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I have one Golden with epilepsy. He is on Phenobarbital. It mostly keeps it in check and he hardly ever has any break through seizures. When he first started he'd jump up like something bit him, run head first into a wall then fall over & stretch out his legs on one side so I thought he had a pinched nerve or something or even hip problems but that proved not to be true. X-rays on hips good and all other tests negative. They diagnose epilepsy after ruling out everything else. His seizures were fairly calm but as he had a few later they grew more violent & I had to just make sure he did not hurt himself.
Ranger was a different story. I was outside doing yard work when my daughter called me & said Ranger had pooped in the hallway & was lying with it. I knew he did not do that inside & when I got to him he was completely unresponsive. I got ready to take him to ER vet but by time we got there he jumped out like nothing had happened. Seems that he had a low thyroid setting his off but after going onto treatment he did not have anymore until he was much older and all within a week he had several & would lay on his side, eliminate, paddle like swimming, shake & snap with his eyes bugged out. He was a very sick boy with a bad heart & a tumor near apex of heart the size of your fist. He also developed pneumonia. Vet stated he had a stoke and his body was tired. He only lived a week after that and I miss him. A seizure is very scary no matter what they do. I think I know enough now to not panic & wait it out. Getting a Pheno level drawn every 6 months can be expensive especially when medications and allergy problems are ongoing. I pay more for vet in a month that I do in a few years of my own doctor. But, I love them.
 

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Discussion Starter #42

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Hypertension and Seizures

This morning I have learned that hypertension (a.k.a. high blood pressure) can cause seizures and other neurological problems in dogs. This is especially common in older dogs.

Here's a link with more information: High Blood Pressure in Dogs | petMD.

The good news is that hypertension can be controlled with inexpensive generic medications and the results are pretty quick, judging from our experience with my Joker.
 

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Abby will be 9 mo in just a few days. She had a grand mal seizure last Saturday. The vet and I also suspect she had some sort of seizure activity during a near drowning incident July 3rd. She is not on meds at this point.
 

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Oh Tiff my heart aches for you. It is so heartbreaking to think that this could happen while they are swimming but it can and this is a good reminder to others :(
My wish is that this becomes a distant memory for you!
 

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After being seizure free for a year and several months; Jinger had a cluster of 2 gran mal seizures on December 9th. We took her to the vet the morning of the 10th and after a good physical the doc gave her a script for Valium to be given immediately after a seizure, as soon as she can swallow.

Today she had another seizure, not as bad as the last one but scary for both her and me. As soon as she could swallow I gave her the meds. She's been resting all day. She'll be off to the vet in the am.

I really thought she was done with them...until the 9th.
 

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Golden Seizures

Koda, my 6 year old golden boy developed seizures about 8 months ago, they were spread out, having one or so every two weeks, vet checked his thyroid levels and Rx Thyroxine into his daily routine. Seizures continued at a slower rate. About two months into this, Koda developed cluster seizures and vet added Rx Phenobarbital. Koda added about 10 lbs of weight, seizures moderated. Then this last month seizures picked up and this past week after additional blood work and increase in Pheno mg, Koda suffered multiple cluster seizures in one day, a total of 14 in 12 hours. Sadly I had to put him down. In trying to find the reason behind this, I am convinced that the breeder is largely to blame. Next time I will take the time to find a reputable breeder. Koda was my third golden, age 6 is too young to see him pass.
 

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I hear that Dr Jean Dodds is warning folks that heartworm meds in epileptic dogs can be a problem. I think flea meds can be as well.
 

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Discussion Starter #52
Koda, my 6 year old golden boy developed seizures about 8 months ago, they were spread out, having one or so every two weeks, vet checked his thyroid levels and Rx Thyroxine into his daily routine. Seizures continued at a slower rate. About two months into this, Koda developed cluster seizures and vet added Rx Phenobarbital. Koda added about 10 lbs of weight, seizures moderated. Then this last month seizures picked up and this past week after additional blood work and increase in Pheno mg, Koda suffered multiple cluster seizures in one day, a total of 14 in 12 hours. Sadly I had to put him down. In trying to find the reason behind this, I am convinced that the breeder is largely to blame. Next time I will take the time to find a reputable breeder. Koda was my third golden, age 6 is too young to see him pass.
I'm so very sorry. The progression that you describe sounds a lot like what we have seen with brain tumors in Goldens. Age 6 is young for that, too, but cancer is common in our Goldens. Hemangiosarcoma in the brain can trigger seizures with every bleed.

