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Discussion Starter #1
Hello everyone, I'm new to this forum. I sought something like this out to ask this question as it has been freaking me out. I have brought my 12 yr old Golden to the vet and her bloodwork and everything checks out. I explained to the vet what was happening and he didn't seem overly concerned, but it has been getting worse and I don't want to be the overactive parent, but I also don't like my dog having issues.

Basically what is happening, is at random times her entire body will just jerk as if all her muscles tighten up for a second and then back to normal. I know it freaks her out because she will come running up to me with her tail between her legs after. She usually is smacking her tongue after for a bit. While walking, she will collapse sometimes (because her legs tense causing her to lose footing). They are not prolonged spasms. As mentioned they are quick jerks, but they seem to be happening with more frequency now (started noticing them about 3 months ago).

I think I'm going to take her back, but I'm not really sure how to describe this any differently and am worried I might be doing my dog an injustice by just accepting a non-concerned verdict when I know there is something wrong here. Anyone come across something like this? If nothing else maybe points me in a direction to see if I can explain it better.

Thank you for any help!!
 

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This sounds like seizure activity. If your general vet is not helping, find a specialist.
 

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Welcome to the forum, I saw your picture of Jasmine in the Old Gold thread, she's beautiful.

I'm sorry to hear this, I would get a referral to have a specialist check her out or if you are close to a Univ. Vet School, see if you can get her an appt. there to be seen.
 

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I too would be seeking a specialist's opinion. Ask the vet to refer you to a neurologist- no need to even go back in if that's what you want, a referral... if it were one of my elders, I would be very worried and do not think it is nothing. You're a good owner to have noticed it, and to be following it, so don't let a casual attitude keep you from seeking the answers you need to keep her life quality good. It might be that the vet figures she is a Golden, and old, so not something to invest a lot of inquiry in.
 

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You have received some great advice above. I just want to add how sorry I am and how scary that must be for you. I hope you get some answers for your sweet Jasmine. Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thank you for the replies above. I am going to call tomorrow and ask for the referral and see if I can get her to see a neuro or something. I haven't read many good reviews on the only one I am aware of here in Orlando, so gonna spread the radius around and maybe try the UF vet school.

Thanks again!
 

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Vet schools are often a very good resource.
 

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Dog Lover
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Seizures

I agree I would get her to a vet or vet school asap. Sounds like seizures.
I think you are describing it well. What about taking a video?
 

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Project Redhead
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See if you can’t get some video of it happening. Murphy’s law states it’ll never happen in front of the doctors.

It’ll be a lot easier for them to work with and understand what you are talking about if they can actually see it.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I was able to get her an apt at UF vet school/hospital this week. One question I have. Has anyone had an MRI done on their senior dog?? It sounds like that is the direction they usually go in from what I have been reading. I have concerns about the anesthetic at her age, and then worry that if they do see anything. Is there anything they would be able to do anyway at her age. Obviously I will take the VET's recomendations into consideration, but I also value the opinions of owners who have gone through this as they have the most vested interest in their loved ones.

Thank you
 

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I've taken my dogs in the past to a Vet School in another State, I found them to be very thorough, try not to worry.

The Vets will take her age and the use of Anesthesia into consideration before they do the MRI.

Sending good thoughts to you and Jasmine.
 

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Every situation is so different it is hard to project what should be done until you get more info. Try to have some really nice days with her, doing some fun things. Rukie likes walks, rides, and cheeseburgers from a drive-thru. I can tell you will be putting her best interest first, so like Carolina Mom said, try not to worry. The vets will be helpful in guiding you and taking good care of her. Maybe she will just need some medicine. Prayers and good thoughts coming to you.
 

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Logan & Lacey in R hearts
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I am happy to see you have an apt with UF vet school. What you are describing does sound like mini-seizures. Catching them early could possibly prevent a full-blown seizure if it is what it turns out to be. This is was happened with our guy. He did end up on meds, but handled them well. Just wanted to mention, even after the full seizure his blood work came back good, so not always is this something that really shows up in those types of tests. However, just from the description I am surprised your Vet did not mention this as a possibility. Best of luck! Keep us posted.
 

