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Dog Seizures
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Dog Seizures

My dog, Sadie,  (70 lb border collie / shepherd mix) started having seizures a few days ago and has had (7) that we are aware of in the last 72 hours.  Our vet gave us Phenobarbital which we are administering and also gave us valium in case she has prolonged or cluster seizures.  The seizures came out of nowhere so fast and now they are happening a few times a day. One of her liver enzymes was high and she is now on meds for that. We changed her food from Eukinuba (sp?) to Beneful about 4 months ago and recently gave her some advantage for fleas for the first time in a couple of years.  I'm just worried.  Sadie is very disoriented and I am worried about how quickly this popped up and that she will continue having so many seizures.  Does anyone have any suggestions?  Thanks in advance.
Tags: seizures
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Age is important when in comes to seizure activity, and you do not mention Sadie's age.

If she is a young dog than the most common cause of seizures is a brain defect or idiopathic epilepsy, which just means that the cause is unknown.  This would be the best scenario since the seizures can be treated and it should not progress once they are under medical control.  If she has been exposed to a neurotoxin (toxic chemical, medication, or substance that effects the brain) the neurotoxin could also cause seizures.   Strychnine is a sample of a poison that causes seizures.  Advantage is relatively safe neurologically speaking unless she was overdosed drastically.  If the seizures are caused by a toxin, than of course, she would need the appropriate treatment for the toxin.  Usually this just means symptomatic treatment, since some toxins or poisons do not have antidotes.

If your dog is an older dog,  than the most common cause of seizures are brain tumors.  Other causes include: encephalitis (toxic or infectious), GME (Granulometous meningioencephalomyelitis, a brain deteriorating disease of unknown cause), and Hepatic encephalopathy.  You did mention that she had elevated liver enzymes, so hepatic encephalopathy could be a possibility.

All of the tick borne diseases, as well as other bacterial, fungal or protozoal disease should be ruled out by the appropriate blood tests.  An MRI or CT scan of the brain may be necessary to diagnose brain tumors or GME.  If she has idiopathic epilepsy, some holistic treatments and acupuncture have been shown to be remarkably helpful.
3 Comments
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Avatar_m_tn
Thank you so much for your fast response.

Sadie is 5. I'm not sure if that makes her old or not.

Is the sudden onset of such frequent seizures more indicative of one cause over another?  Should I be especially worried that she is having so many seizures?  She's had 3 in the past 16 hours.  

Would you recommend trying a holistic diet now or waiting until some of these other tests pan out?

Thanks again.
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234713_tn?1283530259
I would suggest that you could try the following:

Give her 400mg. of vitamin E twice daily, a mineral supplement containing calcium and magnesium.  

A grain-free diet.  

Alpha lipoic acid, Milk Thistle, and the Chinese herbal formula's: Long Dan Xie Gan Tang, and Di Tan Tang, all of the above at human dose's and frequencies.

It would be best to do all of the above under the supervision of a holistic vet, of course.
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234713_tn?1283530259
Aleda M Cheng, D.V.M., C.V.ABlank
American Animal Hospital
Randolph, NJ
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