Dealing With Seizures...? - Golden Retrievers : Golden Retriever Dog Forums

GoldenRetrieverForum.com is the premier Golden Retriever Dog Forum on the internet. Registered Users do not see the above ads.
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1 (permalink)  
Old 12-15-2012, 11:21 PM
New Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Ontario
Posts: 2
Thanks: 0
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Dealing With Seizures...?

New to this forum (Narci is my other golden's name, haha.), and I, unfortunately, have to make my first post in this subtopic...

This is Echo.


She's about 8 years old. I was hoping to get a bit of advice about her condition, since I'm not too sure what to do ... I looked up a lot of things on the internet, but if it's okay, I wanted to know the opinions of people with personal experience.

Back in April, she had her first seizure. It was followed immediately by a second one, so my parents took her to the vet. They couldn't find anything wrong with her, particularly (did the blood test and everything), so we let it go as something of a passing issue. We thought it was her food, so we changed that, cleaned up her 'doggy home', etc.

Over the summer, she had seizures... I can't say frequently, but once in a while. Usually they were weeks apart, and she recovered quickly (I should mention that all her seizures only last about 1-2 minutes at most). She isn't aggressive, but she shakes violently while laying on her side, and her mouth opens.. saliva/foam everything. No blood. She usually urinates/defecates when she does so. Once the seizure ends, she'll run around pacing, her back legs shake, and she will eat/drink like crazy.

Echo never used to eat too much, but now she (tries to) eat(s) a lot, and she will try to eat anything. She was always well behaved and never chewed our things, but she began to do that now... She's also kind of clueless, it seems, and becoming more energetic (and less willing to listen). And, I think she had some trouble recognizing me... Normally when I came back from University, she would go nuts greeting me (even back in October), but when I came home a few days ago, she just stared at me silently like she had no idea what was going on.

Anyways, as of late, the seizures have become more and more frequent. The same symptoms as always, but they happen all over the place... Today, she had one right as we got home from the walk (we were in the garage removing her leash when she suddenly fell over). She had one in the morning too..

It is easy to tell when she is about to have one, because she'll start chasing her tail...well, just running in close circles, I suppose, until she eventually falls over. The other symptom I noticed the other day was that she seemed to be choking- ..but she was fine after the seizure again. She hadn't eaten anything during the walk, so I can't understand it...

She has a couple of bumps on her body- they're small, but white, and if you pet her, you can feel them.

She's normal all the time except when she's got her seizures..active. Friendly. Playful. She does pace a lot more often now, though.

Also, she is on medication- a herbal supplement called 'PetAlive' - EaseSure ? It helped during the summer to control her seizures, but it doesn't seem to be doing the trick anymore.

If I need to provide more information, I can... but I hope someone will know what I should do. Another visit to the vet..? What can they do for her, exactly?

Thank you in advance for any help you can provide.
Digg this Post!Add Post to del.icio.usBookmark Post in TechnoratiTweet this Post!
Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
  #2 (permalink)  
Old 12-15-2012, 11:37 PM
Claire's Friend's Avatar
New Mommy
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: California
Posts: 6,098
Images: 9
Thanks: 6,929
Thanked 6,094 Times in 2,369 Posts
The more a dog seizes, the more seizures they are going to have. The brain actually learns to seize. I think it's time for your girl to go on real meds, so a vet visit is probably in order. From what you are describing , she may be starting to have some brain damage. Getting her into a Neurologist would be best.
__________________


Love is patient, love is kind.
Love never gives up or loses faith.
Love is always hopeful and endures through every trial.



Digg this Post!Add Post to del.icio.usBookmark Post in TechnoratiTweet this Post!
Reply With Quote
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Claire's Friend For This Useful Post:
Doug (12-16-2012), GoldensGirl (12-16-2012)
  #3 (permalink)  
Old 12-16-2012, 12:40 AM
Doug's Avatar
Super Moderator
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Australia
Posts: 3,163
Thanks: 4,338
Thanked 3,888 Times in 1,740 Posts
Claire's friend has given you some excellent advice.

Another thing you may need to remember is that while Echo is having a seizure she does not remember them. However, she would feel the anxiety that goes along with the unsettling post effects of a seizure.

Most of what you said is typical seizure behaviour except the bumps and the choking which seem to be unique to her. You will need to find a vet that specializes in seizures ie a neurologist. The challenge of having a pet who seizes is finding the right medication for them through trial and error. This is very difficult as every dog is different. Perhaps more than one medication is required for Echo. I was resistant to medication but now Pheno is our saving grace.

Some people have found that going outside for a game can distract a dog from a seizure if they suspect one is about to happen. For others exercise can bring on a seizure. Some people find that changes in weather can bring on or ease a seizure so you need to try to work out the puzzle of what makes things better or worse for her. Record everything. Do you feed her any additives or preservatives in her food or treats? What about heat worm treatments?

