Pet forum for dogs cats and humans -

Pet forum for dogs cats and humans - (
-   Dog health - Ask members * If your pet is vomiting-bleeding-diarrhea etc. Vet time! (
-   -   Seizures in dogs - Answered by Dr Van Lienden (

Kootinaes_human November 27th, 2004 10:59 PM

Seizures in dogs - Answered by Dr Van Lienden
Hi! I just found this forum and am wondering if anyone would have any insight regarding canine seizures. I have a 12.5 year old Malamute who is in general good health outside of the regular maladies that come with old age. I just fed him some kibbles (human grade) with some leftover turkey and while he was eating he suddenly dropped to the floor and went into a fit that lasted about 30-45 seconds. He was upset for about 15 minutes afterward but then went back to his normal behavior and finished his meal. He has no history of seizures and I am just wondering if anyone else has experienced this and if so, what steps did you take? Thanks in advance for sharing your thoughts/experiences!


Bugsy November 27th, 2004 11:51 PM

Please have him checked by a vet as soon as possible.

Kootinaes_human November 28th, 2004 12:48 AM

Yes, I am planning to take him in first thing Monday, but I wondered had anyone experienced the same problem with their pet. If I had to guess, considering his age, I would say it is probably a tumor :( ...Of course I will have the vet give his diagnoses. Thanks for your response.

Karin November 28th, 2004 05:28 AM

Glad to hear you are taking him to your vet tomorrow. It is not uncommon for a dog to have a seizure once or twice during their lifetime.
If the seizures come in quick succession then there could be a serious problem.

sedwick November 28th, 2004 09:34 AM

Seizures in dogs......
A friend of mine has a 2 year old Akita... which has seizures just as you described. He was given a perscription which the dog was to take everyday for the rest of it's life, with huge side effects. He opted to go to a homeopath (sp?) vet, who gave him some natural medical type herbs, not sure what but the Akita has only had 1 seizure since and this has been over a 1 year period. I am just writing this to let you be aware of other options if it was indeed a seizure. I agree with taking him to the vet as soon as possible and then explore your options.

Bueller's Mommy November 29th, 2004 01:59 PM

My beagle has epilepsy. He had his first seizure at about 1 1/2 years old. We immediately called the emergency vet because we weren't sure what was happening to him - we thought he may have been choking. He was standing up, staring straight ahead and was sort of rocking front to back. They told us to bring him in and as we were rushing to the vet's office, he had another seizure. About $90 and a lot of tears later, we were told to bring him into our regular vet to have his bloodwork checked.

Our vet advised us to wait and see if he had anymore episodes before we had testing done just incase it was an isolated incident and he may have been into something toxic. 6 months later he had another seizure and then 2 more in the following two months. A typical seizure for Bueller involves his body becoming rigid, slight shaking or rocking, excessive drooling and his eyes often look like they're going to pop out of his head. They generally last anywhere from 2-5 minutes. Anything over 5 minutes and he should be rushed to a vet. After each episode he will seem drunk/disoriented for up to an hour afterwards.

Bueller is now taking potassium bromide and has been seizure-free for almost a year. It's an incredibly hard thing to watch your pet endure and there are a few support groups around if you're interested. Good luck with your vet visit.

mastifflover November 29th, 2004 04:03 PM

I owned an Bloodhound with Epilipsey and it is by no means a death sentence they can be treated with phenobarbitol and there is a homeopathic option as mentioned above.

glasslass November 29th, 2004 06:08 PM

My Den-Den3 had epileptic seizures. He never had to take medication for it as his seizures were infrequent and not severe. We found that the calmer we were during a seizure, the milder the episode would be. I'm inclined to doubt that your dog is having epileptic seizures if he didn't have them prior. Usually, epilepsy shows up when the dog is much younger. I'm thinking something else is going on and agree he should be seen by your vet.

Karin November 29th, 2004 06:35 PM

After only one seizure I cannot fathom any vet useing medication at this point. Most vets want to witness a seizure first too ...sometimes a drop in glucose can cause one.

If a dog has a seizure and the owners rush to the vet, bloodwork will show something has happened or something "is" happening. If the owner waits even 12 hours...the bloodwork could be..98% of the time, normal.

A dog with epilepsy will have normal blood levels too. If they seizure only twice a year, no medication is needed. If they seizure more than twice a month or more frequent than they can still be controlled with medication. Usually as age sets in so will the episodes.
Phenobarbital is not a drug to fear, properly regulated doses can mean a full and happy life.

