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Readers Respond: Living with a dog or cat who has seizures

Responses: 50

By

Shirley

Hi, we adopted a beautiful collie about a year ago aged 4 1/2. We new he had epilepsy and was on meds but hadn't fitted for some time. Last Nov 2013 he had 1 episode about 12 cluster fits so we also gave him diazepam and vet upped his meds. More 6weeks later again then 6 weeks later again. Since Sunday (5 days ago) he has had over 150 grand mal seizures. Vets now added bromide potassium but takes 15-30 days to work. I understand the sheer exhaustion everyone who goes through this feels. The fits from last night are less frequent and slightly easier. He did however have 2 aggressive turns this morning for a few seconds. The vet said this is " normal as he is so scared after hits fit. He also lost his sight on Sunday though I'm told it should return. He's very spooked and insecure-to be expected. As I write he's just had another 4 fits. Just pray to God he'll be better soon. Again before I can finish he's had 4 more! To all who are suffering I wish you and your pups wellness soon.
—Guest Shirley

Seizure went in coma and died

I been so sad I'll never get over it. I'm traumatized for life my puppy Oscar started having mild seizures at 4 months a few times a day just mouth movement with foam then they got worse fast he started to have more severe seizures & more than just a few a day and couldn't walk for days after. Then he went in a coma one day and died later that same day. It looked to me like he had a seizure in his coma & he died moments later worst part is I felt his heart stop. I'm on unemployment and had no money to help him which hurts so bad that I couldn't do anything. I can't stop crying. I looked on the Internet for help but couldn't find none. There should be something out there to help people in my situation. I will never stop feeling the sadness this has caused me. RIP Oscar I love you.....
—Guest Katy

chris

Thank you for your letter on when your dog is having a seizure. I have had three dogs in my life time, who have had seizures. When a seizure starts, you as a good pet owner can see that something is starting to happen to your beloved pet. When the animal,(cat or dog) starts to have a seizure, you are doing the right thing for them. Stay close by, if I can I hold them in my arms and talk very softly to them. Petting and letting them know that I am here and I won't let anything happen to them. I was told by my vet that dogs are born with the Epilepsy gene in their brain. Some dogs have more seizures than others. I can see that the last seizure that my Smitty had, has left him not the same. He lays around almost all of the day. I have decided to start to take him with me where I go as to be able to keep an eye on him. The seizure I have read that may have been a cluster seizure. I want to be there when he comes out of it, to help him feel safe.
—Guest deborah

Dog with seizures

A friend of mine bought a pug from a previous owner. After about a year the dog started having seizures, at first they were just one a day every so many days, then all of a sudden he had 9 in one day . The husband had the dog put to sleep.
—Guest Reda

Minimum Dosage

My cat has been having seizures for about two years. They were brought on by trauma to the head while playing. His seizures did not begin immediately, a week or two later. With his first one he was given a shot of morphine and put in phenobarbital. He continued to seize several times a day and we consulted another doctor. This doctor suggested a MRI but this was not possible nearby. He gave Picasso a steroid shot and a prescription for a steriod pill. Picasso was given the prescribed steriod for a couple of weeks to a month along with the phenobarbital. He almost immediately stopped seizing. Since then Picasso has had seizures, about one a month until recently. We had attempted to ween him off the phenibarbital but could not get him below 1/2 a 32.4 mg every other day. Last week Picasso had two seizures in one day and another yesterday, six between. I consulted the doctor this morning and was told to increase the dosage to 1/2 a pill every day.
—Guest Picasso's Mom

Boston Terrier Puppy Seizures

My 9 month old Bostie had a cluster of 5 seizures in 36 hours. Liver Enzyme blood test slightly elevated, but dr didn't think it was the cause. MRI negative. Diagnosed with epilepsy, 15mg Phenobarb 2X daily, 11 days seizure free. Lower energy and weak, but improving every day. Not sure what the future brings. So scary to see the seizures at first! Heard lots of positive things how dogs can lead a long life with epilepsy...
—Guest Rascal's Mum

Thank God foe Zonisamide

My chihuahua/corgi mix developed seizures about 3yrs ago. At first, the phenobarb worked, but we kept having to raise his dosage. Then the vet decided to supplement with the potassium bromide. Poor Diesel got every side effect (lethargy, back leg weakness, etc), and no benefit. His seizures were coming more often than without it. He also started putting on some serious weight. He ballooned from 14 lbs to over 19 lbs. That's when the vet suggested trying the Zonisamide. It's been over a year since he went on the 100 mg, twice daily dose with his phenobarb, and he hasn't had a seizure, at least that anyone's seen, since. He's back below 14 lbs, and the other side effects of the bromide are gone. Now we're transitioning him off the phenobarb, too. I know that the drug still needs more study of the long term side effects, but it's given Diesel a far better quality of life. And, to me, that's worth a try.
—Guest Cindy S.

