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Poodle with Heart Problems

May 31st, 2006, 04:21 PM

I have a 16 year old miniature poodle who is have heart problems. In the past two days, I've been to two vets trying to figure out what to do with Ficko.

his symptoms include: coughing when excited (trying to clear his throat), often losing his balance for a couple of seconds (especially in the hind quarters), loss of appetite, tiredness, arrhythmia (irregular heart beat)

He is currently taking Lasix twice a day (12.5mg) since the past two days and nothing else. He had an X-ray and an EKG taken. One vet said that his heart was enlarged, the other said it was normal. It seems he does have some fluid around the heart area. But both doctors were amazed that his bone structure was very healthy with no irregularities. The EKG doesn't show a P-wave (may be atrial fribrillation) and a negative (inverted) T-wave. His heartbeat is also quite fast at times (sometimes as much as 170).

Until now, besides the occasional coughing when excited, Ficko had no serious problems. He was a happy and healthy dog. But his shaking became more serious and, now that he is taking the Lasix, he doesn't want to eat and he sleeps during the day and walks around at night a lot (seeming a little disoriented).

We would very much appreciate help or expertise. Ficko has been a part of our family for 16 years and we really want to do everything possible in his interest. Thank you in advance for your help and understanding!


(if there are any further questions please feel free to email me)

May 31st, 2006, 04:45 PM
From a cardiology standpoint, it sounds like congestive heart failure, hence the prescription for a diuretic. Like humans, Lasix can deplete potassium levels. Talk to your vet about this and maybe do a blood level to check this. On the other hand, maybe some neurological disorder complicated by the heart failure? Its hard to see a loved one suffer so, I've been through similar circumstances. Again, talk to your vet about Ficko's lethargy and what can you do. Good luck.

June 2nd, 2006, 07:17 PM
My dog Blacky was diagnosed with Heart Failure and immediately put on Lasix and Fortekor. At the time he was diagnosed, the vet said that he didn't have long to live considering how bad his heart was. He lived for another 2.5 years. He also had a wet cough. He had a very bad murmur. A very important thing to remember with dogs who suffer from heart problems is too not allow them to over exert themselves or get too excited. This would result in the heart being overly stressed. Try keeping his as calm as possible.

Was he put on a special diet? Blacky was immediately put on a very strict diet as well. His food was completely home made following a strict recipe in order to make sure that he obtained the correct vitamins/minerals but at the same time keeping it low sodium.