Seizures in Pets – A Primer

vet #epilepsy #seizure ***trigger warning – seizures are shown at 2:40-3:16*** Hey team! In this episode I’m going to share some …


  1. Thank you so much for this. You covered so much of the uncertainty we have surrounding this. Far from dry material, I was fully engaged the entire time. This will help me make an informed decision for my girl who is 8yra old and had a partial seizure on Sunday

  2. I feel so guilty about considering putting my 113 lb silver lab down bc of seizures !
    He has always had bad issuers w allergies etc bc of the silver coloring ( breeding ) alopecia etc .
    I have 4 dogs and am 61 yr old and live alone .I tell you this bc that is the only reason I’m considering putting him down / I cannot lift him , he is so stumbling after etc . The mess I have to clean up after a seizure is very hard ! Tonight I had to lift a 200 lb dresser to remove a rug he urinated on besides stripping his bed etc / it’s just very hard work at my age .
    He only started these in Feb and they last less than 2 min but I have 3 other dogs – the littlest one is a Westie (17 lbs )is very aggressive during them bc he’s vulnerable & I have to immediately put her in a crate bc she wants to attack him . I am feeling awful guilt bc I feel his quality of life is so hard (mainly bc of his giant size )
    He had one 2 weeks ago when I took a bath ! So I stay home w my dogs and he’s always in same area as me bc if these seizures now , but gosh- I can’t take a bath without having to come out and clear a entire room of urine etc now !
    I think the fact they happen at 2 am doesn’t help . I tried to get the emergency medince to do in his nose but I’m such a nervous wreck during it o can’t figure out hot to draw the medicine out and remove a needle etc seizure was almost over . On top of this he’s very expensive to care for / This dog already has to have 230$ Cytopoint injections each month bc of constant allergies so he is a very $$$ animal . I’m constant running him to vet for shots etc and he gets carsick so I have to give him cerenia to even do that !
    As you an see I’m exhausted but I feel like I’m giving up on him too quickly ?how do ppl decide when is too much ? He’s 8 yrs old btw

  3. I’m in school right now to be a vet tech and I’ve had seizures since I was 12 years old. I would love to specialize in neuroscience as well. Currently taking keepra and zonisamide but I’m still unable to drive due to the frequency of my seizures. It’s my ultimate goal to be able to help animals suffering from seizures. Love your videos!!

  4. My dog has been diagnosed as having grand mal seizures, yet doesn't display any jerking motions. Instead, she will fall over to one side and become completely rigid "posturing" and unresponsive. This is accompanied by decreased respiratory effort, which sometimes requires manual stimulation to maintain respirations. We almost lost her during a two hour episode of status epilepticus. After a seizure, she goes into a deep sleep. Since starting Zonisamide, she has only had an occasional episode of increased lip-licking followed by drowsiness. A trigger that we must still avoid is flashing lights, as this is what triggered the lengthy episode of status epilepticus. Now, when we have to transport her at night, we cover her carrier with a light-weight dark cloth.

  5. Hey doc, I love your videos! Would love to see you do a video on medical cannabis. The industry is constantly growing and since the endocannabanoid system is largely neurological, I’d love to hear your take on the potential pros and cons for this use as a veterinary neurologist. Keep up the great work!

  6. Video idea: Syncope vs Seizure and how to tell them apart. I know, at times they can look very similar, with very short duration and absence of post ictal phase pointing towards syncope vs seizure.

  7. My little rescue chihuahua started having seizures in the first year that I had her, at the age of about between 1 to 2 years old. It was so scarey! She is now doing fantastic on Zonisamide. Your video is the first time any vet gave me a more detailed understanding of seizures. Thanks!!!!!

  8. Hi Dr. Cellini, I am an exotic animal technician and I own a rabbit with a seizure disorder so I came across this video. Unfortunately there is no information out there regarding rabbits and seizures that I can find (please let me know if you have any suggestions or have treated any rabbits) so I read anything I can regarding dog/cat seizures. Just want to say that I appreciate this video for owners to learn what to look for and know that there are diagnostics/treatment options to try. Thanks!

  9. Do you have any experience with treating demodex in dogs that have epilepsy and other neurological symptoms? My senior pit mix just had a positive skin scrape. He has had focal seizures, tremors, and ataxia since I adopted him 2 years ago and just had the first grand mal (that I’ve witnessed). All of the meds I was offered to treat the demodex have his symptoms listed as side effects, so I’m very hesitant to use them. Neuro history- after a clear MRI and spinal tap, one neurologist diagnosed him w idiopathic epilepsy and another said he had survived distemper.

