Heart Disease in Dogs and Cats
Natural Treatment For Heart Disease In Dogs & Cats
How To Treat Heart Disease In Dogs & Cats Naturally
Holistic treatment for heart murmurs in dogs and cats, congestive heart failure, heartworm and heart diseases works best when natural supplements are used in conjunction with treatments prescribed by your veterinarian. Heart supplements for dogs and cats can strengthen the heart muscle, can provide a natural coughing treatment and give your pet energy.
Maintaining a healthy weight and keeping your pet's teeth clean is also essential. Below, you’ll find the best supplements for cats and dogs with heart disease.
Purrfect Pet CoQ10 - Supports circulation, cardiovascular and heart health. Purrfect Pet CoQ10 is made with genuine Kaneka Ubiquinol - the reduced, active antioxidant form of coenzyme Q10 - for maximum benefit and highest absorption. It is pure, safe & natural. Made in the USA. Gluten-free, non-GMO & hypoallergenic. CoQ10 helps to reduce oxidative damage & inflammation in the lungs. Purrfect Pet CoQ10 can support your pet on a cellular level, by helping to facilitate enzyme activity & energy production. As your pets age, they lose CoQ10 and the ability to convert it. Purrfect Pet CoQ10 can resupply your pet with this vital antioxidant and may slow the progression of heart disease. Purrfect Pet CoQ10 is an essential core of a cat or dog heart murmur natural treatment protocol.
Power Probiotic - Power Probiotic is the best probiotic for pets! Backed by scientific research, this powerful, multi-strain formula repopulates the good, friendly bacteria, which research suggests may reduce blood pressure and inflammation, supporting a healthy heart. It’s pure, safe and natural with no fillers! Many pets love the taste of Power Probiotic!
Amazing Omegas For Pets - This product contains a research-backed, powerful source of omega-3 fatty acids, which have been scientifically shown to benefit dogs and cats with heart disease. It’s packed in glass bottles to maintain freshness and to prevent toxins from plastic from leaking into the oil. It’s third-party tested for purity and to ensure all heavy metals and environmental toxins have been eliminated. It’s gently manufactured to supply the omega-3 fatty acids the way nature provided them for an enhanced benefit to your pet. Amazing Omegas are made with a lemon scent and some finicky pets may not like the taste. Consider PureOcean Wild Omegas instead.
PureOcean Wild Omegas - PureOcean Wild Omegas are concentrated, easy-to-use softgels. They have a natural fishy flavor and many pets love the taste. Fish oil is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, particularly eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). They help reduce inflammation in the heart and cardiovascular system, support heart function by helping to regulate heart rhythm, and may help lower blood pressure in pets with hypertension (high blood pressure). PureOcean Wild Omegas may help reduce symptoms such as coughing, difficulty breathing, and low energy levels.
Resveratrol For Dogs - This product contains an exceptional antioxidant that has been researched for its cardiovascular support and cancer-fighting properties. Scientific research shows that its anti-inflammatory effect in the vascular system leads to a reduced risk of inflammation and blood clotting, common precursors to heart disease. It’s a very concentrated formula and works best for dogs over 10 pounds.
Happy Paws Organic Hemp Extract For Dogs - CBD oil is a natural way to help manage heart disease in dogs and cats. Happy Paws Hemp Extract can help by decreasing inflammation and calming anxiety. CBD oil is being researched for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that may help reduce heart disease risk factors such as high blood pressure. Heart disease is associated with inflammation and studies show that CBD may help to increase vasodilation to improve blood flow. Happy Paws is the best CBD oil for heart disease. It contains simple ingredients: organic hemp extract and coconut oil. It’s rigorously tested for potency and purity. Each 1oz bottle contains 550mg of full spectrum hemp extract in an unflavored all-natural coconut oil base. 100% organic. Made in the USA.
"We had some good news about Puff Daddy! Ever since Puff Daddy was a pup, different vets would say they heard a mild heart murmur. About two years ago, we started a heart disease protocol that included Amazing Omegas, Purrfect Pet CoQ10, and Resveratrol For Dogs. We went in for Puff Daddy’s rabies vaccination and the vet listened to his heart for quite some time. She looked up amazed. She heard no murmur. She asked me what I was giving him and said to keep it up. Puff Daddy has the energy of a puppy, running at full-speed with dogs 3-4x his size. I am so grateful for Ask Ariel." - Andrea, Washington D.C.
What Is Heart Disease in Dogs and Cats?
Dogs and cats can have a variety of heart conditions. Being proactive is essential, as warning signs of heart disease may not appear until the disease has progressed to an advanced state. Common heart disease problems may include heart murmurs, congestive heart failure, high blood pressure, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) or poor valve function. While some breeds may be predisposed to develop congenital heart conditions, pets often develop heart problems with age. Early diagnosis, working closely with your veterinarian and using a heart-healthy diet and supplement regimen can help your pet live a longer and healthier life.
