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Mia & Mollie's human mom
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Discussion Starter #1
When we went to the vet with Mia the day after we got her on November 9th, he said that he thought she had a heart murmur and that it sounded pretty strong, but that it might be due to the fact that (according to him) she was so underweight. She was 5.28 lbs at 7 weeks and 5 days.

He said that he would check again next time we went there for her 2nd set of shots... which was today...
the vet says the heart murmur is still there and it got stronger. He is referring us to a dog cardiologist for an ultrasound to determine the severity and where it is... We don't know what grade it is.

We feel devastated and so sad!... :(

I'm going to be doing some reading up on heart murmurs since I am not familiar with them... and this is our first dog...

Mia is 10 weeks and 3 days old today. She now weighs 11.42 lbs

Any thoughts, recommendations from people with experience regarding this?
 

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Innocent puppy murmurs are very common and the puppy grows out of them by 4 months of age, often sooner. It may not be anything but the only puppy murmurs I have had experience with are generally a grade 1 and fade with age. They are caused by the rapid and often uneven growth of a young pup.

It concerns me that it is getting stronger but it still may only be a puppy murmur. Have you contacted the breeder? I know that in situations like this, I would generally make the appointment and take the puppy in (along with the owners).

You might consider a second opinion, just to make sure. Your vet really should be able to tell you the grade and where the mumur is.

As long as it is not life-threatening, you may want to wait a few more weeks to see what happens with it. If it is a puppy murmur, it should be gone by 16 weeks.
 

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Barley & Mira's Mom
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I know a dog that had a grade 1 heart murmer as a puppy and she grew out of it. Did they say what grade each time? Hopefully you find out more information from the cardiologist. Here is a page with lots of resources: http://www.thensome.com/heartmurmurs.htm
 

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I've been there and the news is devastating. The trip to the cardiologist is extemely stressful, but then you know for sure what you are dealing with. There are many causes for heart murmurs. Our Tinkerbell was diagnosed at 9 weeks and was confirmed by an echcardiogram by a cardiologist 6 months later. Tinkerbell's murmur is a 4.5-5 on a sclae of 1-6 and is due to SubAortic Stenosis (SAS). Nothing you read on that gives much hope.

We had vets and even cardiologist offer to put our 6 month old puppy down for us to save us the heartache later. It doesn't get much worse than that. We decided to let her live as fulla life as possible. the cardiologist put her on heart meds and gave us a Rx good for 5 months. She couldn't believe we called and asked for more refills. Everything we read and were told says Tinkerbell should not have lived to be a year old.

But I am extremely happy to say that she turned 2 last June and is doing incredibly well. Several people here on the forum have met her and can tell you they would never had known if they hadn't read about her heart condition here.

As difficult as it may seem do not let the news ruin the joy of your new puppy. There is always hope as my Tinkerbell proves. Good food, an understanding vet, heart meds and tons of love have kept Tinkerbell with us for this long and each day we have her increases her chance of having a long life.
 

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Mia & Mollie's human mom
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Discussion Starter #6
I don't know how much I trust this vet... there are some things that he's said that made me doubt his knowledge of the breed...

We are going for a 2nd opinion at the vet that I go to with my kitties, and we have an appointment at the cardiologist on Tuesday at 10am for the ultrasound and to find out more about it.

We called the breeder the day after we got Mia when we first heard about the heart murmur and she was very surprised since her vet didn't hear it. I heard that it's possible that it can be missed when they are very young...?

We called her again today to let her know and she wants more information about it (grade, etc.) when we get it...
 

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I wouldn't put too much emphasis on what grade your regular vet puts on it. Unless the vet has a lot of experience dealing with heart murmurs they may be wrong. They should have an idea of which side it is coming from, but again if they don't have a lot of experience dealing with it they may not want to say too much. We did also get a second opinion and I liked that vet do much we switched right then.

We had Tinkerbell in to the vet every 2 weeks for just a quick heart check, so that they could monitor it and see if there was any change. Hers has remained very constant. Hers you can even feel and at times you can even see it like when she is in a deep sleep.
 

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I don't know how much I trust this vet... there are some things that he's said that made me doubt his knowledge of the breed...

We are going for a 2nd opinion at the vet that I go to with my kitties, and we have an appointment at the cardiologist on Tuesday at 10am for the ultrasound and to find out more about it.

We called the breeder the day after we got Mia when we first heard about the heart murmur and she was very surprised since her vet didn't hear it. I heard that it's possible that it can be missed when they are very young...?

We called her again today to let her know and she wants more information about it (grade, etc.) when we get it...

It is very common to miss a heart murmur at the initial vet check. Good luck at the cardiologist and feel free to contact me at any time.

And if you are not sure about this vet, switch. You are very liekly goign to be seeing them a lot. It needs to be someone you trust and can relate to.
 