My heart aches for you and for Koda.
 

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Discussion Starter #53 (Edited)
This week I learned of an important new development: There is now a generic timed-release version of Keppra that can be given twice a day. It has a good success rate at controlling refractory (difficult to stop) seizures that are not controlled by Pheno and/or potassium bromide. It can be used as a primary seizure med or in combination with others and it reportedly has far fewer significant side effects than most of the drugs we have been forced to use.

Here's a link to an article about some of the newer seizure meds for dogs: Newer options for medically managing refractory canine epilepsy

Prednisone also has some uses for treating brain tumors and other cancers that I was not aware of before. By reducing inflammation and the quantity of blood in a tumor, it helps to reduce seizures and the head pain associated with tumors. We are using it with Joker and I have been amazed at the difference it has made for him.
 

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Discussion Starter #54
Continuing my research for Joker, I came across a slide presentation from a veterinary conference. It contains a tremendous amount of detailed information about drugs used in the treatment of seizures in dogs and cats. Here's a pointer: http://slvetspecialists.com/files/2014/01/Anti-convulsanttherapydavis2014conference.pdf. It includes information on a variety of new anti-convulsant drugs that are still in early trials for dogs, giving us more hope for the future.

This might be worth sharing with your vet, especially if your dog has uncontrolled seizures.
 

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As a veterinarian for over 35 years, I have treated hundreds of dogs with seizures. Seizures are an enigma as the majority of younger dogs with seizures end up with a diagnosis of idiopathic epilepsy. This essentially means that we do not know what the cause of the seizure is. There are many theories; genetic potential, allergies, toxins and much more. Those of you who are old enough (before brain scans) knew people with children with epilepsy. These children were told that it was a genetic disease and that they would likely pass it on to their children. Many of these children grew up and opted not to have children due to the fear of passing epilepsy on to the kids.

With the technological advancement of MRIs and CT scans, it became evident that many of these children had a history of a blow to the head, resulting in a small nidus of scar tissue on the brain. This scar tissue acted to irritate the brain, triggering seizures. It was estimated that about 80% of the children diagnosed with epilepsy actually had scar tissue on the brain. Nowadays, young children have a brain scan, have a simple surgery to remove the scar and the seizures go away forever.

The moral to the story is that we don't know the cause of most seizures in young dogs. The answer is not to just call it epilepsy, place them on anti-seizure medication for the rest of their lives, and move on to the next case. We should search for the underlying cause by taking a broader look at what could be the cause. My experience shows that a lot of these dogs have food allergies. So, changing to a wholesome diet should be tried. In the end, if an answer cannot be found by using a conventional approach, then try alternative medicine.

I have used TCVM in my practice to resolve many dogs with epilepsy and eliminate the need for harsh anti-seizure medication with long-term side effects. If you have a dog that has been diagnosed with epilepsy and is on anti-seizure meds, find a holistic vet in your area and let him/her take a look at your pet. You might be in for a pleasant surprise.
 

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As a veterinarian for over 35 years, I have treated hundreds of dogs with seizures. Seizures are an enigma as the majority of younger dogs with seizures end up with a diagnosis of idiopathic epilepsy. This essentially means that we do not know what the cause of the seizure is. There are many theories; genetic potential, allergies, toxins and much more. Those of you who are old enough (before brain scans) knew people with children with epilepsy. These children were told that it was a genetic disease and that they would likely pass it on to their children. Many of these children grew up and opted not to have children due to the fear of passing epilepsy on to the kids.



With the technological advancement of MRIs and CT scans, it became evident that many of these children had a history of a blow to the head, resulting in a small nidus of scar tissue on the brain. This scar tissue acted to irritate the brain, triggering seizures. It was estimated that about 80% of the children diagnosed with epilepsy actually had scar tissue on the brain. Nowadays, young children have a brain scan, have a simple surgery to remove the scar and the seizures go away forever.



The moral to the story is that we don't know the cause of most seizures in young dogs. The answer is not to just call it epilepsy, place them on anti-seizure medication for the rest of their lives, and move on to the next case. We should search for the underlying cause by taking a broader look at what could be the cause. My experience shows that a lot of these dogs have food allergies. So, changing to a wholesome diet should be tried. In the end, if an answer cannot be found by using a conventional approach, then try alternative medicine.



