When Should I Take My Dog to the Cardiologist?

Dogs are incredibly resilient and in many cases can fight off illnesses on their own. However, there are some health problems that should not be ignored and may require a visit to the cardiologist. Knowing when to take your dog to the cardiologist can help ensure they receive timely treatment for any heart-related issues. 

If your pet is experiencing cardiac issues, you should take them to a vet immediately. Double Oak Mountain Animal Hospital offers cardiac services such as ultrasounds and echocardiograms for pets in Birmingham. 

What Are the Symptoms of a Dog With Heart Problems?

Cardiac disease can present in a variety of ways in dogs. Below are some common symptoms in dogs with heart problems: 

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Excessive coughing
  • Weakness and tiredness
  • Loss of interest in playing or going on walks
  • Abdomen swelling
  • Paralysis of back legs

If you notice your dog exhibiting any of these symptoms, we recommend taking your pet to a cardiologist. Heart disease is a serious condition for dogs, but you can manage their ailment with proper treatment. 

Does My Pet Need to See a Cardiologist?

When it comes to your dog’s heart health, you may be wondering if you should take them to see a cardiologist. While there are some pets who are more at risk for heart disease than others, there are also a number of signs that could indicate a problem. If your pet is coughing, has trouble breathing, or is lethargic, these could all be signs of heart disease. If you notice any of these symptoms, or if you’re just concerned about your pet’s heart health, it’s always best to consult with a veterinarian. Services provided by a general veterinarian such as ultrasounds and echocardiograms can help aid in the diagnosis of heart-related conditions and can help you determine whether or not your pet needs to see a cardiologist for further evaluation.

You may want to consider scheduling regular cardiologist appointments as your dog gets older. Certain breeds, such as Great Danes or Boxers, are susceptible to heart problems, so it’s best to stay on top of their care.   

What Happens at a Dog Cardiologist?

A veterinary cardiologist is a specialist who diagnoses and treats heart conditions in animals. Cardiology is a branch of medicine that deals with the structure, function, and diseases of the heart and blood vessels. Veterinary cardiologists use many of the same diagnostic tools as human cardiologists, including echocardiography, electrocardiography, and cardiac catheterization. 

Common heart conditions for dogs include:

  • Congestive heart failure
  • Age-related changes to heart structure
  • Coughing and breathing problems
  • Congenital heart defects
  • Cardiac tumors
  • Pericardium disease
  • Heart muscle disease

Dogs can suffer from various cardiac conditions, and a cardiologist can diagnose and treat those problems. 

Find Care For Your Pet Today!

If you suspect your dog is having heart problems, don’t hesitate to contact us at Double Oak Mountain Animal Hospital. Our veterinarians are skilled in utilizing digital radiography (x-rays), echocardiography, and ultrasonography to diagnose and monitor any heart condition your pet may have and can help refer you out to a specialist if need be. Call us today at (205) 991-5446 to schedule an appointment!