This is an updated post from my last. I'm at my witts end. I'm not sure how much more my emotions can take. Two weeks ago we noticed Kasey acting strangely. She vommited on the floor and was swaying a little when she was sit still. She didn't convulse or twitch, no muscle spasims, from what we witnessed but it was possible those things could have occured before we came home. We brought her to the emergency vet where they tested her blood and glucose levels. Everything was perfectly normal, other then the fact that her balance was off and she was acting a little drunk. She was starring and acting confused. This all went on for the rest of the night. I checked her every hour until 5 am where I didn't awake again to check on her until 8am. I quickly ran to the kitchen (where she stays at night and while we are at work) to check her...she was back to normal. I brought her to the vet and they said possibly seizures and to put her on meds. I decided to wait for another episode, that night she started the swaying again and then in the morning it was gone, no vommiting or anything this time. The vet then ordered the meds but it would take 2 weeks to get them. Two weeks went by and we were back to normal, it was like the entire thing was one big nightmare. I then decided to make sure all floors were cleaned with bakeing soda and to elimitate the kitchen from being cleaned with chemicals. We got her into puppy training and tried to get her more social incase the episode was stress induced. Then last Sunday, we first day of training, we had so much fun, went for walks, and we were with her all day. That night the swaying started again. She did not twitch convulse, foam at the mouth or anything of that sort, she just simpley acted drunk and was swaying no starring or confustion just off balance a bit and very lethargic. Prior to all the swaying, about an hour before, Kasey was running cicles around the apartment. Acting hyper and wanting us to chase her and they she went into the swaying. The swaying and off balance walking went on from 8 pm until the next morning and again it was like it was all a bad dream. I brought her to the vet the next morning and they tested for liver shunts ...test came back normal. Now they are saying to go to a neurologist which is so expensive. I hate putting a price on my baby's life but you can only afford what you have. With her age being that she is so young is it really weird that she is having seizures? Is it most likely a brain tumor? I'm afraid I would find that its a tumor and then I won't even have the money for chemo. I'm so confused. What are your thoughts on this. Does it seem seizure like? The vet says its hard to classify because it doesn't quite measure up to be in the seizure category. Also they said if it was a seizure at her age there would be an underlying issue like a brain tumor. I don't know what to think of this. Any ideas? I'm wondering if I should put her on the meds like the vet recommended in the first place and see if the symptoms go away...or wait to see if it happens again...All input is apprechiated.
I don't know when you wrote this, but I hope this helps. I had the same problem with my Shelties and my Collie. We tried everything to pinpoint what caused the swaying, drunk-like behavior, but never found a common trigger. We went the Vet route also, but the meds had bad side effects. We finally decided to just hold and comfort our pets until the spell passed. These occurred for almost two years, but less and less frequently. Our shelties lived happily to 14 years of age, and our Collie is now 9 with no problems. I'm not saying that your Sheltie has the same problem, although the symptoms sound the same. We never went back to the vet, and the dogs outgrew the problem. I hope you find your answer, Ours was love and comfort. Sincerely, Kathy
Your dog is too young for a brain tumor (while highly unlikely it is possible). As many other poster's have stated.... seizures do come in many different forms. I myself would recommend a neurologist, in most cases because of her age you would be looking at an office exam fee. I cannot see any decent neuro vet wanting to do an MRI without trying other routes first. In my time working in neurology Shelties seemed to be the weirdest cases. Many clients came in with stories of perfectly healthy pets and the next they were zombies.
As for medications, I completly understand your concerns for side effects. Here is an article that was writen by my doctor (edited and retyped by me lol) on her website
Nick, the office manager there has a frenchie with Idiopathic Epilepsy, he knows a lot about seizures, how to deal with a pet with them, and helps many of the clients understand the effects of the medications. You have to realize that a seizure is damaging to the brain every time it happens, and as the seizures continue they send messages to other parts of the brain as if to say "hey this is fun, try it". I realize you would like to try other methods other than medications, but without guidance from a properly educated vet (mainly a neurologist) you could be damaging your dog more in the long run. Good luck to you and your baby!
Also as a side note, since most seizure episodes almost NEVER happen in the vets office (when you would like them too) it would be best for you to try and tape the episodes. One recommendation Dr.Chauvet always had. It helps them to determine what is actually going on, I would also recommend a seizure log. What time the episode happened, how long it lasted, what happened during the episode, and how the dog recovered.
Thank you both for the reasurrance. I am looking into things, and I started a journal for Kasey's every move 2 weeks ago when this all started. Knowing that this is likely not a tumor, makes me feel a little better, but I still worry. I read so many articles online that I've been scared to death. But I feel a little better now and I will be getting in touch with a neurologist today just so we have a plan.
Just spoke with a neurologist and a initial exam fee is 120...not so bad, but I want to wait to find a pattern. My journal shows its after she eats and most typically at night. I'm going to wait this out a bit and see if it happens again. She's a puppy and no matter how clean I keep my apartment, she still finds a way to chew toilet paper, wrappers, Qtips, and anything else she can get her little mouth and paws on. So I am revamping the apartment again. I'm putting everything on lock down (as my boyfriend and I are calling this new precaution we have been takeing but are now putting into extreme force) And then we will watch and wait to see if this shows up again. My boyfriend and I are scared for Kasey but overall she is healthy and we know we just need to have a plan and keep positive. Thanks for the feedback...any other feedback is still apprechiated.
