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Supplements used for canine heart disease have two purposes. The first is to correct nutritional deficiencies resulting from canine heart disease which are common and can exacerbate the damage and accelerate the disease's progression.
The second reason we use supplements is for their pharmacological effects. Strengthening the heart muscle's contractions, dilating blood vessels, reducing inflammation, lowering blood pressure -
Whether your dog is still in the early non-
While some people choose to raise their dogs on a vegetarian diet for ethical reasons there are a number of important factors to consider when making the change over.
Dogs have higher protein requirements than humans, and this protein requirement can be adequately met with legumes and other vegetarian sources. The amount of protein required ranges between 12% -
Supplementation is needed to reduce the risk of deficiencies. Two important amino acids that may be lacking in vegetarian diets are taurine and L-
High quality protein is very important for dogs with heart disease, and while amino acid supplementation is routinely recommended for dogs with dilated cardiomyopathy and congestive heart failure, there is evidence that dogs with heart murmurs caused by mitral valve disease can benefit too.
Although heart disease in dogs is progressive and often irreversible, in those cases where it can be reversed, amino acid supplements containing L-
Carnitine is usually classified as an amino acid, but it's actually a vitamin-
These high energy requirements also make the heart uniquely vulnerable to carnitine deficiencies. Low levels of myocardial carnitine are associated with dilated cardiomyopathy in several breeds, especially Boxers, but also Cocker Spaniels, Springer Spaniels, and Dobermans
Carnitine supplementation can produce excellent results in some dogs; cardiomyopathy begins to reverse and prescription heart medications can be discontinued, although the dogs must remain on supplements. Discontinuing supplementation results in a return of clinical DCM symptoms and heart muscle dysfunction.
The body's ability to synthesize Carnitine decreases with age as well as with congestive heart failure, so it's possible that, in some dogs, Carnitine deficiencies are the result, rather than the cause, of heart disease.
Carnitine supplements can boost exercise tolerance, reduce fatigue, minimize muscle atrophy, improve lipid patterns, and decrease heart rhythm disturbances. Carnitine also helps protects the heart muscle against oxidative stress by means of its substantial antioxidant effect. Consequently supplementation may be beneficial even without an underlying Carnitine deficiency.
High levels of this amino acid are normally found in the heart muscle, and taurine deficiencies are implicated in dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM), particularly in certain breeds, such as American Cocker Spaniels, Newfoundlands, Portuguese Water Dogs, Dalmatians, and Golden Retrievers.
When small or medium breed dogs are diagnosed with DCM, taurine deficiency should always be suspected as a possible cause
Taurine is abundant in most meats and fish, but cooking, especially cooking methods that immerse meat in water, such as boiling, can reduce taurine levels in food by up to 85%. However, this is not supposed to be a problem for dogs, because, unlike cats, dogs are supposed to be able to synthesize sufficient taurine from the sulphur amino acids, cysteine and methionine, much like humans. You'll notice the "supposed to’s" in that sentence. That's because it is far from clear that all dogs have the ability to synthesize adequate levels of taurine.
While premium dog foods typically include additional taurine supplements, low protein diets as well as brands using high levels of cereal protein can produce deficiencies. Lamb and rice diets have also been implicated in taurine-
There is evidence that dogs with heart disease can benefit from taurine supplementation even if their blood taurine levels are normal.
This is most likely due to taurine's pharmacological effects as a cardiotonic. Not only does taurine protect the heart by regulating natriuresis and diuresis, it can also strengthen the contractions of heart muscle cells and help stabilize heart rhythm abnormalities.
Additionally, there is evidence that taurine diminishes the harmful effects of angiotensin II (a hormone responsible for everything from blood vessel constriction to the breakdown of lean body mass in patients with congestive heart failure) and reduces oxidative damage by decreasing levels of lipid peroxides in oxygen-
In a placebo-
Vital amino acids for your dog’s healthy heart and circulation
A heart murmur is a specific sound detected when listening to the heart with a stethoscope. This sound is a result of the blood flowing faster than normal within the heart itself or in one of the two major arteries leaving the heart (the aorta and pulmonary artery). Instead of the normal Lubb Dupp, an additional sound is present that can vary from a mild pshhh to a loud whoosh!
Your vet will use a grading system from 1 to 6 to describe how loud the murmur is e.g. a grade 1 murmur is very soft and a grade 6 murmur is very loud. You should ask your Vet for this assessment.
If a heart murmur is present from birth or develops shortly after birth, it will probably be noticed by your veterinary surgeon at the time of vaccinations. The most common type is called an innocent “flow murmur”. This type of murmur is soft (typically a grade 2 or softer) and is not caused by underlying heart disease and will generally disappear in the first year.
However if a puppy has a loud murmur (grade 3 or louder), or if the heart murmur is still easily heard with a stethoscope after 4-
Worrying as this is, it is important to remember that not all types of congenital heart disease will affect your puppy’s life expectancy or quality of life. Your Vet will probably want to carry out further tests to identify the underlying cause.
This type of heart murmur is usually due to heart disease that develops with age and was not present when a puppy.
In toy and small breeds of dog, a heart murmur may develop due to thickening and degeneration of the mitral valve in the heart, preventing it from closing properly and consequently leaking. The heart then has to work harder to compensate for this pumping inefficiency
The heart muscle has enlarged and can distort the mitral valve so that it cannot close properly. The resultant leak across the valve will cause a heart murmur.
Not all murmurs are the result of a problem in the heart. Blood disorders, obesity, emaciation and parasitic conditions can create the conditions necessary to inititiate a heart murmur.
