Among the most common canine neurological diseases is Epilepsy, which affects up to 5% of all dogs through trauma or inheritance. Those that have inherited such convulsive fits, have “idiopathic” or primary convulsions. This means that these animals have inherited a mutated gene from one or both of their parents.
In contrast, secondary canine epilepsy results from an unidentifiable cause like a brain tumor or nerve damage. Seizures in Dogs with inherited epilepsy, usually begin between ages of 1 and 3. Through several years of research, inherited epilepsy has been shown to possibly be the byproduct of a recessive gene, since the pup’s parents usually don’t exhibit similar symptoms. It may also be that the gene is sex-linked; it is found that male dogs inherit convulsions far more frequently than females. According to a specific study, it was found that a certain mutated gene causes a kind of canine epilepsy known as EPM2. This usually occurs in Miniature, Wirehaired Dachshunds and is known to be related to a human form of seizures known as Lafora Disease.
Keep in mind that an epileptic animal can still be a wonderful pet. It is up to you to make sure they live a normal, happy life. Be prepared for seizures to occur and always have your vet’s number handy. Make sure you know how to help your pup in the event of a fit and if they fall unconscious, know how to transport them to a vet safely. If any unforeseen episodes occur, do not discontinue your dog’s anti-epileptic medication without consulting your vet. Follow all procedures and prescriptions so you and your epileptic dog can live together for a long time; all it takes is a great deal of love and understanding.