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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Our puppy, Maggie, has tremors when she's falling asleep. I've tried to take a video by I'm not sure the vet can tell much from them. Could this be a mild form of epilepsy? She doesn't have any kind of seizures when she's awake. I don't care if it's epilepsy or some other neurological disorder; I just want to know whether there'll be long term effects and whether it should be treated with something like phenobarbital or diazapan. Otherwise, she's alert and playful and full of energy.

Thanks for any help you can give me.
Betty
 

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I think we saw the same thing when Bodie was a lot younger. Kinda like little twitches when he was sleeping. But it wasn't like a long continues twitching, maybe more like a muscle spasm. Since it was only when he was asleep we figured it was something he was dreaming about.

But now that he's older I can't remember the last time he's done it when he's sleeping. So maybe she'll stop when she gets older.
 

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Good question, Coco has them alot. I always thought they were nightmares. I usually gently wake him up because cries too
I wonder what it could be?
 

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I have asked my vet that question before, and he said that it sounded like my beagle was just having an exciting dream. Sometimes they will wimper or whine.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the replies. I know dogs sometimes seem to be trying to run and even try to bark in their sleep. This is different. It happens when she's settled down to go to sleep. It's like a shivering. One time, while I had her up around my neck where she likes to sleep, I witnessed she trembled for 15 minutes. I wonder whether it happens after she's been exercising vigorously and her muscles go into spasms. It's doesn't upset her and eventually she will go to sleep and the tremors stop. In every other way, she's a perfect (if you consider chewing and jumping up and not always getting outside for her business) littl puppy. I tell myself she'll get over it but it continues and worries me.
 

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This description pertains to humans (and it has happened to me) but I am convinced dogs can have whatever humans have so perhaps this is what Maggie is experiencing:

You're just about to drift off into a deep sleep when suddenly you feel like you're falling or rolling downhill on a roller coaster. Then your body jerks suddenly and you're awake. Weird! What's going on?

This body movement, also known as a sleep start, is what doctors and scientists call a hypnic or myoclonic jerk.

These jerks usually occur before you enter the deeper stages of sleep and are completely normal. Doctors and scientists aren't really sure why they happen, but they have a few theories.

One theory is that your brain misunderstands the sensation of your muscles relaxing as you drift off to sleep. It's normal for the muscles to relax, but the brain gets confused, and, for a minute, thinks you're falling. In response, the brain causes your muscles to tense up so you catch yourself before you fall down.

These jerks can wake a person up, or the person might just keep on sleeping. They're nothing to worry about, so if one of them wakes you up, snuggle back under your quilt, and try to catch some more ZZZs!
 

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Very interesting judymaggie. This happens to me every night and I have always wondered why. It makes sense that a dog could experience the same thing.
 

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Sounds like she's jonesin' for another hit of beagle crack, aka bacon!!!

my three all have had these same symptoms. but nothing worse has ever come of it.
i always assumed it was muscle tremors.
C.
 
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