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Hi-I'm hoping someone here can give me some advice. My dog, Leo, had his first grand mal seizure about 3 weeks ago. It lasted about 5 minutes, he lost his sight for several hours and then he was completely fine. He is only 18 months old, so when the bloodwork came out normal, they recommended waiting to see what happened with him before starting meds. Last night, he had another seizure. I gave him the valium and he stopped again after about 5 minutes. They admitted him to the hospital for 24 hours and did every test imaginable on him (MRI, chest xray, abdominal ultrasound, spinal tap) and have concluded that it's epilepsy. They put him on Keppra starting this afternoon, so he has had two doses so far. What worries me is that since he's been home (about an hour and a half), he's been pacing frantically, panting, trying to get out of our room and just completely not himself. I'm not sure how to help him. I called the hospital and they basically said it could just be anxiety from all of the testing or it could be pre-seizure activity, but it's breaking my heart to see him like this. Any ideas? Thanks.
 

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I'm so sorry that you're going through this with Leo. I don't know anything about seizures, but someone will be by soon that will have information for you. You're both in my thoughts and prayers.
 

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Until someone comes on that is knowledgeable about seizures, you might find information on the thread link attached:

http://www.goldenretrieverforum.com...ard/85243-seizures-starting-12-years-old.html

You might also try the search tab above and searching:

epilepsy seizures and see if anything comes up. I'm so sorry that you're going through this with Leo. I've never had a kid with seizures, but I know it must be terrifying.
 

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I am so sorry you are going through this with Leo. So far (knock on wood) I have not had the problem with my Goldens, but my Siberian Husky began having grande mal seizures at about 18 months old. Actually he had probably had a few before then, but we were upstairs, he was downstairs...we put two and two together after we witnessed the first one. Supposedly 18 months is quite young for idiopathic epilepsy to show up...Hurleys is Vaccine induced according to 3 Vets.

The pacing and panting is his behavior after a seizure more often than not...and sometimes lasts up to 48 hours. Hurley has been well controlled on phenobarbital...we did try to wean him off once after 15 months of being seizure free, he did well and then had another grande mal exactly 2 weeks after he had been completely weaned from the pb. He is now on a lower dose than he was, and seems well controlled.

I understand the feeling of helplessness...it is difficult to feel something that is out of our control. Some things I did to help me feel like I was doing something proactive was to give Hurley a couple of tablespoons of Natural vanilla ice cream every evening, I also put Bach Flower Rescue Remedy drops in his water bowl daily.

You will be in my thoughts...I know how frightening this is!
 

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I'm so sorry to hear you're going through this with your sweet Golden boy. I understand some of the emotions you must be experiencing right now, as my Golden girl, Ella, was diagnosed with epilepsy at the end of April. The thread that PrincessDi linked to above is an invaluable source of information, and greatly helped me when I was just beginning Ella's journey with epilepsy. Ella's thread is here: http://www.goldenretrieverforum.com...-breed-standard/96396-seizure-answer-yes.html

I don't have experience with Keppra, as Ella is on phenobarbital at present, but Leo's pacing and frantic activity could certainly be due to the stress of the last 24 hours. My thought is that it's most likely post-ictal behavior from the seizure he had yesterday. One of the things that has been instrumental with predicting Ella's seizure is keeping a journal, as GoldensGirl recommended to me in the thread I linked to. If you haven't already, I would strongly encourage you to start a journal of Leo's behavior, along with the times and dosages at which he receives his medicine. It will help both you and his vet(s) to have a detailed account of his behavior both before and after his seizures.

I hope Leo is doing better this morning and you're able to take a deep breath and relax a bit. You'll both be in our thoughts!
 

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Sorry, I have no information but I am Sending hugs and healing thoughts to Leo.

