Why Do Dogs Have Seizures?

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If you have ever experienced or observed a seizure, it can be scary. Did you know that dogs also can have seizures? Seizures in dogs typically manifest in muscle twitching or jerky-movements, but may also result in unusual eye movement, drooling, and unconsciousness. If you believe your pet has had a seizure, it is imperative to inform your vet right away.

So, why do dogs have seizures? There are many different reasons:

The Breed
Some dog breeds are more prone and predisposed to having a seizure- though some of these dogs will never experience a seizure. It seems that larger dogs are more likely to be susceptible to seizures, including the following breeds:

  • German Shepherds
  • Australian Shepherds
  • Labrador and Golden Retrievers.
  • Australian Shepherds
  • Border Collies
  • Longhaired Whippets
  • Sheepdogs
  • Bull Terriers

Smaller breeds like Pugs, Boston Terriers, and English Bulldogs with flat noses also seem to be more likely to experience at least one seizure during their lifetime.


Epilepsy is another reason why your pet may experience a seizure. Talk to your vet to identify any symptoms and risk factors that could contribute to a diagnosis of Epilepsy.

Heat Exhaustion

Heat exhaustion can also manifest in seizures. Dogs should always be encouraged to take breaks when playing hard or when being active in warmer weather. Facilitate water breaks by always bringing along water for your pet and provide them with a shady spot to recover. Dogs will run and play if you keep tossing a ball or chasing them; make sure to stop and let them rest.

Poisoning and Toxins

If your pet consumes poison or toxic substances, they may also have a seizure. Things like caffeine and chocolate can cause toxicity and seizures in dogs and cats; if you think your pet has ingested something poisonous, seek veterinary care immediately.

Other Causes

Still, there are other causes of seizures that may have nothing to do with breed or environmental factors. Some reasons include medical issues or conditions- as well as reaction to medications prescribed to the pet. Some other causes of your dog’s seizure could be one of the following- talk to your vet to learn more:

  • A head injury
  • Liver disease
  • Diabetes
  • Low Blood Sugar
  • Heartworm disease
  • Rabies
  • Nutritional deficiency, particularly thiamine
  • Tumors or Cancer

Seizures are serious and can be fatal. Generally, a seizure can be life-threatening for your pet if it stems from poisoning or if it is prolonged, lasting more than five minutes. If your pet experiences a series of several seizures in a short amount of time, seek emergency veterinary help right away.

Pets are part of our families. When the time comes, know that Midlands Pet Care in Lexington, SC, can help. Midlands Pet Care is a family owned & operated company that specializes in pet burials and cremation; call or visit us today.

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