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Willows' Cardiology Service

27 November 2016

With one of the most experienced cardiac intervention services in the world, the Cardiology team at Willows specialise in the diagnosis and treatment of difficult and complicated cardiac problems.


The cardiology team

The cardiology team at Willows. From left to right: Cardiology Specialists Brigite Pedro, Chris Linney and Mike Martin.


Cardiology cases frequently require intensive veterinary and nursing care, and our dedicated intensive care unit is equipped to the highest levels, enabling us to optimise the management of such high-dependency cases. For those with pets who have a heart condition, you may be asked to track the progress of your pet at home. You may be given a Cardiology Home Monitoring Record booklet and our Cardiology team will provide instruction and guidance on what, when and how to measure certain aspects of your pet’s behaviour.


Willows' Cardiology Service


In addition, Mike Martin, one of Willows Cardiology Specialists, has produced these excellent instructional videos for those of you that have pets with heart failure at home. The videos provide key aspects of monitoring your pet’s respiratory rate and heart rate at home. Often when visiting the vets the heart rate and respiratory rate can be raised because of excitement or being a little worried about the visit and often doesn’t represent the real heart rate when the patient is at home and relaxed!


Monitoring the sleeping respiratory rate

This should be recorded when your pet has had a period of rest and is asleep. This might be by your feet or in bed. It is best to record this when your pet falls asleep when you are in the room, as opposed to going into the room where your pet is already asleep – as they usually wake up when you enter.

Breathing is often best seen when your pet is lying on the side and the chest and flank can be seen to rise and fall. A breath in and then out is recorded as one breath. The rate is given as the number of breaths in 1 minute.




Monitoring the heart rate at rest

This can be a little more difficult to record, but it is possible and provides very useful information. It can often be made easier by purchasing a heart rate monitor, and whilst these are a little more expensive, over the course of your pet’s life, often represent good value for money



The above instructional videos have been made to help you monitor your pet’s heart condition at home, these techniques will have been discussed with you during your consultation with our Specialist Cardiology team, if you have any questions regarding these techniques, do not hesitate to contact us and speak to a member of the Cardiology team.

For further information see our:

Specialist Cardiology Services page and our

Cardiology Pet Health Information Sheets