Seizures
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Thread: Seizures

  1. #1
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    DefaultSeizures

    Has anyone had experiences with their labs having seizures following interaction with a household product? Walter had what I can only describe as a mild seizure last night. We've only had him a week, and the shelter did not indicate that they'd witnessed these in the time that he was with them. I called our ER vet immediately and within a minute or so it was over and he was recovering. I am taking him this afternoon to be evaluated by our usual vet. What I did note is that this happened within 30 minutes of cleaning the kitchen floor and spraying a bit of Febreeze in the family room. This certainly could just be a coincidence and we'll find out more this afternoon. Thanks for any feedback.

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    Dani's Avatar
    Dani is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Seizures

    more than likely it's because of a huge change in his life and probably stress induced. Have his thyroid checked first and foremost.
    Dani, Rider & Rookie
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  4. #3
    Bob Pr. is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Seizures

    How old is he and what was he doing when he had the seizure? -- and after?

    Can you decribe more what you saw?

    If he's a puppy and he was sleeping, be aware that puppies frequently have twitches, jerks, etc., that may last for quite a few seconds at a time. Even older dogs do, too.
    Puff [YF, AKC field line (from competing HT/FT breeder) 62 lbs, dob: 8-'01]

    Bess [BF, AKC bench line (from competing show breeder) 55 lbs., 1967-1981] "Poor Bess, the Wonder Dog":
    http://forum.justlabradors.com/showt...?p=748#post748

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  6. #4
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    DefaultRe: Seizures

    He's 4 years old (approximately, we're unsure of his actual age.) We were all in the kitchen, and he quickly walked over to the corner and layed down, and I initially thought he had a leg cramp, the way his hind leg looked tense. So I massaged it a bit, but then his whole body seemed to get rigid and his mouth was tightly closed. He started drooling excessively and whining. He wasn't convulsing, but he was moving around, shaking slightly, with his limbs extended. His eyes were fixated on one spot. It felt like forever, but it probably only lasted a minute and a half. It seemed like he gradually eased out of it and afterward, he was panting heavily and paced around the kitched a bit. He did seem wobbly on his feet when he first got up.

  7. #5
    Bob Pr. is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Seizures

    I went to my Giffin & Carlson's "Dog Owner's Home Veterinary Handbook" and there were many different types of seizures described, each depending on a particular causal condition (epilepsy, focal motor, post-encephalitic, post vaccination, etc., etc.).

    None of the descriptions IMO matched what you described but your concern is understandable and deserved.

    I do suggest getting a copy of G&C's book -- it may be available in your local library or bookstore and it's sold by Amazon for about $24 + S&H if I remember right. That'll put you in a better position to see if his symptoms match the descriptions. And it might indicate something else other than a seizure that needs attention.

    G&C's "DOHVH" is an excellent book on all phases of dog/puppy health and will save time, money, worry, needless trips to the vet, as well as unfortunate delays in seeking vet assistance.
    Puff [YF, AKC field line (from competing HT/FT breeder) 62 lbs, dob: 8-'01]

    Bess [BF, AKC bench line (from competing show breeder) 55 lbs., 1967-1981] "Poor Bess, the Wonder Dog":
    http://forum.justlabradors.com/showt...?p=748#post748

  8. #6
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    DefaultRe: Seizures

    My dog started having short seizures when he was around 2 or 3. Rusty would try to stand & not be able to & he would have a slight tremor throughout his body. They would only last for a short time & he had them every now & then. I took him to the vet and described the symptoms. He did blood tests and found that he was having seizures but the test were inconclusive as to why. He has been on Phenobarbital since these then & he has only had a few seizures. The last time he had one it lasted a lot longer than usual and his symptoms were worse than normal. I called the vet the next day & Rusty was in his office shortly after having his blood drawn again. It seems that his Phenobarbital levels were low. He increased his dose & knock on wood, he hasn't had one since. I think it is worth taking him to the vet & having a blood test done. It has done wonders for Rustys seizures. Hope this helps.
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    DefaultRe: Seizures

    I had a lab that turned out to have genetic epilepsy. He had his first seizure at about two and he had two or three a year. His mild ones sounded like yours. Once or twice he had a real big one. Scary! But he lived to a ripe old age of fourteen. I found that he'd come out of them faster if you just made everything quieter and didn't stimulate him.

