Page 1 of 1

Possible epilepsy?

Posted: Sun Jan 10, 2016 11:50 pm
by Ally_Kat
Hi all, I am new here so hello :-)

I apologise in advance if there are threads on this already, I honestly haven't looked. I have read so much info over the last few days I really don't know what I am reading any more.

Has anyone here had any experience of keeping a cat with epilepsy?

It's looking pretty likely that my 2 year old neutered male will be diagnosed and put on treatment for it :-( He saw a vet on Friday after his first 2 full seizures. Bloods were run and are all clear. Charlie had a slight increase in temperature for which an antibiotic jab was given to cover over the weekend should that be a factor although vet was pretty certain it wouldn't be that as cat is generally well with a full appetite. Over the weekend the frequency and severity of seizures has been increasing. Its so harrowing to see :-( We will be speaking to the vet again tomorrow about where we go from here. They advised against treatment if seizures were far enough apart but these are too close.

Has anyone had their cat on treatment? Does it stop the seizures completely to enable him to lead a normal cat life i.e going out and hunting (a job he enjoys)?

With the seizures he is having now he is currently being attacked by my other 2 cats (His mum and sister) and we can't risk letting him out. Treatment is for life with regular vet checks and blood tests which we are happy to provide but I need peace of mind that it will improve his quality of life from what he has now. As I said we will be going back to the vet tomorrow but I wondered if any of you had experienced the same thing?

The biggest questions in my mind is whether it is fair to keep him like this potentially for life, possibly another 15 years? None of the cats can go out as they have been use to, the other 2 are not accepting Charlie right now, will that improve if he's on medication?

Right now he's sitting all quiet on his favourite chair and looks as though nothing is wrong. When he's in full blown seizure mode I just want to take his pain away :-(

Thank you for reading, apologies for the rambles.

Re: Possible epilepsy?

Posted: Mon Jan 11, 2016 12:17 am

Re: Possible epilepsy?

Posted: Mon Jan 11, 2016 12:50 am
by Ally_Kat
Thank you. Your answer is the one that is already in my mind really. Epilepsy is more probable unless he does have a raging fever that is too strong for antibiotics but he is too well to have a fever. He is eating us out of house and home and all other functions are normal. I'm not sure what else could cause this many seizures.

I will update when I know more. Thank you again.

Re: Possible epilepsy?

Posted: Mon Jan 11, 2016 3:18 am
by Ruth
Hi there, I can understand how horrible it is for you when Charlie has a fit, my Fred was epileptic from the age of 18 months. His was extremely severe, he would thrash around on the floor, be incontinent, foam at the mouth etc. After the fit passed he would be in a daze for about 5 minutes then be so ravenous he would eat a whole tin of whiskers.
He was put on phenobarb, it took a little while to get the dosage right but once we did he was fine.
He had the occasional fit but nothing we couldn't cope with.
We updated his microchip details to include the fact he was epileptic and he also had his medication details on a tag on his collar.
Epilepsy is quite common in cats, we suffer far more watching them fit than they do having it.
Be guided by your vet but I'm sure Charlie will be fine once his meds are sorted out.

Re: Possible epilepsy?

Posted: Mon Jan 11, 2016 4:42 am
by Ally_Kat
Hi Ruth, thank you for your reply. You have actually put my mind at a little more ease. I hadn't even considered about the microchip details. Did your Fred just carry on going out as normal? I am coming to realise it's quite common the more I have read, it's honestly not something I have even considered until a few days ago. I just feel so helpless for him :-(

Re: Possible epilepsy?

Posted: Mon Jan 11, 2016 11:47 am
by meriad
I don't know much about it at all, but do think that cats can live fairly long lives despite being epileptic. But one thing I would worry about is Charlie having totally unrestrained outdoor access as you he obviously can't control when he has a fit and he will be more at risk. Is there any way you could cat proof your garden so he can go out and be safe?

Re: Possible epilepsy?

Posted: Mon Jan 11, 2016 12:03 pm
by Ally_Kat
We are home from the vets with epiphen tablets and diazepam anal gel to bring him out of a prolonged seizure. Back in a month for review bloods. Vet is confident he will be able to lead a normal life of going out providing we get the medication balance right. So we will give him the chance he deserves and see what happens. He's just scoffed his first tablet dose down with a couple of dreamiest so he's a happy chappy for now.

Re: Possible epilepsy?

Posted: Mon Jan 11, 2016 12:13 pm
by meriad
Fingers crossed for him and you - hope you get it all under control soon. Fusses to Charlie

Re: Possible epilepsy?

Posted: Mon Jan 11, 2016 1:03 pm
by greenkitty
My Tig was born with epilepsy and had it when I adopted him at 7 months old. The vets think he suffered some brain damage during birth and also had a hernia and an undescended testicle which were also causing him pain. He had a little op to correct both of these and some fiddling around with his Epiphen to get the dosage right but once stable his seizures were few and far between. My own vet thought there was a good chance he would grow out of it so after a year we started weaning him off it gradually and I'm pleased to say it's been over 2 years since his last seizure and he's completely off the meds. Tig never had unsupervised outdoor access because he's also deaf and has no common sense. There's no reason why he can't go on to lead a normal life once he's stabilised on the medication.

