Heart Murmur

This forum is for cat lovers seeking everyday advice and suggestions on health-related issues. Remember, however, that advice on a public forum simply can't be a substitute for proper medical attention. Only your vet can say assuredly what is best for your cat.


Purred: Thu Sep 23, '10 1:21pm PST 
Hi everybody! Jameson is a 1 year old sphynx who was just diagnosed with a heart murmur cry My vet suggested that he go to a cartiologist. He DOESN't do well at the vet AT ALL! If he goes to the cartiologist he will probably need to be sedated. Would it be bad to do this since they'll have to listen to his heart? Can anybody explain what exactly it is that they'll do to him so I can know what to expect? He doesn't even let the vet listen to his heart with the stethescope without a big to do.


Stella- Felinis--Queen- of All Kitties!
Purred: Thu Sep 23, '10 3:26pm PST 
It's Stella. We don't know what happens because our person just couldn't afford to do it. Stella suddenly developed a murmur when she was a year old. Possibly coincidentally, the vet was having a portable ultrasound unit come in the next few weeks and they wanted $700 for the ultrasound. We didn't do it, and the next time I was at the vet, the murmur had disappeared, never to reappear. shock confused

If he is that much trouble at the vet's, we're not sure they can even tell whether he has a murmur or not!

We can't advise you, just tell you what happened to me. But we are purring for everything to be all right. hug


RESPECT The- Star!
Purred: Thu Sep 23, '10 4:14pm PST 
I can tell you all about it, have extensive knowledge/experience with this, but running out of time tonight, will post tomorrow after work, its going to be a long one. But in the mean time, take a breath, its not a death sentence, and it is a very manageable condition. Bump was diagnosed at 10 months, he was in first place in his Region, the cardiologist said he wouldn't live past 1 yr. He is 3 yrs old and will be 4 next month. big grin

I was told, thats it, thats all there is, REFUSED.......... to except that, told my vet, start your book now, because Bump is going to be the one that makes it. Went on a mission, did the research, had my vet look up stuff, and we got the Cardiologist at UC Davis involved. They let him go back on the circuit, and he finished in the Top 10. Ya.......... you came to the right place. big grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grin


RESPECT The- Star!
Purred: Fri Sep 24, '10 1:29pm PST 
OK, here's the scoop. big grin

If your vet detected a heart murmur, the next step is to take an x-ray. This shows if the heart is enlarged, and if there is fluid on the heart and/or lungs. They should also do a CBC and Wellness blood panel, to see if any values are not normal. The x-ray and the blood panel, you take to the cardiologist. They will do an ultrasound, to look at the heart. The cardiologist measures the heart, and looks to see if the left ventrical is working properly. It should open and close, like your front door. What happens with a heart kitty, is the left ventrical does not open and shut properly, it kinda swings, like a saloon door, lets in too much blood or not enough. This test will determine, along with the x-ray and blood panel, what grade the kitty is, grades are 1-6, with 1 being moderate and 6 being sever, this also determines the treatment/meds. The most common meds are Atenenol, this slows the heart rate, and baby aspirin, 81 mgs, 1 every 3 days, but the dosage and if other meds are given, is based on the condition, each cat is different.

It is now imperative, the kitty be put on a grain free quality feed, that is LOW IN SALT. He also needs to be kept hydrated and flushed out. You do this by mixing his wet with water, so its soupy. If he won't eat wet, you can use baby food, Beechnut stage 1, chicken or turkey ONLY, 1 teaspoon, twice a day.

You also have to keep his life stress free, no fighting, yelling, being picked on by a human member or another pet.

It is now critical, you monitor, ANY MEDS, he is given, for any reason, ASK the vet or tech, is this safe for a heart cat, NEVER accept, I don't know or probably, MAKE THEM LOOK IT UP. One med you want to avoid is
Centrine, its an antispazmodic, similiar to Pepto Bismal for us, it will kill a cat with a heart condition.

Any change in behavior, or any illness, he has to be taken into the vet, there is no, well, we will wait and see. He now has a weakened immune system. It may be the heart condition is changing, and meds may need to be adjusted.