Hi Ashley, I posted to another board asking what the symptoms were, and then I found your post here, describing them. I have to wonder if the dog is simply tired? Dogs will sleep 14-16 hours a day, some of that is deep sleep, and some just dozing. Puppies are usually more on the 16 hour end. I've had puppies that just could not bear to go to sleep and miss something, so they would fight sleep, and act a little like you described, no vomiting, though. While you are puppy proofing, which is an excellent idea, because it certainly could be something she is eating, check your electrical cords. Maybe she is chewing on some enough to get a shock, but not chewing all the way through, so your lamp(or whatever) is still working. You might want to consider crating her when you're not around. Shelties are avid chewers up until the age of 1 1/2-2years old. Don't feel badly doing it, like I said, they sleep 14-16 hours a day, so if she's in a crate while you're at work, and sleeping yourself, she'll just decide to sleep then. You might find it solves the problem. Hope I helped, I'll be thinking of you. If you do igure out what it is, please post and let us all know. Laura
I have been thinking of you- some more thoughts: Did the vet check her ears? An ear infection will affect equilibrium, and can lead to vestibular disease, which can cause a seizure. Are you doing heartworm prevention yet? If so, what are you using? The herding breeds can sometimes have a problem w/ Ivermectin, which is found in Heartguard and others. I use Interceptor on mine. Did you recently start using Frontline, or a similar product? I know how you feel looking for answers online. There is a lot of bad information out there, too. I end up finding too much information, contradictory information, and bad information. Then I call my wonderful vet, who is threatening to take my computer away soon. I've purchased a home veterinary guide for myself so I can stop bugging her so often :)
the thing is, I haven't seen a full blown seizure before these episodes yet and I have a hard time believeing that this is a seizure...or believe more less that this is something that needs medication. I was feeding her natural balance since I got her and I switched her to Halo...by the end of the bag (actually the day we bought the second bag) she was acting this way. At this point I'm acting off of my feelings (I really feel crazy these days I must add). So today I put her back on natural balance, normally I would slowly switch her but I'm too freaked out about the soy content in the Halo brand that I just went straight to the natural balance duck and potato formula today. This weekend we are putting her on a raw diet. I'm also speaking with a woman named Darleen from purelypets.com. I e-mail her everytime I feel hopeless and she talks me back down to realization. She wants me to put her on a supplement called nupro, and I will be ordering it this week. As for a flea prevention...her puppy resort puts it on her when she stays there and recently we were away...it was a week or two after that she started to have problems. The thing is that she has stayed at the puppy resort many times and had the flea medication applied and she was fine. As of sleep...it could be possible, I'm not sure. We gate her into our small kitchen (everything dangerous out of reach of course) while we are at work, just so she has her option to move about. Sometimes I'm at work from 10am to 6pm, I come home, we take our walk and then back in the kitchen she goes. Lately though my boyfriend and I have really been working on comming home in between and working different shifts to make sure she isn't getting stressed from this. I'm going to switch jobs soon and start working nights so she isn't dealing with being home alone anymore. Again people think I'm crazy.
I'd try to pay attention to whether it happens more often when she's had a busy or exciting day, like when she goes to training, or when you are home with her. She probably likes hanging out with you, and doesn't sleep as much then. I've seen swaying, nodding heads on sleepy Shelties. And mine tend to run and play as fast and hard as they can, then flop down and go to sleep. It sounds a lot like what you are seeing. Did the vet explain that a dog vomiting is not as worrisome event as many people think? It's not really the sign of illness in dogs that it is in people. Dogs eat things they shouldn't and chuck them up quickly and easily. The spot on the carpet is usually more to be alarmed about than the dogs health, unless it's happening repeatedly. They have a "hair trigger" vomiting reflex that they come by naturally, being descended from wolves, who regurgitate food for their young. Yucky, I know. Keep us posted.
Hey I know another great discussion forum you can post on. There might be some more advice on there. I have used it with good a good outcome. Thought you might want to give it a try. www.ask.yahoo.com Good luck
Hiya! We have a 5 month old sheltie called Merlin. He is being tested for livershunt tomorrow - fingers crossed! - he has been a poppet but about a week ago he started to get poorly in the evenings/ lethargic, drooly, staring at walls and generally out of sorts. To start with we thought he was quite simply teething, but it has carried on and we saw our vet who took blood and discovered it was a liver problem. We have spent the day in tears and we have not told the kids anything yet. BUT throughout the day loads of people have told me of their dogs eating stuff that can have the same effect - lots of plants including bulbs - daffodils snowdrops lobelia etc check it out online. Also pine when chewed can be bad for them. And lastly some puppy worming formulas can cause liver damage - scary but true! Anyway I wish you the best for your babe.Hopefully I will be on here with good news soon - I SO hope so!! Debs