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DCM Diagnosis 13 yr old Dobie (SF Bay Area)

1881 Views 4 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  flash98
Hello all,

Longtime lurker 13 and a half year old female doberman was diagnosed last spring with DCM. Outwardly, she is doing fine.

She's a three plus year survivor of mammary cancer and also survived a hard leg tumor, so she is a veteran of difficult circumstances.

My question is the vet along with the cardio specialist have her on Amiodarone benazepril and pimobendan. At the end of spring she was only on pimo, then added benazepril and most recently Amiodarone. What concerns me is that I read very little about any dobermans using Amiodarone. This also is an older drug. In addition I located one study which indicated a nearly fifty percent rate of drug intolerance in dobermans for this. She tried the Mexitecheline (sp) but didn't like it.

I should add that after being on Amiodarone for about a month she has had little side effects other than some weird stools. She however at a vet visit recently did not seem to have her heart arrhythmias under control .... we are going to do a holter in the next couple of weeks.

I have met the cardiologist and was very, very impressed. However it seems like perhaps I should find one that would do more to find the right cocktail to treat her dcm? Perhaps a doberman specialist?

Sorry about the long thread.
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First of all, welcome to the forum. So very sorry you have come here under these circumstances. My Baron was diagnosed last February at 4 years 4 months with DCM:

As he is still in early stage, he is currently only on Sotalol (80 mg every 12 hours) and 2,000 mg of fish oil. I cannot help you with any information on the other drugs your Dobe is on but I am sure someone else with more experience will chime in. As far as your cardiologist goes, make sure you find someone you are comfortable with and you feel is giving your Dobe the best chance for some more quality life. My thoughts and prayers are with your girl. Please post some photos of her. We love to see senior Dobes.
I am very sorry to hear that your dog has DCM.

To me, first Pimobendan then Benazepril sounds the logic choice, the same my girl got among others. I cannot say anything to Amiodarone though. Well what I do know is finding the right cocktail is some tricky thing and I am sure that there is not the one right way to do it and it surely changes over time.

If you feel not comfortable with your cardiologist, check out another one and get a second opinion. If you can´t stand the feeling you haven´t done everything possible for your dog, than why not? Dobermans are surely something they should know about, since DCM is so aggressive and fast with this breed. Usually you don´t have much time... But let me add that I find the age of your dog impressive and wonderful.

I wish you all the best and keep us informed.
To the best of my knowlege, sotalol and mexilitine are the two most commonly used anti arrythmics for dobermans with DCM. Sometimes just one or the other works to get normal cardiac rhythm restored. I did have one dog who had to take both to get to anything close to normal rhythm.

There's a specialty practice in San Leandro who has a board certified cardiologist on staff who I got to know when he treated my dogs during his residency. His name is Dr. Justin Allen, and I'd highly recommend him. VERY competent, very compassionate, and he's a big Doberman fan.

VCA Bay Area Veterinary Specialists & Emergency Hospital in San Leandro CA in San Leandro, CA
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Thank you all for your responses. All of them have been very helpful. I will be posting pictures of her in the near future & Will follow up with more details when I have them.

Much Appreciated!
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