Ask your vet about antioxidants, its the same as people with heart issues, Bump was put on a quality vitamin, Feline Missing Link, you get it at Petsmart. It is a powder, you have to refridge it after you open it,
dosage is based on the weight of the cat, but they put him on the low dose, 1/4 teaspoon, once a day, you mix it with their wet food, or in Mr I Ain't eatin' no wet food case, baby food.

As far as the ultrasound, discuss this with your vet and ask him/her to discuss this with the cardiologist, so they are prepared ahead of time, that the kitty gets upset at the vet. I don't know how they handle upset kitties, but I *insisted* Bump was not to be sedated, he is a show cat, he been everywhere and seen it all. I also insisted he not be shaved and I insisted on being back there with him, some will let you, some won't, my vet "warned" the cardiologist, how I was, mol.

They put the kitty, in a little cradle kinda thingy, on his back. Even with all the commotion and all the doggies barking, Bump just lay there and let them do it. It was just like going to a show to him, he thought the vetty was a judge, mol.

Best of luck, this is very very manageable, and please don't hesitate, if you have any questions, and the others who have been thru this too, can relate their experiences.

((((((((((((((((((BIG HUGS TO YOU )))))))))))))) wave

way to goway to goway to goway to goway to goway to goway to goway to goway to goway to goway to goway to goway to go

big grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grin: Dbig grin


Purred: Fri Sep 24, '10 8:27pm PST 
Wow, that was great! Thanks!!way to go

Olivia,- Tanner, &- Finn

The Dyna Cats!
Purred: Fri Sep 24, '10 8:37pm PST 
Very informative, Bumpurr, thank you! Fortunately, it's not something I need to worry about with my three, but I was hoping sweet Jameson would get some guidance, and he certainly did!


Miss Puff

carma works,- wish I never- chaced Meow
Purred: Fri Sep 24, '10 9:05pm PST 
Bumpurr always has the best answers! Way to Go Bump!!!
snoopy hail cheer
wishes To a swift recovery!


Knead softly &- carry a big purr
Purred: Mon Sep 27, '10 7:01am PST 
Bump was a big help to us! Tigger has a grade 1-2 heart murmur & hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. He has an ultrasound every year. He is on the atenolol 1/4 tab 2x day. It is really cheap, I get a 90 day supply for $4 at Target. You would never know he has an issue. I do watch when he plays, because sometimes he does not know when to stop. So if I se he is starting to breathe a little heavier, we slow down & rest. I am starting him on Llysine for his immune system, and right now he gets a NuCat vitamin daily. At our vet, the cardiologist comes in to do the ultrasound, and it is about $300. I, like Bumpurr's Mom refuse to think that he cannot live a long healthy life. Also it is important to keep their weight firmly in control, so there is no fat buildup around the heart. So good luck, and feel free to ask away! go to the heart groups here also, lots of info


No Not-Moms!!!!
Purred: Mon Sep 27, '10 7:55am PST 
Hi, all! I'm 9 years old and was just diagnosed this spring with a Grade 4 heart murmur. My doctor took an xray, which showed no heart disease (thank you, God!), and my mom then took me to a cardiologist. Mom was with me the entire time, which was a good thing 'cause I was scared! Anyway, the ultrasound wasn't difficult at all; the nurse and Mom held me (and there was no shaving involved). Mom could see everything on the screen, although she didn't understand a lot of it. The bottom line was that there's no heart disease; the cardiologist recommend that my regular doctor check me every 6 months and that I be taken to the cardiologist again in 2 years. No meds,no special food, no special instructions except to bring me back if I start showing symptoms. My regular doctor told Mom that sometimes young cats (which is not mefrown ) often outgrow heart murmurs, so that's a possibility for you.

Mom had been taking me to the vet hospital who'd adopted me to her; it was a doctor at another hospital who found the murmur, so we have no idea how long I've had it, since the original doctor missed it. I'm not going there anymore.

Good luck! You may just outgrow the murmur!


I\'m so pretty!- Oh so pretty!!
Purred: Sun Oct 3, '10 10:33pm PST 
I have a grade 4 heart murmur and I am 18 yrs old! Have had it for years and have no other problems. shrug I eat Fancy Feast cause thats all I like and Mom says at my age I should get what I like big grin I don't take any meds or anything and I beat up the other kitties regularly (I am a little cranky old lady) laugh out loud