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Dr. Joey
Dr. Joey, Board Certified
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 4688
Experience:  15 yrs in practice, specialist canine/feline medicine
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What is the normal procedure if your dog (10 years old) was

Customer Question

What is the normal procedure if your dog (10 years old) was just found to have a hear murmur?
Submitted: 6 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Joey replied 6 months ago.
Hello I am Dr. Joey. Thanks for trusting me to help you and your pet today. I am a licensed veterinarian with over 16 years of experience. I look forward to working with you.If your dog is doing great with no symptoms (no coughing, lethargy, exercise intolerance or breathing issues) and it is a low grade mumur (less than a grade 4 out of 6) then you could elect to have your vet do a blood test called a pro-BNP that tests for an enzyme released from sick heart muscle. If this is negative and your dog is doing great, then you could elect to monitor and perhaps repeat the test in 6 months. If this is positive then further work up to evaluate the heart disease (noted below) is indicated.If your dog has symptoms or it is a high grade murmur, or your vet feels significant concern, then the typical work-up for a heart murmur involves a blood pressure check, chest x-rays (radiographs) and echocardiogram (ultrasound of the heart) +/- ECG. That can tell us exactly what is causing the murmur and if drug therapy is indicated. This is so much more important to do if your dog does have any symptoms. If your vet cannot do all of these then you may be recommended for referral to see a veterinary cardiologist (sometimes we jump to this step if your dog has symptoms like fainting or severe arrhythmia).I am at a point I need to know what questions you have. I hope that the information I provided has been helpful.Please let me know if for any reason you need further clarification, have more questions, or were expecting a different type of answer.If you received all the information you needed, then kindly submit a rating.
Expert:  Dr. Joey replied 6 months ago.

I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?

Dr. Joey