Heart Murmurs In Dogs & Cats
What is a heart murmur? A heart murmur is an abnormal heart sound. There are several different types of heart murmurs. The most common is a systolic murmur. These are usually caused by narrowing blood vessels in the heart but can also be caused by anemia, cardiomyopathy or hyperthyroidism. Diastolic heart murmurs are caused by leaks in the aortic valves and are quite rare in pets. Some murmurs are innocent or physiologic, which means that they are harmless sounds as the blood circulates through the heart. A pathologic heart murmur can be caused by disease or a structural defect in the heart. An irregular heartbeat, persistent coughing, and a lack of energy are classic signs of a heart murmur in dogs and cats.
Heart murmurs are graded by their intensity based on a scale of I to VI. A very slight, faint murmur will be a Grade I murmur. As they intensify, the scale increases. A loud murmur that can be felt is generally a Grade VI murmur. Heart murmurs can be serious, but in most cases, they are treatable. Cat and dog heart murmur coughing treatment is dependent on the diagnosis of the underlying condition. If the murmur is caused by something like anemia or hyperthyroidism, the treatment plan will be much different than that for a cat or dog with congestive heart failure. Pets with heart murmurs need to be regularly monitored by a vet, as murmurs can be a sign of heart disease. Cat or dog heart murmur natural treatment includes exercising regularly, maintaining a healthy weight and adding heart supplements containing omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants to keep your pet's heart function strong.
"I love the new CoQ10 formula for our dog, Bella. These capsules are easy to handle and administer. The outside is firmer, yet squeezable, making it easier to divide than other CoQ10 options. Thank you for providing this supplement to support Bella’s heart health. Even with a Grade IV heart murmur at age 15, she is happy, healthy, and active." - Brenda, California
Congestive Heart Failure in Dogs and Cats
Does your dog or cat have a persistent cough? Does it appear to have a hard time breathing? Most would consider this to be a respiratory issue, but these are the most common symptoms of congestive heart failure (CHF). CHF is a progressive disease and can respond very well to holistic treatments. In dogs and cats, the heart doesn’t actually stop beating. The valves start to leak due to a buildup of scar tissue. Fluid accumulation on the left side of the heart leads to edema in the abdomen, while fluid accumulation on the right side produces coughing and lung congestion. The scar tissue can also create heart murmurs or arrhythmia. CHF affects both cats and dogs and usually develops in middle-aged and senior pets. It is often harder to detect heart problems in cats than in dogs because the symptoms may not be as noticeable until the cat’s heart disease has progressed significantly. That is why it is especially important to have your pet checked routinely, and if your cat displays symptoms such as weakness, inappetence or respiratory difficulties, bring your cat to the veterinarian promptly.
Some common conditions linked to congestive heart failure in cats and dogs may include:
- Degenerative mitral valve disease (DMVD) – detected by a heart murmur; more common in certain breeds (Cavalier King Charles spaniel, Newfoundland, bull terrier, Siamese cats)
- Collapsed trachea – as the trachea collapses, breathing difficulties can lead to an enlarged heart
- Endocarditis – bacterial infection of a heart valve, treated with antibiotics and then with supportive care and supplements
- Cardiomyopathy – disease of the heart muscle, results in weakened contractions and decreased ability to pump blood
- Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM) – most commonly diagnosed cardiac disease in cats, thickening of and abnormal relaxation of the heart muscle, can lead to oxygen starvation and possible arrhythmias
- Heartworm infections – spread through mosquito bites, the larvae mature within the host’s heart and lungs and can impair blood flow
High Blood Pressure in Dogs and Cats
High blood pressure, or hypertension, is a common precursor to heart disease and CHF in cats and dogs. Blood pressure is the pressure of circulating blood against the walls of blood vessels. High blood pressure can cause restricted blood flow in the arteries, making the heart muscle work harder. Over time, the increased pumping and pressure can lead to deterioration and weakness of the heart muscle.
Most cats and dogs with high blood pressure have secondary hypertension - meaning it is caused by another disease or condition. Primary hypertension - high blood pressure on its own - is very rare in pets. The most common conditions causing high blood pressure in cats and dogs include kidney disease, diabetes, hyperthyroidism and Cushing's disease (hyperadrenocorticism). With appropriate treatment for these diseases, many pets will have their blood pressure decrease back into the normal range.
High blood pressure can be associated with many symptoms and health issues, so it is important to have your dog or cat checked by their veterinarian. The risk of high blood pressure increases as your cat or dog ages. With age, they also become more susceptible to kidney disease and heart conditions. Make a blood pressure check part of your pet's annual wellness exam.
Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM) in Cats
Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is the most common heart disease diagnosed in cats. Maine coon, Ragdoll and Persian breeds are prone to this. HCM causes the muscular walls of a cat's heart to thicken, decreasing the heart's efficiency and sometimes creating symptoms in other parts of the body. A heart murmur or arrhythmia may be the first clinical sign, but not all cats with HCM have murmurs. Symptoms include rapid, open-mouthed breathing, lethargy and sudden hind limb paralysis. Some cats will show no symptoms. An echocardiogram, otherwise known as a cardiac ultrasound, affords a look at the inside of the heart and heart valves. This is the most important diagnostic test for HCM. Conventional veterinary treatment for hypertrophic cardiomyopathy consists of medications to regulate heart rate and beats, improve blood flow and alleviate fluid buildup. When dealing with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy in cats, treatment, including supportive care and medication, can allow some cats to live with HCM for years.
