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Old July 12th, 2006, 02:10 PM
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meb999 meb999 is offline
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Question Buster's head tremor...

Buster's been having little 'seizures' (actually I'm not sure what they are). We are going to the vet's tomorow for a thorough exam, blood tests etc.

I was just wondering if anyone here may have an idea of what this could be. He got his first 'attack' on friday. It's like a head tremor. Nothing else moves but his head. He's completely alert the whole time (he's even willing to play while it happens). His apetite is normal and it happens at different times of the day (and it has different lenghs).

Here's what it looks like (there are 2 videos) :

http://video.google.ca/videoplay?doc...96077706955474

http://video.google.ca/videoplay?doc...83019408822522


It happened the first time on wednesday (at 2 o'clock pm, lasted about 8 minutes), once on friday (lasted 2 to 3 minutes), twice on saturday, and once on monday. Those are the ones we have witnessed. I've spoken to the vet twice -- once on wednesday -- she said not to worry, since he's alert the whole time ; and once on saturday -- she said to take him in for blood panel, but she's not really worried because he's young (he's 3 years old). I, on the other hand, am SUPER worried...

It could be like a zillion things.

Has anyone ever heard of Paroxysmal Dyskinesia? (see :http://www.homestead.com/bulldogsworld/headtremor.html)

Any other ideas on what this could be????
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Old July 12th, 2006, 02:19 PM
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Here's a list of things that can cause a seizure in dogs : (found at http://www.purelypets.com/articles/epilepsyarticle.htm)

Factors That May Trigger a Seizure

Below is a list of factors that most commonly trigger seizures. This does not mean your pet will have a seizure each time it comes in contact with one. EACH pet is different and sensitive to certain things. This list does not apply to every pet.

Some of these factors are impossible to avoid, but are listed for your knowledge.

Hair spray - Do not spray when pet is in the same room.
Wool - Wool blankets, wool sofas, etc.
Heartworm pills - A seizure may occur 1 to 1 wks. after administering heartworm medication.
Cigarette smoke
.
Environmental Pollution from chemical plants.
BHA - A preservative commonly used in dog foods, read - "Additives in Pet Foods,"
BHT - A preservative commonly used in dog foods.
Sodium nitrate - Proven in research studies to cause severe seizures. Sodium nitrate is found in many foods we eat. Read the ingredient labels carefully.
Carpet powders.
Air fresheners.
Fabric softeners - If exposed to clothes that have fabric softener on them.
Dryer sheets - If exposed to clothes that have been in the dryer with the dryer sheets.
Salt, Ferrous Sulfate, Copper Sulfate, Calcium Iodate, Monosodium Glutamate - in excess.
Sugar - Sucrose, corn syrup, molasses, cane sugar.
Low quality commercial dog biscuits and treats.
Low quality dry food.
Low quality canned food.
Plastic bowls - All plastics release some undetectable fumes, especially when heated. This out-gassing means the fumes can pass into the foods that are served or stored in the bowl or container. Stainless steel or glass bowls are recommended.
Cheap ceramic bowls - Cause the same problem as described above.
Fumes from all bathroom cleaners.
Fumes from bleach.
Fumes from dusting products.
Household cleaners - Pine cleaners should be avoided.
All toxic flea products - If the product states "Hazardous To Humans And Domestic Animals", it is hazardous to your pet.
Toxic shampoos.
Toxic flea collars.
Dust - Change air filters in your home once a month, and wash curtains twice yearly.
Crabgrass.
Mold.
Eating cat or dog feces.
Stress.
Vaccinations.
Lyme vaccine.
Lyme encephalitis.
Rabies vaccine.
Head trauma.

Worm infestation.
Lead - Pets like to lick lead because it tastes sweet, and lead poisoning can result from licking or eating wood chips on which there is lead paint. This can be checked when doing regular blood work, but it must be specified that you would like a LEAD POISONING TEST which is not part of a normal blood work.
Paint fumes.
Paint chips from lead based paint.
Excessive exercise.
[B]Overheating.
Abuse or neglect.[/B]
Rawhides - Many are dipped in a solution of salt and bleach
Cheap painted pet toys
Loud noises - Yelling, fighting, doorbell ringing
Scented candles.
Vitamins with high sodium level.
Inconsistent routine.
FALL -
Research studies have shown that more seizures occur in the fall. This is due to mold and bacteria in the air.
Blinking lights - Christmas lights, bright lights, etc.
Pine cleaners
.
Red food dye.
Ethoxyquin.
Fungi, Bacteria and Germs.

