Although we are not staffed with a board certified Cardiologist, we do offer general medical diagnostics and treatments for heart and lung diseases. Our office is dedicated to providing pets with compassionate care. In offering some cardiology services, we can better evaluate and treat heart and lung diseases, working towards improving quality of life. If our trained medical staff feels specialty care is warranted for your pet we will refer you to a facility where that is available. Annual pet wellness exams enable our staff to detect early indicators of heart disease that could potentially save your pet’s life – just one more reason why an annual check-up is important for your pet’s well-being.
Diagnostic imaging is initially used when a disease or condition is suspected. This non-invasive method of obtaining information allows our veterinarian to determine existence, severity, and location of a condition or disease. After diagnosis, our physicians will discuss with you the best plan of action for your pet.
Possible indications of heart disease:
Coughing that lasts longer than three days
Inability or refusal to sleep at night
Shortness of breath, wheezing, or rapid breathing
Sudden changes in pet behavior and an inclination to isolate themselves
Sudden episodes of fainting, or unexplained collapses
Swelling in the abdomen
What do cardiology diagnostics involve?
Diagnostics could involve a variety of different procedures. Upon examining your pet, the veterinarian will decide which method is necessary under the circumstances.
Blood Pressure – Routinely checking blood pressure at pet wellness exams is critical. High blood pressure can cause heart failure.
Blood Tests – Blood tests examine hormone levels. Changes in certain hormones indicate heart failure.
Digital X-rays – X-rays allow the veterinarian to examine the heart, lungs, and bones. From an X-ray, your pet’s physician can determine enlargement of the heart or fluid build-up in the lungs. X-rays can also be used to determine placement of pacemakers.
EKGs – An EKG allows the physician to monitor heart rate and rhythm, allowing for detection of abnormalities.
Ultrasound – Ultrasounds let the physician see a 3-dimensional image of the heart and its chambers. From this image, they can observe blood flow and check for any heart murmurs.