Psychomotor seizures are somewhat rare and since they are rare, there is little information available. As a result I have asked Guardian Angel Tina (and Angel Jaff) and Guardian Angel Diane (and Molly), who are dealing with psychomotor seizures, to describe what Jaff and Molly go through with them so that anyone who may also be experiencing these unusual seizures, will know what they are. Both Tina and Diane's stories are below.
Since there is so little information on canine psychomotor seizures, there is a possibility that your dog may have been misdiagnosed with Grand Mals or Tonic Clonic seizures. Tina and Diane's descriptions will help you decide if you are dealing with psychomotor seizures. Tina found some information describing psychomotor seizures and it is included at the end of this report.
We also asked Dr. Thomas, one of our advisors, if there was any special medication for psychomotor seizures and this was his response:
"In human patients, certain types of seizures tend to respond better to specific drugs. We don't know if this is true in dogs so in general, we use the same drugs to treat psychomotor seizures as for other types of seizures."
We hope this is helpful...
Joanne Carson, Ph.D.
Seizure Descriptions Provided by Guardian Angels
Guardian Angel Tina and Angel Jaff (Border Collie):
Many months before Jaff ever
had a Tonic Clonic or Grand Mal seizure he would exhibit strange behaviors with
the most recurring one being that he would look up at the ceiling, duck his
head and cower as though the ceiling was coming down on him. He would constantly
look back up as though he was checking on it. He'd keep his head lowered and
would just roll his eyes up to look.
Guardian Angel Diane and Molly (Shepherd Husky mix):
Molly's psychomotor seizures begin after a day or two of Tonic Clonic or Grand Mal seizures (which are much reduced with the valium protocol.) She doesn't always have them during a cycle, but never has them unless she is just finishing a Tonic Clonic - Grand Mal cluster period. She may be resting and rise up into one, or just walking around, acting completely normal, and suddenly lose consciousness.
During a psychomotor seizure Molly walks with her front feet held very high in a kind of prancing motion, like a dancing horse. Her neck appears rigid and her head is tilted slightly back. Her eyes appear vacant and her gaze is fixed. She walks in a straight line, not turning corners or reversing direction. She attempts to go through anything in her path, climbing over furniture and up walls until she is upright and falling over backwards. She often heads into a corner or into a space between furniture that she could not possibly fit in.
When I lift her and try to redirect her path she remains unconscious and her front feet continue moving. She doesn't navigate stairs in this state, but will walk off the top step into thin air. Calling her name or clapping does nothing to rouse her, although she regains consciousness on her own in 10 to 30 seconds.
Molly usually will have 3 or 4 of these in a half hour and then one or several hours will pass before they begin again. Occasionally a psychomotor will progress to whole body shaking and then into a tonic clonic - grand mal seizure, especially if Molly gets herself stuck somewhere. I always try to stay close by and redirect her path to prevent this from happening. Molly may have as many as 20 psychomotor seizures during the course of a day which, thankfully, always signals the end of the seizure cycle.
Here is the information that Tina found describing Psychomotor Seizures:
"A complex partial
seizure will originate in the area of the brain that controls behavior and is
sometimes called a psychomotor seizure. During this type of seizure, a dog’s
consciousness is altered and he may exhibit bizarre behavior such as unprovoked
aggression or extreme irrational fear.