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Old November 19th, 2012, 12:26 PM
susanlemon susanlemon is offline
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Unhappy Dog Seizure. Help???

I have never posted in a forum before but I am hoping that this community can help me with knowledge and/or experience.

My almost 3 year old Husky, Mia (45 lbs), had a seizure this morning. Her entire body was violently convulsing as she "paddled" and her eyes were buldging and dialated. It was about two minutes total....and in that time I thought she was dying. It was the scariest thing of my life.
When it seemed like it was subsiding, she was still shaking (just no longer convulsing), I picked her up (still in my sleepwear) and got her in the car, and rushed to our vet. By the time we got to the vet she seemed almost her regular self again...if I hadn't been there to see it, I might not have known it had even happened!!

He took bloodwork and gave me five days worth of an oral medication that I am only to give her if this happens again soon and it's over the holiday weekend where we can't go back in.

I need help understanding what is happening to my baby girl. I keep replaying the image of her and crying.
What scares me is that I have to work (I took the day off immediately when this happened) tomorrow and through the week... and I am scared she will have another one and I won't know. Someone has suggested to me to try to find a video recorder to record her while I am at work, then I can look back at it and see if it's occurred again.

My vet said it's possible, as he's seen, for a dog to have one grandmal seizure and then it not happen ever again. However the more I read on here, it seems like for everyone once it begins, it continues and becomes more frequent.

Please help with anything you can offer to me. I am terrified. My dog is my child, as I'm sure you all understand...and I don't know what I can do to protect her!


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Old November 19th, 2012, 04:46 PM
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We had a dog that had a grand mal seizure unexpectedly in the woods one day. Thankfully, we were close--he was so disoriented afterward that he wouldn't have been able to find us had we been out of sight.

The good news is that it was a one-time deal and never recurred.

Our only theory about Gauge's episode was that he seized due to low blood sugar. How long had it been since your Mia had eaten? I hope the seizure doesn't recur, but if you have a camera or a phone with video capability, if it happens again try to get a video of it for the vet to watch.

She's a real beauty, Susan! I hope she has no more troubles!!
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Old November 19th, 2012, 05:37 PM
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Very scary situation Susanlemon. We have another member here that has a Mal that has seizures, I will message her and get her to respond. One question that I have is, did she recently have shots?
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Old November 19th, 2012, 05:55 PM
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I'm so sorry you are going through this. It's terrifying to watch. and breaks my heart every time it happens. Did your vet review the bloodwork with you? Did he have any clues as to why she had a seizure? As Hazelrunpack said, they can happen and be a one time event, but sadly, that wasn't the case for our baby. I have a Malamute who will be 3 in Feb. and has been having seizures since he was 2.5 months old. His are always grand mal, and he has started having them during the night for the last few months. There's a lot of info and great websites to help you cope. But I think the first thing is to rule out some of the common reasons for seizures. I don't have a lot of time right now, I'm at work... pbpatti just messaged me. But in about an hour or so, I'll be able to come on and chat a bit.