Tracy
 

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Thanks so much for your responses. I've spent hours reading Charlie's story and it has helped so much although it also makes me so sad to think about Leo being medicated and risking seizures for such a long time. He's just so young. But he is better today than last night. He is still not himself though. He is less frantic and nervous, but still jittery and is now sleeping more than usual and just has no sparkle. He just seems out of sorts, and I hope this will improve as he adjusts to his medicine and his memories of the hospital fade. Everyone promises that since this is epilepsy that he will return to his normal activities and personality and that we will get the seizures under control for him. I hope that's true for him. He is about the most fantastic dog there has ever been!
 

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So very sorry again that you and Leo are going through this. Charlie's Mommy, is usually on frequently so much be busy right now. I know she will reply to your thread when she can. Her threads have been a lifeline to so many that have goldens that go through seizures. I just can't imagine how awful a time it is right now for you and Leo. Keeping you both in our thoughts and prayers.
 

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I am sorry your pup is having seizures. My Beau was my first seizure dog. He was 10 though when he started experiencing seizures. After his seizures he would pace for hours. And his seizures always happened in the middle of the night. I am not familiar with Keppra but my Beau was on phenobarbital and it helped with his seizures. Keppra was newer and not really well known when he need meds. If you vet suggests pheno dont be scared by it. There is alot of info out there but it helps so many dogs. I do suggest you put him on milk thistle (withapproval of your vet) to help cleanse his liver because meds can be hard on his liver.
Also their blood sugar can be low when they have a seizure so if you give him some all natural vanilla ice cream about 2 tablespoons that will help bring up his blood sugar and may help with the pacing. It did help some with Beau. Also while he is having a seizure put a cold compress on his head. It sounds funny but there is alot of brain activity (electrodes) going on and that helps to slow it down. When I get home from work tonight I will post a thread to a great website called guardian angels that is a wealth of information.
And the best advice is a seizure dog is special so love him and spoil him. There is a reason he is with you. When they have a seizure just sit on the floor talk softly and pet them. I love all my seizure dogs. My current seizure dog is Pawley my red head in my signature.
Good luck....
 

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I'm so sorry you and your Leo are going through this. Seizures are terrifying to experience. It sounds like your vet is very thorough, having run all the necessary tests, and prescribed a good anti-convulsant- my dog's vet also prescribes Kepra frequently. We are relatively new to this whole seizure thing... my Bailey had her first grand mal seizure about 3 months ago. She has been on phenobaribital since then, but she experienced cluster seizures over the weekend which landed her in the doggy ICU for the weekend. I just wanted to add that Bailey also gets quite antsy after her seizures- she paces around like she just can't get comfortable. She also gets very affectionate and licks my face a lot, which she normally never does. I hope you can get Leo on the right dose/combo (if necessary) of meds to control his seizures so your pup (and you) doesn't have to deal with seizures.
 

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Thanks for all of the help everyone! Leo has been having a bit of a rough week-he's been better tempermentally but is really struggling with walking. Supposedly Keppra doesn't cause the same balance problems as other drugs, so no one is exactly sure what's going on but he won't really bend his back legs and has had a bunch of falls trying to walk the last few days. The vet thinks he's getting too much Keppra, but the people at the original hospital (down in RI about an hour and a half from here but where we were when he had the seizure) had me take him to the Emergency Room up here tonight. They let him go home and he has a follow up with a new neurologist on Friday afternoon to see if this is a reaction to the Keppra or something else. Ironically, as soon as they suggested admitting him for the night, leo responded by walking better, acting better and they decided home was the better place. Let's hope so. The good news is that despite the awkwardness and falls he is happier than he has been and has more energy that's not manic, but just normal puppy behavior. He was back to inappropriately begging at the dinner table tonight and it made me very happy to see my poorly behaved dog again :) Again, thank you all for being so supportive. It really really has helped and I feel like we're going to come out on the other side in a good way again.
 

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I sure hope that he continues to improve. I don't blame Leo for all of a sudden walking better. I wouldn't want to spend the night in the ER either if it was me:no:. Keeping you both in our thoughts that the medicine works so that he and you don't have to experience the scarey seizures.
 

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Sorry to be slow responding to this thread. I'm on travel and have limited access to the web.

