View Full Version : sam

6th July 2007, 11:10 PM
While collecting Toby from Vets this evening got my OH to bring Sam for a check up as his heart isnt great, not great news the vet has graded him 4.5 the worst beem 5. He has upped his tablets. Oh not great at asking questions so i dont know what is going to happen will the tablets work for long, is there any thing else that can be done, loads of things going through my head. I will phone vet Monday but till then i will be worrying over everything.
Has anyone gone through this if so what did u do. Anything that can help him.
I have noticed for awhile that he has been getting worst he pants alot more and can walk far. Also drinks alot.
If anyone can suggest anything thanks.

brid kenny
6th July 2007, 11:22 PM
No info Mary but sorry to hear news. He's a lovely gentle dog.

7th July 2007, 11:03 AM
Poor Sam. I am sorry to hear he is having a rough time of it. I have no advice in this area.

7th July 2007, 11:41 AM

I can't really say for sure as I know nothing of Sam's background, age etc, but I will say that many dogs with higher grade heart murmurs have gone on to live a long time on medication and have a fairly high quality of life.

You say he is panting quite a bit, this is mostly due to the fact that his heart is probably quite enlarged and is putting pressure on his windpipe, this is also the cause of the "heart cough" as well. The drinking more can also be attributed to him being on diuretics, also the weather has been quite "close" too.

I am so very sorry to hear that his grade has worsened and I hope that once his medication dosage is sorted out to a comfortable level he will continue to have a happy, quality life full of love for many more years to come!!
A great big sloppy kiss for Sam and a huge gentle :hug: for both him and you as well. Let me know how he goes along??

All the best!

Barbara Nixon
7th July 2007, 11:55 AM
Murmur grades go up to 6 and my Izzy lived for well over two years on a 6. Before that we'd known he had a 3-4 for a couple of years , but had no symptoms.

I took him to the vets, with a slight cough, just before Christmas, as he'd been in touch with dogs with kennel cough, though when this happened in the past, he didn't catch it. Unfortunately, this time, the cough was due to his heart condition and the vet put him on half a Fortekor5 per day. This was to slow his heart,which it did, but the cough, neither too bad nor frequent and usually first thing, remained about the same.

The next setback was in the late spring, when the hot weather started. First thing,Izzy was breathing heavily, though not panting much, and pawing at me to do something. The vet put him on Vetmedin, twice aday and , within a couple of days he was back to how he'd been before the upset. I was told that the Vetmedin opened the 'tubes' but I never remembered to ask whether the vet meant airways or blood vessels.

Late summer, we had the same problem again and the strength of the Vetmedin was doubled. the vet said we were coming to the end, but Izzy was fine again, after a couple of days.

The 'end' didn't come and we went on for over a year, with regular 3 monthly checkups. The vet said that though he had symptoms, his heartbeat and pulse were strong and that was the important bit.

Around September, last year, Izzy's hernia was round and hard and his tummy was drumlike when tapped. This time (first ever) fluid had started to build, but only in his abdomen (his lungs were clear) , so we went onto two halves of Frusicare (Frusimide) a day and these worked well, until a few days before Christmas when the fluid was building, so we went up to two aday for a week, then down to ona and a half. From then, I increased the dose slightly, myself, for a few days after coughy fluidy sessions which were usually around wether changes (I think due to pressure change).

Though a checkup in February showed that Izzy's body was coping well, he became more coughy and not as keen to eat all his dinner, though people food or treats weren't refused, one Friday in March. He had down days before, but popped back next day, but on Saturday, he was more lethargic and though he ate all his dinner ( a favourite expensive pouched one ) he was sleepy. Also, he had been weeing more the last couple of days, though Frusicare does make this happen and he was on two a day, that week.

I had a feeling that we may have to visit the emergency vet on Sunday, but this wasn't to be.

At 8pm he was begging for jelly gum sweets, which he got, then had a snooze. At 10 ish, he went for a drink when the others went out for last wees and was a little huffy. Though March, the air was quite close, so I suggested he go out for soem fresh air. he went off the doorstep then stood still, so I patted his bum and said 'Go do a wee' and off he went.

Monty and Teddy came back in and then I realised that the other two had been out for some time, so I put on my shoes and went out the back door to be met bya returning Joly, bit no Izzy.

I found him up the garden. He had died mid stride.

It was a difficult two years for us, but overall Izzy had a good quality of life.

Izzy a few weeks before.


Vets grading, without electronic help, does vary. I was upset to be told that Monty's 3 grade had gone to a 5, just before we risked anaesthetic. However, at his post treatment checkup, the head vet listened to his heart and said it was beating well and that that was the important bit. The best bit being that he still thinks it's only a lower end 4. He is symptom free and I pray that he goes on like this for some time.

matties mum
7th July 2007, 02:30 PM
My Sam is a grade 5/6 and he is on Frusimide and vetmedin
at the moment I would say due to the weather is a bad day he has a bit of a cough but bar for that he is going on alright he drinks a lot and of couse wees alot you take each day as they come sorry I cannot give any advice ------Aileen and the gang (Jazzie----Barney---Sam)

matties mum
8th July 2007, 09:45 AM
How is Sam this morning
-----Aileen and the gang(Jazzie---Barney---Sam)

8th July 2007, 11:25 AM
Sam is fine this morning he is always in great form. Have to bring him Back in 2 weeks to see if the new dose is working.

8th July 2007, 11:29 AM
Hi Mary,

Hope Sam does well on the medication.


8th July 2007, 03:08 PM
One thing to keep in mind as well is that vets are often not great at grading murmurs -- they often underestimate the grade of early murmurs and overesitmate the grade of more serious murmurs. The only way to get an accurate grade is to have a cardiologist listen.

I've just learned that Blanchardstown Vets (www.anicare.ie) have a mobile cardiac unit that comes to them once a week so this might be worth looking into. I need to bring Leo in to them in the next couple of weeks because my vet thought she could hear an additional heartbeat every few beats and wants to see if this is actually the case and if so, what the problem might be. When I go in, I will talk to them about the possibility of doing a lower cost heart clinic for board members if there's interest.