View Full Version : 7 year old - MVD coughing advice ...

7th November 2008, 07:48 PM
My cav Bella is 7 (well, she'll be 8 in a few weeks if she makes it that long!). She developed a murmer about a year and a half ago, and has declined rapidly in the last 6 months. She's been on vetmedin for about a year, and her cough got pretty bad about a month ago so the vet put her on the water tabs. This seemed to control the cough, but the last 3 days or so her cough has really gotten bad. She's coughing up clear fluid and although not coughing constantly, when she does, it changed from a light cough to a really horrible sounding deep cough that lasts ages, and also slightly laboured breathing. I just can't bear to here it! She is still active and enjoys excercise. The vet has given me a new tablet to try today (prilactone - which I tried for a week about a month ago and it didn't do anything, although her cough was light then compared to now), & he suggested taking half a water tab 3 times a day instead of 2. So she is now on:

6am: half a water tab
8am: half a vetmedin flavoured tablet (250mg)
12 noon: 1 prilactone (don't know what this does)
2pm: half a water tab
6pm: half a vetmedin (250mg)
10pm: half a water tab.

I really hope this helps with her cough and the fluid in her lungs. It's just so horrid to watch her, although she doesn't really seem to be in any distress, she's still really happy. She just sounds like she's got pneumonia or something!!

Does anyone know of any combination of drugs or different meds I could mention to the vet? I'm seeing him again in a week. The vet has never mentioned any sort of scan or anything, he's only ever listened to her heart and lungs through a stephoscope, but it's too late now anyway. I know murmur grades don't mean much and it's the symptoms that are important. If it wasn't for the fluid in her lungs she'd be a fit and active dog! She seems so young and active to die yet, I just find all this so stressful and want her to stabalize ... I could handle the more gentle cough she had a while ago. I'm scared to pick her up and cuddle her incase she starts having a coughing fit.

Thanks for any advice.

7th November 2008, 08:31 PM
Hi Jennifer, I am sorry about your Bella. It sounds like you love her very much and want to do the very best for her. I don't have any experience here, but I know others who do will be helpful. I just wanted to say :hug:
to you and Bella.

7th November 2008, 08:34 PM
I wish I had knowledge for you and know it's so hard to bear when they are distressed. You might take a look at this site and make a copy to take to Vet-it looks pretty good. :xfngr: for improvement.


8th November 2008, 12:36 PM

Cathy Moon
8th November 2008, 07:50 PM
Hi Jennifer, I'm sorry Bella is not well. Can your vet refer Bella to a specialist? A cardiologist would be more able to diagnose and effectively treat her, especially in determining which medicines are the most appropriate for her condition.

My Geordie has grade 4 MVD, and I've found the cardiologist is so much more knowledgeable. In Geordie's case, our regular vets felt he was in congestive heart failure, but the cardiologist had a different diagnosis and treatment for Geordie.

If you do get a referral to a cardiologist, an x-ray and an ultrasound of her heart will probably be needed. Then the cardiologist will most likely prescribe her medications, and tell you what symptoms to watch for. Our cardiologist is willing to work with our vet, so if Geordie starts breathing faster or coughing we can go to our vet and the vet will work with the cardiologist over the phone to change meds, etc.

I hope Bella improves, and we'll keep fingers and paws crossed for her. :xfngr::xfngr::paw::paw::paw:

9th November 2008, 02:52 AM
First off I'm so sorry to hear that Bella is so ill. We recently lost our lovely ruby, Tandie, to MVD so I understand what you're going through. It's very hard to watch them going through it all. :flwr:

I would definitely recommend a cardiologist scan. A vet with a stethoscope is not adequate. Actually it was our vet that recommended a scan. They have a cardiologist that visits the practice every so often and she scanned Tandie. She was a great source of advice and information, and also ensured that she was on the correct doses and medication for her grade. This was covered by insurance so may not even cost you anything.

best wishes to bella.

10th November 2008, 12:51 PM
Thanks for your replies. I don't know why but the 2 vets I've taken Bella to have never mentioned scans or anything like that, only ever listened to her heart with a stethoscope. Her cough seems a tiny bit better since increasing the water pill to 1 1/2 a day and giving her the new pill. I'm just wondering how much time she might have now her lungs are filling with fluid? (Even though it's being controlled with pills, eventually they will stop working I guess). I will ask the vet about x-rays when I go on Thurs.
Thanks again :)

10th November 2008, 09:27 PM
Hi Jennifer. Prilactone is a diaretic used for congestive heart failure. If you Google in Prilactone,INN- spironolactone you will be able to read up on it.

:xfngr: the meds will help your little one. Please keep us posted how she gets on.

10th November 2008, 11:53 PM
No advice to give, just wanted to let you know I am thinking of you and your little Bella.

11th November 2008, 01:04 AM
So sorry to hear that you are going through this.... it's so hard. :( I have an 8-year old foster and she has a Grade 4. We went to the cardiologist and they did a Doppler and a chest x-ray and then prescribed her meds.

Good luck and hugs to you.