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Q. 6yr. old Chihuahua. At 4 she had 1) seisure. 2) in Dec.,'15 - 3) in 4 or 5 days. Maybe 2) min. Dur. Time. ? Pls. Help! $$ are a PROBLEM!!! Medicare $

Answered By
DR. CHRISTIE LONG, D.V.M., C.V.A.

A. There are many causes of seizures. At 6 years old she could have epilepsy, but other causes include toxin exposure, liver disease, low blood sugar (typically caused by pancreatic cancer), something taking up space inside the skull (like a brain tumor), or meningitis. Seizures can be costly to work up, as we typically start with blood work in order to look for some of the things I just mentioned, and hopefully rule out the really scary things (like brain tumors) before we get to the diagnosis of epilepsy.

If she has epilepsy it can be treated with anti-seizure medications quite successfully. Many dogs live very normal lives with epilepsy. Left untreated the seizures will likely get more and more frequent, and there's a very real danger that she could have what's called status epilepticus, which means the seizures can't be stopped. I urge you to talk to some senior resources in your area - there are many organizations that help seniors with veterinary care. You can also call your local humane society, which may have some options for you in that department as well.


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