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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 28562
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience
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Last night my dog seemed to lose control of his bladder in

Customer Question

Last night my dog seemed to lose control of his bladder in the middle of the night. He appeared to squatell to pee instead of lifting his leg. Then it seemed his back legs were working for a short moment. Maybe 2 min. Then he was completely fine like nothing happened
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. Have you looked to see if there is a wound on their foot?
Customer: There was no wound. It was in the middle of the night when he was sleeping
JA: What is the dog's name and age?
Customer: Buddy. Around 8. He's a border collie
JA: Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about Buddy?
Customer: No
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 9 months ago.

You're speaking to Dr. Michael Salkin. Welcome to JustAnswer. I'm currently typing up my reply. Please be patient. This may take a few minutes.

Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 9 months ago.

That curious but quickly resolving combination of symptoms - inappropriate urination and ataxia ("drunken sailor") suggests a complex partial seizure (previously called petit mal and also called psychomotor seizure) which is described as abnormal focal or asymmetric sensory or motor activity affecting any part of the body and which may be associated with autonomic signs, (salivation, vomiting, urinating, defecating, e.g.) and is associated with a change in mentation (mental status) and/or behavioral abnormalities. Sleep is the most common post-ictal (post-seizure) symptom. Mark your calendar for this event and for just what you witnessed. Buddy's vet will need all the information you can gather when deciding if Buddy should be prescribed an anticonvulsive drug. Most of us will accept one mild (lasting less than 5 minutes, no thrashing about, no loss of consciousness) event monthly before prescribing such a drug. Should he suffer another event within 24 hours of this one clustering is diagnosed and that may presage status epilepticus - the state in which seizure activity doesn't abate unless I heavily sedate or anesthetize my patient. She would then need the attention of a vet at your earliest convenience.

Seizures first arising between the ages of 1-5 years are usually considered idiopathic (unknown cause) epilepsy. Seizures arising after 6 years of age are often caused by brain tumor or, less commonly, adult onset epilepsy. Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.

Thank you for the info. I found some vomit in the yard from what I assume last night. When I let him out of the urination he was running for in the squat position. So his rear legs were working. Once I let him in he laid for a minute. He was still coherent. Best way I could describe would be if his back legs were asleep. Still operational. Could it possible be a stomach issue. And he didn't know if he had to poop or pee and that's why the squatting. And the vomit?

Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 9 months ago.

I believe that his vomiting was another autonomic sign of seizure. A stomach issue wouldn't cause his transient ataxia. If his mentation were intact (still coherent) not knowing to poop or pee would seem unlikely to me. We need to see a track record of such behavior before being able to consider differential diagnoses. I would ask you to only carefully observe Buddy for similar behavior or anything out of the ordinary for him. I don't think that a vet visit is necessary at this time. It's likely that his vet would only see a normal dog.

Please continue our conversation if you wish.

Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 9 months ago.

I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?

Dr. Michael Salkin