CBD oil has been used for the control of seizures caused by epilepsy in dogs, cats and even humans. They can last seconds or minutes, be a twitch or a full-blown fit. They vary from dog to dog and can happen for many reasons.
Reasons dogs can have seizures include:
- An underlying health condition such as liver/kidney disease, cancer etc.
- A head injury
- Idiopathic Epilepsy
This article takes a look at one dog, in particular, Monty, an English Springer Spaniel from the UK. At the age of 4 Monty had his first fit, completely out the blue.
It’s advised to have your dog checked by a vet if they’ve not had a fit before to ensure there is no underlying health problem that’s causing it. The vet will do a full health check and may even take a blood test.
Epilepsy In Dogs
As Monty is a fully healthy, active dog Epilepsy was mentioned as the cause for the seizures.
It wasn’t till after Monty had his 4th fit that medication started. The most common medication and the one a vet is most likely to prescribe is Phenobarbital. It’s a strong drug that is meant to control seizures.
As it is such a strong drug it’s generally started on a low dosage and then increased if needed. Monty is currently on 6 Phenobarbital a day alongside 2 Potassium Bromide and has had 16 fits in total over 5 months. Some have happened within a few hours of one another.
The Effect Seizures And Medication Can Have On Your Dog
After each fit – that, in this case, lasted around 20-30 seconds each time with about 5 minutes to come around, your dog is exhausted. Not only that but they’re scared, upset, tired, drained and overall unhappy.
Seizures in dogs can last anything between seconds and minutes. It’s advised that if a seizure lasts longer than 5 minutes you should contact your vet immediately.
Monty had fits when he was in and out of sleep phases, which meant when he was recovering from a fit, he was cautious to go to sleep in case he had another one.
After each fit, dogs can be extremely disorientated, not recognise owners, be aggressive and more. This can last from a few minutes to 24 hours.
They can take a while to come around and may not seem like your dog. It’s important to stay calm, talk calmly and ensure you are safe until they regain full consciousness.
Seizure Medication For Dogs With Epilepsy
Monty completely changed on medication, he became extremely needy, developed separation anxiety, become more vocal- crying, barking and howling, on edge and started to run off.
He would wake his owners up 3 times in the night pacing, scratching doors, trying to jump on their bed, all with hyperactive/anxious behaviour as if he was anticipating a fit was going to happen.
This was hard on his owners who both have full-time jobs, it was also contributing to his other anxieties of not being able to be left alone in a room let alone the house.
Every person that knows Monty and saw him at the time commented on how he had a sad look about him in his eyes. This was heart-breaking for the owners to see as Monty’s personality had changed so much.
How Can CBD Oil Help Anxious Behaviour And Control Seizures
Monty’s owners started using CBD Oil to see if it would help with his anxious behaviour. Monty has been on CBD oil for just over a month and the results are astounding.
He’s not fully back to his old self as he can’t be trusted to not run off in certain areas – it seems the medication is affecting his hormones. However, how quickly his anxious behaviour has disappeared and how quickly his fun confident personality has returned is heartwarming.
He now sleeps through the whole night with no anxious behaviour or waking his owners, he’s back to his routine of being left for short periods and being fully calm. (His owners used a pet camera to spy on his behaviour).
He also hasn’t had another seizure since starting the CBD oil. On medication alone, his normal seizure pattern followed 1 fit every 11 days. It’s been 60 days and counting since Monty’s last fit….
CBD oil is not expected to stop all fits completely of epilepsy and there is no cure, however, it can reduce the frequency and the strength of seizures.
Monty is still currently on medication, his owners are going to reduce his dosage as instructed by the vet. When reducing or taking a dog off Phenobarbital it has to be done gradually due to the strength.
You can’t just decide one day you want to stop giving your dog anti-seizure medication as a sudden withdraw can have fatal consequences. Always consult your vet on advise with all medication dosage, increase and decrease.
It’s great to see the results that CBD oil can have, especially on extreme cases such as this. Below is a quote from Monty’s owner, Olivia:
“Experiencing and watching Monty with epilepsy has honestly been the hardest thing. The fits themselves are horrible to watch, although they feel no pain during. The coming around after broke my heart- the fact he didn’t recognise me. With every fit he had, we could see him getting sadder and sadder and it affected our personal lives a lot.
Seeing him change into this nervous, anxious dog that jumped at the slightest sound was horrific.
Seizures in dogs were something completely new to me that I had never even heard of. You put your trust in the vets as they are the experts in their field. We even got a second opinion from another vet as something in my gut was telling me there must be another option out there.
If I could turn back time now I would have done everything differently and hopefully, Monty wouldn’t have had as many fits as he has. I wish I knew CBD oil existed as it would have been the first thing to try instead of medication.
Although the medication has controlled Monty’s fits to an extent, it’s come at a cost of Monty’s happiness and how much of a liability he is to whoever is looking after him.
I’m just glad I came across Petals & Tails CBD oil as it has been the most successful thing at not only controlling his anxieties and behaviour but his seizures too, for that I am very thankful. We are now working on reducing his medication and relying solely on CBD oil.”
If you want to keep up with Monty’s story, follow him on Instagram @the.unique.looking.springer
We love hearing your experiences with Petals and Tails CBD oil for dogs and cats and love to hear how it’s helped your pets. If you have a story to share, get in touch today.