Seizures In Dogs: Causes, Symptoms, Treatment, And Prevention

Watching your dog have a seizure can be terrifying, especially if it's the first time. To help your dog, it's important to understand common causes of seizures, what symptoms your dog may exhibit, and how they can be treated and even prevented.

What Causes Seizures in Dogs?

Similar to humans, there are a number of things that can cause seizures to occur in dogs.

Dogs can have seizure disorders, but other medical conditions can cause seizures as well, such as kidney disease or blood sugar issues. If your dog has no history of medical conditions that can cause seizures, other causes may include eating poison or a traumatic head injury. While seizure disorders can occur at any time in your dog's life, it's especially important to watch for signs of seizures during an illness with a fever, after an injury, or during times of great stress.

What Are the Symptoms of a Seizure?

While you may think that a seizure will be easy to spot, think again. Some seizures are so small that you need to know what to look for in order to notice it.

Obvious signs of a seizure include collapsing, stiffening of the body, muscle twitching, and foaming at the mouth. Your dog may or may not lose consciousness during a seizure, and the seizure may be preceded or followed by disorientation. Less obvious signs of a seizure include chomping or tongue chewing, drooling, or repetitive motions such as shaking of the head in a certain direction.

How Are Seizures Treated and Can They Be Prevented?

While certain seizure disorders can be treated and certain types of seizures can be prevented, not all of them can.

If your dog experiences frequent seizures, his vet may prescribe medication. Once the dosage is right for your dog, it can help to treat the condition that's causing the seizures and prevent them from occurring. Illness and stress can cause the medications to not work, however, so your dog may still be susceptible to seizures. While seizure disorders cannot be prevented, certain triggers can. If you notice your dog is more susceptible to seizures after a certain event, avoidance can help to lessen the amount of seizures your dog experiences. Keeping a journal of your dog's symptoms and things they ate or did prior to a seizure can be helpful in finding and eliminating triggers.

To learn more about seizure disorders in dogs and other things that may lead to a seizure, consult with your dog's veterinarian, such as Stroudsburg Animal Hospital.