Syncope / Fainting in Pugs? Your experiences please
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Thread: Syncope / Fainting in Pugs? Your experiences please

  1. #1
    cookie_monster's Avatar
    cookie_monster is offline Village Mayor
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    Exclamation Syncope / Fainting in Pugs? Your experiences please

    Well we had a real fright with cookie.

    Cookie is a very healthy pug, on a trip to the vets with my gran's poodle, the adoring vet who loves her said he is "The healthiest pug he has ever seen, she should be in textbooks as the picture perfect ideal of pug health!" She's 18 months old, ideal weight, no joint problems, no soft pallete/breathing problems, she doesn't even snore!

    A couple of weeks back she nearly died in her sleep, and had she not cried out we think she might have.
    We were trying to get cookie used to sleeping in her crate, she used to sleep on our bed but we're trying to get her used to sleeping in the crate.
    She sleeps most the night through, though occasionally we get the odd indignat squeak when she wakes up and forgets where she is.

    It was about 2am and we heard a noise we've never heard from her, she is not a vocal dog and she doesn't bark at the door, or whine or cry, the only thing we really get is her "spoiled princess" squeal when she's in a huff, or an occasional growl if mums cat sniffs her treat/toy.

    The noise we heard can only be described as a scream and we're certain she did it to alert us as when we rushed and turned the lights on, honestly it was like she was gone she was not breathing, her whole body was limp and her eyes were in the back of her head.

    We swang her upside down, and I got my fingers down her throat and she gagged and started breathing again. After that she was fine, like nothing ever happened, we had a quick chat with the vet who seemed to think she had chocked on something and us making her retch had loosened/brought it up which we could believe, as she tends to chew her chews into pieces and leave them allover for later, he said any signs she may do it again to bring her straight back in but she was fine.

    Last night it happened again, worse.

    She followed me into the bathroom at around 1am as I was putting my trousers on to take her for her last wee, she wagged and tilted when I said "want a wee" walked out of the bathroom and collapsed.

    Her jaw locked, eyes rolled back, she wet herself and and stopped breathing, we did the same as we did last time, hung her upside down and got our fingers down her throat to make her gag, even though we knew she was not chocking it worked last time and it did this time.

    After she had calmed down a bit, she's a very clean dog and was upset that she had wet herself, I put her harness on and went to take her into the garden for a wee. When we got into the kitchen she collapsed, she did not faint but her legs went out from under her like she couldn't hold herself up.

    A paniced call to the on call vet said that to keep her calm and quiet with the lights off and to bring her in the morning if she showed no more signs, or if she did show signs of doing it again to bring her to the emergency vets.

    She was very subdued over nigh and did vomit but other than that normal self, though she has been "chasing fairies/ghosts" a lot, where she looks as if she's watching an insect flying round, but there isn't any??

    She didn't do it again and we took her in the morning, she had very traumatic bloods taken from her neck and the vet said she had no soft pallete problems (I could have told her that, she has fantastic breathing, clear nostrils and doesn't even snore)

    We're awaiting results tomorrow and have been given rectal diazepam in case she has another "seizure" despite the fact that the vet will not listen to us when we tell her she was not seizing, she was passing out, we are certain it is syncope, she does not tremble or jerk like a seizure and we are more concered about getting her breathing again, than administering rectal drugs for tremors she isn't having....

    Anyway, does anyone have any experience of Syncope / Fainting in pugs? I've read of it in older pugs, but not younger healthy ones? I dread that it could be PDE but she has no other symptoms and there are faints not seizures I am certain of it, I have family with an elder dogs that has epileptic seizures and these are nothing at all similar.

    if the bloods are clear we don't know what to do, the vet says it could be anything from idiopathic epilepsy, which is basically seizuring with no explanation, but we are certain it is syncope not seizures, and she is an otherwise healthy dog,it could be that or low blood sugar, vitamin/mineral deficency etc.

    It cost me 135 just for the tests ($216), so hopefully they will give me some answers, and in the meantime anyone can give me some advice on syncope in pugs
    Last edited by cookie_monster; 10-24-2011 at 12:21 PM.

  2. #2
    CountryPug's Avatar
    CountryPug is offline Village Pug Pony & Brittany Wrangler
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    I'm thinking seizure or heart problem, did he check her heart.....any murmurs?

    Christa, Mom to Toby, Kelsey, Summer & Ellie Mae

    missing Riley and Roxy, who are at the bridge
    and my precious Bella 11-2-07 - 05-6-12

  3. #3
    Suri's Avatar
    Suri is offline Village Secret Super-Star
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    Hayes, Virginia


    No advice, just hoping it doesn;t happen again, it sounds so scary.
    Susan, mom to Bo, Lucy and Finn

    Honoring Sruffy, Maggie Mae, Jenny, Trooper, Kaja,Muff, and Pepper

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  5. #4
    Rugbysmom is offline Village Royalty
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    Moses Lake, WA


    I made a reply in your other thread--thinking of you & Cookie!

    Rugby 7/10/02 - 9/28/15 Miss you, little girl! You're always in my heart!

    Molly DOB: 7/6/04

  6. #5
    Wally 'n' Leto's Avatar
    Wally 'n' Leto is offline Pugzu Guru
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    Jun 2010
    Montreal, Qc


    I am sorry to tell you that there are several kinds of seizure, only one of which is what people think of as a 'seizure' with the jerking and thrashing around. It is *very* possible to have a seizure without the jerking (tonic-clonic) movements. That's what it sounds like to me. The cry is from air being expelled from the lungs as the diaphragm tightens up, then the eyes roll back and the jaw locks, the (human/dog/horse/cat/whatever) falls to the ground and does not breathe while the brain does its thing and causes abnormal muscle tone (flaccidity, rigidity, or both). Loss of bladder or bowel control is very common. Afterwards there is a period of confusion and weakness (a 'post-ictal' state) where mental state is altered and muscle control is poor -- probably why she fell in the kitchen when you brought her back in. I have a friend with a seizure disorder and he frequently vomits after. THe gazing at things that aren't there may be a smaller seizure (petit-mal in humans) where the brain just clicks off for a spell without any motor signs. (I don't know why docs (human and animal) don't explain this carefully, but that's for another thread.)

    That she does not have any respiratory or heart problems makes syncope less likely. Syncope would likely be accompanied by flaccidity (floppiness), as when a person faints, not a jaw-lock and cry as you describe.

    I am so sorry you and Cookie are going through this, and I hope you find an answer soon, and that it is easily fixable!
    Heather, Mommy to skinkid Toby and furkids Sir Wally of Pugzu and Duke Leto Prancypants the Fragrant.

    Also Mom to Archer the Canadian X and Willow the Paint.

    Main squeeze of high school sweetie Scot.

  7. #6
    evfc's Avatar
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    I too am really sorry you are going through this. I know with humans seizures don't always involve jerking. It depends on what part of the brain is affected and how it is affected. I knew someone who had epilepsy and when she would have a seizure she would stare off into space and mumble about things from her past. She became very still as opposed to thrashing. The muscle tension and the cry with Cookie does sound more consistent with a seizure rather than fainting.

    I hope you'll be able to get some answers soon. The not knowing can be so hard. I am sending you positive thoughts.

  8. #7
    shaynapug's Avatar
    shaynapug is offline True Village Royalty
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    Berkley, MI


    I had this happen with my Nikki once. Only once...she coughed and fell over!!! Was limp....I shook her and she came back!

    I don't want to scare you, but a year later she had a grand mal seizure.....and the next year she had one too!
    Shayna Pugs
    Member of PDCA Rescue Committee

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