We know that taking care of your cat’s health is essential to giving her the quality of life she so richly deserves. Cats are generally strong and resilient animals that are not prone to disease. But that doesn’t mean you should let your guard down and ignore strange behavior.
A cat’s convulsion is a very uncomfortable situation to live in. It’s also a distressing situation for the cat, who doesn’t understand what’s happening to it. However, staying calm, helping him at the moment, and going to the vet is the best way to help him. This is why we want to talk to you about the cat’s seizure, its causes, and what to do when it happens. So, if you follow the advice in our article “Cat Seizure – Causes, Treatment and What to Do”, you’ll know how to treat the problem in the most appropriate way.
What are the symptoms of cat seizure?
The main symptoms of cat seizure are as follows:
-Uncontrolled movement of the legs.
-Loss of knowledge
-Drop to the side
-Defecation and urination
Read the rest of our article “Cat Cat Convulsions – Causes, Treatment and What to Do” for more details on this condition.
What is cat seizure?
It is a series of repetitive and uncontrollable movements produced by an alteration in the normal functioning of brain activity. A simple way to explain this process is to say that it is caused by the fact that the neurons, which are responsible for transporting electrical impulses through the nervous system, receive more excitement than they can handle, causing abnormal electrical discharges in the brain as a result of over-stimulation.
When the brain receives these abnormal shocks, it reacts with the obvious signs of a convulsion. The danger lies not only in the cat’s convulsion itself, but it can also cause brain damage and affect other organs, such as the lungs. That’s why early diagnosis and prompt treatment are essential to avoid fatal consequences.
Convulsions are not common in felines and are usually a symptom of another disease. They should not be confused with cat epilepsy. Epilepsy is a self-manifesting, lifelong disease, with no other disease influencing its onset. Conversely, the convulsion is accompanied and caused by other conditions, although it does not disappear completely with treatment, although it can be controlled.
Causes of the cat’s convulsion
Many disorders can have as a symptom the cat’s convulsion, including the following:
-Infectious diseases: toxoplasmosis, encephalitis, meningitis, peritonitis, among others.
-Congenital malformations: hydrocephalus, etc.
-Intoxications: with insecticides, poisons against parasites, parasiticides for external use, household products with toxic and dangerous labels.
-Diseases of metabolic origin: hypoglycemia, thyroid pathologies, liver problems, among others.
-Use of certain drugs.
-Presence of certain parasites that have migrated abnormally into the cat’s body.
Cat convulsions: symptoms
In cats, the convulsion manifests itself in different ways. In some cases, the symptoms are quite obvious, while in others, the signs may be difficult to detect. The most common signs are :
-Uncontrolled movement of the legs
-Loss of knowledge
-Drop to the side
-Defecation and urination
The convulsion may last 2-3 minutes, and before it appears, the cat may try to attract the attention of its guardian or, on the contrary, hide. These types of episodes are easy to identify, although other less serious signs may also occur, manifesting themselves in behaviors such as obsessive tail chasing, uncontrolled facial movements, and chasing something that isn’t there, among others. In these cases, the cat only partially loses consciousness of what is happening. Any abnormal behavior should be reported immediately to your veterinarian.
Cat convulsion: what to do during the seizure?
When a seizure episode occurs in a cat, you need to be prepared to know what to do, because any mistake will hurt you or the cat, or the seizure will last longer. This is why we recommend that you :
-Stay calm: avoid crying, making loud noises, or even talking to the cat, as these types of stimuli can further excite the cat’s nervous system.
-Removing any object that could injure the cat. However, avoid touching it, as it could bite or scratch you, as it will not be aware of what it is doing. You should only touch the cat if it is in danger of falling from somewhere. In this case, we recommend that you pick it up with a towel and put it on the floor or handle it with a pair of kitchen gloves.
-Eliminate any noise that may be present in the environment, such as television or music. Turn off the lights and even close your shutters if the sunlight is intense.
-Do not wrap the cat if it is not necessary. Also, don’t expose it to the heat from the heater.
-Don’t try to give the cat food or water.
Never self-medicate. Only a veterinarian can tell you how to do this.
-Once the crisis is over, take him to a cool place under your supervision and contact your veterinarian.
Cat convulsion: what is the diagnosis?
-To make a satisfactory diagnosis of cat’s convulsion, you must provide the veterinarian with all the information about the signs you were able to detect, which will help him/her to know which tests are the most appropriate to detect the origin of the problem. The purpose of the diagnosis is to determine whether the cat has epilepsy or seizures and what might be causing them. In this sense, it may include :
-Complete medical history – information on all diseases, injuries, and various ailments of the cat throughout its life. Vaccines administered and medications used.
-General physical examination.
Electroencephalograms, electrocardiograms, X-rays, and MRIs, among others.
-Urine and blood tests.
Of course, it will not be necessary to perform each of these medical studies in all cases.
Cat convulsions: what treatment should be followed?
Treatment for cat convulsions aims both to reduce the frequency and intensity of the attacks and to eradicate their cause. Of course, depending on the cause, a specific treatment will be necessary, prescribed by your veterinarian.
With regard to convulsions, phenobarbital is often used in animals to prevent seizures and diazepam to control them when they occur. However, the drugs must be prescribed by your doctor, as well as the doses and frequency of medication. These two specific components cannot be used in cats with liver problems.
Usually, medications must be given for life, always at the same time, and at the same dose. The convulsion may recur, but the animal will be able to lead a normal life if the veterinarian’s recommendations are followed.
Early diagnosis and continued treatment can greatly improve the cat’s condition, but the longer you wait to see a specialist, the worse the final prognosis will be, reducing the chances of the cat leading a normal life and increasing the risk of more frequent seizures.
It is also recommended that you keep your cat indoors to prevent her from having seizures outdoors, which would expose her to all sorts of dangers that you could not remedy.
A cat’s stroke is one of the most common medical emergencies that can save and, more importantly, help a cat recover from it. There are 2 forms of strokes in cats, the first being an alteration of blood flow in the brain and the second being a cerebral hemorrhage. A cat stroke can cause, among other symptoms, a cat’s convulsion which will not always be detectable because it can be of very short duration.
Often impressive because of its sudden onset, it is essential to describe what you observe on the phone to the emergency veterinarian for better management. Once the emergency treatment has been applied, it is essential to carry out an extension assessment, but also the causes of the stroke.
Epilepsy in cats: natural treatment
If your cat, unfortunately, suffers from epileptic seizures, be sure to consult your veterinarian first in case you want to give the feline a natural treatment. When treating a cat’s epilepsy or any other disease, the advice of your veterinarian is paramount, and as we said earlier, you should never self-medicate your cat.
There are natural treatments to prevent cat epilepsy that can be administered along with the anti-epileptic drugs prescribed by your veterinarian. Diet is always a good starting point since the health of the nervous system and brain depends largely on an adequate supply of nutrients. Therefore, whenever possible, make sure you buy good quality food, preferably organic.
This article is purely informative, we do not have the expertise to prescribe veterinary treatments or make any diagnosis. We invite you to bring your animal to the veterinarian if it presents the symptoms of a fever or a disease.