Feline Epilepsy

Epilepsy is a disorder of recurring seizures. There are many conditions that may cause a recurrent seizure disorder. Some of these conditions may include tumors, exposure to toxins, hypoglycemia, kidney or liver disorders, congenital defects, infections, or trauma.

A seizure is the result of an abnormal pattern of brain activity and are more commonly seen in dogs than cats.

The type and severity of a seizure is determined by the area of the brain affected. A seizure may be as minimal as staring off into space for just a few seconds or it may be major as in the case of a grand mal.

Your cat may appear restless prior to a seizure. She may pace, meow, salivate, seek affection, or even hide. Once the seizure begins, your cat may appear excited, vomit, salivate, run in circles, collapse, and have uncoordinated muscle activity. This stage of the seizure generally lasts less than 5 minutes. You should cover your cat with a towel during this stage to keep her safe from injuring herself against dangerous objects. If your cat is on a couch, human bed, or similar, you may safely lower her to the floor to prevent her from falling. So that you don’t stimulate another seizure, keep the room quiet and dark. Immediate veterinary care should be sought for any seizure which lasts more than a few minutes to prevent brain damage or even death. When the seizure passes, your cat may appear disoriented, uncoordinated, and occasionally may be temporarily blind. This recovery period may last several minutes to days.

Veterinary care will involve diagnosing and treating the primary cause. The seizures can be controlled through medication themselves. A record should be kept of the date, time, and duration of any seizure.

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