Witnessing your precious dog or cat having a seizure can be a most frightening experience. During seizures pets often lose control, fall over, chomp their teeth, salivate or drool, whine, paddle with their feet, and begin to urinate or deficate on themselves. Their eyes become large (dilated) and unresponsive.
Hopefully, you and your pet have not, and will never, have to experience this shocking event. But, if you have, or when you encounter it in the future, this report can help you to understand the causes of seizures, what you can do while your pet is having a seizure, and the many treatment options available.
Certain dog breeds are more susceptible to epilepsy. Veterinarians are not sure what causes this”hereditary” epilepsy.
Vets can normally discover the cause of seizures. These include chemical toxins (which includes chemical preservatives used in many pet foods), brain tumors, feline leukemia, feline infections, peritonitis, feline AIDS, head trauma, and issues with the kidneys and liver.
In dogs there are many causes of seizures besides hereditary epilepsy. Allergies to food and the chemicals, preservatives, and artificial flavors put into the foods can cause seizures. Other causes include liver and kidney disease, tumors, poisonings, and low blood sugars.
Try to stay calm. This is hard to do, but with a calm, reassuring quiet voice will comfort your dog or cat. Move any furniture or other objects where your pet could hurt itself. If you’re not able to move the object, place pillows or wrapping blankets between the pet and the object. Slide something soft under your pet’s head, but be sure to keep your hands and face away from his mind so that you don’t risk a possible bite. It is possible to gently stroke his side or hip, but position yourself opposite the side of the feet and toenails as the muscle spasms make the feet curl into claws which could gouge or rake your skin. Dim the lights, and keep the environment as quiet as possible by turning off the TV and loud music.
If at all possible take notes concerning the seizure so that you can give details to your veterinarian. Jot down the time of day it occurred, the duration of each seizure, and the time in between each seizure if they are recurrent. Your vet will also need to know whether your pet urinated or deficated, if the seizure hit suddenly or improved from mere body twitching, whether your pet recovered consciousness, and how long it took before your pet appeared normal again. In addition, you’ll need to work out if there were any potential triggering events. These include loud noises such as fireworks, unusual items which were eaten, and excessive playing or exercise.
After the seizure, pets usually appear lost or drugged. This drugged condition can last a few minutes to several hours depending on the severity of the seizure. Your pet may respond to you, but do this in a very slow way. Since seizures are tiring to your pet, he will probably want to sleep afterwards. It is best to allow him to sleep, but check on him sometimes without disturbing his rest.
If this is your pet’s first seizure, call your veterinarian as soon as possible. Some vets will want to see if another seizure occurs, while others will conduct a variet of blood tests to check for anemia, liver & heart acts, calcium, glucose, & electrolyte levels. Your vet might even run a screen for possible toxins, take x-rays, or play an electroencephalogram.
The evaluation results may not indicate the specific reason for the seizure. In this case, your veterinarian may wait to see if another seizure occurs or he/she may suggest medications. If the diagnosis is epilepsy, pets have an exceptional opportunity to live a normal life as long as proper medical care and follow-up are provided.
If you discover the reason for the seizure, you might be able to eliminate future seizures by removing the seizure’s source. For instance, if the seizure is due to chemical toxins, ensure that your pet stays as free of toxins as possible. Provide human grade food and treats that do not contain chemical preservatives, fillers, or additives. Clean your home with bespoke products. Also, use more natural flea, tick, Bat Removal Melbourne & heartworm prevention products as some of these products may lower your pet’s seizure threshold and make seizures more challenging to control. Avoid products containing organophosphate insecticides. For safer heartworm prevention, use products containing interceptor and filaribits.
What can you do if your pet’s seizure condition can’t be cured and you realize you and your pet may have to live with the seizures? Before, the only treatment options available were strong anticonvulsants that could have severe side effects. These still may be your only option. But, more natural approaches have been found to help some pets, either prior to stronger medications or along with them so you might have the ability to reduce the dose. There are a variety of treatment options which include a natural diet, acupuncture, nutritional supplements, homeopathy, herbs, and traditional medications.
As mentioned above, give your pet a human grade diet, free of additives and compounds. Also, remove other toxins from the pet’s environment. Clean with natural products and use more natural flea, tick, and heartworm prevention measures.
Minimize stress on your pet’s life. Try to avoid sudden changes in his environment, loud noises, and other stressful conditions.
You can even try herbs that act as sedatives. These include valerian root, kava, skullcap and oatstraw. Note that if using herbs and supplements, you might need to reduce the dosage of other anticonvulsants.
Several supplements appear to help in preventing seizures. Try an antioxidant combination of Vitamin C, vitamin E, B-6, and selenium. Your vet can recommend the dosage for your pet. Magnesium and DMG (dimethyl glycine) are other useful supplements.
Acupuncture is another valuable option that has helped to control seizures in many pets. Sometimes just placing an ear acupuncture tack in a dog’s ear will prevent seizures, and this only requires one acupuncture visit.
If the ear tack doesn’t work, gold implants can be placed in various locations under a pet’s head. Or your pet can be treated with traditional chinese acupuncture.
As you can see, there are many natural approaches to treating seizures in pets.