Keppra is not one of the meds my Charlie was on, so I don't have personal experience with it. The Guardian Angels site has this information about it: Keppra (levetiracetam) for Seizures. This site is a rich source of information for anyone with a dog having seizures. Google can take you to a lot more information - query "Keppra canine seizures."

Much of what you describe sounds "normal" for a dog adapting to seizures and seizure medications. I think they experience a lot of frustration at some points, as they remember what they could do that isn't possible now. In the last week of his life, Charlie brought me to tears just by sniffing at a tennis ball, pausing, and then walking away with a sad look. Perhaps I project my feelings onto him, but it felt as if he remembered his days of energetic games of fetch - games no longer possible for him in the last months of his life.

Like people with disabilities, dogs who have conditions that limit their lives can still enjoy life. They are often better than we are at living in the present and loving the life they have instead of agonizing about the one that is no longer possible. But there are certainly periods of adjustment that can be difficult for everyone concerned. Adapting to the "new normal" takes a little time.

Through it all, it is important for you to take care of yourself and remember to make time for fun! If you are successful in managing his seizures, Leo may have a very long life and you want to be able to enjoy those years with him.

Holding Leo, you and your family in my thoughts and prayers,
Lucy
 

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Hi Again-It's been a rough few weeks and I'm starting to lose hope that I'll have the same dog ever again. As of a few days ago, Leo started having daily partial seizures and then for the last 2 he's had at least one generalized, 3-4 minute seizure per day. We've now upped his zonisamide to 300 mg two times per day and he is barely walking and has no energy at all. Since he hasn't been a day without a seizure lately, I am just sitting home, scared to leave him and waiting. My kids are away this week, which is great, but they don't do well with seeing him like this-it scares them a lot. Does this get better? It seems horrible for him-he's scared of walking and he is only a year and a half old. I will carry my 90 pound dog down the stairs shortly to try to take him outside, but even that is just hard to watch because I just really miss him and the puppy that was there a few weeks ago.
 

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I don't really have any advice for you, but i wanted to say I'm so sorry that this is happening to you and Leo. I hope that you find some medicine or something that can help Leo. My thoughts and prayers are with you.
 

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Is he on any other type of meds other than the zonisamide? If not you might talk to the vet to see if the phenobarbital might be a better option for him. My Beau only had good results with the phenobarbital.
 

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I agree with BeauShel. I would insist on changing meds I think. Have they done the blood work to see if he's on a therapeudic level of his other meds?

If he's having that many seizures per day it gives me pause that maybe they missed something. It also makes sense that he'd be unsteady - it's a horrible assault on his little body.

I know that my bridge baby, Duke, would be horribly unsteady for days after a cluster of seizures.

All of that said, I'm just so sorry for you and your furkid. Those of us who've had seizure kids understand completely. And, you can certainly come on here and vent if you need to. Coley is 19 months old and I would be devistated if he had to deal with this.
 

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Is he only on Zonisamide? Because usually it is an "Add on" drug to be used with either Pheno or Potassium Bromide. All these drugs can cause ataxia and sleepiness. It's quite a balancing act to get them just right. Some takes months to get to the right levels. It sounds like he had all the tests, do you know how his thyroid came out?
 

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The neurologist is supposedly calling in some phenobarbital today which I hope will help to at least control the seizures, but he still is not really able to stand or walk which is horrible horrible. And he's not at all really "present" right now-it's not exactly that he's sleepy, he just paces and paces all the time. I hope that the pheno helps. I hope something helps because I'm losing hope.

The neurologist didn't want to do the thyroid test because he felt like he'd have some other symptom of low thyroid-he said he was only maybe a couple of pounds overweight but is eating well and had no other symptoms so he really felt like it wasn't that. At that point he'd had every other test on earth and I didn't want to push for yet another anxiety provoking test for leo if the neurologist felt so strongly about it.

So, he'll be on the phenobarbital and the zonisamide combined and hopefully that will stop the seizures and eventually he'll be back. I'm just mostly scared right now. it's not even the seizures that are as scary as the rest of the day.
 
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