My dog is ill

I came home to find Zoe lying on the floor, breathing hard and foaming at the mouth. She soon started convulsing violently. :eek: :frowning: :frowning:

Fortunately I found an emergency vet 15 minutes away. And Zoe seemed to be doing a little better by the time I got her there - she actually walked around and drank some water there. They did the blood work and the blood chemistry is “all over the place” - low potassium and low BUN being the most notable. I have no idea what that meant but it was explained to me that it’s consistent with a seizure, but unknown cause. The doctor’s pretty sure she’ll pull through, but I understand she’s not out of the woods yet.

I was also told epilepsy is a possible cause. I’m starting to wonder if that was the reason she was abandoned - would that be possible? (I adopted her about 5 months ago, haven’t had any health problems during that time.)

Sorry for a downer thread, but if anyone has any related experiences or insights…


I hope she gets better and it is nothing serious


It’s already “serious” but I know what you mean. She was hooked up to an IV drip and breathing a little easier when I left her at the animal clinic. I was assured there’s a vet on duty 24 hours a day. I suppose I’m lucky I could find such care on a Saturday night.

Poor Zoe. :frowning:

I’m aspiring to be a vet in the future because of my love for animals. I hope that her life continues to be happy and long lived, regardless of her medical conditions. Show her all the love in the world, and good luck.

If its simply epilepsy it might not be as bad as you think.

My dog has had 5 seizures in the last 15 months or so. 2 on the first day he ever had one, then none for over a year, then three in the space of about 2 weeks. His may be caused by elevated triglycerides, (10x higher than normal when he had the first seizure) or he may jsuthave epilepsy.

When he has the seizures its horrible to witness, he foams, pees himself, his spine bows, his teeth chatter and his whole body thrashes and goes rigid. It’s pretty damn nasty. But he’s not conscious. When he starts to come to, he’s confused and it sometiems takes him a few minutes to remember who we are, but then he gets over it and he’s his normal self.

It’s much worse for those who see it than the dog who experiences it. Just make sure he doesn’t bang his head on anything. If you’re lucky, the seizures will be limited.

Sending good vibes your way; I hope Zoe’s fine.

(By the way, your picture link isn’t working for me.)


I have to say I followed your adoption threads and photos closely, as you described your search so well, and really showed your commitment to your dogs. Not to mention that you picked two of the cutest animals.

I have nothing constructive to add except good wishes for a quick explanation of what is going on, and a speedy recovery for Zoe.



Poor Zoe, and also poor you! Hope they get a handle on what is wrong soon! I had a dog with epilepsy. He would have a seizure around once a year. Awful to watch, but he was fine when he came around, except he would usually sleep the rest of the day. He lived a long and happy life, otherwise.

Thanks everyone. I just got a call from the vet saying she’s doing great. :slight_smile: They still want to keep her there till tonight to observe but she’s definitely out of the woods.

Sorry about the picture link, I don’t know what’s wrong… Here is the same photo on another site. Here is another photo.

Keeping my fingers crossed that Zoe recovers fully ! The gang are sending Pappy Kisses and Setter Smoochies to both you and Zoe. And a ((((hug)))) from me , as well.


Glad to hear she’s doing so well. Ideopathic epilepsy (i.e. seizures without a known underlieing cause) is relatively common in dogs. If they are severe they can be controlled with daily medication.

Seizures are one of the most emergencies at dog shows - something that points to how often they occur in dogs. Stick with your vet, though, to make sure they rule out other things it might be.

When I was young, we had a miniature poodle with epilepsy. The seizures were very hard to watch and we helped him all we could. He went to the vet almost every month. He lived to the ripe old age of 13 years!

I do hope your dog pulls through. Please love your furbaby as much as you can, then love her some more! Do all you can, as you will get every ounce of pure love that she can muster in return!

Best wishes to Zoe!

She’s gorgeous.

I’m glad to hear she’s doing better. Keep us informed, if you’re willing.

Zoe is a cutie! She looks like she has some sheltie or collie in her (my favorites).

We had a chihuahua with epilepsy when I was growing up. This was in the days before seizure meds for dogs (early 70’s). The dog would have a seizure every few months or so. As others have said, it was frightening to watch, but the dog seemed to handle it okay. He’d be a bit tired afterwards, but no lasting damage. He lived to around 15. The epilepsy wasn’t a factor in his demise (he was hit by a car while staying with my grandparents).

Best wishes to Zoe. That’s great that you have an emergency vet so close. I have one about the same distance, and the few times I’ve had to bring my dogs there, I’ve been glad for the short trip. It also makes visiting them while their in the hosipital much easier.

I’ve had two dogs with epilepsy. Depending on how frequently your dog has seizures, she may need medication. They usually start with phenobarbitol (inexpensive) and only go on from there if it’s not effective.

I feel your pain, though. A month or two after we adopted our Ivan dog, he started having seizures that wouldn’t stop. Luckily, we were close to an emergency vet. They kept him overnight and shot him up with valium while I went home and frantically researched canine epilepsy and its treatment. His seizures were pretty mild and easily controlled.

My Sasha dog started having seizures when she was about 7. Hers were harder to control, but we had found a good combination of phenobarbitol and potassium bromide before she died of cancer two years later.

Best wishes to Zoe!

That is a beautiful dog. :slight_smile: I am sorry to hear that you had to deal with such a scary situation. I hope things start looking up soon.

If it is epilepsy, don’t worry too much, my dog is epileptic. It is very scary to watch, but according to my vet, they are not painful to the dog (as much as we think). But there are a few different types of seizures, (just like w/ humans). Grand Mal, petite mal, cluster , and probably more than that. Grand Mals can cause temporary blindness, incontienence, etc. Petite Mals are not as bad, the dog does not lose conciousness, and usually once the seizure is done will just jump up and be fine like nothing happened. (like my dog does). A cluster seizure is more than one seizure in a 24 hour period. (of any type).
What my vet told me to do is keep a log of Norton’s (my dog) seizures. Recording everything, date time of day, was the tv on, were lights on, the radio, what was he doing before (chewing a rawhide), and the duration of the seizure. This could help figure out triggers for the seizure. Like w/ humans, certain envirnmental factors can cause siezures . With my dog, we’ve figured out that chewing rawhides generally leads to seizure activities. The overstimulation of chewing can do that. So after cutting rawhides out, he hasn’t had a seizure in almost 7 months.
Check out online about epilepsy in dogs, you’ll find it’s more common than you think. But more importantly talk to you vet! Research medication. My dog is not medicated , b/c his seizures are not too bad, or too often (anymore), my vet and I agree that the medication will actually be worse for him. Most of the medications for epilepsy can cause liver and kidney issues in dogs, so talk to your vet.
And make sure you love your puppy during a seizure, turn of lights, watch near stairs, be quiet, remove other animals from the room, and watch your hands near the dogs mouth.
Good Luck!

Thanks again for all the info and kind thoughts. I brought her home about an hour ago and she’s doing great. :slight_smile: :slight_smile: She seems a bit tired but she’s relaxed and eating normally. No medication or followups prescribed for now.

But nobody knows what exactly happened… We don’t even know whether the severe electrolyte imbalance was the cause of the seizure or the effect. I sure hope this is the one and only time, but if not, at least I won’t panic so badly next time. :smack:

Big hugs to Zoe from her online poochie pal Dolly. So glad to see I came in to this thread late enough to know Zoe is doing “great” and you guys are working towards keeping her great in the future.

Dolly sends extra love because she just had a quick lump removal surgery that took both her and mommy by surprise. She’s also groggy this weekend.