Witnessing your precious dog or cat having a seizure can be a most frightening experience. Their eyes become large (dilated) and unresponsive. A pet caregiver feels panicked and helpless while watching it all happen.
Hopefully, you and your pet have never, and will never, have to undergo this shocking event. Butif you have, or when you encounter it in the future, this article can enable you to understand the causes of seizures, what you can do while your pet is having a seizure, and the various treatment options available.
Certain dog breeds are more susceptible to epilepsy. Veterinarians are not sure what causes this”hereditary” epilepsy.
In cats hereditary epilepsy is unusual. Vets can normally find 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 liver and kidneys.
In dogs there are many causes of seizures besides hereditary epilepsy. Allergies to food and the chemicals, preservatives, and artificial flavors put in the foods can cause seizures. Other causes include liver and kidney disease, tumors, poisonings, and low blood sugars.
What can you do while your pet is having a seizure? Try to stay calm. This is difficult to do, but with a calm, reassuring quiet voice will comfort your dog or cat. Move any furniture or other objects on which your pet could hurt itself. If you’re not able to move the item, place pillows or wrapping blankets between the pet and the item. Slide something soft under your pet’s mind, but be sure to keep your hands and face away from his mind so that you don’t risk a possible bite. You can 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 can gouge or rake your skin.
If possible take notes concerning the seizure so that you can give details to your vet. 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 abruptly or improved from mere body twitching, whether your pet recovered consciousness, and how long it took before your pet seemed normal again. Moreover, you’ll need to figure out if there were any possible triggering events. These include loud noises such as fireworks, unusual items that were consumed, and excessive playing or exercise.
After the seizure, pets usually appear lost or drugged. This drugged state can last a few minutes to many hours depending on the severity of the seizure. Your pet may respond to you, but do so in a very slow way. Since seizures are exhausting for your pet, he will likely need to sleep afterwards. It is ideal to allow him to sleep, but check in on him sometimes without disturbing his rest.
If this is your pet’s original 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 functions, 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 cause of the seizure. In cases like this, your vet may wait to determine if another seizure occurs or he/she may suggest medications. If the diagnosis is epilepsy, pets have an exceptional chance to live a normal life as long as proper medical care and follow-up are provided.
If you discover the cause of the seizure, you might be able to get rid of future seizures by eliminating the seizure’s source. For instance, if the seizure is due to chemical toxins, make sure your pet stays as free of toxins as possible. Provide human grade food and treats that don’t contain chemical preservatives, fillers, or additives. Clean your home with bespoke products. Also, use more natural flea, tick, & heartworm prevention products as some of these products may decrease your pet’s seizure threshold and make seizures more challenging to control. Avoid products containing organophosphate insecticides.
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? In the past, the only treatment options available were powerful anticonvulsants that could have severe side effects. These may be your only alternative. But, more natural approaches have been found to help some pets, either before stronger medications or along with them so that you might have the ability to reduce the dose. There are many different treatment options which have a natural diet, acupuncture, nutritional supplements, homeopathy, herbs, and traditional medications.
As mentioned above, give your pet an individual regular diet, free of chemicals and additives. Additionally, remove other toxins from the pet’s environment. Clean with organic products and use more natural flea, tick, and heartworm prevention measures.
Minimize stress in your pet’s life. Avoid sudden changes in his surroundings, loud noises, and other stressful conditions.
You can also try herbs that act as sedatives. These include valerian root, kava, skullcap and oatstraw. Note that when using herbs and supplements, you might need to reduce the dosage of other anticonvulsants.
Several supplements seem to help in preventing seizures. Try an antioxidant combination of Vitamin C, vitamin E, B-6, and selenium. Your vet may recommend the dosage for your pet. Magnesium and DMG (dimethyl glycine) are other useful supplements.
Acupuncture is another helpful option which has helped to control seizures in many pets. Sometimes just placing an ear acupuncture tack in a dog’s ear will stop seizures, and this only requires one acupuncture trip.
If the ear tack doesn’t work, Bat Removal Melbourne can be placed in different 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. These should help your beloved pet to live a normal and comfortable life.