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Species affected: Cats, Dogs
Background: Any condition in which the heart is unable to pump the blood through the circulatory system adequately to meet the metabolic needs of the patient is considered CHF. This disease is more common in older animals but can occur in young animals that have heart damage or congenital disorders. It also occurs secondary to heartworm disease, lung disease, valvular disease, or wasting of the myocardium.
Symptoms: Pulmonary edema and coughing or dyspnea, ascites, exercise intolerance, and collapse.
Diagnostics: Cardiovascular workup, radiology, echocardiography, and EKG.
Special Notes: CHF in dogs and cats stems from differing disease processes. Dogs commonly develop CHF secondary to valvular disease, backward failure due to lung disease and heartworms, congenital outflow obstructions and other abnormalities, and dilated cardiomyopathy. Cats commonly develop CHF secondary to hypertrophic cardiomyopathy and to a lesser extent, dilated cardiomyopathy and restrictive cardiomyopathy. Vascular disease such as atherosclerosis is extremely rare in dogs and cats.
Principles for Supplementation: Improve myocardial function with antioxidants; improve oxygenation, blood flow to myocardium.


Formulas: Dosage: Mechanism/Purpose:


Cats: capsule sid
Dogs: 1 capsule/25 lbs sid

Improves myocardial function; hawthorn may or may not be appropriate for cats with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.


1 capsule per 25 lb

Heart Support Formula. Supports cardiovascular health and function.


Cats: -1 scoop sid (mixed w/ food)
Dogs: 1-3 scoops sid (mixed w/food)

Tonifies circulation, relaxes arteries, decreases heart rate,
increases blood flow to heart, strengthens heart muscle.


Cats: 1 capsule sid
Dogs < 25 lb: 1 capsule sid

Present in mitochondria; essential factor in ATP production. Greatest need in metabolically active cells such as the heart, gingiva, immune system, lacrimal glands and gastric mucosa. Antioxidant and helps recycle vitamin E.


Dogs: 1 capsule/25 lb sid

See above

CoQ-10 ST26

Cats and small dogs: 10-30 mg bid
Medium dogs: 30-60 mg bid
Large dogs: 60-90 mg bid

See above

E400 Selenium26

Cats: tablet sid
Dogs: tablet/25 lbs sid

Antioxidant; vitamin E and selenium are synergistic. Selenium in high doses is toxic. Vitamin E in high doses can raise blood pressure and can increase coagulation time. Do not exceed recommended dosage. Use less in case of heart failure or if animal is on digoxin.

Coleus Forskohlii12

Cats: 5-10 mg bid
Dogs: 10-15 mg bid

Increases cyclic AMP.


Cats: 1 capsule, sid
Dogs: 2-6 capsules sid

Essential nutrient for dogs with cardiomyopathy.

Potassium Citrate12

1 or more capsules per day, determined by monitoring blood levels.

Do not supplement without monitoring blood levels. Can cause GI distress. Animals with renal failure can often be hyperkalemic. In cats with renal failure, feeding high protein acidifying foods can cause hypokalemia. Hypokalemia increases kidney damage.

Small Animal

Cats: 1 capsule sid
Dogs: 2 capsules/25 lb sid

Antioxidant, decreases oxidative stress.

Super EPAVET12

Cats: 1 gelcap sid
Dogs: 2 gelcaps/25 lb sid

Fish oil has been shown to decrease cytokines, cachexia, and improve survival in CHF dogs.


Cats: 1 capsule sid
Dogs: capsule/25 lb sid

Essential nutrient for cats and dogs; deficiency may cause cardiomyopathy in cats since they do not make their own taurine.


Cats: capsule sid
Dogs: capsule/25 lb sid

Antioxidant, decreases oxidative stress.

Section 1 - Canine and Feline Index of Pages


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