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Dr. Andy
Dr. Andy, Medical Director
Category: Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 30036
Experience:  UC Davis graduate, Interests: Dermatology, Internal Medicine, Pain Management
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My 15 year old pit has been falling on her side and all 4 legs

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My 15 year old pit has been falling on her side and all 4 legs going out stiff and while.body shakes legs sort of running but straight legged she has other medical.conditions but she has an appt friday. This has happened at least 5 times that we've seen. Doesn't respond when talking to her and can't get up on her own after now...
Welcome! My name isXXXXX am a UC Davis graduate, and currently, a Medical Director of a veterinary hospital.

I am sorry to hear about this concern for Shelby.

What you are describing seems highly consistent with seizure episodes.

Seizures are generally caused by:
1. Intra-cranial disease (something inside the head including infections, inflammatory conditions, and cancer)
2. Extra-cranial disease (anything outside of the head including organ problems like liver disease, infections, electrolyte abnormalities that can be caused by endocrine disease like Addison's, cancer)

Treatment for seizures does not necessarily start immediately. A life-long medication like Phenobarbital or Potassium Bromide is considered when:
The seizures last for 4-5 minutes or longer, causing increased concern for brain injury
If they occur in clusters
If they are increasing in frequency

Initial testing usually includes a basic blood profile, which should be done immediately.

If a blood test does not reveal any abnormalities, additional testing would possibly include:
- to check for evidence of inflammation or infection within the spinal cord or brain.

If you would prefer to see a specialist, your primary veterinarian can refer you to a neurologist, or you can find one yourself and go without a referral by using this link:

Find Various Specialists
--> Under "specialty" select SAIM = Small Animal Internal Medicine
--> Or, you can search for a Neurologist, Cardiologist or Oncologist
So, hard for me to even suggest considering a MRI. But!
If you wanted to try and get the upperhand on the seizures, a basic blood test would be worthwhile, and a vet could start a medication like phenobarbital which might get the seizures controlled.

But, if you were to still elect euthanasia, I would personally completely understand.
Normally, a pet will remain in a post-ictal period after a seizure for up to a few hours. But, if unable to stand at all, that is less than ideal.

Please let me know if there is anything I did not cover for you. I hope that information has been helpful.
Please remember to select Reply to Expert, if for any reason you need further clarification, have more questions, or were expecting a different type of answer. DO NOT rate if you are not satisfied yet or have any other questions. My goal is to try and provide you the best answer possible.
Dr. Andy

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

at age doesnt seem feasable shes had a great much wojld i get out of her doing all that...and its more about quality i think at this point i think....she pees in her sleep and has had mes for that for years she hasa cataracks shes been slipping on the hard...but i spoke to the vet who said pretry much what u did....i am grasping at the last straw trhing to justify this awful decision for friday


Understood Michele,
It's all about 'quality of life"

Unless the vet feels they could improve it by starting medication to try and control what is happening, I absolutely support your decision and wouldn't even second guess it.

I am very sorry. I know its difficult, as I just lost my 9 year old Cavalier King Charles Spaniel due to severe heart complications.

I hope the responses have been helpful.
Dr. Andy

Dr. Andy and other Veterinary Specialists are ready to help you
Hi Michele,

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

Dr. Andy
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

oh thank you ok....dreading tomorrow

Whatever you decide I am confident will have your vet's support.

Petloss support resources:
Pet Loss Hotlines

Rainbowbridge Grief Support

Dr. Andy
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