Epilepsy in Cats – Can it Be Prevented?

Tess Thompson



The most common cause of seizure is epilepsy. It is probably due to this fact that the terms are used interchangeably. Epilepsy is characterized by involuntary body movements and loss of consciousness. The duration and frequency of epileptic attacks determines the seriousness of the condition. While mild to moderate feline seizures may be harmless to the cat, severe manifestations can last for hours and may even be fatal.

Feline epilepsy is not common in young kittens. Feline seizures usually occur after the cat reaches the age of two years or older. Preventing feline epilepsy involves understanding the major causes of the disease. A fair amount of detailed observation is required at an early stage to be able to prevent a full-fledged attack of epilepsy. Such observation should start early in age to ensure that enough preventive measures can be taken. Although epileptic attacks are more common in dogs than in cats, preparing a preventive plan for seizures is sound advice for cat owners who would like to ensure that their companion does not suffer unnecessarily.

Major causes of seizures include neurological factors, brain tumors, liver and kidney malfunctioning, severe parasitic infestation, hypoglycemia, head injury, and lead and chemical toxicity. Most of the preventive measures revolve around natural ways of ensuring a reduction in risk factors.

In many cases, there is an underlying disease that causes seizures. The primary step is to rule out health problems like thyroid, diabetes, cancer or liver and kidney diseases.

Lack of nutrition or a poor diet causes many diseases. If you must feed your cat with commercial diets, make sure you buy only high-quality products after you have checked the authenticity of the manufacturers. Also make sure that you read labels for ingredients. Commercial diets are more often than not loaded with chemicals, coloring agents, stabilizers and fillers that are detrimental to cats. As revealed in clinical trials, sodium nitrate (one of the substances used in commercial foods) is specifically responsible for producing changes similar to epileptic attacks. Cats are obligate carnivores and need a diet that suits their specific needs. A homemade diet is best for cats. It is recommended that you gather information about the natural diet of cats and feed accordingly.

Household cleaners and floor polishes often contain chemicals which can cause cancer, heart disease, liver problems, and even damage the nervous system. Prolonged exposure to formaldehyde can also contribute to neurological problems. Keep the cat in ventilated areas when cleaning.

Regular exercise can spruce up metabolism and improve muscle development and digestion. A well-conditioned body is better equipped to fight disease, as it ensures regular blood supply and oxygen. Like humans, pets can suffer from fatigue and exhaustion, too. While exercising your cat, ensure that you consider the age, health and the weather conditions before deciding on an exercise routine. Cats with low blood sugar levels, epilepsy and heart problems should not be over-exercised.

There are normally pre-seizure indicators, and cat owners are well advised to inform themselves regarding these signs, so that in the event of an epileptic attack, they can prevent physical injury that seizures are liable to cause.

References:
http://www.purelypets.com/articles/epilepsyarticle.htm

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