Sorting Fact from Fiction Canine Epilepsy Awareness


Hello everyone, CEO Olivia here. In the last hundred years there has been wagnificent progress in understanding the biological basis of canine epilepsy, the development of effective antiepileptic drugs (AED) & other modalities of management & the pawvention of seizures. Yet, there continues to be confusion & misunderstanding when it comes to canine epilepsy.

Let’s take a sniff at some of the more common misunderstandings or myths.

Canine epilepsy is not a death sentence.  Most dogs living with epilepsy can live long & happy lives with proper seizure management/control. I have a pawtacular life in which I am a Princess &  the Prettiest of All Pretties ( huMom says so). My life is full of wooftastic dogventures, doglightful gratitude & so much love. This good dog couldn’t ask for more.

Epilepsy is a disorder not a disease. An epilepsy warrior isn’t sick, during an episode something electrical is going wrong in the brain.

Not all seizures are due to epilepsy.  Many other health issues can cause seizures. Blood sugar issues, head injury, electrolyte problems, kidney or liver disease, & eating poison can all cause seizures in good dogs.

Dogspite how your dog’s seizures look to you, seizures are not painful. We dogs will feel confused & may have episodes of panic. It is impawtant to be prepared by creating a safe & quiet (both in sound & light) space.

Finally, dogs do not swallow their tongues during a seizure episode. Although they may bite their tongue or any fingers that get too close.

Sharing information & creating awareness is how we overcome these misunderstandings. That’s why we believe it is dog gone impawtant to support  Wally’s Canine Epilepsy Foundation in their mission to educate, inform & assist good dogs living with canine epilepsy.

Wally’s Canine Epilepsy Foundation also helps save the lives of canine epilepsy warriors every day by assisting those humans who through no fault of their own can not afford the life saving medications for their good dogs. Good dogs who might otherwise would be surrendered or worse, euthanized.

A gift to WCEF gives hope to those epilepsy Warriors & their families who are not only battling the ‘epi monster’ from a health standpoint but also financially.

CEO Olivia

Help support Wally’s Canine Epilepsy Foundation🐾💜🐾 & Pamper the chef in your life with wooftastic Pampered Chef products✨ June 1st through to June 30th✨ because no Epilepsy Warrior should be without their lifesaving anti seizure medication.
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What is Ocular Compression?


When it appears that the epi-monster is lurking about, that is, when I show warning signs of an impending seizure, my huMom uses a technique on me called Ocular Compression Therapy. She learned of it while researching canine epilepsy.

Have you ever rubbed your eyes when your stressed? People do this naturally as a way of calming down. By applying gentle pressure on one or both eyes, you stimulate the Vagus Nerve which then triggers a release of Gamma-Amino Butyric acid (GABA) which acts as a neurotransmitter in the central nervous system. It inhibits nerve transmission in the brain, calming nervous activity & if done in time, can shut down “messages gone out of control”, i.e. seizures, before they hit.

Applying ocular compression on your good dog is quite simple. Begin ocular compression as soon as signs of an impending seizure are present. You may be able to prevent a seizure from occurring.

Here’s how it’s done.

First, you will need to stabilize the head as best you can. Initially my huMom would sit in a chair & cradle my head on her lap. I’ve since become used to receiving ocular compression & have come to enjoy it. Now she can apply it any time, even out in the car.

If your good dog has already gone into a seizure, ocular compression may not be possible right away. It’s always important to avoid getting too close to a seizuring dog’s mouth as it may bite unintentionally.

Apply pressure – Once you’ve gotten the dog’s head stabilized, close the eyelids with your fingers or thumbs & apply firm, but gentle pressure. You should be able to determine the amount of pressure to apply. You should be just a little firmer than what it takes to read a pulse. If your dog resists you may be pressing too hard. Pressure should be applied for 5 to 8 seconds.

Release & repeat – Release pressure for another 5 to 8 seconds. Begin the pressure cycle again, releasing & repeating until you sense the dog’s relief from the seizure. Applied after a seizure, ocular compression can reduce post seizure effects.

Here is a short video that briefly shows how to do ocular compression therapy.

Here you can read a comprehensive article on Ocular Compression.

CEO Olivia

What to do while your good dog seizures


Hello everyone, CEO Olivia here. I know many who follow this blog already know what to do if your good dog seizures but there are always those who are new to living with canine epilepsy. Today I want to touch on what to do during an epileptic event.

First, remain calm. Witnessing a seizure is never easy, but you need to stay focused. If your good dog is in a kennel, under a table or a bed, gently pull him/her out to the middle of the room. If possible grab the scruff of the neck, if  you can’t reach, gently pull a back leg or the tail. It’s important not to get near the dog’s face as it may unintentionally bite you. Try your best to keep the dog away from anything it could thrash into such as furniture or walls.

Try to reduce stimuli such as noise or bright lighting; we know this can be difficult if you are alone with your epi dog.  Although we don’t do this, some will put a blanket over the dog. The weight of the blanket can have a calming effect. There are special coats called, “Thunder shirts” which are for calming dogs. I’m going to talk about them in a future blog post.

Although it’s never happened to me, should your good dog vomit during the seizure, do not try to clear the airway with your fingers. Again, you may get a nasty bite. Instead, if possible, tilt the dog’s back end up so it’s head is down & let it drain out. I’m sure this may be difficult with a larger dog but it needs to be done.

An ice pack applied on the spine above the back hips can help. Cooling seems to reduce the chance of clustering. If you can’t get the ice pack applied during the seizure, do so as soon as you can.

A seizure may seem to last hours & some dogs do cluster & have several seizures back to back. If your good dog goes into a second seizure that’s manageable but should a third hit, you need to get to the vet or emergency right away. Every seizure carves out a pathway in the brain making the next seizure easier to take hold, so stopping clusters is very important.

After the event, it’s a good idea to record the details in a seizure journal. The information may be useful to your vet. I’m going to share an example in a future post.

Canine epilepsy is a frightening disease. It’s never easy watching your good dog suffer through an event. But knowledge is power. Understanding what’s happening & what to do will make things less stressful. Read up & reach out.

CEO Olivia