Every once in awhile, and not frequent enough to cause serious red flags, I would find Cody with mucus around his nose area and half of his face would be wet. He’d have a sour smell about him. It would cause me alarm in the sense that I couldn’t figure out why he was in this state. I would clean him up and check the yard, his bedding area, etc. attempt to discover some clues as to why I would sometimes find him like this. At first, I thought maybe he had killed some poor creature and had rubbed and smothered it (like dogs do when they make a kill). There was never any “kill” to be found. This state that I would find him in was so infrequent that it didn’t cause further alarm but I always had it in the back of mind and it annoyed me that I couldn’t explain it.
One very late evening, I did my routine check on the boys before retiring to bed. Doc was deep in sleep, but Cody was not on his bed and emerged with his face wet with mucus. Alarmed, I check the area and no sign of what would cause it. I cleaned up face with a wet towel, he seemed okay… and so I kissed him goodnight, tucked him in and said my good-nights. Troubled and alarmed by this scenario, I started looking things up online — but I didn’t really know what I was looking for. Maybe he was throwing up?
About an 1 1/2 hours went by, still reading online about canine diseases and conditions when I hear some ruckus and noises where the boys sleep. Running to find the source, I open the door, flip on the lights to see Cody in a seizure! Within milliseconds, it all came flooding back all those unexplained states I found him in. The seizure lasted in what seemed like forever, especially if you’ve never seen anyone have a seizure. Finding him like that, I realized that how I found him the first time that evening, he had already had an earlier seizure and the one I finally witnessed, was his second seizure within a couple of hours.
We braced him by holding his body’s mid-section and pulled him away from anything he might bang into. Careful to stay away from his mouth with our hands, we softly spoke his name and repeatedly said “good boy, Cody… good boy.” When the seizure was over, he was disoriented, and instinctually, we were both cautious that he might not know who we were or where he was. While one of us made preparations to get him to the vet, the other put him on a leash and walked him out in the yard (not knowing if he might go into another seizure, you want to keep them close and we still weren’t sure how disoriented he might be).
It’s about 12:45AM and we’re rushing him to the emergency animal hospital…
As we’re driving, a million things were going through my mind: Something he ate? Epilepsy? The worse scenario (I didn’t even want to think it or say it out loud), a tumor?? I’m trying to remain composed, otherwise I know I can’t think straight if I lose it…but the tears start coming and I can’t stop. Not good. I know Cody will pick up on my state and I’m trying not to alarm him. I’m sure he’s already figured out the abnormality of the situation since we’re taking a drive during sleep time.
The next posts on Cody’s seizures, I’ll share our experiences and decisions about:
- What the tests revealed.
- Cluster seizures and patterns.
- The choices: Medicate or not.
- More scares and Idiopathic Epilepsy in Dogs
- Blood tests, liver damage, prescription medication.
- Routines and life changes.
It can be a very disturbing sight and experience to see your loved one, person or pet, going through a seizure. The thing to try to remember is to stay calm, pull them away from harms way so that during the attack they don’t bang into something that they can get hurt from or might fall on them.