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WEST PALM BEACH, Fla., Jan. 27, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The Mobile Dog Heart Health Tour is heading to West Palm Beach for an afternoon of free heart health examinations at Dreher Dog Park. From 1 to 5 p.m. on Saturday, January 29, certified veterinary cardiologists will perform on-site heart screenings in a soundproof medical unit, as well as educate owners about canine heart disease.

(Photo:  http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20110127/CG37759)

Since early 2009, veterinarians on the Mobile Dog Heart Health Tour have checked the hearts of more than 5,000 dogs around the country and found a previously undetected heart murmur in approximately 20 percent of them. In addition to providing free heart health exams, veterinarians teach dog owners about heart disease – a common ailment that is about 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. Yet, a national survey shows that more than half of dog owners are unaware that their dogs may be at risk of heart failure.

"Early diagnosis and treatment of heart disease can significantly prolong and improve the quality of a dog's life," said Tacy Rupp, a West Palm Beach area veterinary cardiologist with the Mobile Dog Heart Health Tour. "We look forward to educating local dog owners 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."

Veterinary specialists will provide free dog heart screenings from 1 to 5 p.m. on January 29 at Dreher Dog Park, 1100 Southern Boulevard in West Palm Beach. Certified veterinary cardiologists on the Mobile Dog Heart Health Tour use a stethoscope to list

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