A dog having seizures can be very scary to watch. If your dog starts having seizure taking them to your veterinarian to help figure out the cause of these is best. This article explains all about seizures and what we can do to help our furry friends.
Seizures are a condition that affects the nervous system of dogs. A seizure is caused when a temporary disturbance in the brain causes involuntary muscle contractions.
Most seizures are due to one of two different things. Epilepsy is commonly seen in young dogs who have just started having seizures for an unknown reason. Even after a lot of medical tests, there is no known cause for these seizures. The other cause is due to a brain tumor. The tumor is pressing on a certain part of the brain triggering the seizures. Brain tumors are seen in older dogs who just start to have sudden seizures.
The most common type of seizure is a Grand Mal seizure. This is what everyone thinks of when they hear the word seizures. Most dogs are thrashing around uncontrollably, unresponsive, shaking, paddling their legs and foaming at the mouth. Usually, they will lose control of their bowls and will release urine and feces where they are laying because the nerves that have control of the sphincter muscles that would normally keep the dog from soiling itself are under an extreme amount of distress and literally they lose all control.
Not all seizures are this severe. Some dogs will just look off into a distance, have small facial twitches or act like they are biting a fly.
When your dog is thrashing around on the floor, they can hurt themselves. If they have a seizure while they are up on a high bed they may fall off and break a bone. A seizure can also occur due to a chemical imbalance in their body. Small dogs commonly have trouble keeping their blood sugar in normal ranges. Low blood sugar is a common cause of seizures in young tiny dogs
With seizures, the more seizures your dog has the more often they occur and the longer they last. If your dog starts having seizures seek veterinary care immediately as there can be an underlying condition.
The most important thing to do is to first stay calm. If you or anyone is overreacting or screaming it will only cause more stress to the dog and ultimately make an already stressful situation escalate further. If you can safely hold your dog wrap a blanket around them so they do not hurt themselves because they are shaking excessively. Sometimes they bite down unfortunately on their own tongue but never put your hands near their mouth during a seizure episode as they could bite down on it and really have no control to let go resulting in a severe injury.
If the seizure does not subside on its own within a minute or two it is imperative to get your dog veterinary attention immediately as a prolonged seizure can result in irreversible brain damage. If the dog is on medication to control seizures it is extremely important to stay on a strict schedule.
CBD or Cannabidiol is derived from the hemp plant. CBD does not contain any THC. THC is the psychotropic part of the plant. CBD acts on the endocannabinoid system to help decrease the seizure activity.
Recent studies show that CBD is very helpful in reducing seizures. CBD acts on the CB 1 receptors in the endocannibals system in the brain decreasing the seizure activity.
Usually, the dosage is on the package for how much to give your dog for seizures. But a general rule is that smaller dogs need a smaller amount than large dogs. If you are having trouble figuring out how much you can give your dog contact your veterinarian for advice or the company, you purchased the product from. It is best to give a small amount and slowly increase until you see the desired effect.
CBD oil can also help your dog with pain and inflammation from arthritis. It can also help with the repair of the natural skin barrier that we see disrupted with a skin infection.
Seizures in dogs can be scary at first. Supplements make a great addition to help your pet with seizures. Your veterinarian can help you can determine what is causing the seizures and get your pet on track to living a good healthy life.
Dr. Sara Ochoa DVM
Since she was a little girl, she knew that her dream was to become a veterinarian. With a tremendous passion and love for animals that makes her a great source of knowledge for others. She lives happily with her husband Greg and her babies Ruby the Schnoodle, and Bam-Bam the bunny.