This is a patient we examined this month for a new heart murmur. It highlights the most common cause of heart murmurs in pets as they age. By performing an echocardiogram (ultrasound of the heart), we can see the inside of the heart to diagnose the cause of the murmur and determine what actions should be taken to minimize the symptoms of heart disease.
This dog will start heart medications as well as supplements and herbs to strengthen the heart and protect her from worsening of heart disease. Also, the thickened mitral valve will attract any abnormal bacteria in the bloodstream (usually from dental disease), so we will need to take extra precautions to keep her teeth clean.