Ask a Dog Vet and Get Answers to Your Dog Veterinary Questions
Hello this is Dr. Holloway but you can call me Dr. H for short. I am sorry to hear that your pet Mia is having respiratory issues. I will do my best to help give you the best advice on how to help Mia.
So I understand that Mia is already being treated with your vet. Did you want to discuss the findings so far with Mia for better understanding of her condition? Or did you have questions or concerns regarding her treatment so far?
- Dr. H
Congestive heart failure occurs when there is a heart defect that is causing poor flow of blood through the heart. This poor flow will cause congestion to back up into either the lung fields (occurs mostly with left sided heart failure) or the liver (occurs mostly with right sided heart failure). Now the specific defect that is present in your pet is determined by doing an echocardiogram, which is a 3-D image of the heart. This classification gives you the most information about the heart and will be able to give you the best prognosis for your pet.
Congestive heart failure in general is treated with a vasodilator (Enalapril) and a diuretic (Furosemide). The vasodilator helps keep the heart vessels open to help blood flow and also to decrease hypertension. The diuretic is in place to drain the fluid build-up in the lungs so that it is excreted through the kidneys, helping your pet breathe better. Also if the heart failure is deemed extensive then another medication called Pimobendan is used which helps to increase the contractility of the heart and this medication works best along with Enalapril.
There can be variations to this formula for CHF treatment depending on if your pet also has an arrhythmia (irregular heart beat) and also if the heart failure is not caused by a defect in the heart and perhaps due to heart worm infestation (a completely different discussion has to had about this cause). I hope the information proves useful to you and if you have any questions feel free to ask and I will be happy to assist you further.