What Causes Seizures in French Bulldogs?


Seizures in French bulldogs are caused by abnormal activity in the brain that leads to losing control of the body. According to statistics, one in 20 dogs suffer from canine epilepsy that can be an anxiety-laden experience both for you and your Frenchie. Seizures in Frenchies usually occur at a young age, especially during the adolescence period.

What are the main reasons for seizures in French bulldogs?

There could be many reasons for canine epilepsy in your pet and the most common one is:

  • Low blood sugar level
  • Stroke
  • Calcium deficiency
  • Anemia
  • Liver disease
  • Infections
  • Different poisons
  • High or low blood pressure
  • Heat stroke

A seizure attack is otherwise called a fit or convulsion. It represents a temporary brain disturbance function and it’s followed by uncontrollable muscle activity. Vets use the term epilepsy to describe the repeated episodes of seizures.

What happens during a seizure in a French bulldog?

The seizure attack consists of 3 stages. In the first one, the dog may act nervous, seek out the owner, and salivate excessively. This period may last from a few seconds to a few hours. This phase is otherwise called pre-ictal phase.

The second phase (the ictal phase), can last from a few seconds to several minutes. A Frenchie who went into this phase will excessively lick his lips, have a dazed look, shake, stare, and even completely lose his consciousness in the end. As the Frenchie falls over its side, his muscles will move spastically and erratically, and then his legs will look paralyzed.

A seizure usually lasts from one to 5 min, and if it doesn’t stop within that time, the dog is said to be in a prolonged seizure.

The third phase is called the post-ictal. It’s the period immediately after the end of the seizure. The Frenchie who has just experienced this episode will seem disoriented and will pace and salivate excessively.

How to stop a seizure in a French bulldog?

There is a common misconception that you need to put a raw glair into the dog’s mouth or pull his tongue during the seizure. The truth is that such crazy ideas can only hurt you or your pet. Contrary to popular beliefs, dogs don’t swallow their tongues during seizures. If you put your hand inside your Frenchie’s mouth, you can break his jaw and cause other injuries as well. The only thing you should do is to place your dog on the ground and wait for the seizure to end. Periodical seizures don’t represent a treat for a dog. However, in case of multiple seizures during a day, you have to keep in mind that his body temperature will begin to rise.

Unfortunately, this could be especially dangerous for Frenchies because they are naturally prone to overheating.

To cool down your French bulldog, it would be best to place a wet towel on his body. You can also turn the air conditioner on.

Seizures in French bulldogs can be successfully prevented by regularly taking oral medications. Visiting your vet is also recommended because he is the only one who can tell you what would be the best treatment for your pet.

How to help a Frenchie after a seizure?

To help your pet recover after a seizure, our advice is to place him on a summer cooling pad or bed

Another option to cool down your Frenchie is to dress him a cooling vest. The following vest should be worn wet. The best effect your dog will get if you place the vest in the fridge for about 30 min before wearing.

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