Your little girl is just beautiful
to you both


Robyn
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Old November 19th, 2012, 08:38 PM
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I had a poodle in the 1980's that had epilepsy. His first seizure occurred at two years of age and terrified me. The seizures usually followed periods of excitement, such as when we would come home with a doggy bag. His seizures would involve shaking and losing control of his limbs. He would seem conscious but unresponsive. I would hold him and walk around talking to him. He seemed to hear me and he would seem to take interest in where we were walking. Then his body would begin to relax and he would drool profusely. I learned to pick up a towel to carry with him. I learned that the calmer I stayed, the milder his seizure would be. Eventually, the seizures became very infrequent. We were able to discontinue the meds (I'm sorry, I can't remember what the meds were). He lived to be 18 years old and was healthy. I think that the point I'm making is that my fears made the seizures worse and my calmness seemed to make him better. He was conscious and relaxed when I stayed calm. Work with your vet to rule out causes. If it's epilepsy, it can be managed.
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Old November 19th, 2012, 08:41 PM
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Susan, your pup is gorgeous, I wish you the best with her. Rgeurts I'm sure will be a wealth of information for you. I can understand your concern about leaving her alone while you're at work. Is there any chance you could afford to send her to a doggy daycare for a while until you figure it all out? Or better yet, would your employer let you take her to work? My boss let me bring my Akita X to work rather than pay for daycare as she has seperation anxiety. Good luck to you. Please stick around and keep us posted.
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Old November 19th, 2012, 09:28 PM
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Before you decide that this is going to be your new normal - you need to look at some environmentals. For starters - do you use heartworm medication? What kind? Do you check ALL the labels on her treats and rawhides to make sure they are not made in China? Do you let her have chicken jerky treats?
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Old November 19th, 2012, 09:34 PM
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What a sweetheart of a dog! I hope she will be okay. She is gorgeous.
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Old November 20th, 2012, 09:24 AM
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So sorry about your baby having seizures. But Robyn will be a great help she has been through a lot, and has garnered a ton of info. She is also one of the sweetest people you will meet.
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Old November 20th, 2012, 11:12 AM
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Thanks DD and Robin

I checked a few times and didn't see that you had responded, but, just in case you do come back (and I sincerely hope you do), I'll leave some info.

A few of the first things I would have checked is liver,kidneys and Thyroid. When you request the Thyroid test, make sure your vet requests a full Thyroid panel, not just a T4. Sibes and Mals are both prone to Epilepsy, Auto-Immune disease and Immune-Mediated Hypothyroidism. If the liver and kidneys aren't functioning properly, or your girl has developed a liver shunt, those can trigger seizures, so good to rule those out first. The Thyroid can also cause seizures, expecially if it is in the "low-normal" range. The best place to have a Thyroid panel is through Dr. Jean Dodds at Hemopet. She's the leading authority in Auto-immune disease in dogs and will tailor the Thyroid panel to your specific dog (breed, age, previus health issues etc). As she has proven, the "norm" for standard Thyroid tests do not fit all dogs. There are many factors involved when determining the proper range. I'll post a link at the bottom of the page. Your vet can draw the blood and send it off to her, or you can go to any vet, have the blood drawn and send it off to her yourself. She gives all the instructions on her website

Now for vaccines! Vaccines are a huge issue, especially in certain breeds (Northern breeds/Akitas are affected often). Vaccines and over vaccination can cause something called Vaccinosis, which is one of the likely culprits in my baby's Auto-Immune disease. If your girl has been vaccinated within the last 1-6 weeks, I would suspect that. Most vets will tell you that vaccines do not cause harmful side effects such as seizures etc, but they can, and often do. Some may say that due to lack of information/continuing education on their part, and some rely on those annual visits. So please, before you take someones word on anything (including mine), do some research on your own. There's so much information available now! Again, Dr. Jean Dodds has a lot of good information on her website regarding Vaccinosis as well as Hypothyroidism and seizures. And never allow the vet to give all vaccines on the same day. The Rabies should be given at least a week to 2 weeks after the other vaccines. Also, never let them vaccinate while your dog is having active seizures.

The next is Epilepsy. As I said, your girl is prone to Epilepsy, sadly, due to her breed. The onset for Idiopathic Epilepsy (meaning no known medical reason/cause for the seizures) is usually between 3-5 yrs old. Some dogs will have the onset between 1-2 years. If that's what it is, it's manageable with medication. There are several medications available, but Phenobarbital is the most commonly used. Now, having said that, I would not allow them to ever give my baby Phenobarbital as a first choice. It's extremely damaging to the liver and there are better choices out there. My baby doesn't take anything now (he was on Phenobarbital, Prednisone and Azathioprine for seizures and meningoencephalitis). The meds he was on caused severe internal bleeding and liver damage (and possibly in conjuntion with things he had eaten like toys-he has Pica as well) and had to have a blood transfusion at 8 months old, we almost lost him. They prepared us for the "end" and said his disease had probably run it's course. We started seeing a TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) holistic vet who gave our sweet baby his life back. So he's on a combination of Chinese herbs and Homeopathics to control his seizures. If you have a holistic vet in your area, check reviews, google him/her and if they seem good, it's worth the money.