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the first time we took Ruby to the vet nothing was mentioned about a heart murmur
the second time we took her it was a diferent vet and they said she had a definate heart murmur and she had it for a while after that we were terrified of something happening to our baby
then one day we took her to the vets about something completely diferent and we asked them to check her heart and the murmur had gone
so dont give up hope and if it does turn out she has a long term heart problem there is always someone here to talk to
by the way Mia is gorgeous :smooch:
 

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Asia had one at her second puppy check after we got her and it was gone a month later never to return. Lots of pups have innocent murmers and I hope this is the case for Mia.
 

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Mia & Mollie's human mom
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Discussion Starter #11
Thank you all for your kind words.
I'll let you all know what the cardiologist says after our Tuesday morning appointment.

Whatever it is, it doesn't seem to be slowing Mia down, so I take that as a good sign...

Heart murmurs aren't painful for them, are they? :confused:
 

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Love, kisses, and extra treats to Mia. I so hope she will grow out of it. The tiny puppy who fits in two hands just awakens every protective instinct, and it's so hard to come to terms with and adjust to problems. But it's amazing how, after the shock of the initial diagnosis, some adjusting does take place. I hope your breeder stands by your side supportively.
 

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Shortcake, I have just a few words of wisdom from experience. When Simon was a puppy his vet heard a murmur during his first visit to the vet. His vet was at the Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital at the University of Wisconsin here in Madison. A board certified veterinary cardiologist also heard the murmur upon exam, but in his words "we won't worry about grading until Simon is older, and by that time it may close on its own." My wife and I were freaked out, devastated and afraid.

Long story short: Simon grew out of his murmur and we spent a few months of needless worrying. I know I can't tell you not to worry, but please, please don't let it get the best of you. Enjoy Mia's puppy days and nature will take its course. Even if she has an ongoing murmur there are medical ways to manage.

Mia's such a darling, sweet puppy and I just know she'll be fine. Keep us posted.
 

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I don't have any experience with murmurs but I will send my best prayers that Mia outgrows this and lives a long and healthy life!
 

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B.J. and the Kohana Kids
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Short answer to whether its painful or not: no.

Sydney has a heart murmur that she didn't grow out of. Hers is a grade 1/2. I had the doppler ultrasound done (by a radiologist though, not a cardiologist) and he really couldn't give me any answers. She didn't appear to have SAS (which is the worry with goldens) and it was caused by aeortic inefficiencies. My point is, not all heart murmurs are a "problem" and not all are genetic. I know you can go online and google heart murmurs and you will be bombarded with information about SAS and next thing you know, you're thinking your puppy is on deaths door. (trust me, dont do that). Every murmur is different and can be caused by a million different things.

Another note about regular vets and heart murmurs: When I took Sydney in to be spayed (I chose to spay her shortly after), one of the vets was listening for a murmur and I told them she had one. The vet kept insisting that she did NOT have a murmur (at this point I had paid a lot of money for proof of this supposed heart murmur), so I told her again, that yes she did have one. She insisted she couldn't hear it. I swear sometimes they dont know what they're listening for... not to say that Sydney's isn't faint enough that a good DVM could miss it, but I wouldn't worry too much about what they hear or dont hear. Good luck, BJ
 

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The Missouri Crew
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Doesn't Maggie's Mom's Cruiser have a heart murmur?
Yes Cruiser does.... I agree Unless the vet has a lot of experience dealing with heart murmurs they may be wrong. They should have an idea of which side it is coming from, but again if they don't have a lot of experience dealing with it they may not want to say too much. Our vet has been right on the money with every dog /pup brought in with the murmurs.

Cruiser has a grade 3/6 left basilar systolic murmur,has had it since 3 months. The echocardiograph was done at 6 months old and the findings included mild subaortic stenosis(sas) and regurgitation at the aortic valve. His pressure gradients across the stenosis was less than 35mm which is very mild. His prognosis for a happy normal life is good. He will be 2 in March and weights 85 pounds, he is to go back for another echo at 2 years of age..I was told that after the age of 2 the chances of it getting worse is very slim at a grade 3 . He is on no meds and he lives a normal happy life with my other goldens.The specialist said there is no limits on what he can and cant do.
 

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My vet told me that it's very hard to grade heart murmurs, and that it can sound totally different on any given day so I wouldn't put too much worry in "it's getting worse". Just means your vet cleaned his ears the night before :)
Good luck at the cardiologist. Let us know how it goes!
 

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Mia & Mollie's human mom
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Discussion Starter #19
I'll try not to worry too much about it until we know for sure and the seriousness... Your posts make me feel better about things. :)

One thing that I'm wondering, is when my fiancé called the vet after we got home to ask what grade it was, they said 3 on 4... which doesn't make much sense to us... I thought the scale was out of 6?
But yeah, we'll see what the cardiologist says.
 

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The Missouri Crew
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The scale is to 6. 3 and under they usually dont go on meds, depending on what kind of murmur. anything 4-5 they do, if they dont out grow it. I have heard that with a 6 they dont live long lives.
 
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