Emotional Stress?

Hi All, I am so perplexed! I had two 7 year old sibling female Mini Schnauzers. I had to let Sophie go 10 days ago from most likely a stroke. Her sister Chloe started having Grand Mal seizures 9 days later. Her only medical condition is Pancreatitis which has been kept under control with diet. We've done blood work that shows elevated liver enzymes, awaiting bile acid test results. Probably an ultrasound tomorrow. We put her on Keppra every 8 hours but haven't had two full days for the therapeutic level to take affect. Last night she had 4 seizures that seem pretty close to 6 hours apart. I'm a Paramedic so luckily giving her rectal Valium has been easy and effective. My question is this.....can she be so emotionally distraught over the loss of her sister that this is pushing her to her threshold limit? Has anyone experienced this? I'm also considering parasites, liver shunt, epilepsy and brain tumor in light of her sisters recent demise. My best advice, research, research
—Guest Michelle

Cats w/ seizures & Phenobarb vs Keppra

I have 2 special-needs cats: One that has post-trauma epilepsy, & another that has an unknown neurological disorder. My cat w/ the neuro disorder had a seizure last year that lasted 1-1/2 hrs (a status elepticus) before we could get him to the vet. He was induced into a coma & is fine now after months of rehabilitation from brain damage. Long story short: He was on Phenobarb for a year after the seizure, & he almost died AGAIN b/c the Phenobarb was killing his liver. Now he is on Keppra & all is fine. Our other cat is on Phenobarb & tolerates it well. Not all cats/dogs do. If your furbaby is on Phenobarb, please, please, please get his/her ALT liver #'s checked periodically to make sure the liver is functioning correctly. I want other people to know, b/c we did not know about this, (our vet never told us), & we almost lost our cat.
—Guest Aly

my little old lady

Within the past 3 weeks our "elderly" somewhere between 13-16 little baby started having seizures. At first I had no idea what was wrong she fell over and urine poured out of her. Emergency vet said it could be an isolated thing never again... Well 3 weeks later she has multiple seizures a day. We started phenobarb (praying for a miracle) and it hasn't helped, still multiple daily and lasting longer each time. I'm broken, I would give anything to take her pain away. We are making the decision to "let her be in peace" but I'm still so sad. It was really nice to hear others going through similar situations.
—Guest Heather (Lexi's Mommy)

Seizures and help

I have a 10 yr old cat that started having severe seizures about 3 years ago -- literally causing damage to himself. Started him on pheno 8mg AM and 8mg PM. For one year he did great, then he seemes to have an allergic reaction - itching and pulling out his fur. Searched online and found Pet Alive. They carry a herbal remedy called EaseSure that worked wonders. Weaned him off the pheno and for 2 years he was on the ease sure. Then they changed the 'form' of alcohol they were using and no matter what I did, I couldn't control the seizures. Now back on the pheno until my vet can come up with a 'human' compound sized down for my kitty. For those that haven't tried the Ease Sure, I would highly recommend it. If anyone has any other suggestions, I would love to hear them. I"m totally at a loss. Don't know what the vet is going to recommend, hasn't given me the name - just know it's used on humans. Terrible dilema!! You want the best for your pets and yet are blinded by the side effects
—Ziggy1955

max

my 4yr old springer spaniel just had a seziure it was very distressing to watch the vet gave us 6 diazepam tablets incase he has another one in the next 24hrs he has to wait a week to have blood tests done to find out what caused it its a very upsetting experience he vomited and messed himself during the seizure it lasted about 2minutes such an awful thing to happen to my dog.
—Guest mandy

max

my 4yr old springer spaniel just had a seziure it was very distressing to watch the vet gave us 6 diazepam tablets incase he has another one in the next 24hrs he has to wait a week to have blood tests done to find out what caused it its a very upsetting experience he vomited and messed himself during the seizure it lasted about 2minutes such an awful thing to happen to my dog.
—Guest mandy

max

my 4yr old springer spaniel just had a seziure it was very distressing to watch the vet gave us 6 diazepam tablets incase he has another one in the next 24hrs he has to wait a week to have blood tests done to find out what caused it its a very upsetting experience he vomited and messed himself during the seizure it lasted about 2minutes such an awful thing to happen to my dog.
—Guest mandy

max

my 4yr old springer spaniel just had a seziure it was very distressing to watch the vet gave us 6 diazepam tablets incase he has another one in the next 24hrs he has to wait a week to have blood tests done to find out what caused it its a very upsetting experience he vomited and messed himself during the seizure it lasted about 2minutes such an awful thing to happen to my dog.
—Guest mandy

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