JRT new to seizures! Help!

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JRT new to seizures! Help!

Post by Melissag010 » Sat Sep 22, 2018 7:10 pm

So, long story short. Our 12 yr old JRT (Wally!!) had his first seizure on 9/5/18. We didn’t see it just found him on our bed in the post-ictal phase (around 5:30 am )!and a lake of pee (ick!). We called our vet & was told to monitor him and not to come in for his first seizure. I went to work around 8:00 & he was still in that groggy phase. I came home at noon to check and he was some what better but still not himself. The vet decided to see him and run some labs. All normal! So we went on with life. On this past Sunday (9/16) we saw the “aura” phase then witnessed his seizure. We took him to the ER vet and they gave him prednisone and zonisamide. The Prednisone was to treat any possible tumor in the brain and take swelling down. She said if he has a tumor it is 9 times out of 10 benign! (Good right!!?? I think so!) he seemed good through out this week but today had a sudden onset of the post-octal phase. We never saw seizure signs but have been watching him kinda lay around and be confused for about 2 hours now. He perks up when we talk to him. He’s been up moving some and drank water. He’s not interested in food but I know that’s normal. Has anyone put there pup on zonisamide and seen this over a seizure? Maybe he had one and it was super mild? The vet did say this med would not iliminate the seizure but make them less intense and make the post-ictal phase better. Could that be what we are watching? He’s on Zonisamide 50mg every 12 hours. Anyone have some encouraging news? He’s my baby. Not ready to say goodbye!!! 😞😞😞
Jack Russell
12 yrs old
Zonisamide 50mg every 12 hours

GentleJacob's Mom
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Re: JRT new to seizures! Help!

Post by GentleJacob's Mom » Mon Sep 24, 2018 5:57 am

I'm sorry to hear Wally is having seizures after being healthy for so long. They're our babies whether they're one or 12 aren't they?
It's true the older they are when they're diagnosed the higher the possibility that a tumor may be involved. I know of a 9 year old Cocker Spaniel that lived for over 4 years with one, but every dog is different. Just like with medications, each dog can respond differently. I do hope Zonisamide works for Wally. It does take some time for them to adjust to the meds so time will tell.
Jake had many "almost seizures" over the years, but would still have some post ictal symptoms regardless, so that could be what you're seeing. We didn't use Zonisamide but I do think ataxia and drowsiness is a common side effect but that happens with most meds so it may be just a matter of Wally adjusting to it all. You and your vet will be learning together what his and your new normal will be. Have you thought about talking to a neurologist? You don't have to get an MRI, although they will probably recommend it, but they deal with seizure issues every day and can sometimes pin point things that others can't. We didn't get an MRI for Jake.
You can keep a journal of when Wally seizes and make notes of what he was doing and how the seizure presents itself that it will help a lot when you're talking to your vet.
You're in the beginning of all of this and as Wally's mom I know how worried and scared you are that this is happening. That's an unfortunate thing we all share here. You just want things to be better but all you can do is wait, see, and hope. When Jake started seizing and we found he wouldn't find control I never in a million years thought he would prove us all wrong and live for over 11 years with it. You just never know with this disease because there's really nothing definitive about most of this. I know that's not much comfort, but we're here when you need us
I hope this helps a little.
Let us know how you're doing.

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Re: JRT new to seizures! Help!

Post by Kestrel » Wed Nov 28, 2018 11:15 pm

How is Wally Doing?
My beagle started having seizures Sept 2017 when he was 15 and has been on Zonisamide 50mg 2x a day since March. It took him about two weeks to get used to the Zonisamide. Due to advanced age our dog could have a brain tumor, I didn't want to do anything invasive like MRI or spinal tap, treatment would be the same and focus on quality of life. Before starting the Zonisamide we even had our dogs teeth cleaned cuz he fractured teeth during a seizure, his seizures are intense. The Zonisamide worked great for about 5 months but my poor dog lost 4 lbs since it really suppressed his appetite. I didn't want to increase dose and last October we had to add Keppra XR 750mg cut in half, one half 2x a day and he's been on that for about 6 weeks. Now the issue we are having is GI upset, since my pup is so old, his digestion is not as great and having to take 4 pills a day upsets his stomach, he will get painful gas and diarrhea. We had to give him metro an antibiotic a couple of times this month already, then that was 6 pills a day. Luckily our dog is eating much better now, feed him smaller meals and give meds after he's had something to eat. I also space out the pills if I can at least an hour or two. We also got a nanny cam since we both have to work during the day but can rush home if our little one has a seizure, so far they happen when he is sleeping. It's really hard at times caring for a dog with seizures and I can't even believe it's been over a year for us and my sweet old dog is still here. Good luck everyone.
16 yr old beagle
first seizure Sept 1 2017 when he was 15
Zonisamide 50 mg x 2 a day, since March 2018
Levetiracetam XR 750 split x 2 a day, since Oct 2018

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Re: JRT new to seizures! Help!

Post by Degutis » Thu Jul 15, 2021 5:26 am

My housekeeper had a 10-year-old Jack Russell Terrier. He had 2 seizures every 3 days and later was diagnozed with a brain tumor. But he lived another 3 happy years. Late life seizures may not always lead to the surgery.

Ghent University: Jack Russell Terriers, author- PhD publication https://essaydune.com/dissertation-proposal/

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