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Old 09-30-2009, 08:50 AM   #1
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Default Difference between a dog seizure or stroke?

Ok brethren, I need some information.

Last night as my wife and I ate supper, our Cocker Spaniel (Tanner) has some type of "fit." My first thought was this must be a seizure, but I've never seen one before. It scared my wife to tears. Poor Tanner didn't know what was happening. One of his back legs seemed to lock up, he trembled terribly and stumbled around. This lasted for about maybe a minute and then he was fine. We payed close attention to him the rest of the night and he seemed unaffected.

Before this happened, I had been home a while and he and I had been outside for about an hour. Since he likes to wander off sometimes, I have to keep a close eye on him. So, I know he didn't get into anything outside. We keep his food and water inside and away from chemicals and I know he didn't get into anything inside either.

He's 2 years old, so I'm pretty sure he's too young for a stroke, but I'm no vet. Does anyone have any experience or knowledge in this area? Is there anything that can be done for him, if it happens again? I really appreciate any tips, facts, suggestions, prayers... anything to keep Tanner safe and my wife at ease.

Thanks,
Letney
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Old 09-30-2009, 08:59 AM   #2
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Could have been a focal seizure. Sometimes their patella (kneecap) will slip to the side and cause their leg to lock up. A stroke is not likely at this age and the symptoms/recovery/timeframe do not fit. Feel free to e-mail me. I am a veterinarian in Houston/Katy. If you would like, you can PM me your info and I can give you a call and answer any other questions you may have.

Mike
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Old 09-30-2009, 09:04 AM   #3
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A true stroke would most likely be followed by some kind of neurological impairment. Even if it was a TIA (temporary ischemic attack) there would typically be some impairment even if it only lasted a day or two. The fact that your dog had a "fit" and then was good to go afterward, would probably not lead one to believe it was stroke related. Seizures are not rare in dogs and the description of his leg going stiff along with him trembling for a short duration I would guess is more apt to be some type of seizure. Either way, a trip to the vet is paramount. Not all seizures are epilepsy related and can be induced by other means. The fact that he had been outside could mean he ingested something that precipitated the seizure. Get him checked out.

The power of TBH is amazing. Call Mike above.

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Old 09-30-2009, 09:06 AM   #4
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i know my dog has seizers if we dont give her a pill twice a day. what she does is just locks up and her whole body will just start shaking its nuts, the first time it happened i didnt know what to do. but all you can do when he is having a seizer is just try and make sure he doesnt hurt himself by falling on something or hitting his head. but you have to make sure you dont hold him tight where he can move when he is having an episode. and besides that get him to the vet and checked out bc they do have medicine for that. with the medicune she has been fine since. so best of luck, and i def know the feeling of not knowing what to do bc you do kinda feel helpless when it happens. Best of Luck!!!
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Old 09-30-2009, 09:14 AM   #5
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Just an FYI. My email is always open to fellow TBHer's with any questions regarding their pets. I am usually pretty quick in replying. Good luck to everyone this weekend.
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Old 09-30-2009, 09:15 AM   #6
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Thanks yall for the help. Is there anything that we can do for him while it happens (Lord forbid it does)?
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Old 09-30-2009, 09:17 AM   #7
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just saw your post reaper, thanks for the tips. we'll get him looked at for sure. thanks for the open email Mike. Good luck to you all also.
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Old 09-30-2009, 09:23 AM   #8
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No. Like Sully said, just make sure he cannot fall off anything or hit his head if he has a full (grand mal) seizure. Do not try to put your hand in his mouth, no matter what. If it happens again, go see your veterinarian. Epilepsy is the most common cause of seizures in dogs between the ages of 2 and 6/7. However there are other things that need to be checked and ruled out. They will likely run some bloodwork to check a few things. Assuming this is a seizure, as long as he has them infrequently, it is not necessary to put him on any medication. If the start to happen weekly or even monthly, then it is time. A single seizure episode is not damaging at all. However, if it is prolonged, i.e. minutes, then there can be permanent damage. The majority of seizures only last seconds to a minute or two, but seem longer. After the seizure, they are typically groggy or out of it for a while, seemingly dazed. Could take a few minutes or up to hours to be back to normal.

Mike
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Old 09-30-2009, 09:25 AM   #9
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Sorry, meant Reaper33 not Sully, scrolled to far
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Old 09-30-2009, 09:35 AM   #10
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Thanks again Mike. I will inform the wife.
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Old 09-30-2009, 10:04 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by agvet2004 View Post
Just an FYI. My email is always open to fellow TBHer's with any questions regarding their pets. I am usually pretty quick in replying. Good luck to everyone this weekend.
What a great offer! TBH is a heck of a resource for all things!

I have a Lab that has (had) grand mal seizures. He would always have them in a deep sleep (usually btwn 1-4 am). His lasted 30 seconds to a minute maybe. A telltale sign that they have had one (if you weren't present) is they will empty their bladder and bowel. Yuck!

Mine had been on phenobarbital with no liver damage now for 4 or 5 years.
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Old 09-30-2009, 10:14 AM   #12
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Our Golden retriever will have one ( a seizure) about every 2 or 3 months. She is about 11 years old. She will salivate and drool at first licking her chops then tremble a little then always vomit. We were also told not to put her on medication unless we want her acting drugged so to wait till it happens a lot more frequently.
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Old 09-30-2009, 10:24 AM   #13
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The majority of animals on phenobarbitol will act drugged for a time (usually not that long), but will then become acclimated and be back to their bouncing, happy selves.
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Old 09-30-2009, 10:27 AM   #14
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Quote:
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The majority of animals on phenobarbitol will act drugged for a time (usually not that long), but will then become acclimated and be back to their bouncing, happy selves.
Yep. Mine was fine after a few days. He just acts old and lazy now.
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