Broadcaster Gloria Hunniford discovered that her cavalier King Charles spaniel Gemma was suffering with heart disease when she collapsed earlier this year.
Now that her beloved pet is doing well with the right medication, Gloria has joined a campaign to raise awareness of the commonality of heart disease in small dogs, and encourage owners to seek out information on earlier diagnosis of the disease in their canine companions, to help them live a longer, healthier life.
Heart disease is one of the top five causes of death in dogs in the UK, with MVD accounting for the majority of cases.
The disease is caused by the deterioration of one of the heart valves and predominantly affects small breed dogs, including cavalier King Charles spaniels, dachshunds, poodles and terrier breeds.
But the global EPIC study, led by Professor Adrian Boswood of the Royal Veterinary College, found that treating dogs with enlarged hearts – an early warning sign of progressive heart disease – before they display any outward signs delays the onset of heart failure secondary to mitral valve disease (MVD).
Watch the video to find out more.