MEDICATIONS AND DIETS THAT HAVE WORKED FOR EPILEPTIC DOGS

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Jennifer and Patch:  Patch is my 6 year old epi dalmatian, that I added to my group of 5 last October.  He was on 90 mg. of Phenobarbital twice daily when I got him and he was seizing every 30 days or so.  I have since changed his diet and added supplements.  He started on thyroid medication 6 weeks ago, after being tested by Dr. Dodds and was shown to have low thyroid. I am PROUD to say that as of today (4/25/2000) patch is on day 70 seizure free.

Medications and food:  90 mg Phenobarbital and 0.5 mg Thyrozine two times a day.   Nutro lamb and Rice dry and Nature's Recipe wet food.  His dinner is supplemented with Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Selenium and B-Complex.

 

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Jennifer and Molly:  Molly is a wonderful and loving 7yr old dalmatian that came into my life on Aug. 18, 1996 from the local Humane Society. She experienced her first seizure 3 weeks after I adopted her. Since then her seizures are easier for both us since I can see signs and somehow just know when it will happen. Molly has a personality that makes everyone love her. She loves to go places and is even in the Three Dog Bakery Halloween video singing. Molly is blessed with many talents, singing being one of her favorites. When singing you can actually hear her say "I love you".

People tell me all the time that she acts so human in her reactions. She learns everything quickly, even to never take food from strangers. Which always gets funny looks from the people at pet stores. When offered anything she looks at me like she is asking for permission.

I must admit that Molly has become a very spoiled and well loved little girl.

Meds and Food: Pb 64.8mg 2x daily. PetGold Rice and Chicken. She also enjoys fresh fruit and vegetables as snacks. Occasionally she gets a home-cooked meal.

 

Jill and Molly: Molly is a spayed Irish Setter, born 5-7-00. My husband, Bill, brought her into our lives several months after the passing of our dog Lady.

Molly made her presence known the minute she landed from the airplane and was in ear shot of us. I knew we had a special pup but never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that Molly would take my heart so fast. Knowing what I know now, I am so grateful that Molly joined our family.

Molly had her first seizure at age 1.7 years old. To say we were terrified is an understatement. Molly was in the front room by herself and I walked in to see her paddling with her head arched back (funny how we just know something is wrong). We both thought she was choking and of course did everything wrong. We called her name loudly, tried moving her, then in desperation my husband scooped her up and off to the only vet open at that time. We had them X-Ray everything. We were sure that Molly swallowed something. When they brought her back to us I was just as frantic as she was pacing and pacing in this fairly large room we were in and not giving us too much, if any, eye contact. I had no idea why she was acting this way. The doctor spoke to us but it was hard to comprehend all he was saying. I felt so helpless and had no idea how to help my baby.

Seizures were few are far between and in those early days and there was no loss of bladder or bowel. Our record keeping of these episodes was not very good though. Molly’s pattern though would come to change from every 5-6 months, to every 3 months. I did not consider medication until Molly first clustered. Phenobarbital was the drug of choice to start. Soon enough Molly was having seizures about every 3 weeks. The gradual increase of PB that we did was not helping lessen the seizures.

We have come a long way. Molly is now 3.7 years old and has had her Phenobarbital increased over time and the last few months we added Potassium Bromide to the mix. Molly has never done so well. The change to Molly was nothing short of a miracle to me. We did not do the loading dose yet here my kid went months without a seizure from the minute we added this medicine. I hear over and over it takes time, yet for Molly, the addition of Potassium Bromide made a world of difference. The seizures are now farther apart.

Molly as a baby, we did not know the importance of a proper diet and thought we were feeding Molly and her fur sister just fine with the kibble and canned food we purchased. I learned about proper nutrition while in a training class with my non epi Abby and we started them both on better quality food. Today we use the home cooked diet on this site as well as home cooked treats. Both the girls are thriving.

We are always hopeful that we can contain the seizures but also know there is no rhyme and reason to this disease so we are not kidding ourselves that Molly will be “cured”. Molly will be a part of this family for as long as she desires. We will continue to look to new advances in treatment. We are lucky to have a vet who is in on the cutting edge of treatment of this disease. His help along with all the support and knowledge from this wonderful group of people and Angels on this site have changed us from helpless parents to parents with knowledge to back us up which gives us a bit of control over an uncontrollable disease. We are ever so grateful for the love and support of this group.

Medication and Food: 1.5 grams PB twice daily, 4 ml KBR twice daily, nasal valium as needed to stop a cluster seizure in its tracks, cranberry extract once a day. Home cooked diet from site along with Natural Balance kibble and home cooked treats.