Many things can cause seizure's later in life...for instance a dog that suffered from canine distemper as a puppy and recovered. Treatments can vary.

petdr December 2nd, 2004 12:38 PM

Dog seizures
Seizures in older dogs always warrants blood work: a CBC, biochemical profile, thyroid levels. Urinalysis is also important. Chest radiographs, ecg, possibly echocardiography and abdominal ultrasound may be indicated.

Whenever you assess seizures, it is important to notice if there is an extra-cerebral cause or a prinary cerebral cause. Liver, kidney, hormonal, neoplastic (cancer) and cardiac disease may all cause seizures. Brain tumors, whether in the brain or on the menegies (fibrous linings of the brain) may also cause seizures.

Epilepsy is an important cause and may be inherited or acquired subsequent to a major illness or a brain injury, such as a concussion. Inherited epilepsy is usually evident by the time the dog is 2-3 years of age. Ultimately, if this is a brain lesion, then MRI will be needed to confirm and map the extent of the probleml, and if indeed amenable to surgical removal.

Menigial tumours are very amenable to surgery. It is time to visit your veterinarian, and if possible a veterinary neurologist.

Naturally, it is entirely possible that this seizure was a one-time event, however there is no guarantee that this is not the beginning of a trend.

Dr. Van Lienden

Dr. Raymond Van Lienden DVM
The Animal Clinic of Clifton
12702 Chapel Road, Clifton
Virginia, U.S.A. 20124

Gale February 17th, 2005 06:49 PM

My 9 year old shizu X has been having mild seizures for the past year. They are more like a severe "thunderstorm phobia" attack but for absolutely no reason. Now, in the past couple of weeks, she keeps us up most of the night (every single night) quietly woofing beside our bed. She doesn't want anything at all and we can't seem to find anything to comfort her or anything to help her settle and sleep. We are getting quite frustrated and very tired! We are still exploring out options as far as meds are concerned.

pambandit April 27th, 2007 01:51 PM

dog seizures
Hi ,,, i just wanted to tell you who have dog's with seizures that a couple of years ago my dog was having them... scary to watch... the news had stated a link between the drops for dogs that we put on them to get rid of ticks and fleas and seizures... Well it was true. I never put drops (i think i was using Frontline) on him again and NO more seizures! good luck,, Pam

porsche11 September 10th, 2007 11:38 AM

Seizures in my 11 year old weimeraner
My 11 year old female weimeraner has been having grand mal seizures. They started about 6 months ago and, they have been increasing in frequency until the other night when she had seizures on back to back nights. They only occur in the middle of the night. I am now noticing her having mild fainting spells during the day, like nodding of the sleep for a split second and just falling over. I have seen my vet and have done blood work with no answers yet. If anyone has ant suggestion it would be much appreciated.

mummummum September 10th, 2007 12:36 PM

No personal experience but others who have dogs with epilepsy have recommended these two sites as helpful:

I am a little surprized that you haven't mentioned anything about your dog being prescribed medication for his seizures. Is there something in his bloodwork (or an MRI) leading your Vet to think the seizures are non-epileptic in origin ?

cknipp September 10th, 2007 03:32 PM

hi, i just joined today and i needed to know if you know anything about neurological problems. i have a pup that i rescued from the road that has an issue with its hind quarters hopping up and down. we call her hoppy. her mother left her here, so i just put her in our fenced in yard. she will have nothing to do with us, yet. i am working on it, slowly. she seems to get worse when she is upset or scared. i watched her and she does it when she goes to the bathroom, also. otherwise, she seems very healthy. i will be worming her and my other two dogs, so that should take care of my dogs getting worms while she is in with them. they don't seem to pick on her or anything. thanks. cknipp

mummummum September 10th, 2007 07:47 PM

Welcome to Cknip !

If she has a neurological or a musculo-skeletal problem causing the "hopping" you really don't have time to work with her slowly. It sounds to me like this dog needs a medical assessment by a Veterinarian asap.

KeishKayAll July 26th, 2008 12:15 AM

Our 5 year old shepard/basset cross started having seizures 6 months ago, only two in six months. In the last two days she has had 4 bad ones (scares the heck out of my wife and I) she just started taking Phenobarbitol, to help with the seizures. The owner of our local pet store suggested it would help to get her off of a food with grain in it. Does anyone know if that is correct or not? We currently feed her Purina Vetrenarian Diet Maintenace formula.
I will follow up with our Vet tomorrow and see what her thoughts are. I must say this is all very scary, we do not have any kids so our dogs our the kids.
Just joined tonight so hello to everyone

hazelrunpack July 26th, 2008 09:11 AM

Hi, KeishKayAll.

