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Louie is a few months over 5 now. His winter was very sedentary due to the fact that I had to work long hard hours, and my back is out. I just about made it home each night.

Anyhow, I started walking him on short walks around the block and noticed that he is winded. Really winded. Assuming it was from weight gain (he is on steroids all summer...10 mg every other day...and he is about 80 pounds. So I cut out his cookies (well almost)...and I cut down on his canned food. He eats dry Ultra z/d (allergic to everything).

I took him on a walk to the boardwalk in the next town over, with lots of dogs and kids...things he loved, and he was alarmingly winded.

I am so frightened. I am wondering if it's heart worm? Is it cardiomyopathy? Is he in pain?....we left him with a neighbor overnight in March and he fell down her steps. She said he was limping, but when we got home, he was fine.

Lou is my $5000 dog. I have literally spent that and more on vet bills for him. We are at the verge of being broke ourselves...hence the long work hours at the hospital. Our vet is very expensive. Should I take him to the clinic in town? Should I keep walking him? He is happy and good natured in everyother way, and doesn't appear ill. His coat is shiny, he eats his meals, and he sleeps well too.

Please advise!
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