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Logan & Lacey in R hearts
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Wow - that could have been my dog in the picture. That is exactly how his seizures started. At first I thought it was something else, then as you say, they started with more frequency. As you say, they have it, and then are back to normal. Once he started in with the full seizure, he had 2, we then started him on Phenobarbital. It took a bit for his body to adjust, but after a couple of weeks he adjusted to it. Good luck with your apt!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Wow - that could have been my dog in the picture. That is exactly how his seizures started. At first I thought it was something else, then as you say, they started with more frequency. As you say, they have it, and then are back to normal. Once he started in with the full seizure, he had 2, we then started him on Phenobarbital. It took a bit for his body to adjust, but after a couple of weeks he adjusted to it. Good luck with your apt!
Maybe I'm putting the "cart before the horse", but did you do an MRI or anything like that? Obviously my first thought was oh she has a brain tumor or something. More I am reading, it seems like it could be so many different things. She has not other issues I can tell. Still eats, drinks, gets excited for rides and her Swim day every Sunday. It's literally just these quick little jolts.
 

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Logan & Lacey in R hearts
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When our boy started having those twitches, and then ultimately the first big seizure, I talked to a very good friend who is a Vet as well. After the first seizure he recovered, we took him to the emergency clinic as it was on a Sat. afternoon. They ran some blood work but it did come back in good shape. That Monday we went to see our primary Vet. He said we would wait and see before rushing to the meds. Then about a week later he had another smaller seizure. At that point we started the Phenobarbital. A couple of months later when I noticed the twitches starting to happen again, we went for a checkup. We had to increase the meds a bit as his body had gotten use to that level. When it all started, in talking with my vet friend I asked about doing an MRI. Though expensive, I would have done it. She told me - what will you do with the information? You are not going to do brain surgery. It really will not change how to treat Logan. He will still be on meds to control the seizures. I so appreciated her honesty with me. She was right. If they found something, it would not change the outcome so we opted not to do the MRI. Everything was based on the physical evidence he was presenting. I think Logan was on pheno for almost 2 years before he got bone cancer. He would have been 12. I do have to say, that at the time I was on another Golden forum and several talked about their dogs who had seizures. Because I had been following what they were going through, when it happened, I was not totally unprepared. I had to calm my husband as we waited for it to pass and then go to emergency to get him checked out. One final thing - doing different treatment options such as an MRI is strictly a personal choice. Sometimes there is not a yes or no answer. You just need to do what you think is best. The choice we made was what we thought best for our boy. Good luck to you!
 

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Mandy's Mom
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Your girl is beautiful, I love the old gold.


How did the appointment go?
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Thanks for the information. I just got home from the APT (Been there since 9am ... ). So I went over everything and their plan was to do bloodwork, urinalysis, Chest X-Ray and Ultrasound of the abdomen. They were looking for anything systemic. The Resident said that the ticks I am describing aren't the typical presentation for seizures, but would not definitely say that is not what they were. The ultrasounds / x-rays and bloodwork came back normal. There was nothing remarkable about them, which meant if there was anything nasty.. it hadn't spread.

Next steps. They prescribed Kreppa (sp?) The Anti - Epileptic medicine to see if that controls her Jolts. They said if it works, it means it is seizure and it is probably something with her brain going on. Her suspicion is that it is something, but she can't say what without an MRI. They said it could be inflammation or a mass. So... 2 hour drive to Gainesville, 8 hours of waiting, 1000 dollars worth of testing yields.. We aren't sure what the issue is. I could pay another 2500 to POSSIBLY see something on the MRI, but no guarantee. I don't really care about the money, like was mentioned earlier. I guess if I get the MRI and they find something; is there really anything I could or would do anyway. I don't think the idea of operating on the brain of my 12 yr old Golden is something I have any interest in entertaining. Soooo I will see how these meds do. She is groggy right now from the sedation for the ultrasounds. (makes me sad when she is like that).

I appreciate all the thoughts and advice etc. I hate feeling helpless and still not really knowing what is going on with here. One thing we did notice. It almost seems like I can trigger her jolt with certain sounds.
 
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