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  #21  
Old 08-23-2012, 10:32 PM
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Liberty just turned 11 (!) and he has a Grade 2 murmur and has for most of his life.
((((hugs))))) and vibes to you and yours all the same!
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  #22  
Old 08-24-2012, 07:57 AM
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My friends dogs had this. She took them too a holistic vet that told her to give them COQ10 daily. Here's some info on it:

http://www.animalwellnessmagazine.com/art/aV124_70.htm

Coenzyme Q10 is an antioxidant synthesized in most tissues of the body and found in all cells. The highest concentration is found in the heart, kidneys, liver and pancreas. It is one of several coenzymes and is required for the conversion of energy from carbohydrates and fats in the synthesis of ATP. CoQ10 also protects cell membranes and DNA from oxidative damage.

Studies in people with high blood pressure showed a reduction in systolic blood pressure when they were treated with CoQ10. In humans with heart failure, CoQ10 therapy also increases cardiac output, improves contraction of the heart, and dilates the blood vessels necessary to allow normal bloodflow through the body.

In general, 1 mg of CoQ10 per pound of body weight one to two times daily is used for most animals with heart disease. Its recommended that it be taken with a meal or a small amount of oil, since it is a fat soluble supplement.
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  #23  
Old 08-24-2012, 08:36 AM
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thanks again to everyone--Barb, I will look into that.
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  #24  
Old 08-24-2012, 08:36 AM
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A heart murmur is just an abnormal sound, it doesn't tell you much about what type of heart disease (if any) might be present. Having said that, if I were going to play the odds... with his breed/age/onset I would bet on something called mitral valve insufficiency. It really takes an ultrasound of the heart called an echocardiogram to diagnose the actual cause of the murmur, though.

IF it is diagnosed as mitral valve insufficiency, the easiest way to think of it is that one of the valves inside the heart gets a bit "leaky", creating some turbulent blood flow and backflow that we hear as a murmur. In the early stages it really is nothing to be concerned about, and a lot of dogs live with minor, stable valve disease that never progresses to heart disease for years or even forever. I personally had a dog who developed this at maybe 7-8 years old and her murmur never progressed beyond a grade 1 or caused her any problems in her life. For other dogs the leaky valve becomes severe enough over time to eventually cause changes in the heart itself that can ultimately lead to congestive heart failure (fluid in the lungs).

But honestly once you figure out what is causing the murmur, IF turns out to be mitral valve disease I wouldn't lose one wink of sleep over it. There are tons of dogs walking around out there with mild mitral valve disease living their normal lives and doing all their normal things. With a stable grade 1 mitral murmur you probably won't need to do anything about it other than monitoring for changes. With a few exceptions (like cavaliers as a group, or some isolated individuals) any changes in the heart usually occur over a period of years and even congestive heart failure is usually manageable with medications for long periods of time.

Obviously if it turns out to be something else, that was a lot of useless words.
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Old 08-24-2012, 08:39 AM
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Thanks for that explanation Sass--that helps. I am not a worrier in general, but this just hit me--he is my "baby" afterall.
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  #26  
Old 08-24-2012, 03:13 PM
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Vet just called--said all his bloodwork came back normal--no heart damage, etc. So to just keep doing as we are, and follow up in a year. *Doing a happy dance*--Thanks again to everyone for your thoughts, comments and information/education. It helped me a great deal.
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  #27  
Old 08-25-2012, 07:41 AM
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So glad to hear this.
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  #28  
Old 08-25-2012, 07:52 AM
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Grrreat news! I know how relieved you are.
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  #29  
Old 08-26-2012, 12:43 PM
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Sorry to know about that but Grade 1 isn't something to panic about. There are better remedies for that.
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