Remi’s Visit With The Cardiologist

Little Remington was seen by a cardiologist. His heart murmur is being caused by a small hole in his heart between the left ventrical (lower chamber – major pumper of blood to the aorta) and the right atrium (upper chamber). The condition is called VSD (intraventicular septal defect). It is a congenital defect.

The good news is that no surgery is needed and dogs can do very well with this defect. There are no signs of congestive heart failure and no further treatment or drug therapy is required at this time. Worst case scenerio, medicine may be needed (similar to blood pressure meds) in the future if his resting heart rate goes above 30 breaths/min. Remi’s foster mom has been given instructions to monitor the color of his gums and inside his eyelids to be sure his heart is pumping enough oxygen through his blood. (Pink is good, blue means lack of oxygen.)

The cardiologist recommended that Remi get another echocardiogram at one year of age to see what the heart looks like when he’s fully grown. If it looks like it does now, he doesn’t foresee the need for any further cardiac care – unless resting heart rate has increased (measured while sleeping – inhale/exhale = 1 breath, less than 30/min is where it should be) or his gums and/or eyelids are blue.

Whoever adopts Remi will be expected to follow the cardiologist recommendations, get periodic follow-up CBC and blood profiles at least yearly, monitor Remi’s gums, periodically measure his resting heart rate, and keep a log of everything. His adopter should also be willing and able to provide any extraordinary care the Remi could potentially need.

Remi will potentially be available for adoption in the late winter or early spring, after Remi has a follow-up cardiologist appointment and he’s been neutered. Stay tuned for more updates between now and then.

Here’s a quick video of Remington playing chase with one of the resident dogs at his foster home.