Whist most vets will do a basic thyroid blood test. However a more detailed one is required. I would contact Jean Dodds (Google her) for this to rule out any thyroid issues.

I would also suggest contacting Archives of EPIL-K9@APPLE.EASE.LSOFT.COM foe extra support.

I hope that you find the right vet to help out sweet Echo. She looks as though she is worth the extra effort to find the right support that she needs. GOOD luck!!
__________________
Digg this Post!Add Post to del.icio.usBookmark Post in TechnoratiTweet this Post!
Reply With Quote
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Doug For This Useful Post:
Claire's Friend (12-16-2012), GoldensGirl (12-16-2012)
  #4 (permalink)  
Old 12-16-2012, 12:41 AM
GoldensGirl's Avatar
Super Moderator

 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Between D.C. and Baltimore
Posts: 6,876
Thanks: 10,452
Thanked 7,170 Times in 3,493 Posts
Welcome to the Forum, despite the difficult circumstances. I am glad that you have found this community of supportive people who will be here for you and Echo.

It sounds like your girl is having classic grand mal seizures. Having two in a 24-48 hour period is called a cluster. Clusters are especially dangerous because they can cause swelling in the brain. Uncontrolled, that swelling can cause brain damage or even death.

I heartily agree with Claire's Friend that Echo needs the help of a veterinary neurologist, who may be able to determine the cause of the seizures and will get her on the right meds. The most common one is Phenobarbital, which is widely prescribed because it is effective quickly and it is relatively inexpensive compared to other seizure meds. You won't like the side effects - none of us do - but Echo needs help now.

This thread has a lot of our collective wisdom about how to deal with canine seizures, the meds, and the precautions that are needed: http://www.goldenretrieverforum.com/...formation.html (Seizures 101: Basic Information). I bet you will also hear from other members who have dogs in Echo's age range who are also having or had seizures.

Don't hesitate to ask questions. Someone here is almost certain to have dealt with anything you encounter on this sad journey. Most importantly, keep in mind that some of the Forum members have dogs who have lived pretty normal lives with seizures spanning 10 or more years. This is a very, very hard path to travel, but it can be done and you will not be alone.
__________________
Lucy, owned by Joker and Sunny, who remember Charlie with me
http://www.goldenretrieverforum.com/...oker-13-a.html
http://www.goldenretrieverforum.com/...years-old.html
Digg this Post!Add Post to del.icio.usBookmark Post in TechnoratiTweet this Post!
Reply With Quote
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to GoldensGirl For This Useful Post:
Claire's Friend (12-16-2012), Doug (12-16-2012)
  #5 (permalink)  
Old 12-16-2012, 10:47 PM
New Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Ontario
Posts: 2
Thanks: 0
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Thank you everyone for the information! I will check that thread out more thoroughly as well.

We cannot see the vet on the weekend, and in a small city, there isn't an emergency vet anywhere near enough (Echo is rather carsick for rides 20min +) but luckily, she has not had another seizure yet.

Today, though, she seems more tired- it is hard coaxing her to go up the stairs (she managed a few times), but now, she is sleeping yet again in her bed. She went on both her walks and wandered around a bit earlier, so I don't know if that burned her out, but she is usually so full of energy.... She'll still wag her tail and lift her head up when I go near her, but she seems to want to sleep.

Also, I don't know if this is something to worry about, but she breaths really loudly...

To Mr.Doug- she doesn't get any (or much...) additives or preservatives. (I don't think...) The dog food is Kirkland's and we don't add anything on top of it. As well, she sometimes eats Dentabones or the Chicken Jerky style treats that is sold at Costco (for dogs). There is another treat she has from time to time that contains a bit of peanut butter with oats, flour, and water (baked). I don't know anything about a heat worm treatment, but she's never had worms, so I'm going to say no on that too. We used to give her food scraps sometimes, but that has long stopped since she started having her seizures.

Regarding finding a pet neurologist... We will call the vets around this area and see. Would you be able to find one at the vet's, or are they usually a specialist who works alone?

Ah, pheno. I believe the vet did offer that to my father back in April, but when we heard the side effects, we did not end up getting it. Still, we did not foresee that the seizures would develop, so now we'll go back and get some, I guess. Has anyone had problems with it...?

Thanks again for the help!
Digg this Post!Add Post to del.icio.usBookmark Post in TechnoratiTweet this Post!
Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to Narci For This Useful Post:
GoldensGirl (12-16-2012)
  #6 (permalink)  
Old 12-16-2012, 11:00 PM
GoldensGirl's Avatar
Super Moderator

 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Between D.C. and Baltimore
Posts: 6,876
Thanks: 10,452
Thanked 7,170 Times in 3,493 Posts
Glad to hear from you again.

Having a grand mal seizures is sort of like running a marathon. The dog expends a tremendous amount of energy in that very short full-body episode. I suspect that the fatigue you are seeing is partly a result of that.

