Puppy Heart Murmurs
When I had Teddy in for his second set of boosters, my vet said he had a small heart murmur, but not to worry about it yet - it could just be a puppy murmur that will resolve itself. I've been reading that puppy murmurs can go away between 3 to 6 months of age, but wanted to see if any of you had experienced this problem and what happened, and if the murmur did go away, by what age?
Thanks for any input, love my little boy to pieces and trying not to worry too much at this early stage.
I don't mean to alarm you but have you done research of MVD and heart murmurs and problems with cavaliers??? There is a TON of wonderful info in detail from people who have more experience and knowledge that I do but http://www.cavalierhealth.com/mitral_valve_disease.htm is a great place to start. Early onset MVD, would show up as a heart murmur, perhaps your vet does not know that half of ALL cavalier's have some form of MVD (which could be a small murmur to a serious murmur- that causes server symptoms) but age 5 or that 100% of all cavalier have it but age 10, again in some form!!!!!!!! Again I'm not knocking your vet I just think you need to consult a board certified vet cardiologists, only a cardiologist can properly tell you for sure the grade of a murmur and treatment. I have never heard of a cavalier having a "puppy murmur" and I suspect it doesn't happen often in this breed given their genes with this condition. If it were my puppy I would be searching for a cardiologist in my area. However, I do not wish to alarm you a small murmur may require no treatment, there are lots and lots of people walking around with small murmurs who don't even know it. The progression of MDV varies however if you pup has early onset it is something you will need to visit a cardiologist regularly for life to monitor and when/if the time comes treatment.
Do some more reading and hopefully other people with more knowledge will reply as well.
Oh wait I stand corrected, there is such a thing as a puppy flow murmur however you still need to get Teddy to a cardiologist because only that can tell if its a puppy flow or MDV related, or something else. With a cavalier I would not just go with the wait and see approach when it comes to their hearts. Personal opinion.
Oz's regular vet heard a murmur at 4 months of age and sent us to a cardiologist. We saw the cardiologist when he was close to 6 months old, he still had the murmur and he also had 2nd degree intermittent heart block according to the cardiologist so he had to wear a Holter monitor for 24 hours. Upshot of the whole experience is that he has a congenital heart murmur - Grade I which his cardiologist says does not put him at any more risk of MVD than any other cavalier and he doesn't even need to be monitored yearly any more since his heart hasn't changed at all in the last five years. He does need special anesthesia protocols though for teeth cleaning or any other procedure.
I guess I would wait for the next vet visit and see if your vet still hears it and if so, maybe go to a cardiologist. I believe that it is really rare for MVD to strike so early. There are others on this forum though with far greater experience than I have though.
So called "innocent flow murmurs" can occur in puppies, and often resolve on their own. It's great that your regular vet is aware and on top of Teddy's heart. I would wait for his next set off shots (or plan a visit in a month if that was his final vaccination). If the murmur is still audible book a visit with a cardiologist (or an internist if there isn't a cardiologist available near you.
The cardiologist will be more expensive than your regular vet, and if they want to run any tests those will be expensive as well. Often though, getting into see a specialist early will actually save you money, because a regular vet may not really know what is going on, and have to try several avenues of diagnosis before getting a clear picture; the specialists are far better versed in their own field and can rule out some diagnoses just by looking at the pet or the history. My mother's cat nearly died because her regular vet wasn't able to diagnose him (an expensive internist visit and test later and he was on the road to recovery).
Almost certainly this is indeed just a puppy murmur, as your vet said, and nothing to worry about :) -- it is very likely to have disappeared by 6 months of age or so. If the murmur can still be heard at that point your vet will likely steer you to a cardiologist (and should).
There's a link in the Health Library to information on puppy murmurs somewhere; but I went and googled the document you want (easier!) -- from the cardiologist for the Uk Cavalier Club: