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D2007-51

Dear Daisy Dog

My 2-year-old beagle had two mild seizure-like episodes during which he fell over and trembled but remained conscious. After about a minute, he was fine.

I researched seizures, and his seem more like Chinook seizures than typical seizures with leg paddling, loss of bladder and bowel control, and post-seizure lethargy. What do you think?

Daisy Responds

I think it’s time your beagle visit his veterinarian for a physical exam and lab work to make a diagnosis and determine what treatment, if any, is needed.

Seizures come in all gradations of severity, from mild focal or partial seizures – when the dog remains conscious, or movements are limited to one body part or one side of the body – to more severe, generalized seizures.

That said, it’s also possible your dog is experiencing a heart problem or some other condition. Only your veterinarian can tell for sure.

If the episodes are seizures, they may be caused by epilepsy, which is inherited by some beagles.

Another common cause of seizures in a young dog is a portosystemic shunt, a blood vessel that inappropriately bypasses the liver.

Lead and other toxins also can trigger seizures, as can very low blood sugar.

On the other hand, Chinook seizures are mild events seen in Chinooks, a rare breed of American sled dogs. Chinooks are most famous for taking Admiral Byrd to Antarctica in 1927.

Although your beagle isn’t having Chinook seizures, he is experiencing episodes that need your veterinarian’s attention.

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