By Tahlia Mitchell | Dated June 4, 2022 | 0 Comments
Can you believe it’s al […]
By Tahlia Mitchell | Dated June 4, 2022
“Whoosh, whoosh, whoosh,” instead of “lub dub, lub dub’” was the concerning sound travelling though the stethoscope. Cleo was having a preanasthetic exam before her surgery, and a heart murmur that had been identified as a pup had not disappeared as had been expected. A heart murmur is an extra sound that we hear when listening to a pet’s heart, and indicates that there may be turbulent blood flow, which usually signifies an abnormality in the structure of the heart. Occasionally as with Cleo, we hear a murmur in very young puppies at their first check up, however these murmurs usually resolve by the time they come in for their puppy check at 4 months of age. In Cleo’s case, the murmur was still present even though she was one year old, which had us and her owners concerned about the safety of a general anaesthetic for her.
Cavalier King Charles Spaniels have an increased tendency to develop heart murmurs that are associated with degeneration of the valves inside their heart. In fact, approximately half of all Cavvies will have a heart murmur by 5 years of age. When these valves degenerate they become leaky, and we hear that as a murmur.
So, prior to her anaesthetic and surgery, Cleo had an echocardiogram, which is an ultrasound examination of her heart. We were all greatly relieved when the echo showed that her heart had no structural abnormalities, the valves were all healthy and it was functioning perfectly. At this stage she doesn’t need any further monitoring for her heart, and can live life and exercise to her heart’s content.