I don't have any advice for you except to post your question again in the food forum (at the top fo the page, click on "Discussion Groups - mainly cats and dogs", scroll down to "Dog and Cat Food Forum" and click on that. Start a new thread with the "New Thread" button you'll see at the top left of the listed threads.) A lot more members will see your question there and you'll get more responses.

I do know how scary grand mal seizures can be :grouphug: and I hope between the phenobarb and any diet changes, you can get them under control quickly! :goodvibes:

Welcome to the board.

tessasmum August 3rd, 2008 04:30 PM

I have a shepherd that went through seizures out of the blue
Hi sorry to hear your baby dog ,has had the seizure that he had ,but i hope that he had no more. My german shepherd of 10 yrs had two isolated seizures within weeks of each other ,but then had collapsed after having another ,then continued to be followed by 4 more including a grand mal seizure.This may be way off ,from what is wrong with your doggy but i felt on the slight chance is wasnt i would tell you about my Tess's experience.
Her pcv (packed cell volume)red blood cell percentage was way too high(revealed by a specific blood works).Which meant that there was little room for oxygen to flow through her blood thus the seizures. This is known as erythrocytosis or polycythemia vera. The hard part was finding out what the cause was as it could have been tumour induced,there were also other possibilities but as it turns out tess's is from bone m arrow cancer,which sounds awful,and beleive in the begining it was very scary but so far tess's has had 7oomls of blood drained to reduce to pcv twice and remains on hydrea a form of chemo.BUT MY TESS IS BACK TO HER OLD SELF JUST NEEDS WEEKLY MONITORING AS ITS ONLY BEEN ABOUT4-6 WEEKS. This is a very rare disease diagnosed through a process of elimination,which is why every chance i get i tell someone about it.Just the same i hope your baby isnt suffering and that all turns out ok .

'To love is to be loved'

"I would be unstoppable.If i could just get started" Furry logic

ontariopetowner September 27th, 2008 04:53 AM

pet seizure
it's 4 am and my dog has had, what appears to be her 1st seizure. since there is no vet emergency this time of day, i found this site and found it reassuring that we were assisting my beloved 2 year old dog to the best we could manage until a vet might be available in the next couple of hours. The dog hopped on my bed, started to shake, fell to the floor shaking violently - foaming at the mouth - loss of urine.....I am a 1st time dog owner and both my daughter and I were frightened, trying to keep our dog safe....when the dog snapped out of the seizure...the dog was snarling and snapped at us....of course she was frightened...she sat in my room for quite a while...she started to pace and would bump her head ...she indicated the need to go outside to defecate - she paced for a good hour ...then showed signs of her personality coming back into play...we provided water during this we were concerned with dehydration...the dog appears to be okay, just wish there was a means to take her to a vet...I even called the police to see if animal control could assist !!! The police officier even reassured me that I had done the best I could, reassuring me that no vet would be available until 9 am at best...with your shared information I know that my black lab dog & I can last at least a couple of hours more...thanks

kianmah October 18th, 2008 06:38 PM

Worried about my dog
Hi there,
This is my first time using this website. I don't even know if I'm posting this in the right place or not :S I have a one year old dog. She is half chiuaua, half yorkie. Two days ago she was sitting on my lap, and she started shaking, but it was as though she was scratching herself. I couldn't exactly see her because a blanket was blocking my view. So I went on thinking she was scratching herself, until she poked her head out of the blanket. Right away I knew there was something wrong. Her tongue was sticking out, she tried to get off the couch, but she fell. Her hind legs were not working, and she was off balance and disoriented. I was terrified. I rushed her to the vet, she was much better by the time the doctor got to see her. From what I described, the vet told me it sounded like she had had a seizure.
They ran a blood test right away (so within 45 min to an hour of the incident), and everything seemed normal. The vet decided that she had not systemic problems.
Now she hasn't had any seizures since. She acts normal, eats fine, and pees/poos regularly. She is very playful. I don't know if I'm just obsessing with her behavioure or what, but it seems like she drinks water more than usual, and yawns a lot.
If anybody has any advice, comments, or suggestions, it wold be great if you could share them with me.
Thank you for your time !!

brown_ca January 24th, 2009 07:53 AM

Very scary
1 Attachment(s)
We have an 8 year old female Malamute named Roxi who started having seizures about a year ago. The first one was incredibly frightening to watch (the all are actually) and we raced her down to the vet once it was over and he ran all the tests. After her blood work we placed her back in the car and as we were driving away she had another. Now to put this into perspective, she is 90lbs and these seizures are quite violent, so we turned around and the vet came out to the car with a tec and witnessed the entire event. Once it was over she was taken in and held for 48 hrs for observation.