 

Joan and Beauregard: 3-year-old, 43 lb. terrier mix

Beauregard was literally thrown away when he was about three weeks old. He was found in a dumpster, then brought to the pet store where my daughter worked. He was thin and malnourished when we took him in, but he was so cute, who could resist? His life, as a result of having limited interaction in a litter, is full of “issues.”

His first seizure happened when he was about 20 months old. I have no way of proving what started them, but I think it was the use of artificial pheromones recommended by a rescue group as a way of quieting him down. For several days I didn’t recognize the seizures for what they were. At first, they always happened in the middle of the night, and by the time I would get to him the seizure was over and what I found was a very confused looking dog.  After about a week of late night visitations by the monster, Beau had a seizure in the early evening. At least, then, I knew what was plaguing him! After a night filled with eight Grand Mals complete with loud vocalization (very scary, indeed) in 10 hours, I took him to the vet and he was given Valium intravenously, and then sent him home with 64.8 mg. of Phenobarbital every twelve hours.

After I found the Guardian Angels website, I had Beau tested for hypothyroidism and found that he was, indeed, low. He now gets .35 mg. of soloxine every twelve hours. After reading the advice on the GA website, I also added Taurine and Melatonin to his diet, as well as vitamins and calcium. He gets the home-cooked Healthy Adult diet, as well as a little Wellness Super Mix kibble to add crunchiness and interest to his meals, as well as a snack before bedtime.  While on this regimen, he was seizure-free for one year and one week. He was off Melatonin for three weeks when I started work with the animal communicator, and I believe being off it was what triggered his seizure in mid-March of this year. He is back on the Melatonin now, and has not had any seizures since. 

I doubt that we will ever overcome all of Beau’s issues. Two trainers and an animal communicator concur that he is very resistant to change and fearful of new or unusual circumstances. Because he is of some sort of terrier lineage, he would rather argue than give in to anything. He behaves best in structured situations (he was an absolute star in obedience classes, but at home, not so much!). He adores being able to run free, ears flapping in the wind, when we are at the family farm. Even with much obedience work he doesn’t recognize the “come” command, so at the farm is the only time he is off-leash. Although I wasn’t anticipating being faced with something as time-consuming as this disease is at this point in my life, I just consider him my mid-life intellectual challenge! I wouldn’t wish the challenges of epilepsy or fear-aggression on anyone, but it is an interesting journey that we are on!

 

John and Edison: When I first saw Edison (My St Bernard) he was a puppy listed on a breeder’s website. I called the breeder up and said that he was my new dog she laughed and said “Okay but when you get here if you want a different puppy that is fine”. After an 11 hour drive we arrived at the breeder’s house. I sat down with all the puppies and they were all so cute, but when I got up to go see the parents of these puppies there was one little guy that followed me everywhere. It was the puppy I had told her was mine (Edison). 

Edison was born on April 5th 2001. He was diagnosed at eight months of age with severe hip dysplasia, front leg alignment problems and a severe case of Panoceitis (a very painful bone disease common in larger dogs). His first seizure came on August 14th 2003. He had them every two weeks almost to the minute after that. Until September 11th 2003 when he had his first cluster he had six grand mals in one day and ended up spending the night in the emergency hospital. After some changes in his diet we managed to slow the seizures down to once a month. On April 9th 2004 I was awaken at 4 am to a loud boom. It was his head slamming against the wall in the midst of a severe seizure. He continued to have 3 more grand mals in the next 10 minutes. After calling the vet they said to bring him in asap. Well Edison went into another grand mal in the car and ended up stuck under the front seat of my car, before we could even get out of the garage. Somehow the poor guy let me get him out of the car before he went into another cluster of three grand mals.

While trying to get him out from under the seat I was on the phone searching for a mobile vet. I had found one and he was on his way. When the vet arrived he used valium to stop the cluster. I was told however that due to the severity if his seizures that he would probably be dead by the age of five.

Edison had changed my life for the better in so many ways I decided I was not going to let that happen. He has taught me so many things about life, like determination, forgiveness and unconditional love that I could have never learned anywhere else.

That is when I found the Guardian Angels. The knowledge and dedication of this group is priceless.  Aside from the knowledge, the overwhelming support and just family like atmosphere of this group has been one of the best things that has ever happened to me. The Angels are honestly the most dedicated group of individuals I have ever met, they truly care about our epi-pups and I will be forever indebted to them for the help and support they have provided me for Edison.

Currently Edison is fed IVD Potato and Duck formula mixed with a home cooked diet of  ground round, string beans and zucchini. His medications are 150 mg Phenobarbital twice a day, 500 mg Taurine once a day and .8 mg of Soloxine twice a day for his hypothyroid.

 

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