When a dog has a heart murmur, what this indicates is that there is abnormal blood flow within the dog’s heart. This can be caused by a change in the heart valves and their function, or a number of other potential causes. Dog heart murmur symptoms may be caused by an abnormal communication between the left side and the right side of the heart. There are a number of things that may cause this, as they may be congenital or present from birth, or acquired which means the heart was affected after birth because of age or disease. There are two types of heart murmurs in dogs, benign murmurs which do not concern the health of the dog, and much more serious heart murmurs which may indicate the development of congestive heart failure in dogs.
Dog heart murmur symptoms may involve the following: bluish tinge to the gums or tongue, poor exercise ability, coughing, labored breathing and even fainting. Some of these symptoms would suggest that your pup may have other health issues. However, the symptoms are similar between benign heart murmurs and those that are more severe in nature. If you are at all concerned about your canine’s health, you should consult your veterinarian. A couple of these symptoms may be overlooked which would include poor exercise ability and a bluish tinge to the gums. If you think that your dog has any dog heart murmur symptoms, canine heart disease or the development of congestive heart failure, immediately contact your vet for a positive diagnosis.
These are symptoms that indicate that something serious is going on with your dog’s health. The best way to identify the source and severity of the dog’s heart murmur is to conduct a thorough physical examination by a veterinarian, however sometimes additional testing is needed including a heart ultrasound, blood testing, an EKG and chest x-rays. The ultrasound offers a particularly enticing list of benefits because it allows your veterinarian to measure the extent of the murmur, defining whatever the cause of the underlying heart disease may be. It is vital that you be able to properly diagnose the cause of your dog’s heart condition because some conditions that cause heart murmurs are treatable, either through surgery or through medication.
If your canine has a congenital heart murmur, then surgery may be necessary. On the other hand, you may have to give your pooch certain types of medication as non-congenital heart murmurs are often an underlying symptom of congestive heart failure in dogs. You will not be sure exactly what to do until you have consulted with the right veterinarian and have been given advice as to your dog’s health. You should not leave symptoms like these unchecked due to the fact that not every heart murmur is benign and there could be serious changes occurring in your dog’s heart.
It is vital to share any concerns or questions that you may have with your veterinarian especially when it comes to your dog’s physical condition and lifestyle. If you are not comfortable with a diagnosis from your general veterinarian, you should consider seeking out a specialist for your dog. You could either go to a veterinary cardiologist or an internist. These vets have specialized training and probably have vast experience in these problems and other issues that your dog may have.