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Heart murmur diagnosed following a routine visit to the vet

A customer recently asked us if their dog should go onto Carnicare at the first sign of a heart murmur………….… 

 

The vet had not prescribed medication and so it was likely that the murmer was mild - either a 1 or 2 . This means that no damage has so far been done to the heart or circulation. He is probably not too concerned that it will deteriorate in the short term or he would have asked for a follow up.

Therefore the owner can only manage the situation by diet, exercise and weight control.

On the diet front the dog received one human meal per day and one kibble meal per day. It may not be getting  enough dietary animal fats and it may be short on protein. It probably gets a bit too much carbohydrate and vegetable fat.

Therefore the best long term solution is to modify the diet slightly. Human meals should be high in meat/vegetable content but low in potatoes/rice/pasta etc. Kibble should be low in vegetable oils and carbohydrate.


There is evidence that additional Taurine and L-Carnitine in the diet can reverse heart enlargement caused by various diseases including mitral valve leakage ( heart murmur). This dog's heart probably isn't enlarged yet but supplementation may reduce future enlargement.

Heart murmurs are not caused by defiency of Taurine or Carnitine - they are hereditary, therefore I would not suggest supplements especially in middle aged or young dogs until further deterioration was seen.


What would I do?

1- ask the vet to check in 12 months to see if any deterioration

2- improve the diet somewhat as outlined

3- feed oily fish or a salmon oil supplement

4- avoid obesity and the risk of diabetes.