Epilepsy in dogs: everything you need to know

Epilepsy is the most common neurological disease in dogs and causes seizures that must be treated and controlled.

Do you know why canine epilepsy affects one in a hundred purebred dogs? And why are mongrel dogs less prone to this disease? The Epilepsy is the most common neurological disease in dogs, and also very dangerous. This article explains what canine epilepsy is, how to take care of a sick dog at home, what is its treatment, what to do in case of an attack and why almost half of the cases of epilepsy are genetic in origin.

Epilepsy in dogs: what is this disease?

Epilepsy is the most common neurological disease in dogs. Epilepsy affects 1% of purebred dogs and up to one in five dogs in the most severe cases.

Epilepsy in dogs, as in people, encompasses a set of chronic neurological symptoms that include severe unprovoked seizures. These spasms involve abnormal or excessive brain activity in the animal, which can affect a localized part of the brain but also spread to other areas. Seizures of epilepsy in dogs happen randomly and unpredictably. They are produced by an enormous discharge of energy in the brain that triggers pedalling movements in the extremities, profuse salivation, uncontrolled urination or defecation, and loss of consciousness .

Can dog epilepsy be cured?

Canine epilepsy can be cured in some cases and, in others, at least reduce the frequency of seizures.

When epilepsy has no specific cause (such as a tumor), the disease is chronic and has no cure. However, with proper treatment, the recurrence of epileptic seizures decreases considerably.

But seizures are not always due to epilepsy, since they can be caused by pathologies and metabolic disorders, including hypoglycemia. Hence the importance of discovering the cause of seizures, as there are treatments to reduce the frequency of seizures.

How to care for a dog with epilepsy at home?

Every dog ​​is different, and this also counts in the case of epilepsy. There are some who have attacks on a regular basis and there are those who suffer them sporadically. However, with adequate medication, the symptoms of the disease are minimized, although they do not disappear.

Treatment for the epileptic dog is essential, as it will reduce its number and duration: an epileptic attack lasts a little less than a minute, but medication will make it shorter.

Epilepsy in dogs, what to do in an attack?

Seizures of epilepsy in dogs begin unpredictably, the result of a discharge of energy in the brain that causes seizures. In these cases there are some important guidelines to remember.

The first is to remain calm and position the animal so that it does not hit or fall. It is advisable to lie on a soft surface, such as a bed, mat, or cushions, so that he is comfortable and does not hurt himself. Also, you should never try to stick your tongue out because there is a danger that it will bite you. Once the epileptic seizure is over, the dog must be allowed to recover in a quiet place because it will be exhausted.

Is epilepsy in dogs inherited?

Although not all types of epilepsy in dogs are the same, genes largely determine the appearance of the disease. ” 40% of epilepsy cases in dogs have a genetic origin. Scientists have studied how canine genetic material reveals the propensity of an animal to suffer from epilepsy and have discovered a dozen genes responsible for this disease.

Epilepsy is a dangerous brain disorder that affects about 1% of pedigree dogs, but whose incidence is multiplied in the case of breeds with highly controlled reproduction by man, such as the beagle or border collie.

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