Two things help: Immediately after a seizure, give Echo about two large spoonfuls of Hagen Daz vanilla ice cream (the brand matters only because it is an all-natural product with no nasty additives) and then offer a full meal of the normal kibble. Most dogs are ravenous after a seizure, so don't be surprised if she gobbles it up quickly and then wants a lot of water. She may also be a bit sore, since her muscles work very hard during a seizure. And she may be feeling a bit timid and disoriented. I recall that Charlie was embarrassed by his incontinence and knew that something had happened to him, though he didn't know what. Just love your girl and try to reassure her.

Since an emergency vet is so far away, your vet might be able to give you valium in some form to use when she has a cluster of seizures. That will help to stop the cluster quickly.

Veterinary neurologists are specialists who often practice alone or as part of referral practice. You can also find them associated with a school of veterinary medicine. This may take some effort, but their advice and diagnostic skills are invaluable.

One thing worth testing for is hypothyroidism. This takes a full panel of blood tests that are not cheap, but there is causal link between hypothyroidism and seizures.

Good luck and please keep us posted.
Lucy
__________________
Lucy, owned by Joker and Sunny, who remember Charlie with me
http://www.goldenretrieverforum.com/...oker-13-a.html
http://www.goldenretrieverforum.com/...years-old.html
Digg this Post!Add Post to del.icio.usBookmark Post in TechnoratiTweet this Post!
Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to GoldensGirl For This Useful Post:
Claire's Friend (12-17-2012)
  #7 (permalink)  
Old 12-17-2012, 04:43 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Wales, UK
Posts: 171
Thanks: 147
Thanked 404 Times in 150 Posts
Hello and welcome and I am sorry you are having to join our seizure community. I hope you can get Echo's seizures under control quickly. All the above advice has been brilliant and I will completely agree - you NEED to get Echo seen by a vet asap. She is having far too many seizures now and they need to be controlled. A neurologist would be ideal as they know so much more, however they do not come cheap but to me I believe they are worth every dollar.

Most likely Echo will be started on Phenobarbitone. I know it is horrible to think of her being on permanent meds but it is FAR worse to be having repetitive seizures. They need to be controlled. The side effects are rough for the first 2-4weeks and are not to be underestimated but they will balance out and you will barely notice many differences when Echo is on it permanently. The main side effects are ataxia (wobblyness in the back end) and lethargy (she will be VERY sleepy). She is also likely to be more hungry and thirsty (and therefore need letting out to the toilet more often). The latter side effects are more likely to remain beyond the first 4 weeks of medication. There are other medications but this one is most commonly used.

Good luck with Echo. I won't lie, it is a horrible condition but you can manage it and you will learn to help them in different ways.
Digg this Post!Add Post to del.icio.usBookmark Post in TechnoratiTweet this Post!
Reply With Quote
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to LucyMoosey For This Useful Post:
Claire's Friend (12-18-2012), GoldensGirl (12-17-2012)
  #8 (permalink)  
Old 12-17-2012, 10:25 PM
Claire's Friend's Avatar
New Mommy
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: California
Posts: 6,098
Images: 9
Thanks: 6,929
Thanked 6,094 Times in 2,369 Posts
"The dog food is Kirkland's and we don't add anything on top of it. As well, she sometimes eats Dentabones or the Chicken Jerky style treats that is sold at Costco (for dogs)."
IMO you should stop giving her any of these things NOW. Get her on a quality grain free, low carb food and do not give her anthing with artificial flavors, colors or preservatives. I think many of the Chicken Jerky treats from Costco have been recalled. She should be getting filtered water in stainless steel bowls.
As was said before, thyroid testing (a full panel test) is very important for her at this point. Most Goldens who test in the low normal range are actually low. Get the numbers and post them here and we can help you with that. It is important that the blood for the thyroid test is pulled at least 7 days after a Grand Mal seizure to get a good read. You are not alone in this and most people can get their dog's seizures under control fairly easily. Most of us that post here were not so lucky, but were devoted to our "shaker pups" and loved them all the same.
__________________


Love is patient, love is kind.
Love never gives up or loses faith.
Love is always hopeful and endures through every trial.



Digg this Post!Add Post to del.icio.usBookmark Post in TechnoratiTweet this Post!
Reply With Quote
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Claire's Friend For This Useful Post:
Doug (12-17-2012), GoldensGirl (12-17-2012)
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -4. The time now is 10:54 PM.



Powered by vBulletin® Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.5.2
Golden Retriever Forum .com
PetGuide.com
Basset Hound Forum Doberman Forum Golden Retriever Forum Beagle Forum
Boxer Forum Dog Forum Pit Bull Forum Poodle Forum
Bulldog Forum Fish Forum Havanese Forum Maltese Forum
Cat Forum German Shepherd Forum Labradoodle Forum Yorkie Forum Hedgehog Forum
Chihuahua Forum Retriever Breeds Cichlid Forum Dart Frog Forum Mice Breeder Forum

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64 65 66 67 68 69