My Dog Is Having A Seizure – What Do I Do?

Seeing your pet having a seizure is one of the scariest things that has happened to me as a pet owner.  I hope that by writing about my experience I can help someone else who may have this happen to them at some point in their pet ownership journey.  Twenty years ago, I had no idea what to do or what my dog having a seizure meant the first time it happened to one of our pets.  Poor little Sadie barked at me to wake me up in the middle of the night and was running around the house as I had never seen her do before.  Then she collapsed and just started shaking uncontrollably; she wouldn’t respond to anything I was saying to her.  The shaking lasted for about 2 minutes, but to me, it seemed like 20.  After the shaking stopped, she laid there for a while and slowly “woke up” and was just very tired the remainder of the night.  This was 20 years ago, our Vet didn’t have emergency hours; I didn’t know if there was a 24-hour emergency Vet anywhere like there is today.  I don’t think I slept at all the rest of the night.  Thankfully though when we did get to the Vet the next day, they didn’t find anything wrong with our girl and she lived another 12 years before having another seizure.

The next seizure was much more severe than the first.  It was at 1 o’clock in the morning.  But this time I knew what to do.  It wasn’t completely unexpected – we knew that Sadie had a nasal tumor and our time with her was growing short.  That didn’t make the seizure any less scary because it was much longer than the first – this one lasted well over five minutes.  And she did not recover from this one.  All I could do was lay beside her and talk softly to her to let her know she wasn’t alone.   Following this seizure, we took our girl to MedVet where we humanely euthanized her because we knew that was the right thing to do for her.  We loved our sweet Sadie for 14 years through her very last breath.

Please take a moment to read this article to learn more about the causes of seizures in pets, what the signs of a seizure are (because it’s not always the flailing, shaking like what we experienced with Sadie) what to do for your pet when one happens, and how to talk to your Vet.  This may one day help when you least expect it.  The more we know, the better pet owners we can be.

Nicole Laber, Fospice Mom and Board Treasurer