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Last Updated: Thursday, 20 March 2008, 18:05 GMT
Viagra helps heart condition dog
Talisker, a border collie, passes out when he gets excited
An impotence tablet is helping to keep a pet dog with a heart condition from an early grave.

Talisker, a border collie, was living on borrowed time after vets found his heart had become dangerously enlarged.

The dog, three, from Yardley Hastings, Northamptonshire, passes out when he gets excited because his blood cannot pump quickly enough around his body.

But, since taking Viagra, the blood flow to Talisker's heart has improved, according to owner Lesley Strong, 58.

Vets advised Ms Strong to give Viagra to the dog after they found he was suffering from a potentially lethal heart condition.

It causes great hilarity at the chemist's when I pick up the prescription
Lesley Strong

Ms Strong, a former pub landlady, said: "We were very surprised when we were recommended Viagra.

"It causes great hilarity at the chemist's when I pick up the prescription.

"He is happy and healthy apart from the heart. I'm pretty sure it has kept him alive, but, the thing is, it can't cure him.

"He needs special care and we have to make sure he doesn't over exert himself, as over-exertion causes it. It's about him being active without being over-exercised."

Now Talisker takes one quarter of a Viagra tablet three times a day and an eighth of an aspirin tablet daily.

The dog, who is named after a single malt whiskey, has had the condition since June last year.

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