Dog Seizure Disorders: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatments

Your normally cheerful canine appears shaky and perplexed. They flop to the ground after that. They appear to be treading water, even though they are completely unaware of what is going on. It’s a seizure they’re having. What can you do about it and why is this happening?

Your dog may have a seizure problem if they occur frequently. Epilepsy is a different term for it. Seizures are caused by abnormal, uncontrolled electrical activity in your dog’s brain, which alters their appearance. Seizures can be characterized by twitching or uncontrollable shaking and last anywhere from a few seconds to several minutes.

Table of Contents

What Can Cause Seizures in Dogs?

  • Eating poison
  • Liver disease
  • Low or high blood sugar
  • Kidney disease
  • Electrolyte problems
  • Anemia
  • Head injury
  • Encephalitis
  • Strokes
  • Brain cancer

What Are the Symptoms of Seizures?

Collapsing, jerking, stiffening, muscle twitching, loss of consciousness, drooling, chomping, tongue chewing, or foaming at the mouth are some of the signs and symptoms. Falling to the side and paddling with their legs is an option for dogs. During the seizure, they may defecate or pee. They’re also not pay attention to what’s going on around them.

Before a seizure, some dogs may appear dazed, unsteady, or confused, or stare off into space. Your dog may become disoriented, wobbly, or briefly blind as a result of the operation. They may walk in circles and collide with objects. They can be drool profusely on their chin. They might try and hide them.

What Are the Types of Seizures?

The generalized seizure, often known as a grand mal seizure, is the most common type. A dog’s consciousness can be lost and convulsions can happen. Throughout the brain, aberrant electrical activity takes place. Seizures that are generalized last from around a few seconds to a few minutes.

A focused seizure occurs when abnormal electrical activity occurs in only a brain region. Unusual movements in one leg or side of the body might result from focal seizures.

They may only last a few seconds at a time. They may start off as focused and then spread off.

A psychomotor seizure is characterized by unusual behavior that lasts only a few minutes. Your dog may start fighting an imaginary item or chasing its tail out of nowhere. It can be difficult to differentiate psychomotor seizures from unusual behavior, but a dog who suffers from them will always act in the same way when they have a seizure.

Idiopathic epilepsy refers to seizures that have no known etiology. They usually affect dogs between the ages of 6 months and 6 years. Idiopathic epilepsy is more common in border collies, Australian shepherds, Labrador retrievers, beagles, Belgian Tervurens, collies, and German shepherds, yet any dog can have a seizure.

What Should I Do if My Dog Has a Seizure?

To begin, maintain your composure. If your dog gets too close to something that could damage them, such as a piece of furniture or the stairs, gently pull them away.

Keep your distance from your dog’s lips and head; you might get bitten. Do not give them anything to eat. The tongues of dogs are incapable of choking. Time it if possible.

Your dog is at risk of overheating if the seizure lasts more than a couple of minutes. To keep your dog cool, turn on a fan and spray cold water on their paws.

To reassure your dog, speak softly. They may bite if you touch them. When the seizure stops, call your vet.

Take your dog to the vet as soon as possible if they suffer a seizure that lasts more than 5 minutes or several in a row while they are unconscious. The longer a seizure lasts, the higher a dog’s body temperature can rise, causing breathing difficulties. This could put them at risk for brain damage. To stop the seizure, your veterinarian may give IV Valium to your dog.

What Should I Expect When I Take My Dog to the Vet?

Your veterinarian will perform a complete physical examination and obtain lab results to determine the cause of your dog’s seizures. Diagnostic imaging, such as MRI, can aid in the diagnosis of brain lesions.

Seizure medications may be prescribed by your veterinarian. When giving your dog medicine, always follow your veterinarian’s directions. Make sure they don’t miss a dose.

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