Degenerative valve disease in dogs accounts for approximately 75% of all cases of heart disease. While disease of the mitral valve (the valve located on the left side of the heart between the atrium and the ventricle) is the most common form of valvular disease in dogs, disease of the tricuspid valve is sometimes seen as well.
Dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) in dogs is by definition a disease of the muscle of the heart. Essentially, the muscle of the ventricle of the heart becomes weakened and is not able to contract normally. This inability to contract eventually leads to heart failure.
Some breeds of dogs are more prone to have dilated cardiomyopathy than other breeds. Dietary deficiencies, drugs and infectious diseases are also possible causes of this condition.
There are several medications that are regularly used to treat dogs suffering from heart disease and/or heart disease as a result of dilated cardiomyopathy.
The prognosis for dogs diagnosed with dilated cardiomyopathy depends on many different factors. These factors include the breed of dog, the specific type of dilated cardiomyopathy that is involved and the severity of existing clinical signs.