Seeing your dog have a seizure is one of the most terrifying things that can happen to a pet parent. Even though we may feel powerless and out of control in these circumstances, there are things we can do to ensure a safe recovery for our dogs. To learn what to do if you see a dog having a seizure, we consulted Dr. Jerry Klein, the AKC’s Chief Veterinary Officer.
Why Do Dogs Have Convulsions?
Dr. Klein says, “First of all, a seizure is an indication, not an illness.” “It’s a sign that your brain is doing some weird motor stuff,” they said. Idiopathic epilepsy is one of many possible causes. Epilepsy is a complex disorder, and veterinary experts still don’t know what causes it. Low blood sugar, severe anemia, cancer, brain tumors, brain trauma, metabolic illnesses, and toxic exposure are some more reasons of seizures in dogs.
How do Convulsions Appear?
Dr. Klein stresses the difficulty of determining whether or not your dog is experiencing a seizure. A Grand Mal seizure can force your dog to spasm all over. Some seizures, although more obvious, might be confined, such as a facial tremor, or manifest as a rapid commencement of rhythmic motions or behaviors, such as peculiar barking. Most animals recover fast after seizures of any sort, but for their owners, it may seem like a very long period.
Is Your Dog Having a Seizure? What Should You Do?
Dr. Klein says, “When you’re with an animal that’s experiencing a seizure, there are a few things to remember.” While your dog is having a seizure, you can both stay safe if you follow these steps:
- Keep your cool. Your dog’s well-being is dependent on your capacity to persevere during this trying process.
- Learn the time. For your doctor to get a full picture of your dog’s condition, he or she will need to know when the seizures began and how long they lasted. Ask a bystander to record the seizure on his phone if there is one, and then take the footage to your vet to explain what happened.
- Even though your dog seems alert and hurting, know that he is not.
While having a seizure, dogs (and humans) will not ingest their tongues. Do not reach out for his tongue; he has a nasty bite.
- It is not indicative of rabies if a seizing dog has foaming at the mouth or heavy drooling.
Keep your dog away from any steps, give him a pillow for his head, and cuddle and console him softly until he starts to come out of his seizure.
- Some canines may have to go to the bathroom. The seizure is neither improved or worsened in any way by this.
- Long-lasting convulsions in dogs may lead to dangerously high body temperatures (overheating). While attempting to chill your dog with cold water or damp cloths applied to his groin, neck, paws, and head is helpful, getting him to the doctor as soon as possible is of utmost importance.
- After a seizure in your dog, you should always contact your regular or emergency vet, even if your dog looks fine.
- Get a notebook going or make a quick note on your phone to record the date, time, and duration of your dog’s seizures. A veterinarian may then use this information to determine whether your dog’s seizures follow a certain pattern.
- A dog is said to be having “cluster seizures” if it has many seizures in a 24-hour period.
- It is imperative that you have your dog checked out by a vet ASAP.