If the heart murmur is caused by an underlying problem, the treatment will be based on the diagnosis, and may include a combination of specialized diets, medications and supportive care. Only a few congenital heart defects can be surgically corrected. Treatment and Care may well be required throughout your pet’s life.
The prognosis ranges depending on the cause of the murmur. If the murmur is not strong and the dog is a puppy the your vet will probably just keep and eye on the situation and offer no treatment.
The outlook for a dog with dilated cardiomyopathy varies -
Dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) in dogs is a heart condition where the individual muscle fibres in the heart progressively loose their contractabilty. Consequently the heart’s pumping action is impaired leading to symptoms you may observe as well as internal changes to the heart which of course you cannot see. DCM is predominantly found in the larger breeds of dog.
Symptoms of DCM in dogs that you may observe are lethargy, reduced stamina, increased breathing rate or panting and a cough (especially on lying down). Internal changes are enlargement (dilation) of the heart in response to trying to pump more blood, retention of fluids around the body especially the lungs and risk of arythmia (irregular heart beat). DCM can develop into congestive heart failure if not treated. Congestive heart failure is the latter stage of the disease though dogs may still in many instances lead a comfortable and meaningful life for some time.
Improve the contractability of heart muscle cells ( common drug is Vetmedin)
Reduce the workload of the heart by relaxing the arteries and veins (common drugs are
Reduce the fluid build up around the body, especially the lungs and the cause of the cough symptom (common drugs are spirolactone and furosemide)
The amino acids Taurine and L Carnitine have a proven role in supporting dogs with DCM. Older dogs produce reduced amounts of these amino acids and coupled with dietary deficiencies the hearts efficiency is reduced.
Carnicare contains these two vital amino acids and magnesium which is added to improve nerve function. Carnicare is compatible and safe to give with all the prescription drugs that the vet may use.
Owners who decide to feed a vegetarian or vegan diet can fully satisfy their dogs dietary needs if they are aware of the species’ nutritional requirements.
Dogs may prefer to be carnivores whenever possible and while meat and fish are their preferred prey, even when times are plentiful they will still eat some herbage. Perhaps they are self medicating in some way. Perhaps obtaining certain minerals and vitamins that their meat diet lacks. Observers of carnivorous animals have noted that hunters will often eat intestinal contents before tackling raw meat. Another piece of evidence to give us an insight into the dogs true nutritional needs.
So what should you take into account when preparing a vegetarian diet for your dog. Well firstly because they do not have a large capacity to digest vegetable matter, including starches and sugars they do lean towards a high protein and high fat content diet.
Therefore be aware that cereals, including rice, and potato must be kept to a minimum. Excessive starches and sugars increase the risk of your dog developing serious diseases such as diabetes, colitis and other digestive conditions.
Vegetable fibre is difficult to digest and so must be well broken down by mincing or liquidising though not necessarily cooking; which will reduce nutritional value. Raw is often best if it is broken down to improve digestability.
Plant proteins are abundant in legumes, peas, beans etc.
Since practically all vegetable material contains fats and oils in addition to the oils you may add, you need to be aware that too much omega 6 oils are harmful, causing internal inflammation that can give rise to arthritis and other complaints. The better vegetable oils are: olive, coconut and flax. Avoid sunflower, corn and rapeseed oils especially. We have a good article on vegetable oils for dogs in our online healthcare blog.
The clever thing about metabolism is that if we don’t get a certain nutrient in our diet then the body can synthesise it from the chemical building blocks obtained from other parts of our diet. So in fact not that many nutrients are really classed as “essential”. But nevertheless there are some that are essential that the dog can’t manufacture at all or can’t manufacture enough of to fulfil their true potential. This can lead to a dog “surviving” on a vegetarian diet rather than “blossoming”. It can also become more important for older dogs as their internal “manufacturing” systems weaken with age.
This then is the area where judicial supplemention of the diet on the owner’s part can help the vegetarian diet become truly fulfilling both for dog and owner. Supplementation is usually needed to reduce the risk of deficiencies at somer point in your dog’s life.
Two important amino acids that may be lacking in vegetarian diets are taurine and L-
Many minerals can be deficient either because of where crops are grown or over-
Bear in mind that the greater the variety of foods that you introduce into the vegetarian diet the lower the risk of deficiencies.
Bear in mind that the greater the variety you can introduce into the vegetarian diet the lower the risk of deficiencies.
The use of L-
During the post traumatic and post surgical recovery periods, energy requirements increase by between 20% and 100%. L-
While not a magic bullet for combating canine obesity, we are satisfied that there is sufficient evidence to indicate that L-
Carnicare liquid syrup is fed at the rate of 1ml twice per day for every 10kg of your dog’s weight. It should be sprinkled on your dog’s food at mealtimes, although not necessarily with each meal. A measuring dispenser is provided to help you to feed the correct amount easily.
Side effects are rare and limited to mild diarrhea. Feed at half the recommended rate to allow your dog to acclimatise to it.
Carnicare contains 40% (400mg/ml) of L-
Carnicare™ contains is a special grade of L-
Magnesium Aspartate Hydrochloride 100mg/ml
Potassium Sorbate natural preservative – less than 1%
Safe and Vet recommended
Please consult your Vet
The Ingredients in Carnicare are widely recommended and used by Veterinary Surgeons, often in conjunction with prescription drugs.
Carnicare has a very safe record and is compatible with all medications that may be prescribed by your vet. It is important that in order to obtain the most complete treatment available for your dog Carnicare should be used in conjunction with medications deemed necessary by your Veterinary Surgeon.