Mobile Phones - Research carried out on animals suggests that mobile phone emissions may trigger seizures. Check out this site - Epilepsy and Mobile Phones
Hereditary Factors
.


How the heck are you supposed to narrow down what causes seizures???

I mean THE FALL????? How the heck are you supposed to prevent a season!! LOL
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Marie-Eve and Buster (5 year old-ish rescued Boxer)

Deep thought, by Jack Handey : "I think my new thing will be to try to be a real happy guy. I'll just walk around being real happy until some jerk says something stupid to me."

Last edited by meb999; July 13th, 2006 at 12:46 PM.
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Old July 12th, 2006, 02:25 PM
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You are right it could be a million different things and you or course are going to jump to the worst thing it could be and make yourself crazy. It may be something as a reaction to something and he will be fine. Try not to drive yourself crazy thinking of all the things it could be. I know easier said than done. Keep us posted I am sure the blood work will tell
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Old July 12th, 2006, 03:29 PM
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Thanks Mastiff!
I,m trying not to freak out everytime it happens, because I don't want to stress him out.....I hope it's nothing serious
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Deep thought, by Jack Handey : "I think my new thing will be to try to be a real happy guy. I'll just walk around being real happy until some jerk says something stupid to me."
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Old July 12th, 2006, 03:39 PM
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Oh, poor doggy! It's sad to watch but at the same time, I find it weird that he stopped when he was distracted by what was outside the window for a few seconds. Like he had a bit of control for a tiny moment.

I hope it's nothing serious.
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Old July 12th, 2006, 03:40 PM
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Could he have possibly gotten bitten by something and it may be a reaction. Or have you changed anything that you normally use in the house or on Buster. Have you washed his bed lately? My friends dog had a reaction to something she washed his bed in. I am sure he will be okay just throwing ideas out there for you to obssess about instead of freaking him out because he can sense when you are stressed.
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Old July 12th, 2006, 04:08 PM
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I posted back on November 1, 2005 (sorry I don't know how to attach the link) a thread called epilepsy in dogs - head shaking. Halo has similar episodes (although not too often). This thread was answered by Raingirl who's dog Odin does this, and one of the vet also answered with many good ideas. So try searching through the threads that I started for this one. It may give you some ideas anyhow of what to be looking and testing for. Good luck to Buster.
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Old July 12th, 2006, 04:17 PM
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You changed the food after it started, right? Just wondering if it might be linked.
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Old July 12th, 2006, 04:19 PM
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I have my fingers crossed that everything goes well at the vet and it's something easily fixed like an allergy to a different soap or something. I'll keep Buster in my thoughts.
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Old July 12th, 2006, 05:39 PM
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One of my dogs was suffering from focal (or partial) seizures 2 years ago. It looked exaclty the same as you described, head shaking side to side, but Streets was always totally responsive and alert.

As you've posted, it can truely be a million things that cause this to happen. Once we had done a full blood panel, seen 3 vets and a neurologist, Streets was schedualed for a spinal tap and MRI. What happened however, was that they stopped happening, so we kept putting off the spinal tap and in the end never did it or the MRI.

The best theory all the vets and myself could come up with is that the Sentinel he had been on had caused the seizures, but since I wasn't about to try it again just to see, this has never been confirmed.

The best advice I can give is to keep a log of every seizure, everything the dog did, ate etc. that day and try to think, as I'm sure you are, of anything in the house that the dog may have been exposed to.

Also, incase you haven't come across these yet, I found these sites really helpful:
http://www.canine-epilepsy.net/
http://www.canine-epilepsy-guardian-angels.com/

I hope everything is easily solved. Try not to worry too much, I know I was freaking out when this was happening to my dog and just kept thinking about brain tumors, but it turned out totally fine and I've heard so many similar stories.

Last edited by pitgrrl; July 12th, 2006 at 05:44 PM.
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Old July 12th, 2006, 05:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Prin
You changed the food after it started, right? Just wondering if it might be linked.
When it started he had just started on Wellness SuperMix5 (Lamb), and I read that food can be a cause for seizures, so I stopped feeding him that right away (on wednesday) and bought a bag of Solid Gold...so yeah, his food was changed after the seizures started...

Quote:
The best advice I can give is to keep a log of every seizure, everything the dog did, ate etc. that day and try to think, as I'm sure you are, of anything in the house that the dog may have been exposed to.
I've been keeping a log (including lengh of seizure, time it happened, what he was doing at the time...etc)

The only thing I can think of is that I was painting the dining room last week. I originally attributed the first few incidences to paint fumes...but I've been done painting since friday and the house has been fully aired out...so if it WAS the paint, he shouldn't be having them anymore, right?

He just had another 'episode' a few minutes ago. They seem to be getting shorter (they went from like 8 minutes to just around 30 seconds)....That's gotta be a good sign, right?

thanks for the links and everything
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Marie-Eve and Buster (5 year old-ish rescued Boxer)

Deep thought, by Jack Handey : "I think my new thing will be to try to be a real happy guy. I'll just walk around being real happy until some jerk says something stupid to me."
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Old July 12th, 2006, 06:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dog Dancer
I posted back on November 1, 2005 (sorry I don't know how to attach the link) a thread called epilepsy in dogs - head shaking. Halo has similar episodes (although not too often). This thread was answered by Raingirl who's dog Odin does this, and one of the vet also answered with many good ideas. So try searching through the threads that I started for this one. It may give you some ideas anyhow of what to be looking and testing for. Good luck to Buster.
Here's the link : http://www.pets.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=20889

I'm thinking it might be Paroxysmal Dyskinesia (also called...please don't laugh...head-bobbing syndrome) which is apparently frequent in bulldogs (like Odin) and Boxers.

from : http://www.homestead.com/bulldogsworld/headtremor.html

The videotape is a classic; the videotape shows a great example of what is referred to as "idiopathic head bobbing syndrome"; we see this most commonly in the bulldog, doberman and boxer although I have seen it in a lab as well as in some mixed breed dogs; the head bobbing can be either up and down or side to side; usually activity, such as concentrating on food or a toy, makes it go away but not always; it can be very episodic in the sense that it may go away for months only to reappear; sometimes it seems to increase in frequency; the exact cause is not known nor is the anatomic dx; we believe strongly it has something to do with the stretch receptors in the neck
- ie the gp or maybe gsa fibers in mm bundles - although this is only a theory; we use to teach that it had something to do with basal nuclei of the brain like parkinsons but that is unlikely.


I have scanned a few dogs but have not found anything as of yet; the good news is that it absolutely does not harm the dog; in fact the dog does not seem to even be bothered at all; it bothers the owners immensely but all you need there is some good client communication; the key with this dz is NOT to treat it as a seizure with anticonvulsants as that absolutely does not work; I unfortunately had to get involved in too many of these cases that are on super high doses of anticonvulsants - one from Penn that almost died -18000K later in their ICU - they came for a second opinion - stopped all the meds and the dog was perfectly fine; we have tried lots of meds to no success but who cares as it does not affect the dog.

I usually tell vets to treat the owner not the dog in these cases as client education is the key.

Dr. DeLahunta, Dr. Kent and I have an article coming out in July compendium on involuntary mvmt disorders - we have described this syndrome in that article.
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Marie-Eve and Buster (5 year old-ish rescued Boxer)

Deep thought, by Jack Handey : "I think my new thing will be to try to be a real happy guy. I'll just walk around being real happy until some jerk says something stupid to me."
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Old July 12th, 2006, 09:10 PM
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Buster's....

I read something similar on another message board although the owner said that her dogs teeth were chattering. It turned out to be a bad tooth that was infected. While you are the vet maybe have him check out Buster's teeth.
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Old July 12th, 2006, 09:57 PM
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I know several greyhounds this has happened to as well, most commom cause was the heartworm meds


One thing that can help to find a cause is to make a diary, and note things like weather, activity, meds, any treats, time of day how long the siezuew lasted and sometimes you can find patterns as a result
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Old July 13th, 2006, 11:16 AM
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Hi Maie-Eve,I was not able to look at the videos but I wanted to tell you good luck,hope it's nothing serious
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Old July 13th, 2006, 11:57 AM
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Being able to see the video segment is so much better than any verbal description! I hope your vet is able to pin the cause down. Staying calm and not panicking is best advice I can offer. You seem to be handling it well and doing what should be done, seeing the vet, keeping a record, etc.
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Old July 13th, 2006, 12:52 PM
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Thanks everyone!

The vet doesn't seem all too worried. She didn't take his blood because she doesn't think a blood test is necessary right now (she said ' at THIS point, with THESE symptoms, a blood panel would be a waste of 300$) She says since he's eating normal, acting normal, is even playfull during these seizures...it doesn't sound like anything that would be detected with a blood panel.

She wants to wait a week, to see if it may be a reaction to his heartworm meds (he's on Interceptor) since he had a wicked reaction to Revolution last year (two weeks of MASSIVE drooling -- I'm talking buckets and buckets of drool!) (so you may well be right, Ontario Greys!!)

