Seizures, including feline and canine seizures occur due to abnormal brain activity caused by confused nerve impulses. They are characterized by uncontrolled body movements. Numerous other symptoms like loss of consciousness, frothing and involuntary urination and defecation may accompany.
Seizures normally happen suddenly without warning and the first time your dog has a seizure it can be a pretty frightful experience. The manner in which you handle the situation can make a lot of difference to your pet. If you know how to handle a dog seizure it can help him to calm down.
There are two stages of how to treat a dog seizure - during the seizure and after it.
Firstly, it is important not to panic as you will be required to observe and provide the smallest detail of the symptoms and duration of the seizure to the veterinarian. Make it a point to note everything on a piece of paper as soon as the seizure is over. Also, you can calm the dog down only if you yourself are calm.
Take a deep breath, pet him gently and speak in a soft tone to your dog, calling him by his name. Remember that the dog depends upon you and you have to take care of him just as you would care for your child.
Even if the dog is conscious he is most likely to be unaware of the surroundings. Ensure that there is nothing around him that can possibly hurt him. Put a rolled towel under the dog’s head. Hold the dog’s head to prevent it from hitting the floor.
Although it may look as if the dog is about to swallow his tongue, rest assured he will not so. Do not try to put your hand in his mouth to retrieve it.
Once the seizure symptoms are gone the dog will start recovering but it may take some time.
During recovery, take the dog out for fresh air but ensure that you are beside him for some time. There is a possibility of temporarily blindness that the dog may find difficult to handle. The dog may also suffer another seizure and might need your help again.
Your dog is likely to be thirsty by the time he recovers. However he may not be in a state to look for his bowl. Offer some water to him. If the dog has a diabetic history there is a possibility of low blood sugar having caused the seizure. Offer him some thing sweet to restore his sugar levels.
The first time a seizure occurs, you should take your pet for a physical examination and blood tests to get the condition evaluated. Once the condition has been diagnosed, you need not take him to the veterinarian each time there is a seizure unless it continues for more than five minutes or there are recurrent seizures within, say, an hour.
Frequent and recurrent seizures are mainly due to feline and canine epilepsy but it may turn out to be a simple case of overexposure to household cleaners, hair sprays and paint fumes. Seizures can also occur due to metabolic diseases like diabetes, liver or kidney problems and viral or bacterial infections like distemper and tetanus.