When your Pet Needs a Cardiologist

Your pet is a special member of your family. As such, you want the best possible care for every ailment that your pet must face during his or her lifetime. If your veterinarian faces a situation outside their area of expertise, they now have the option of referring you to a board-certified specialist, just like your family doctor does for you. A Board-certified veterinary cardiologist is the most qualified person to define the nature and type of heart problem when your veterinarian suspects heart disease in your pet. Veterinary cardiologists provide congenital defect repair and save the lives of younger pets with birth defects in their heart. Through specific medical management, pacemaker implantation, and advanced imaging techniques, veterinary cardiologists also extend the length and quality of older pet’s lives. They can be a critical component of your pets’ total health care team.

What is a board-certified veterinary specialist?

A Board-certified veterinary specialist is an individual who has completed years of advanced training in a specific area of veterinary medicine. This education parallels the training that medical doctors receive to become the specialists we commonly seek for the human members of our family. For the animal members of the family, the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine (ACVIM) supervises the training and development of Diplomates, specialists in one of 5 areas—small animal internal medicine, large animal internal medicine, oncology, neurology, and cardiology. These specialists have dedicated an additional 3 to 6 years after graduating from veterinary school to complete advanced training in one of these areas. Only veterinarians who have successfully completed the ACVIM’s rigorous training and testing requirements are certified as Diplomates, and have earned the right to be called Board-certified specialists.

When do you need a veterinary cardiologist?

When your veterinarian suspects a heart condition in your pet, she or he may then refer you to a Board-certified veterinary cardiologist. The gold standard of care for veterinary cardiac patients is diagnosis and treatment by a Board-certified veterinary cardiologist. There are currently 129 Board-certified veterinary Cardiologists in the country and we are fortunate to have 7 of them in the region within Chesapeake Veterinary Cardiology Associates. Along with our doctors’ expertise, Chesapeake Veterinary Cardiology utilizes the most advanced imaging equipment available to assist in diagnosing and treating your pet’s cardiac disease.

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