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Epilepsy in K-9
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Epilepsy in K-9

I have a 4 year Rott/lab mix that has been diagnosed with epilepsy within the last 2 years.  The doctor has put him on Phenobarbital 64.8 mg 1 tablet two times a day, and valium when and if needed for his seizuress. He was good then for about 6 months, then after,  he started seizuing again so we took him back for labs and to check his blood levels...they then changed his meds to the same 64.8 mg 1 1/2 two times a day, but also added K ProVet oral solution..my question pertains to longterm Phenobarbital usage, we have discovered little lumps on his body in different areas. One has grown and is now the size of a pea.  Are any of these medications he is on, going to cause him cancer, I was told and have experienced certain medications that help with one thing and then cause worse problems in a another matter....could these little lumps be cancerous or just little cysts that arre fatty tissue, or do i have serious reason for concern at this point.  He has only been on these meds within the laswt two years. But I am concerned and worried it is helping his seizures but slowly killing him in another way.
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perhaps seek a second opinion my miniature pinser had similar problem and i eventually weaned her off medication I learnt to see the signs glazed eyes and panting and would just sit calmly with her for the duration of the seizure.  My vet would take bloods and generally make sure she was in good health.  she was 9 when the seizures started I stopped medication cause she was jusr not her real self.  She passed away with heart disease aged 18.  I know its not for everyone but i feel she was happier off the medication.
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Your rottie's epilepsy started at a pretty classic age.  Unfortunately, when you have early onset epilepsy, it's not usually something they'll grow out of.  While it can take a frustratingly long time to sort out the correct med dose for individual dogs, there is no reason your rottie can't live a long, healthy life.  I'm not aware of any cancerous side effects from phenobarbital and it's a very old, tried and true medication.  

Have you been able to identify any possible triggers for the seizures?  I read of one case where the dog seized if the doorbell rang.  The owners figured it out after a couple of years and simply disconnected the doorbell and that took care of the majority of the dog's seizures.  Most of the time there won't be anything that obvious, but it never hurts to keep a log of where and when seizures occur.  Make a note of how long they last and any other environmental conditions like the weather.  You may get lucky and discover a pattern or an outright trigger.

As for the lumps you're finding, ask your vet to take a look.  They're most likely sebaceous or fatty cysts and entirely harmless.  
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