications start to work. I hope that he is okay.

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