You wake up one morning and your older dog or cat is suddenly acting very unusual. They are falling over, rolling, their eyes are darting side to side and they’re acting very confused & perhaps nauseated. You may think, “Have they had a stroke, or is it a brain tumor?” Either way, it’s a scary situation for a “pet parent.”
Uncle Joe might offer, “It’s time to put ‘er down.” But wait!! It may NOT “be time” at all. It might simply be a temporary situation called Canine or Feline Idiopathic Vestibular Syndrome. It may be time however to make a quick trip to the vet & see if it is indeed this balance system disorder.
Upon examination, your vet might run routine blood work and do a physical and neurologic exam. If they are determined to have this disorder, they could be prescribed some simple motion sickness medicine.
It’s hard to believe, but this scary situation can resolve itself over a period of days or a few weeks. The pet may (or may not) be left with a slight head tilt & some wobbly walking, but otherwise return to normal.
Of course, while they’re recovering, they may need a pet caregiver to carry them outside for their “business” and help them stand, plus assist them in finding their water & food dishes. They might also need easier-to-eat wet food during healing. And, be sure to keep them off high beds & away from concrete & metal objects they could fall off or into & hurt themselves.
So, before you make any major decisions, you may want to first make an appointment with a vet (or two) to see if it might just be Canine or Feline Idiopathic Vestibular Syndrome (a.k.a. Old Dog’s Syndrome) or any other serious, non-life threatening condition. Two opinions are worth a life & it could help you & your family enjoy a few more years with your loving, furry companion!
By: K. Karington
Medi-Paws (a division of Freedom Pharmacy)
Disclaimer: The above information is not in any way intended to be medical advice, nor substitute for medical advice by a veterinarian. It is merely to present the disease, not known by all & encourage examination by a medical professional/s prior to major decisions.