During observation she had one seizure but of very short duration. Once the blood work was back and all checked out fine we met with the vet to discuss options. We were advised that we could send her to Saskatoon for an MRI (we live in Winnipeg) but that even if she had a lesion the treatment would be the same as if she had epilepsy, as an operation would probably be more harmful than not seeing that she was considered geriatric.

Currently she is on Phenobarbital (240mg per day) and will be until the levels in her blood are at a certain level and the vet plans to place her on another drug and slowly take her off the Pheno, as Pheno is toxic.

Since her first set of seizures Roxi has had four more grandmal seizures, the latest two being last night (she always gets them in her sleep and never when awake).

Whatís frustrating about this is, like most people, we are looking for answers and a permanent solution to the problem. Fact is, we donít think there is and this is something that we have to live with and are willing to. We have heard of others having their dog put down and it frustrates us when we hear that, as they are doing it not for the dog (they say they are) but for themselves because this is a very scary and tough thing to deal with, but honestly thatís what you get when you have pets, it is a responsibility, they are truly family.

What we have written here is no solution to your or anyone elseís problem but we just wanted to let you and others know that you are not alone. We have spent many sleepless nights waiting for Roxi to have another seizure and suffered with anxiety over this issue, but knowing we are not alone helps some.

Good luck and love your dog.

2bigdogs January 26th, 2009 06:53 AM

Hello, I can relate -brown CA, Our 3 yr old, 125 lb German Sheppard Buck has had Grand Mal seizures for the last year now. They are getting more frequent- he's had 3 this month alone. We've been to the vet, had blood work done and everything seems normal. We were prepared to deal with it, live with it and just accept that our dog has seizures, but... The problem now is several times over the last 2 weeks, Buck has acted disoreinted, like he doesn't recognize us, gets scared, hides from us..I'm really afraid, he's got a tumor or a serious neuological problem on top of the seizures. It scares me...does anyone have any knowledge of this type of behaviour with seizures>? I'm calling the vet again, this am.

Margomay March 9th, 2009 01:48 PM

My 3 month old Jack Russell was behaving strangely yesterday. Back legs didn't seem to work, weaving, weak, almost like a rag doll. Ran her to the pet hospital but by the time the vet saw her she seemed find. After reading this discussion I think she had a seizure. She had thrown up just a bit before the strange behaviour. She was so motionless on the way to the vet I thought she died a few times. Now she's her usual self.

CarolynInPEI March 16th, 2009 09:24 AM

Hi. My family and I have a 14.5 year old dog named Monty. We got him from the PEI Humane Society when he was six months old. For the past 14 years he has been the best dog anybody could ever ask for. I love him so much, everybody does. We live a small community and everyone knows and loves Monty too. He has always been a friendly and outgoing dog....I don't think he has ever met a person he didn't love. Well, on February 3, 2009 Monty had to have a surgery to remove a tumor from his side. This was his first surgery and we were very, very worried. With him being 14, we weren't sure if he would make it through the surgery. But he came through it with flying colors and we were so happy. A week after the surgery he was just like a pup again. Loving life. Then, a few days later (February 12, 2009) things changed. He started having seizures. At first they were small and my parents didn't know what was wrong. He was having a lot of these small seizures....not just 1 or 2. The next morning I got a call from my sister who was crying, she and my father were on their way to the vet with Monty because the seizures had gotten worse and were violent. He went to the vet and was put on Phenobarbital. The next few days were a nightmare. His seizures were terrible. I witnessed only the small seizures, and I thought they were bad. Before the Phenobarb kicked in fully, he had 3 big seizures....biting his tongue, body thrashing against the floor and walls, loss of his bowels, etc. This was very traumatic for my family and especially for Monty. We were so close to having him put to sleep. And we were so heart broken. The thought of him not being around was very hard to handle, but seeing him in the state he was in was terrible as well. He decided to hold off because we knew it would take 2-3 days for the Phenobarb to work properly. And luckily within the next 2-3 days his seizures stopped. He started to look like himself again and we were relieved. Although he was in and is still is in a state of drowsiness all the time. He can't walk straight, bumps in to things, falls down, gets lost everywhere and it's hard to watch. He is a shell of the dog he used to be...but he's our best friend and we love him. But, on March 12, 2009 the phenobarb stopped working for him and he started seizing again. I took him to the vet rite away and got a blood sample to check his phenobarb levels. He was at a good level and we were allowed to increase his dosage. Now he is in worse shape than before, he can't get up the stairs, falls down, stumbles, get disoriented everywhere. He fell down the stairs last night. The time is coming for us to put him to sleep...I can barely even write those words. The thought of losing my best friend is really tearing me apart. I'm trying to think of how he must feel, scared and confused. But when I see him run to me and wag his tail and just to so happy I forget everything that's wrong with him. Deep down I know the time is near, but it doesn't make it any easier. He has a brain tumor, and the phenobarb will only stop the seizures for so long. He's basically been the only dog I have ever had and I love him so much. He's been my constant companion for 14 years and I can't picture life without him. It's going to be a very difficult time for me and my whole family. The thought deciding that he shouldn't live anymore is very difficult for me. It's helping me that I am not alone with this situation and is nice to talk about it.