Symptoms of Heart Disease in Dogs and Cats
The clinical signs of congestive heart failure are quite varied, and many of them may not seem to be heart-related. Heart disease can be a “silent killer,” and it is important to have regular veterinary exams, as it can be caught early. Watching for these signs can improve the prognosis for your pet with heart disease and congestive heart failure.
- Heart murmur (abnormal heart sound)
- Easily tiring after exercise, loss of stamina
- Bluish discoloration of the tongue
- Sudden collapse
- Difficult or heavy breathing
- Accumulation of fluid in the lungs, leg or abdomen
- Enlarged liver
Long Term Treatment For Heartworm In Dogs
There is a misconception that heartworms are only a problem for pets in a few states. While heartworms are most prevalent in the Atlantic and Gulf Coast states, the infected mosquitoes carrying the heartworm larvae can travel quite far. Now, heartworm infections have been identified throughout the US. Preventative care is the best way to approach heartworms.
Heartworms are foot-long parasitic worms that look like strands of spaghetti. Heartworm larvae (microfilia) are spread by mosquitoes. When a mosquito bites an infected cat or dog, their blood contains the larvae. The mosquito spreads the parasite by biting another cat or dog. The larvae mature into worms that circulate in the bloodstream of infected pets and live in the heart and lungs. They can damage and destroy the heart and lung tissue. Heartworms can live for up to 3 years in cats and almost 7 years in dogs. Heartworm disease affects cats and dogs differently.
- Dogs - Heartworms can complete their life cycle inside of dogs. Dogs can have hundreds of worms inside their bodies. Early symptoms of heartworm disease in dogs may include persistent coughing, lethargy and fatigue. As the infection progresses, many dogs will experience a loss of appetite and weight loss. Heartworms can migrate to the brain and affect mobility and cognition. A high number of worms can cause a swollen abdomen or block blood flow and cause heart failure.
A veterinarian can administer a series of injections to treat heartworms. In some cases, surgical removal may be necessary. Many times, heartworms can cause lasting damage to the heart and lungs. Using natural heart supplements during and after treatment can support your dog's heart and immune system.
- Cats - Most heartworms in cats do not survive to the adult stage. Heartworms in other life stages also present a risk for cats. They can still damage the heart and lungs. Signs of heartworm disease in cats may include coughing, labored breathing, vomiting, lack of appetite and weight loss. Cats may develop heartworm-associated respiratory disease (HARD). Prevention is the only protection for cats, as the medications used for dogs cannot be used in cats.
Most dogs have an advanced case of heartworms by the time they are diagnosed. Veterinarians generally treat with a series of injectable antiparasitic medications along with a course of antibiotics. The injections are spread out over a few months. During treatment, dogs need to rest and restrict exercise. This is because physical activity and an increased heart rate can allow heartworms to damage the heart and lung tissue. This dog heartworm treatment protocol has a success rate of over 90%. While medications treat the dog’s immediate symptoms, natural supplements can strengthen their heart and immune system for long-term support.
If your dog has heartworms or has been treated for heartworms, using Purrfect Pet CoQ10
, Resveratrol For Dogs
and Amazing Omegas For Pets
can strengthen and protect the heart muscle. Olive Leaf Extract For Pets
has natural anti-parasitic properties and may help fight heartworm infections.
Three Ways To Help Your Pet With Heart Disease
Monitor - If your pet is diagnosed with heart disease or congestive heart failure, close monitoring will be important to help your pet maintain an active and happy life. This will include regular veterinary visits to evaluate any changes in their condition and adjustment of medications. At home, a pet with heart disease will need to have much closer observation than a healthy pet. It will be important to monitor their exertion and resting heart rate. You will need to be vigilant and note any changes in your pet's behavior, appearance and appetite. Report any significant changes to your veterinarian.
Exercise - If your cat or dog has heart disease, keeping them at a healthy weight is extremely important. The more weight your pet is carrying, the harder your pet's heart has to work. Even though your pet has heart disease, regular mild to moderate exercise can be helpful to keep them healthy and fit. Be sure to take it slow and don't let them overexert themselves. Taking water and treats along during a walk, especially during the summer can really help. Intense exercise can aggravate the heart and lungs and can be dangerous for your pet.
Diet - The best heart disease diet for dogs and cats is a diet high in fiber and rich in omega-3 fatty acids. A low-fat, fresh diet can be very beneficial. Green vegetables contain fiber, vitamins and minerals and can support a healthy immune system. Many pets are eating prescription diets that can contain chemicals, food allergens and grains when low-fat natural diets are available. Include your pet’s treats and diet on the order form at checkout, and we will include free heart diet tips on the packing slip that comes with your order.
We understand how hard it is when your pet is suffering from heart disease and we will do all we can to help. It can be confusing to know which cat and dog supplements would be appropriate for your pet. Please email us at Support@AskAriel.com. Please note that we cannot provide consultative advice due to veterinary regulations, but we will be happy to provide articles and information so that you can make an informed decision about what's best for your pet.