If he's still doing these in a week, she wants to put him on some anti-convulsive meds. She says it's either a reaction to Interceptor or mild epilepsy. I don't want to put him on meds now, just because, at this point - -since the seizures aren't bothering him, and he's alert the whole time, I think the cure would be worse than the illness!

Thanks for all your answers, and encouragement. I really appreciate it. I'm such a huge worry-wort, and coming here and hearing all your comments and suggestions really helps!

Thanks again, you guys are the best
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Marie-Eve and Buster (5 year old-ish rescued Boxer)

Deep thought, by Jack Handey : "I think my new thing will be to try to be a real happy guy. I'll just walk around being real happy until some jerk says something stupid to me."

Last edited by meb999; July 13th, 2006 at 12:54 PM.
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Old July 13th, 2006, 01:03 PM
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Just a question, because I had a poodle with mild epilepsy, when the seizure stops, does he have excessive drool? My poodle wasn't on meds and the seizures became less and less frequent, and more and more mild as he got older. His started at approx 2yrs of age.
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Old July 27th, 2006, 04:13 AM
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Head Bobbing

What you are showing in this videotape is called "idiopathic head bobbing" and it is commonly seen in the boxer, doberman and bulldog; It is a benign problem and not a seizure; do not let your vet treat it with anticonvulsants such as phenobarbital or kbr as they will not work; If you have questions google "bulldog, head tremors, glass" and you will see a letter I sent previously to another veterinarian regarding this syndrome in a bulldog;

I hope this is helpful to all;

Sincerely
Eric Glass, MS, DVM, ACVIM (Neurology)
Neurology and Neurosurgery
Red Bank Veterinary Hospital
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Old July 27th, 2006, 10:52 AM
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Wow, I'm sure meb will so appreciate that.
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Old July 27th, 2006, 11:14 AM
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Meb, so glad this thread came up again. It's always got more info in it. The head bobbing is exactly what Halo does - but very very rarely (she's a lab) and it does mention that it has been seen in labs occasionally. I hope this is all that is the matter with Buster. Wow our fur babies are complicated!
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Old July 27th, 2006, 02:54 PM
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my dog waffles has been having head tremors too, for about 2 years now, but they seem to be getting worse and more violent. she is a german short haired pointer and they started when she was about 6 months old. she is 2 1/2 now. we are on our second vet now. it looks just like busters video but a little more violent, only the head shakes, but our dogs eyes roll back in her head. both vets put her on potaasium bromide and phenobarbitol. hopefully they are doing the right thing. what's hapening with buster vet wise? would appreciate any sugestions from any body. vet want us to take her to cornell to see a nuerologist, but unfortunately i don't have the monetary funds for that or i would. thanks
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Old July 27th, 2006, 03:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by engvet
What you are showing in this videotape is called "idiopathic head bobbing" and it is commonly seen in the boxer, doberman and bulldog; It is a benign problem and not a seizure; do not let your vet treat it with anticonvulsants such as phenobarbital or kbr as they will not work; If you have questions google "bulldog, head tremors, glass" and you will see a letter I sent previously to another veterinarian regarding this syndrome in a bulldog;

I hope this is helpful to all;

Sincerely
Eric Glass, MS, DVM, ACVIM (Neurology)
Neurology and Neurosurgery
Red Bank Veterinary Hospital
Thank you so much for your response. I thought it might be idiopathic head bobbing (as I stated in one of the posts) --- but it seems to have gone away. He hasn't had an episode in over a week. Then again, since they don't last long he may be having them when we're not around.

Right now, I'm thinking it's probably due to the heartworm medication, since it started at the begining of the month (when his heartworm is given) and has slowly decreased as the month progressed. Plus he's had a reaction to a heartworm medication before....
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Marie-Eve and Buster (5 year old-ish rescued Boxer)

Deep thought, by Jack Handey : "I think my new thing will be to try to be a real happy guy. I'll just walk around being real happy until some jerk says something stupid to me."
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Old August 5th, 2006, 04:05 PM
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Same type of seizure in my dog

Thank you so much for posting the video of buster's head tremors. It is exactly what my dog began doing just a week and a half ago. My dog is a 3 year old lab/chow mix named Lilly. Prior to this episode, and what I described as a seizure, she had just received stitches in her leg from a cut she sustained when she broke a window trying to scare off a cat. The cut was not too deep, but required seven stitches, and of course, anesthesia. The next day, it was time for her monthly Interceptor, which she had been on six months prior. I gave her the interceptor as scheduled. The following night, she began having this exact type of head tremor. It scared me. I took her to the emergency vet. She was given a low dose of valium, but 24 hours later, the she had the tremor again, three more the next morning, one more that same afternoon. I took her again to the emergency vet where she was prescribed phenobarbital, 64.8 mg, 1.5 tablets, 2x daily. She's been on it for one week today. She still has the "seizures" twice a day. I think there might be a slight improvement, but I am not sure because I can't be with her all day. The vet also said it would take a while before the Pb would take effect. I have read all the responses and possible explanations for this, but I believe it was a reaction to the Interceptor. I know she had been on it previously, but never before after having sustained an injury.

