Zoey is a 10 year old Maltese from Orlando, FL.  Zoey's vet diagnosed her with a heart murmur when she was approximately four years old.  Her owner was told that it wasn’t a big deal because they would monitor it and she didn’t think anything of it because Zoey's sister had a heart murmur and lived to be 17 years old without any problems or medication.

In July 2016, Zoey was gasping for air and coughing was taken to the vet.  On suspicion that it was her heart, Zoey was referred to an internist since Orlando does not have Vet Cardiologist.  The internist Zoey was referred to did several tests and misdiagnosed her with pneumonia. She was prescribed antibiotics and a nebulizer.  Zoey’s sickness continued to progress. She was then taken her back to the internist where they did more tests and once again Zoey was misdiagnosed, this time with a mass in her lung and the doctor wanted to perform surgery to remove the mass. Her owner knew she wouldn't survive the surgery, and it was decided that Zoey be taken to an ER Vet where she had previously been a patient.  It turned out to be the best decision.

The vet from the ER knew it was her heart and put her on Lasix and in an oxygen chamber immediately.  They referred Zoey to a cardiologist at University of Florida in Gainesville and loaned the oxygen cage to transport her.  UF saved Zoey's life.  Unfortunately,  during the month of being misdiagnosed, Zoey went into heart failure and ruptured a cord. The Cardiologist at University of Florida told me Zoey had two months to two years to live.

That answer was not acceptable, so an appointment with Dr. Simon Swift, the Medical Director and Clinical Cardiologist at UF was scheduled and he reviewed all of Zoey’s records.  He suggested that Zoey was a good candidate for mitral valve repair surgery and she was referred to Dr. Sabine in France.

Zoey is currently stable and on four medications in the morning and three at night. She gets acupuncture treatments twice a month and is on multiple supplements.. Zoey is still under the supervision of Dr. Swift and she is scheduled for surgery in France on September 22, 2017.

Cardiologist : Dr. Simon Swift, University of Florida
Owner: Jeanette Jordan

Mitral Valve Disease in Dogs | Mighty Hearts Project