Sunday, September 1, 2013

French Bulldog Epilepsy Treatment

Q:  Dear Ariel:  Our 2 year old French Bulldog has been having seizures and is currently taking phenobarbital.  I really don't like to use this medication because of the side effects but don't know what else to do.  Are there any natural options I can use instead?  Thank you!  Jennifer

A:  Dear Jennifer:  So sorry your French Bulldog is having seizures.  We understand how stressful and upsetting it is to witness a dog having seizures.  First let me say, that holistic care can greatly help dogs having epileptic seizures.  The first part of helping your Frenchie is to take the cloud of "mystery" surrounding seizures and break them into parts.  Seizures have triggers.  The value of holistic pet care is to determine what those triggers are and to try to reduce the inflammatory cascade that can start the trigger.  There are many different reasons why a dog can have seizures.  Some common reasons are the following:  brain tumors, brain cancer (less likely in such a young dog), liver disease (unlikely unless a liver shunt or other severe congenital liver condition is present), food allergies, hypothyroidism, exposure to toxins and chemicals.

Let's consider food allergies.  While it may seem incredulous that a dog could experience seizures from food allergies, it is a common occurence.  You may have heard about how people can suffer from migraines or even severe reactions to foods such as peanuts.  There are common elements---inflammation caused by the food allergy response can affect the brain.  So, the first thing to do is try to eliminate potential food allergens from your dog's diet.  Similarly, when the body is inflamed and a person or pet is eating foods that increase that inflammation, this can trigger a thyroid imbalance.  And, some pets are just more prone to hypothyroidism due to their genetics. 

Autoimmune thyroiditis is common in dogs so please be sure to get a complete thyroid panel done, even in a young dog.  We have seen many occurences of low thyroid values causing seizures in young dogs.  Now, many dogs suffer from allergies and not all of them get seizures, so the next part of the equation is to try to reduce the overall inflammation in the brain and central nervous system.  It is essential to give any dog with seizures, nutritional support to reduce inflammation in the brain.  The products we have seen the best success with include the following:

Amazing Omegas---this is a highly purified fish oil that does not contain mercury or other contaminants found in most pet fish oils.  It is sold in a glass bottle to preserve the natural oil and prevent oxidation which can result in the terrible odor we often smell in rancid oils.

Dog Brain Booster--contains scientifically proven ingredients to help dogs with epilepsy, stroke recovery, seizures and other neuropathy.  Excellent results with many dogs with unusual neurological conditions.  Safe for small and large dogs.

Neuroflam--Recommended for dogs over 20 lbs only--Ingredients to reduce neural inflammation.  Works well with the Dog Brain Booster





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