Dogs with heart problems produce abnormally high levels of hormones that cause muscle loss which causes heart failure. These hormones unfortunately also cause an increase in the dog’s energy levels but regrettably a decrease in appetite, so the dog is not getting the nutritional needs it requires to support the energy levels.
Improving quality of life
Fatty acids found in fish oil Omega 3 can help decrease these hormones and help improve the dogs quality of life although it won’t cure the heart condition.
Dogs with heart conditions as with humans should have a diet low in salt, this decreases the volume of blood and therefore the work that the heart has to do to pump the blood. Dog treats traditionally are high in salt to make them palatable so reducing the amount of treats will help with the dogs welfare.
Obesity should be avoided at all costs, an obese dogs heart has to beat harder to circulate blood around its body. Studies show that every 1lb of fat contains a mile of blood capillaries this cumulates in the heart working harder.
What do we need to understand as groomers?
When grooming dogs with heart problems make sure you keep up to date records of the condition with regular dialog with the customer. Dogs with heart conditions should avoid periods of extreme activity so the groom should be combined with regular breaks, and any concerns reported to the owner.