Heart Disease

Pet hearts are very similar to human hearts; they both have four main valves: a mitral valve, tricuspid valve, pulmonic valve, and aortic valve. The mitral valve, located between the heart’s left atrium and left ventricle is a pet’s most fragile valve and is usually the first to fail. In dogs, this failure occurs slowly and causes the pet to exhibit tell-tale symptoms that could trigger a pet-owner to realize something is wrong. However, heart disease in cats progresses much more rapidly and involves failure of the entire heart, which makes a pet owner’s detection of it much less likely.

At the onset of heart disease, a pet’s circulatory system starts to fail. With that failure, the kidneys, liver, and other vital internal organs are flooded with stationary blood and cannot function properly. The organs no longer get the essential amount of oxygen they need and slowly start to die. Heart disease is a very serious medical condition that must be addressed promptly. If you notice any of the following symptoms, please contact our office at your earliest convenience.

Symptoms of heart disease in pets: 

  • Bloated stomach
  • Coughing
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Lethargy
  • Rapid breathing
  • Reduced appetite
  • Restlessness
  • Weight loss

Diagnosing a pet with heart disease

If a pet patient is suspected of having heart disease, the veterinarian will first listen to their heartbeat with a stethoscope. If a heart murmur can be heard, it signals the vet that one or more valves are not functioning correctly. The veterinarian will then perform an X-ray, checking for an enlarged heart. Additional testing may include an EKG or echocardiograph.

How is heart disease treated?

If heart disease is a pet’s official diagnosis, the treatment and prognosis varies based on pet species, breed, and the underlying causal condition. The veterinarian will formulate a treatment plan that focuses on getting the heart to pump efficiently to help your pet live comfortably. There are numerous medications that can help a pet when heart disease is caught early enough.

If you have any questions about heart disease or think your pet is demonstrating possible symptoms, please contact our office.


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Here's a vet that still cares.
Just wanted to say I love Dr. Petcu's staff and his compassionate , caring way of taking care of my dogs.The staff is not only friendly and professional ,they know who you are when you arrive ,and they actually love animals. Is the first Animal Hospital that my dogs are at ease and feel comfortable.The place is very clean and the reception area very elegant and inviting. Exquisite services and Dr. Petcu always take his time to explain the disease and options and still finds time to play with my dogs. He's always treated both his animal and human patients with compassion and dignity,and would never recommend procedures unless he truly feels your pet will benefit from it. One of the vets that cares for your pet. The prices are reasonable and the services exceed all expectations. I Highly recommend Dr.Petcu and his hospital.

Reba S

Western Animal Hospital AMAZING! Western Animal Hospital is the best place in the valley .The staff is professional, friendly, caring and accommodating. The hospital is very clean and upscale. The customer service and the provided services are outstanding.Dr. Petcu is one of the most professional veterinarians that i have ever met in my 25 years of pet parenting. I drive across the valley just to see him( i live in Anthem) .He really cares about his animal patients and it shows in every visits . He is very knowledgeable , compassionate, friendly and always takes the time to answer any question i have and explaining in detail any situation we are dealing with. I had my share of visits to many animal hospitals in the valley but none of them had the last technology as Western - digital X-ray ( they send you home with a cd for you x-ray records ) every room has a computer monitor where the x-ray shows and Dr. Petcu can review with me every detail of it. Also they have the laser surgery and digital dental x-ray. Dr. petcu is one of the most
courteous and pleasant Vets I have ever met. The prices are more than reasonable and also they try to accommodate everybody. I cannot recommend them enough. You can rest easy knowing your pets are in their care.I STRONGLY RECOMMEND THIS HOSPITAL - THEY HAVE A CUSTOMER FOR LIFE IN ME! very good !

Betty K

Western Animal Hospital this doctor is making a lot of sense and will explain everything in details..
prices are great ....

.the best vet I met !! Pam M. 5 Western Animal Hospital - we are bringing our pets to Dr Petcu for 8 years. He was always helpful, many times we did not have the funds to treat our pets but he was fine with us paying when we had the money. He saved our cats in many instances and all I have to say is that I greatly reccomend Western Animal Hospital for any responsable pet owner .

Yolanda M

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