Here are a few links:

This is a wonderful webpage designed specifically with people like us in mind. There are many stories from people with Epileptic dogs who give advice on everything from medication to diet, specific items to avoid such as anything (food, treats, home scents) with certain items like Rosemary (in most holistic food and treats now), Lavender, certain chemicals, preservatives etc.:

http://www.canine-epilepsy-guardian-angels.com/

This is a link to Dr. Jean Dodds foundation called Hemopet:

http://hemopet.org/

This is also a great website to help you understand what's going on, and possible causes:

http://www.canine-seizures.freeservers.com/index.htm

One thing that helped me (though it may sound morbid to some), is watching dog seizures on youtube. It helps to see that what's happening to your baby is "normal" in terms of what a seizure looks like. Nanook has grand mals, and his seizures last sometimes upwards of 10 minutes, which is extreme. The first time it happened, I did the same thing as you... I freaked out and thought he was dying, and by the time we got to the vet, he was almsot back to normal. I had no idea what seizures in a dog looked like (or should look like) and thought his were much worse to see than they should be, but in fact, look very much like many others. The link just below is one of his grand mals. We take videos for our vet, which you should do as well. It helps them to see the type/severity and can help with the treatment. I apologize in advance for the focus. This was in the middle of the night and hubby was trying to focus with the zoom ... being awaken by a seizure is frightening and adds to the confusion:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sBRV...A&feature=plcp

If you stick around, there is another girl here who joined around the same time I did. I'll send her an email and see if she can come on and give you some advice. She also has a baby that has grand mals and has been through several medications trying to find one that helps, but doesn't damage the liver/kidneys as much. The last time I had spoken to her, they were about 8 months without a seizure (her dog had seizures weekly, and sometimes more often than that). Her name is Serenamlambe. She's wonderful

Good luck to you and your sweet girl
If you have any questions, please ask. I'll also pm you my email address and my FB. Feel free to add me if you use FB
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"Obey my dog!" - Mugatu

"Who can believe that there is no soul behind those luminous eyes!" ~ Theophile Gautier


"Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole" - Ok... whoever said this has never had a sick or special needs baby. They ARE our whole life!

R.I.P. my sweet, handsome Thorin. You are missed dearly Dec. 25, 1999 - Mar. 4, 2012

Last edited by Rgeurts; November 20th, 2012 at 11:23 AM.
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Old November 20th, 2012, 01:11 PM
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Robyn you are great! Your kindness in sharing your experiences must be so helpful to those who need it. Bless you.
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Old November 20th, 2012, 04:46 PM
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susanlemon,

I can relate to the fear you experienced. My dog Rudy, now gone, began having seizures just after he turned 1 year old. He was diagnosed with epilepsy and prescribed phenobarbitol (sp?). We never put him on it due to side effects we had read about. His seizures were sporadic but I made an entry in a notebook everytime he had one to see if there was some sort of pattern. I still have that notebook.

His came on suddenly, lasted a minute or two most times, and then he was fine. I would sit on the floor behind him and hold him. I stayed away from his mouth in case he got aggressive, but he never did.

He learned quickly to come find me when he felt one coming on, it was amazing. I would immediately sit on the floor - he knew I was there during the episode. I also hated to leave him for long periods of time, afraid he would seize without me there, fortunately my roomie was here alot when I was at work.

If your dog continues to have them,(I certainly hope she doesn't) I do hope you find the reason and maybe there is a remedy to help your dog.

Be strong for your girl, she will feel it.

Diane
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Old November 20th, 2012, 08:45 PM
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Your girl has a sweet pretty face i do hope this is a one time seizure
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