I have used TCVM in my practice to resolve many dogs with epilepsy and eliminate the need for harsh anti-seizure medication with long-term side effects. If you have a dog that has been diagnosed with epilepsy and is on anti-seizure meds, find a holistic vet in your area and let him/her take a look at your pet. You might be in for a pleasant surprise.

In your opinion, do you think Spinosad could be a cause/trigger for seizures?

I ask because I've read it on here numerous times
 

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I have owned dogs since 1956 (I was 11) and for the first time, on of my dogs had a seizure about 2 months ago. I have had many English Setters (used for quail hunting), 2 Irish Setters, 6 golden Retrievers and 2 Great Pyrenees. Sophie, my golden girl is almost 12. Her story is a little strange.

Last Sept. we adopted a Great Pyrenees. His owners wre moving way up north to open a bed and breakfast and that is not a place for a pyr. They asked me if I would let them know how he did on the ride home. I kept in contact with them via e-mail. telling of Moose's adventures at the beach, visiting his new friend, the horse, on the street behind us, going to pet friendly stores, etc. Also sent pictures. Then inFeb. they asked if we would be willing to take their 11 year old golden retriever. She has arthritis pretty bad in her hips and they didn't think she could handle the freezing conditions and snow in Wisconsn. We took her.

About 2 months ago we came home and as always, Sophie was by the front door. She always gets up when I bump her with it, but she didn't that day. I could get my arm in and touch her, she didn't move. Need I say we feared she had passed while we wren at our doctor's for a check up. I finally got the door open enough to squeeze in and she had her head up and was trying to get up. Her left rear leg would work some but it appeared her right would not. She had a lot of foam around her mouth and had pooped all over herself. I thought at first she had a stroke, and then thought I was probably a seizure.

I got her to her feet and she was wobbly. She fell, but got her back up and outside and by then she was acting normal. Gave her a bath to clean all the poop (some was pretty runny) off her tail and backs of her legs. She did not appear to have peed on herself.

Got her to the vet and he confirmed a seizure. Ran tests and found she was low thyroid and he said that sometimes causes seizures. Put her on thyroid meds. Well, I e-mailed Jill and told her what had happened and she said Sophie had had seizures when she was young. Had her first at about 2 and her last at 4. Sometimes she was have 3-4 in a day, spaced out over the day, and then go weeks or months without another one. Then she would have a cluster of them. The vet put her on seizure meds, but it made her so "loopy" (Jill's description) so she took Sophie off. She had a couple more, but none since turning 4 and Jill had not even thought about 7 years later when we adopted her. She had actually keep a record of those she knew Sophie had and sent me the record.


No idea what had caused them for those 2 years or why they ended. I do know they moved several times while they had Sophie and it is possible it was something she was allergic to. And of course we are not really sure what caused this one a couple of months ago. Are hoping it was due to her thyroid being off. She has not had another that we know of.

Oh, I also put her on Cosequin and it has done marvels for her hips. And tho our Pyrenees shows no signs of it at 8, we started him on the Cosequin also.
 

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We adopted a 3 yr old male rescue Golden last week. When Rusty was rescued it was noted that he would attack his foot/leg and he did it for the first month there, but not the 2nd month so she thought it was the stress of the transition. Bringing him home last week we had 6 hrs in the car. The first 2 hrs were fine, but then I stopped and went inside a place for the bathroom. When I returned to the car he started growling & snarling & attacking his foot and he did that for about the next 12+ hrs. When I took him to the vet I showed her a video of this behavior and she said it was a seizure, most likely being triggered by stress.

Rusty had never been inside a house before so he was adjusting to new sights, sounds, smells, everything. Plus being house trained. Lots of stress. She started him on Valium and tomorrow he starts on Phenobarbital.

Does anyone know if there is a name for this form of seizure? Anyone else have dogs that do this?
 

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In your opinion, do you think Spinosad could be a cause/trigger for seizures?

I ask because I've read it on here numerous times
I would imagine that it could. Spinoza is a biochemical compound that is created as a bi-product from a bacteria. Even though it is an organic chemical it acts as an insecticide by over-stimulating the insects nervous system. Reasoning would suggest that it could likely trigger hyperactivity of the brain (seizure) in pets that are prone to seizures. I would not use it if my dog were predisposed to seizures.
 
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