As Ruth has said it's worse for you to view it (and it is very distressing to watch) but he will be oblivious to what's going on. Tig is a happy, content little lad now :)

Re: Possible epilepsy?

Posted: Mon Jan 11, 2016 1:15 pm
by Ruth
Hi, I'm glad I helped put your mind at rest a little.
Fred wasn't able to get out of our garden as he had multiple health issues, but I would recommend that you cat proof your garden just to keep Charlie safe and in close proximity to your home.
Fred was first put on epiphen but I always found that pheno controlled his fits far better.
Epiphen is the animal version, pheno is human medication.
Cats can live long good quality lives with epilepsy so please try not to worry too much.
Definitely call your microchip company and have his condition added to chip details.
That way if he did get out of the garden and someone found him after fitting a quick scan of chip details and a phone call to the database will immediately give a vet the medication and dosage he is on.
The diazepam enemas are essential and do help if a cat is having a prolonged fit or they are clustering.
My Fred is no longer with us but his passing had absolutely nothing to do with epilepsy at all.
Take care and fusses to Charlie.

Re: Possible epilepsy?

Posted: Mon Jan 11, 2016 6:40 pm
by Ally_Kat
Thank you all for your fusses and positive words. It really does help. As I said I had honestly never heard of a cat having epilepsy and I've had cats all my life. It certainly is an eye opener as to how common it is. Thank you for sharing your experiences, I certainly feel happier now that I did when I first posted. I don't know that we can totally cat proof our garden. We have some allotments at the back where he goes so I'm thinking I may also leave my details with the people there just in case. He's a long way off going out just yet but hopefully things will all sort themselves out.

Re: Possible epilepsy?

Posted: Tue Jan 12, 2016 12:56 am
by CatLadyLover
Ally_Kat wrote:Thank you. Your answer is the one that is already in my mind really. Epilepsy is more probable unless he does have a raging fever that is too strong for antibiotics but he is too well to have a fever. He is eating us out of house and home and all other functions are normal. I'm not sure what else could cause this many seizures.

I will update when I know more. Thank you again.
So sorry to hear about your sweet boy. Cats can have seizures due to toxic buildups in their systems too. It's not very common that cats get epilepsy, as it is a neurological issue. Make sure that you're feeding grain free wet food, as cats cannot digest grains well and it can cause a buildup in the GI tract that can lead to inflammation. I would also recommend a natural anti-inflammatory, as the medications also allow toxins into the blood stream. Here is one that I have seen work in similar (but not as severe-sounding) cases: (Advertising link removed)
Good luck and I'll keep my fingers crossed for your sweet boy. It is heart-breaking to watch them suffer.

Re: Possible epilepsy?

Posted: Thu Jan 14, 2016 12:55 am
by Ally_Kat
A short term update... The tablets seem to be doing their job brilliantly. I know we are not out the woods yet but Charlie has made a massive improvement!!

After the vets on Monday he seemed fine and quiet but I guess after sunday he was going to have a quiet day anyway. From the evening he started pacing around and remained unsettled all night which meant I did too, waiting for the inevitable. I think he had a couple of moments during the night then he had a partial seizure in the morning. The rest of the second day he had a couple of little ones but he seemed very disorientated and almost as if he was drunk. By night time he seemed quite well in himself and actually stayed quiet all night. I managed a full nights sleep. First one for a week so I am now seeing things in a much better light.

This morning it was like having the old Charlie back. He's had no hint of a seizure today and he's been getting his own back on his mean sister by pouncing on her when she least expects it. Like I say, I'm aware it's early stages but signs are looking good. We are going to be changing his tablets to a liquid version at recommendation by the vet. It has less of an effect on the liver and can be given in smaller doses so should suit ok.

I really can't thank you enough for your support and kind words. Just sharing your experiences helped me understand a bit more than I did. Thank you xx

Re: Possible epilepsy?

Posted: Thu Jan 14, 2016 9:00 am
by meriad
thanks for the update and pleased to hear that you can see improvements already - go Charlie boy!

Fusses to your gang and fingers crossed for continued improvements x

Re: Possible epilepsy?

Posted: Sat Jan 16, 2016 8:18 am
by greenkitty
That is great news, Tig was on the liquid Epiphen for the same reason, as his started as a tiny kitten he need tiny amounts of it but it gives the flexibility to go up or down by 0.01ml. It can sometimes be difficult got get hold of so make sure you never get too low before reordering it.

Re: Possible epilepsy?

