Dog with pacemaker fitted

Cardiology Service

We are proud of providing a caring and dedicated cardiology service with unbeatable, unique expertise and facilities in the South West.

Our patients have access to state of the art facilities such as a top of the range CT scan, echocardiography, fluoroscopy, and access to specialist, on-site cytologists and a state of the art ICU for the critical patient.  Our Specialist cardiologists work alongside other Specialists in critical care, anaesthesia and internal medicine to ensure a multi-disciplinary approach that provides holistic care of the highest quality.

All cases of cardiac and or respiratory diseases can be referred. We also see tertiary referrals for Cardiology certificate and diploma holders.

 

 

 

Welcome to the Cardiology Service

We hope you find the questions below useful. There is also a list of more general questions in our General Info for Owners pages.

 

 

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My puppy has a heart murmur, what should I do?

A quiet heart murmur in a puppy might be normal. However, if your puppy is quieter than other puppies, does not appear to be able to exercise as much or your veterinarian detects a loud heart murmur your puppy might need further investigations from a cardiologist as these findings are not normal. 

You should not wait until your puppy is grown, as some congenital cardiac diseases can cause heart failure before your puppy is one year old. Furthermore, some of these diseases can be corrected, which will give your puppy a normal life expectancy.

To find out which cardiac disease might be present, we will perform an ultrasound investigation of the heart. This procedure is not painful and enables us to detect the cause of the heart murmur, assess the function of the heart and decide on the best treatment options.

When the heart disease is identified, we will discuss if treatment is needed and what are the best options for your puppy.

 

How long will my pet need to stay with you?

Cardiac cases are usually seen as day cases. This means you bring your pet into the hospital in the morning and the same evening we will discuss the results of our investigations with you, and you can take your pet home. However, if your pet has a severe disease and requires stabilisation, we might recommend hospitalisation. Our state of the art ICU unit allows 24 hour patient monitoring to provide best care for your pet.

If your pet has a lung disease, it might not be possible to schedule all investigations in one day and your pet might need to stay overnight. For hospitalisation every dog gets its own kennel and cats stay in our dedicated Feline Centre. Staff are present 24 hours in the hospital to care for your pet.

 

My pet is being referred for a 'Cardio work up,' what will you do to them?

Depending on your pet's problem, we will carry out blood tests, measure blood pressure and obtain an ECG and ultrasound investigation of the heart. If a cough or breathing difficulties are present, we might take an x-ray or perform a CT of the chest.

An ECG will tell us, if the heart rate and rhythm of your pet is normal. If we detect an irregularity, we might send your pet home with a 24 hour ECG (Holter monitor). This enables us to get a recording of the heart rate and rhythm when your pet is at home during a normal day (going for walks, getting excited, being asleep).

An ultrasound investigation of the heart allows us to diagnose a cardiac disease, detect its severity and whether treatment is necessary.

If your pet coughs or has breathing difficulties, x-rays or a CT of the chest are the best ways to find out if there are abnormalities in the lungs and what is causing the problem.