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Old 01-09-2013, 01:21 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Seizures caused by excess protein?

Hi everyone! I have two wonderful, energetic beagles. Remington, 3 years old, has definitely had 5 seizures in his lifetime, possibly more. We have remote collar system to keep them in the yard when we are not home so they are free to run around (great system, I highly recommend it), but anyways since me and my fiance both work full time and are often busy on weekend the dogs are left alone often and therefore Remi could have had many more seizures we do not know about. After his first seizure (at 2 years old), the vet did many tests and could not find a cause. The following year he had 2 more, only a day apart. The vet suggested it could be from excess protein that is put into cheaper dog foods as a filler. We had switched dog foods quite a few times in the months leading up to his 2 seizures, getting what was on sale when our regular food was not available. So we switched to a food that is acutally tested on dogs (many foods are just formulated to meet dog food standards, but not actually tested on dogs). Remi went 9 months without a seizure. Last month, he had one. I really thought about what he had eaten leading up to it, and I realized that we had bought the same treats for so long and I had just bought a different brand of treats and he had gotten into his Christmas present (bones from the dollar store). It may have been a coincidence, but literally 20 minutes after having one of those bones he had the seizure. So at that point we cut him off EVERYTHING but his regular dog food. No treats or bones. As a reward once in a while we would give him a small cube of cheese (he LOVES cheese!). He is not much of a treat dog, never has been so he really didn't care too much about not getting treats. I was concerned with his teeth however, that they would get too sharp/become unhealthy from not having a bone to chew on. So we recently gave him a deer antler to chew on, I'm sure it has protein in it but it wouldnt be in excess like it is added into treats. We then found an organic type of dog treat. So after a month of "nothing", we introduced this new treat (which was 3 days ago). Today, after only having 3 pieces of this new type of treat, he had another seizure. I think our new approach is going to be to stick with our regular dog food (as we have been giving him for almost a year now), and go back to the treats we had bought for so long (they're cheap ones, but they worked for 9 months so I'm guessing he's tolerating them well). We had found a whole bunch of "organic" and "special formulated" treats for him to try but I just hate the feeling of being responsible for his seizures because we are giving him something to test it out.

I am wondering if anyone has any similar experiences, and if anyone's heard this possible idea of excess protein as a cause of seizures. I should mention our other beagle (same parents as Remi, just the litter the year before) has never had a seizure. The vet said that some dogs just have this kind of reaction to excess protein and others could be eating the same thing and be fine. Thanks for reading Remi's story!
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Old 01-09-2013, 03:18 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I don't have a dog with seizure but I'm wondering what dog food do you feed?
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Old 01-10-2013, 11:58 AM   #3 (permalink)
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My 6 yr old female had her first seizure on Sunday. Was on valium for 3 days to quiet the electrical system in the brain. I am not sure what to expect from here on out. It was SOoo scary. Any advice will be appreciated.
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Old 01-10-2013, 09:57 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Sophie has seizures - the vet believes that at least part of the cause is the damage she suffered at 8 weeks or so from being kicked in the head by her first owner. The vet had us keep a diary, so that we could see what triggered the seizures. We found that anything that stressed her body was likely to bring one on. Some of the triggers included eating an entire bag of cat food (which is now no longer in a "childproof" cupboard - it is now downstairs in a locked box), having teens fight about taking her out when she really has to go, extreme weather, etc.

Seizures don't hurt and they can be managed just make sure that your dog in in a safe place - the floor works. We found out that Sophie can tell when one is coming, and she crawls into my lap to have them. We do not restrain her - I hold her flat with her legs pointing out so that she cannot hurt herself. After the seizure, the dog is usually confused and may want to run and hide. They may vomit or lose control of bowels or bladder. Our vet recommends gentle restraint, and some liquid sugar dripped slowly in her mouth helps her come out of it more quickly. And be prepared to wash yourself and your clothes. We wait she is 'with us' and gently cleanse her in a warm - not hot - shower.

Sophie is not on medication, and the seizures decrease in frequency as we manage to control or eliminate triggers.
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Old 01-21-2013, 08:49 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Remington is on Purina One dog food (green bag, can be found at most major grocery stores). We don't think it is the food since he has been on this food and only this food for close to a year now and the seizures haven't been consistent. We think it's treats, because it seems like any time we change treats he has a seizure. We are now sticking with treats we bought during the 9 months he did not have a seizure (cheap ones, which is a bonus) and are not going to even bother trying anything else. If it's working for him, we will keep it consistent. Thanks for everyone's input and I'd be happy to hear more suggestions/advice!
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Old 01-26-2013, 06:03 AM   #6 (permalink)
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We do not limit her - I keep her smooth with her feet directing out so that she cannot harm herself. After the seizure, the dog is usually puzzled and may want to run and cover up. They may throw up or come unglued of bowels or kidney.
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Old 02-02-2013, 12:30 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Seizures are a genetic trait in beagles. I don't think it's a cause per say but certain proteins could be a trigger. Keep a daily diary noting weather, lights, temps, activity, food ect. You could start seeig a pattern.

The Role of a Natural Healthy Diet in the Management of Canine Epilepsy

Vaccines are a cause so make sure you get a vaccine waiver per health reasons.
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