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Veterinarians to Perform Free Dog Heart Health Screenings at Bark Around the Park April 16 in Millbrook Exchange Park

ST. JOSEPH, Mo., April 14, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- On Saturday, April 16, veterinarians are going to the dogs in Raleigh, N.C., at "Bark Around the Park." Veterinary cardiologists on the Mobile Dog Heart Health Tour will stop with a soundproof medical unit to perform free dog heart examinations at Millbrook Exchange Park during this 22nd annual Raleigh Parks and Recreation Department event.


In addition to providing free heart health screenings, veterinarians will be available to answer questions for dog owners about heart disease – a common ailment that is almost as prevalent in dogs as it is in humans. About 11 percent of the nearly 75 million dogs in the United States have heart disease, and that figure increases to as many as 60 percent among aged dogs and certain predisposed breeds. (1) Yet, a national survey shows that more than half of dog owners are unaware that their dog may be at risk of heart failure. (1)

"Early diagnosis and treatment of heart failure can significantly prolong and improve the quality of a dog's life," says Dr. Teresa DeFrancesco, a Raleigh-area veterinary cardiologist. "We look forward to reaching out to local dog owners to educate them about heart disease in dogs and the treatment options. By emphasizing the importance of annual veterinary examinations and early diagnosis of heart disease, we hope to help more dogs live longer and better lives."

Dr. DeFrancesco will perform free dog heart screenings from inside a special mobile exam room from 12 to 4 p.m. at Bark Around the Park, where admission is free. She will use a stethoscope to listen for heart murmurs and other irregular sounds as well as generally assess whether or not the dogs show any signs of heart disease. No appointment is necessary.

The veterinarian will also educate dog owners about the most common symptoms of heart disease: reduced willingness to walk or exercise, difficulty breathing, coughing, loss of appetite and weight loss. Dog owners can learn more at Dog Heart Health Tour Stop in Raleigh When:

Saturday, April 16, 2011, from 12 to 4 p.m.Where:

Millbrook Exchange Park, 1905 Spring Forest Road in Raleigh, N.C.Why:

To educate dog owners about canine heart disease.Who:

A veterinary cardiologist will perform free dog heart screenings.About Congestive Heart Failure in DogsThe Mobile Dog Heart Health Tour is designed to educate people about congestive heart failure (CHF) in dogs.

While there is no cure for CHF, clinical study results have shown that dogs with the condition live nearly twice as long and enjoy a higher quality of life when diagnosed and treated during the early stages of heart failure. (1)

About Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica, Inc.Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica, Inc. (St. Joseph, Mo.), is a subsidiary of Boehringer Ingelheim Corporation based in Ridgefield, Conn., and a member of the Boehringer Ingelheim group of companies.

The Boehringer Ingelheim group is one of the world's 20 leading pharmaceutical companies. Headquartered in Ingelheim, Germany, it operates globally with 142 affiliates in 50 countries and more than 41,500 employees. Since it was founded in 1885, the family-owned company has been committed to researching, developing, manufacturing and marketing novel products of high therapeutic value for human and veterinary medicine.

In 2009, Boehringer Ingelheim posted net sales of US $17.7 billion (12.7 billion euro) while spending 21 percent of net sales in its largest business segment, Prescription Medicines, on research and development.

For more information, please visit

1. Quality of Life and Extension of Survival Time, Effect of pimobendan or benazepril hydrochloride on survival times in dogs with congestive heart failure caused by naturally occurring myxomatous mitral valve disease: The QUEST study. Haggstrom, J., Boswood, A., O'Grady, M. et alJ Vet Intern Med. 2008


SOURCE Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica, Inc.
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