How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Dr. Deb Your Own Question
Dr. Deb
Dr. Deb, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 10379
Experience:  I have been a practicing veterinarian for over 30 years.
Type Your Cat Veterinary Question Here...
Dr. Deb is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My female cat is about 12 years old, has been overweight but

Customer Question

HI! my female cat is about 12 years old, has been overweight but now that's under control. Since early summer she's had about 7 what I call "spasm" attacks where her body locks. It takes a few minutes to recover and after she seems to feel fine.
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. The veterinarian will know what to do. Is there anything else important you think the veterinarian should know about spasm?
Customer: Spasm is what I call it. There does'nt seem to be any particular time or activity. It can happen when she's lying down.
JA: What is the cat's name?
Customer: Flower.
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Deb replied 10 months ago.

Hello, I'm Dr. Deb.

I recently came online and see that your question about Flower hasn't been answered. I'm sorry for a delayed reply but I'd like to help if I can.

It sounds as if Flower may be having focal or petit mal seizure episodes given the length of time that the episodes last. I suppose it might be a pain response but typically, these would last a little longer than just a few minutes.

These events tend to occur totally randomly and are completely involuntary.

As to the underlying cause, when the patient is younger, they are usually Idiopathic...meaning we can't find a reason for them. However, when older cats start to behave this way, then I always worry about a brain mass as the underlying cause.

Unfortunately, such a diagnosis would require advanced imaging such as an MRI or CT scan although these masses aren't usually located in areas of the brain where it's either advisable or feasible to remove them. They do tend to be benign, however, and slow growing although they are, after all, space occupying lesions in the brain.

Other possible explanations for focal seizure activity might include head trauma, liver issues, low blood sugar or cardiac issues although usually there are other signs.

I usually recommend that blood work be done to rule out the metabolic causes of seizure activity so this may be something to consider if it hasn't already been done.

Unless or until these sorts of episodes progress, I don't usually treat them unless they occur on a daily or almost daily basis although every vet has a different approach to them.

I hope this helps to provide possible explanations for this behavior although I'm sorry that I might be the bearer of potentially bad news.

Again, my apologies for the delayed reply. Deb

Ihope this is helpful but please let me know if you have morequestions.

Magnesiumoften used for ecclampsia seizures has anti seizure effects....Taurine downregulates GABA receptors.... Melatonin modulates theelectrical activity of neurons by reducing glutamatergic andenhancing GABA-ergic neurotransmission.

Gabapentin instead ofphenobarb due to its effects on NMDA receptors.

Vitamin B6(B6) is an essential cofactor of glutamate decarboxylase andcatalyzes the decarboxylation of the excitatory neurotransmitterglutamate to the inhibitory neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid(GABA). Give B-50mg orally

Start Cerenia tablets (2mg/kg/day)for 7-10 days th