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Old 05-12-2009, 08:41 PM
Mike77 Mike77 is offline
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Default Strange "episode", but not a seizure? Your thoughts, please.

I’d like to get input on an “episode” that happened to my dog, a 5 year old JRT/Brazilian Terrier mix. He is 36 pounds and in good health (as far as I know).

Two nights ago he was relaxing on the bed, everything fine.

The first thing I noticed was that he seemed afraid/scared. He tried to hide behind me and looked confused and frightened.

About 30 seconds later, he looked like he had lost his balance and was standing with his legs bent, sort of “low to the ground”. Swaying back and forth a bit. Looked like he couldn’t walk or sit down (or move at all). He was trembling and shaking, but I wouldn’t call these convulsions (to the best of my knowledge).

I picked him up and put him on the floor. His muscles were very tight, perhaps like they were in spasm. Especially his hind quarters., but other muscles as well. Pretty much very tight all over.

I was extremely upset at this point because things looked so bad. I called for my Mom and she joined me, and I said a good prayer. I started to get dressed to take him to the Animal Hospital. I was terrified. The “episode” lasted about 5 or 6 minutes total.

After 5 or 6 minutes, all of the sudden, he seemed OK! He walked up the hallway with perfect balance, stopped and turned around to look at me. His tail was wagging. He looked like everything was fine! I felt him and he wasn’t shaking anymore at all. I said “wanna go out?” and he went right to the door, just like normal. He went outside, down a couple of steps, and walked around like he always does. No limping or anything out of the ordinary. He came back in and I gave him a snack which he ate (great appetite right off the bat). No problem at all the rest of the night. He sleeps in bed with me so I know there was no other problems all night long.

He never lost consciousness.
Never lost control of his bladder or bowels.
Did not vomit or heave/wretch.
No foaming of the mouth.
He did not yelp or cry out loud.

First thing in the morning when we woke up, I immediately noticed he was favoring his front right paw as he walked across the bed. He didn’t want to put weight on it. I saw that it was swollen. I put him down on the floor and he walked with a serious limp. Couldn’t put much weight on it at all. He held it off the ground when standing still. I checked it but didn’t see anything wrong. There were no signs of a paw problem the night before.

We took him to the vet. Here is what they said for both problems:

#1 The “episode”- They are not sure what it was. They took blood for tests. Results came back normal. Not sure what to think. May not ever happen again. If it does, can consider seizure meds (but it didn’t seem like a seizure to me). Possibly a spider bite or sting given the swollen paw the next morning???

#2 The hurt paw- Checked his leg/paw but didn’t see anything. Gave me Rx for Rimadyl for inflammation. Said to avoid running/play for a few days to let the paw heal up. If it doesn’t get better, could do an Xray.

I’d like to get thoughts on this episode. From what I’ve read, it doesn’t sound like a seizure. Perhaps a reaction to a spider bite?

Thanks in advance!

Here's a picture of "Big Boy"... we named him that because he was the biggest pup out of 3 litters

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Old 05-12-2009, 08:58 PM
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elegy elegy is offline
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seizures can take on all sorts of different forms from what looks like just staring into space to the full-on convulsions. my seizure dog only had three full-on convulsion seizures (grand mal) but he had dozens upon dozens of little seizures (mostly "chewing gum" seizures where he'd chew) or facial twitching. he may have had others that i didn't recognize as seizures.

i hope whatever it is, it's nothing serious and he stays well.
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Old 05-12-2009, 10:18 PM
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bubbatd bubbatd is offline
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Just keep watch !!! Chances was it was from a bite , but record any more occurrences . Vibes being sent !
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Old 05-13-2009, 12:15 AM
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Sounds like a seizure to me, honestly.

Emmy, my chihuahua mix, has epilepsy. And what you describe fits her seizures precisely. She suddenly gets 'scared', and will quickly come find and hide behind a human. Then, her muscles tense up, and she begans swaying, and losing her balance. She can't control her legs, can't sit, and has a hard time standing or keeping her balance. This lasts anywhere from 3-5 minutes. Once it's over, she's back to her normal self and you can't even tell anything happened.

He never lost consciousness.
Never lost control of his bladder or bowels.
Did not vomit or heave/wretch.
No foaming of the mouth.
He did not yelp or cry out loud.
Emmy doesn't do any of these things during her seizures either.

She, too, had bloodwork and x-rays of her brain (to check for tumors) done when this first started. She came back healthy as a horse, and was diagnosed with canine epilepsy. Emmy has about, on average, 1 seizure every 3 weeks or so. Her last one was about 4 days ago. Because her seizures are not severe, nor are they very frequent (my friend has a rottie who used to have several seizures a day) my vet opted not to put her on medication. Seizure medications come with some hefty side effects, so a lot of vets only prescribe them if they are truly needed.

Keep a close eye on him, if it happened again, log it down -- how long it lasted, the symptoms, what time, what was he doing at the time, ect. and contact your vet immediately for further advice. My vet is very keen on being kept very up to date on my dogs health, and requires that I contact and notify him everytime Emmy has a seizure (again, about 1 every 3 weeks or so) so that he can log it in her file for his records and can keep a record of the seizure activity himself. I also keep a seizure journal for her, which my vet looks over periodically when we go for check-ups. The journal includes the time of the seizure, the duration, what she was doing before the seizure, how she acted afterwards, the symptoms of the seizure, ect.
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Old 05-13-2009, 12:23 AM
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Gypsydals Gypsydals is offline
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To me it also sounds like it was a mild seizure. Just to be safe I would keep a log/journal of when it happens(if it happens again), what was going on,what was going on before, symptoms, how long it lasted and how he acted after.
The paw might be a spider bite, and depending on what bit her, could have brought on the seizure. It would not be unheard of for a bite or a sting to bring on a seizure.

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Old 05-14-2009, 03:03 PM
StillandSilent StillandSilent is offline
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Those sound exactly like Argon's seizures. His can be triggered by stress (the last one was caused by a bite at daycare), so maybe he was stung or injured his paw and that caused the seizure to begin?

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