Canine strokes, an owners guide to strokes in dogs
Strokes in dogs are very rare. They occur when the blood flow to the brain has been impaired. There are two types of strokes, namely hemorrhagic and schemic. The former occurs when a vessel breaks, while the latter occurs when blood supply is diminished for some reason.
Canine strokes can occur for a number of reasons. Some occur because of severe trauma to the head, such as being hit by a car. Dogs that ingest poisons may also have a stroke. Underlying medical conditions can also be to blame. Common conditions include Cushing’s disease, heart disease, kidney disease, diabetes, and brain tumors.
Unfortunately, strokes in dogs can produce some of the same symptoms caused by other diseases or conditions. Some of the most common signs include head tilting, constant circling, and difficulty walking. It is also common for dogs to experience sudden behavioral changes, loss of bowel control, and blindness.
If your dog exhibits any of these symptoms, you will need to seek medical assistance quickly. Quick diagnosis and treatment goes a long way towards a complete recovery. The veterinarian will start out by physically examining your dog. If your dog has had a stroke, he will perform a CT scan or MRI to try to determine the cause. These two procedures require that your dog be anesthetized.
Canine strokes are treated by determining the underlying medical condition and treated it if possible. Successful treatment of this condition will prevent future strokes. Unfortunately, the damage caused by these strokes is irreparable. Most dogs recover motor functions and have a complete recovery within a few weeks. However, your dog may have certain behavioral changes after having one.