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Lisa
Lisa, Certified Vet Tech
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 16379
Experience:  AAS Vet Tech. Bully breed rehab & Behavior modification
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My dog is having episodes of panting heart racing sometimes

Customer Question

My dog is having episodes of panting heart racing sometimes and sometimes tremors
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Lisa replied 1 year ago.

Hi there. My name is ***** ***** I'm happy to help you with your question today. Just like an in person consult, I have some questions of my own to help ensure I give you the best advice possible...

How often is she having these episodes?

How long does each episode last?

Do they seem to be increasing in frequency?

Has your vet done any blood work on her?

What is your main question?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Was having maybe once a week. Now every other day about. We have administered the diazappam and subsides. Yes vet did blood work and no apparent problems. Did say she does not have a thyroid problem my main question is does she have a neurological problem or possible seizure problems. And can they be controlled? Is it dangerous to continue to treat her w/diazappam?
Expert:  Lisa replied 1 year ago.

Has she had seizures her whole life?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No she has not had any seizures. Only the symptoms mentioned. She seems to be scared apprehensive and paces. Sometimes has tremors sometimes not but pants heavily and drools be cuz tongue hanging out
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
She weighs 24 lbs
Expert:  Lisa replied 1 year ago.

Thanks for the additional information. I really appreciate it!

From your description of the tremors and the fact your vet has you treating with Diazepam, I suspect that your dog is having focal seizures.

Normally when we think of seizures, we think of the grand mal type, where the whole body spasms and the dog loses consciousness. However, there is another kind, called a petite mal where only one muscle group is affected or the dog exhibits some kind of strange behavior. Sometimes this can look like just muscles shaking, or the dog can be doing fly-biting (snapping at invisible insects) or they can just have overall tremors. I suspect this is what is going on with your dog.

The cause of these kinds of seizures can be anything from ingestion of a toxin to low blood sugar (you could try rubbing a little Karo or pancake syrup on her gums to help rectify this if it's the issue) to some kind of organic brain disease or organ disease. Obviously, there's no way to know for sure which is going on with your dog without being able to see her, but since she's an older dog who seems to be having increasing frequency to these episodes, I suspect there's a neuro issue here. Whether it's something like a tumor, or just a gradual degeneration because of age is impossible to know.

Unfortunately often the cause of the seizure isn't found. They call that a "seizure of unknown eitology", which essentially means that yes, the dog had a seizure, but we don't really know why.

I think at this point, you might want to talk to your vet about getting her on some Phenobarbital...it's a medication given every day that helps stop these kinds of tremors. If he feels that her tremors aren't bad enough to warrant it, then you can absolutely continue to use the Diazepam. It's very safe and frequently used for these kinds of issues.

I hope this helps!!