hazelrunpack March 16th, 2009 10:54 AM

When the time comes, Carolyn, if you make the decision out of love for Monty, you can't make a wrong choice. When I feel like I'm keeping the dog alive for [I]my[/I] sake, instead of [I]his[/I], then I know it's time.

Good luck with Monty. I know how very hard it is to make that final decision and my heart goes out to you and your family. :grouphug:

:fingerscr that Monty rallies and you won't have to make that decision any time soon! :goodvibes: You're in my thoughts and prayers.

sunniB July 6th, 2009 06:21 AM

seizure in young dog
Probably posting in the wrong place; I'm new here. Sorry. Your post touched me & prompted me to write about our dear doggie:
Our seemingly young,healthy 4 yr old schipperke dog suddenly awoke from his sleep convulsing, stiffening up, shaking violently, foaming at his mouth, and acting vicious when handled to calm him down. When we were finally able to secure him, we headed over to the emergency vet for the first time. In between our own panic and getting lost, we noticed he had completely calmed down. We decided to take him home for observation. He's drinking excessively and has urinated on the floor twice. He appears better, but still not quite himself. He had got ahold of a toothpick and chewed it, so we were wondering if it could've caused the seizure? We're at our wits end! We will take him to the vet for a checkup asap. In the meantime, is there any information and/or advice any good reader could share w/us. The incident has been traumatic for him as well as us, and we're just so scared for him. He's still young so how could this have happened so suddenly? HELP!!!!:cry:

sunniB July 15th, 2009 07:02 PM

your story really touched my heart since I've been going thru something similiar w/my 5 yr old dog recently. I still haven't figured out what caused the seizures; he had two 9 days apart and it was awful feeling so helpless. His blood work came back normal so I'm still up in the air. I hope you're able to pinpoint what is wrong w/your beloved pet. I wish I could give you answers but I'm still searching for them myself, but I will send My best wishes and good thoughts to you and hope he has no more seizures.

jovialj December 7th, 2009 03:47 AM

further description of seziures
my bugg, 2 years old, has had her 5th episode. she goes from full on playing to a small tremor, then stops moving around and her body wobbles, by now im all worried and hold her on my lap like a little baby, and she stays this way for 3 or 4 hours. I assumed this was a seizure because if you move your hand near her face she jerks away. shes not drooling, shes very dopey, seems drowsy, i end up cuddling her for a few hours while she sleeps it off.
there isnt an apparent link between the episodes, except that they happen at night, ive tried feeding and watering her which she will have none of and ive tried giving her sugar to see if its bloodsugar related, which i havnt seen any improvement.
i have taken her to the vet, which lead to nothing, because she was fine by then. ive given her rescue remedy, and after a while shes back to her old self, i dont think it was poison, because she was inside.
i realize this isnt the best way, but the descriptions arent very specific, and she is very young and healthy.

hazelrunpack December 7th, 2009 10:20 AM

If you can't get her in to the vet while she's having an episode, it might be helpful if you can get video of it, jovialj. Might give your vet the clues he needs to figure out what's going on.

:goodvibes: with your little one.

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:37 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.