  10. YouTube suggested this video to me and coincidentally, you actually saw our cat Cheddar a few years ago when she first stared having seizures. She's been seizure free for over two years now. We appreciate you!

  11. My dog has idiopathic epilepsy, we knew that for sure because along with normal blood work, he was 3 years old, and his brother also began having seizures around the same time. Unfortunately he has a cluster of 2-3 seizures every two weeks just about. The longest he’s gone without one (besides when he first started pheno) was a month. It is extremely taxing and difficult, especially since he was intended to be my emotional support animal. I feel like I’m at that breaking point but don’t want to give up on him. He’s my first dog that was supposed to my responsibility but at almost 22 years old I feel like my life is being consumed by trying to take care of him. I’ve considered rehoming him but my parents don’t want to, but they also don’t want to take over all of his care (we do about 50/50 give or take). Just hearing some validation is help l and I’m glad you’re trying to educate people about this disorder

  12. I found your channel at a great time. My 3 year old Westie has been presenting with what her vet thinks is either epilepsy or idiopathic head tremors. We were referred to a neurologist and I've been very nervous about the whole thing. I've owned dogs my entire life, many with cardiac, GI, and kidney issues; but never any neurological issues so I'm feeling uneasy about it. Your videos have helped bring some peace of mind though and I don't feel as intimidated now. Thanks for the informative content!

  13. Hi Dr. Cellini, thanks for another great video! I'm wondering if you ever have students come shadow you? I'm starting vet school at Oregon State in the fall and I'm quite interested in neurology. Let me know if this is something you'd be open to talking more about. Thanks!

  14. Very cool! My sisters dog has seizures and is starting on Keppra. Are there studies on Simparica having to do with causing seizures? My dog is still on Simparica and I worry this caused the epilepsy in his cousin.

  15. This was very interesting.. our toy poodle started haveing these weird episodes where she'd freeze up stare into space then fall over with stiff legs in air like she looked like a dead stuffed dog. After 2 min just get up and be fine. On vets advised she said try to video it if happens again so 4 mo later we did showed it to her and was told looks like a absent seizure. Then rt there I said look at her eyes it's happening. So she protected her said yes that's what it is. Said if lasts more then 2 min bring her rt in. Said they usually grow out and since she's fine and happy after no meds were warranted. After a yr and a half it never happened again. She was 2 and she's now 12. But it was scary to us so I really feel for the pets and owners who have these types. Thank u

  16. Hello James! Excellent vídeo again. Very clear. I have a patient in my clínic, a 5 year old dog, who startet with general seizures a year after a fall of a height of three floors at the age of 4 ( i saved him from this fall). I started with phenobarbital, and he did very well. I also did phenobarbital concentration in blood, and it was almost perfect. But after a time the frequency of the seizures increased despite of the medication. In between he had a positive result of neospora and toxoplasma, but with a very low title. I did not think that the title was important, but one doctor in the university hospital prescribed doxicicline, and after finishing the treatment, seizures stayed the same.
    In your opinion, should i try to associate phenobarbital with Pottassium bromide?
    Blood work ( hepatic, renal, etc) was ok.
    It is really difficult if not imposible here to do a mri in pets.
    Perhaps an interesting case for You to hear.

  17. I really like the epilepsy breakdown!. I’m an emergency vet and the moment when I talk to clients I use the extracranial vs intracranial method but maybe reactive, structural and idiopathic is a better, less broad breakdown 😍

  18. Dr.Cellini I really hope you see this!! I'm so confused! My dog started having seizures when he was 3, and they diagnosed him with idiopathic epilepsy. He's 6 now and being treated with phenobarbital. He has a seizure about every 6-7 weeks like clockwork, that last anywhere between 3 to 5 minutes. However, no vet has ever told me that I need to bring my dog in each time he has a seizure. Should I be doing that??

    Also, what, if anything, can I do during a seizure to make it less severe, or make it stop sooner? I heard a dog's body temp will get higher during a seizure, so what I've been doing is putting an ice pack on his lower back and putting a fan on him during the seizure. I always lay with him and try to comfort him, and keep him from hurting himself during it. Is all of that ok? And what else can I do to help him?

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