  10. #8
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    DefaultRe: Seizures

    We sit on the ground with him & gently pet him. We let him know that it is going to be ok. He is very lovey once he comes out of it. He licks our faces or hands, whatever he can reach at the time.
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  11. #9
    Kris L. Christine's Avatar
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    DefaultSEIZURES--Possible Triggers/Causes

    One of the potential adverse reactions to vaccinations is seizures -- has your dog recently been vaccinated?

    Significant calcium deficiency can cause seizure-like episodes, have you had a blood test to check calcium and phosphorous levels? High phosphorous foods (meat, eggs, nuts) bind with calcium, as do high oxalate foods (oatmeal) and may deplete your dog's levels to a point where it will cause problems. Poison will also cause seizures.

    You might want to do an online search for "canine hypocalcemia" or just "hypocalcemia". This link http://www.lowchensaustralia.com/breeding/eclampsia.htm will take you to an article on this subject in which it states that the signs of low calcium levels (hyocalcemia) are: "Muscle tremors, restlessness, panting, incoordination, grand mal seizures and fever as high as 106."

    Further, the above articles thats a one of the possible causes: Poor Nutrition - "Home brewed" diets usually are at fault. The owner innocently may be adding too much unbalanced meat to the bitch's diet, thinking the extra protein is beneficial. What's really happening is the calcium to phosphorus ratio is out of balance because the amount of useful calcium in the food is actually reduced! The ideal contains a ratio of calcium to phosphorus of 1.2 to 1. (Many organ meats such as liver have a ratio of calcium to phosphorus of 1 to 15!! Liver is great for dogs but if it comprises a large part of the diet, the calcium/phosphorus ratio of the diet will be improper.)

    If you have chickens, you should be aware that their droppings are extremely high in phosphorous and can cause a problem if your dog eats too many of them. If the droppings are charging your dog's blood with phosphorous, it's going to drain him/her of calcium in order to maintain proper pH balance and cause muscle twitching, etc...

    Check this link HPA | Phosphorous | FAQs on phosphorous from the Health Protection Agency, especially this quote: "It has been used as a rat and rodent poison.."

    Check this site Eclampsia (Puerperal Tetany, Milk Fever, Hypocalcemia) in Dogs "Eclampsia, also called milk fever or puerperal tetany, is an acute, life-threatening disease caused by low blood calcium levels (hypocalcemia) in dogs ...."

    One of our dogs developed severe seizures after the second of his puppy rabies shots -- his head shook so hard we thought his eyes would pop out, it was terrifying. After this seizure activity triggered by the vaccine, he became prone to them from other triggers. Whenever he ate too many high phosphorous foods (or chicken droppings), he would seize. Giving him 1/2 a quart of plain organic yogurt would calm his seizures within 15 minutes, when they were food-related.

    Personally, I would have a complete blood count done to check for mineral levels if you don't think vaccines or something your dog is eating is causing the seizures. PLUS, I would consult a Homeopathic/Holistic veterinarian for an alternative treatment.

    Kris L. Christine
    Founder, Co-Trustee
    THE RABIES CHALLENGE FUND

    The 2003 American Animal Hospital Association's Canine Vaccine Guidelines are accessible online at http://www.leerburg.com/special_report.htm .

    The 2006 American Animal Hospital Association's Canine Vaccine Guidelines are downloadable in PDF format at http://www.aahanet.org/PublicDocumen...s06Revised.pdf .
    Kris L. Christine
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  12. #10
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    DefaultRe: Seizures

    Thank you for your posts and suggestions. Walter had a cluster of seizures the other night. The first lasted 6 minutes, and the symptoms were generally the same as the last. We remained calm and kept the room quiet and sat with him. He came out of it and then within minutes slipped into a second. We took him to the ER vet (this was 1:30 a.m.) and he had yet another on the drive there.

    Blood and urine tests were done which came back negative for liver or kidney problems. Both veterinarians I've taken him to, think that it's hereditary epilepsy. We've started him on Phenobarbital, and so far he's been fine, although it's only been 2 days. I did ask if this could be related to Hypothyroidism, but given his age and overall health, they said it's unlikely. I have reservations giving him the Pheno daily, which can ultimately cause liver damage. Has anyone heard of giving them Milk Thistle to offset the potential damage to the liver? I have read this a few different places. Also, can anyone shed light on why they push the Pheno as opposed to the Potassium Bromide which seems to have less long term effects?

    This has been a very stressful experience for us, I feel like they were so quick to assume it's epilepsy and start him on meds. I know this is something they deal with often, but I just want to be doing what is best for our dog.

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