Posted: Mon Jan 18, 2016 9:10 pm
by Ally_Kat
Well the inevitable has happened. Charlie had been popping out and back in and really not going far out the garden. We were locking him in at night and when we were not here. Last night he got out just after 10pm and has not come home. He was sighted in a garden up the road this morning but he has not been seen since. Am gutted. Have been out calling and trawling the streets but nothing.

Its cold out there tonight and he is about to miss a 2nd dose of meds. Literally can not believe it :( :(

Re: Possible epilepsy?

Posted: Tue Jan 19, 2016 6:41 am
by Mayday21
Hi Ally-Kat I'm keeping my fingers xd Charlie comes home. Try to think +Ve. Vivian

Re: Possible epilepsy?

Posted: Wed Mar 02, 2016 4:49 pm
by Ally_Kat
Hello....thought it was about time I did a little update.

So to recap a little.. Charlie had been acting odd for a week, having seizures for a weekend, diagnosed with epilepsy and given medication. Was given medication for a week, showed massive signs of improvement and then he vanished. Gone without trace.

Two solid weeks followed of heartache, wandering the street, putting notes through doors, speaking to people in the allotments before finally coming to terms with the fact he was probably more unwell than we thought and wasn't coming home, when who should walk back in through the cat flap but Charlie!! 7 am on a Sunday, I was not best pleased to be woken by meowing cats assuming it was the other 2 demanding an early breakfast. I soon realised it wasn't them and there was another cat in the house and there he was bold as brass, meowing lots, a little thin, a little grubby, complete with a tick but seemingly well and very very happy to be home!!

We popped him up to the vets the next day for a check up and tick removal, (I couldn't budge the thing and was quite relieved when the vet also had trouble) he had only lost 0.2kg from his last recorded weigh in and the vet gave him a clean bill of health stating what a lucky cat he must be. Vet advised to let him settle and get the weight back on before starting the epiphen. A week passed and he had shown no signs of anything, no odd behaviour and certainly no seizures. Another chat to the vet and they agreed we could hold off giving the medication. We can monitor and assess the signs.

A month on after his return Charlie cat has shown absolutely no sign of having any problems what so ever. The other 2 cats have accepted him again and all the hissing and attacking has stopped and it seems like we have the real Charlie back again. We still have all his medication for just in case but its looking like it was another factor causing the seizures.

We have no idea where he went, or why he went but we are very happy he decided to come back again :D :D

Re: Possible epilepsy?

Posted: Wed Mar 02, 2016 5:47 pm
by lilynmitz
How lovely to have him home again! What a happy surprise, and a relief, that must have been for you.

Oddly enough, friends who I cat sit for had a very similar story. Their tiny 12 year old cat suddenly started fitting, about 4 times a day, and they had just started her on medication for it. Then a week later, she vanished. For 6 months. Like you, they did everything possible to find her, but they eventually resigned themselves to the fact that she had had a really severe fit, or possible sinister underlying causes (eg brain tumour) had taken their toll. Just before the fits started she had been given an injection to control a suspected flea allergy, and we also suspected this might have been the cause of the fits.

Anyway, after she came home, very thin but otherwise well and with no bald/scabby bits from the allergies, just like Charlie, she has never fitted since. So we rather suspect if the injection caused it, the effects have now worn off, and/or the vet suspects she may have ingested some toxin she found outside in her daily travels which caused the fits, but which again, has also worn off. it may be that she had a severe fit when she went out at night which disoriented her so much she couldn't find her way home. I guess we'll never know. She was fending for herself all that time, with some kind souls feeding her, and eventually someone caught her, took her to the local rescue centre, who scanned her, found her microchip, and contacted her owners. The joys of microchips!

As suggested, do keep Charlie in until he is fully back to his old health and bonded with the house again, and so you can monitor him for a while. Then just play it by ear. Let's hope he's over that particular hurdle.

Re: Possible epilepsy?

Posted: Wed Mar 02, 2016 7:42 pm
by Ally_Kat
Oh wow! That is a similar story, how amazing. Yes we were wondering the same if he'd had a big fit and simply just got list or did something in him tell him to get away from the medication. It's so strange and yes, something we will never know.

Charlie is going back out now and seems to be completely fine. We do keep a very close eye on him and give him a shout if he's out and he always comes home.

Thank you for sharing your story. I'm glad I'm not the only one because you do begin to think your going a bit mad :lol:

Re: Possible epilepsy?

Posted: Thu Mar 03, 2016 9:04 pm
by Crewella
That's an incredible thing to have happened to both cats! Thankfully both happy endings. :)

Re: Possible epilepsy?

Posted: Sat Feb 04, 2017 8:11 pm
by Lesley4
Hi, my 17 yr old cat, Tipsy, had 5 seizures in 18 hours, the vet put him on epiphen, he's very disorientated and staggering as if he's really drunk. We think the seizure made him blind, he's also deaf. Is this behaviour normal on epiphen. I don't want him suffering if it's not the epiphen causing this behaviour. Thank you