Last edited by penneylain; August 5th, 2006 at 04:19 PM.
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Old August 5th, 2006, 08:16 PM
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Obviously this should not subsitute the advice of your vet penneylain, but when my dog was having head tremors, it was pretty likely the result of Sentinel.
He had taken the same thing for 2 summers in a row prior to the tremors, but on taking his first dose the 3rd summer, his head started shaking once or twice a day for a couple of weeks, then slowly decresed until about a month later he was no longer having them.

I don't really know anything about interceptor, but you can usually find the possible side-effects listed on the manufacturers websites.
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Old January 13th, 2007, 05:45 PM
jswofford jswofford is offline
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Hi all,

Last night my greyhound, Dazzle, did exactly what Buster was doing in his video. I was working at my desk and turned around to look at Dazzle, who had been lying on her bed for some time. She was looking up at me, with her head resting on the bed, but it was doing the tremor. Naturally I went right to her and kind of checked her over to see what was going on. I held her head in my hands and she stopped, and then she stood up and it happened again, but then I had her walk around the room and it stopped. Because she was perfectly alert and otherwise "normal" I decided on the watch-and-see course of action. At the time I thought it could have been some kind of pinched nerve thing -- those dogs do sleep in funny positions sometimes!

I don't have anything to add to the thread except that I have not given her heartwork medication any time recently. In fact, I haven't given it to her at all. I got her in December I and forgot to give the dogs their dose on 1/1. (Uh, now that I'm thinking about it, I need to go do it ... you don't have to scold me.)

She had recently finished a Kong full of peanut butter, but that's the only significant thing that happened that day. (Maybe it's high in one of those food ingredients?) She mostly gets her dog food, with a dollop of yogurt, and little else. Except treats, which haven't changed recently.

So, I'll keep an eye out for it happening again, and especially after giving her peanut butter.

My other greyhound, Maple, has never done anything like this that I've seen. I'm relieved to find that it's probably not a big issue.

-Jen, Maple and Dazzle
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Old January 13th, 2007, 06:50 PM
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Hi Jen, it could be idiopathic in nature (non known cause) or could be a symptoms of an underlying probem, I would at least recommend ruling out some things, by doing some general bloodwork, and bloodwork to check thyroid function(make sure your vet is aware that greyhounds have a lower t4 than other breeds
Have your dogs been tick tested? Tick disease can also cause seizures and neurological problems, and a host of nasty things as well and often symptoms do not show up till a few years after they have been infected. The adoption group I used to volunteer for , tested all incoming greys before placing quite a high number were testing positive for exposure to babesia, some ehrlichia and we had a couple with lyme or a combo of tick diseases.
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  #28  
Old January 20th, 2007, 02:30 PM
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jeepers43229 jeepers43229 is offline
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interesing info you found about bulldogs

i think it is very cool that you found those videos about the head shakes...man internet has come a long way! same thing was happening with my boston terrier, he is kinda similair to a bull dog i guess. never thought it could be something else. we saw three different vets and went through numerous blood and nurological tests...nothing. he did have an ear infection vet said was totally unrelated. 2 weeks later they stopped and stay away as long as my boys ears are super clean. i clean his years 2-3 times a week and he has had the shaking head for over a year I hope it is something simple as well it sounds like your vet is at least watching and trying to narrow it down before putting your pup and your wallet through alot of un-needed tests. Good Luck!
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  #29  
Old March 6th, 2007, 02:17 PM
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meb999 meb999 is offline
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Sorry for reviving an OLD thread....but Buster's doing it again. He had two seizures today.

It definetly can't be heartworm meds because he hasn't had any in months.

It has to be either epilepsy (which I doubt) or idiopathic head bobbing. I called the vet, and she says to just let it be as long as he doesn't seem in distress....

I'm a little worried....
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Last edited by meb999; March 6th, 2007 at 03:04 PM.
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  #30  
Old March 6th, 2007, 03:03 PM
Prin Prin is offline
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I hope he's ok...
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