February is American Heart Month, and it’s a great time to evaluate not only your own heart health, but your pets’ as well.
Each year, heart-related conditions, such as heart disease, heartworm and heart murmurs, affect our furry family members in a big way. In fact, Healthy Paws Pet Insurance says it processed nearly 4,000 heart issue-related claims in 2016 alone, based on information from their database of hundreds of thousands of pets.
While these conditions are fairly common, they come at a large cost for pet parents—the average bill for treating a pet’s heart problem is $385. Last year alone, Healthy Paws Pet Insurance reimbursed a total of $929,000 in heart issue-related claims, with the highest claim coming in at a heart-pounding $12,736 for the treatment of a golden retriever’s heart condition.
The good news is there are simple lifestyle changes you can make to lower the risk of heart conditions in your cat or dog.
“Feeding your pet a healthy diet, ensuring they get regular exercise and maintaining a healthy lifestyle to prevent obesity will help keep their heart in good health, decreasing the risk of developing certain conditions” says veterinarian Dr. Kristonn Colborn. “Be sure to have your pet examined once a year—twice if they’re over seven years of age—to allow your vet the best chance to detect problems early on and provide treatment before disease has had the opportunity to progress.”
Pet parents can take the first step to protect their furry family members by visiting the Healthy Paws website for resources on pet health and wellness.