Generally, the Golden Retriever is a healthy breed of dog, for which they are bred. In fact, a Golden Retriever breeder goes through a rigorous screening process before deciding which two dogs to breed.
Seizure disorders are not the most common health problems with Golden Retrievers, but there is no available process for screening. Any Golden Retriever is at risk. Fortunately, treatments are available.
What Causes Seizures In Golden Retrievers
Seizures have a variety of causes including primary and secondary epilepsy. Seizures can also be caused by a severe head injury, a calcium deficiency, heartworm disease, chemicals, toxic plants, fertilizers or other poisons. Evidence also indicates that seizures may be hereditary.
The Dangers & Signs Of Seizures In Golden Retrievers
The only way to know for sure that your dog is suffering from seizures is to have them properly tested. Several types of seizures are seen. If you think your dog is having seizures, discuss it with your veterinarian as soon as possible.
Tonic-clonic or generalized seizures come in two stages and may be mild or severe. During the severe, tonic stage, the Golden Retriever will fall to the ground, stretch out their legs rigidly and lose consciousness. In addition, breathing will also stop at this time. This phase should only last about ten to thirty seconds, then the clonic stage will begin, which is commonly known as a fit.
In the clonic stage of a seizure will appear with the following symptoms:
- Running in place
- Jaw movements resembling chewing
- Dilated pupils and unresponsive eyes
- Excess salvation
- Loss of bladder or bowel control
Seizures are a terrible thing for a dog owner to go through. With no warning at all, your beloved friend can be thrashing about on the ground, padding his or her paws and barking. It is crucial that you know what you need to do.
Preventing, Controlling & Managing Seizures
The first step to preventing a seizure is proper screening before breeding. When you visit a reputable breeder, they should be able to provide the appropriate documentation. In addition, some breeders will even have X-rays available for you to view.
In addition, you can request that your veterinarian check for seizure related illnesses. The veterinarian that you choose for your Golden Retriever’s care should be able to help you learn all the things you should do to take care of your dog properly.
When you witness a seizure, you want to do something to help. However, the best thing for you to do is to note the length and time of the seizure and make sure there are no immediate environmental dangers to the animal.
Make sure he or she is nowhere near stairs. Remove any other animals from the area, and pad the Golden Retriever’s body and head in order to prevent injury.
NEVER reach into your Golden Retriever’s mouth while he or she is having a seizure to prevent swallowing of the tongue. Even though your dog may be conscious during a seizure, he or she is not aware of their surroundings. Therefore, you do not want to be anywhere close to those clenching jaws.
It is important that you remain calm if your dog suffers a seizure. Use a soft voice to comfort your Golden Retriever. Dim the lights and eliminate as much noise as possible. Gently stroke your dog on their side or hip, taking care to avoid feet and sharp toenails. Once the seizure subsides, report your notes to your veterinarian.