When your dog doesn't seem interested in eating his food, do you know what to do? When your dog vomits often, could there be something serious wrong with him? If he struggles to get up the stairs, does he need to see a vet? Having never owned an older dog, I knew nothing about the things that can begin to go wrong when dogs age. I adopted this guy when my neighbor moved into a nursing home and had to learn a lot about how to care for an older dog. My blog is filled with the many things that I have learned over the last year through the help of my vet.
There are many health problems that can affect pugs, including pug dog encephalitis. This is an inflammation of the brain that only affects pugs. Here are three things you need to know about pug dog encephalitis.
What are the signs of pug dog encephalitis?
Usually, this condition strikes quickly, and it often affects pugs between the ages of two and three years old. Since pug dog encephalitis causes brain inflammation, affected pugs exhibit neurological symptoms like seizures or a loss of muscle coordination. Your pug's personality may also change; aggression or agitation that are out of character may be caused by the inflammation.
There are two different classifications of pug dog encephalitis. In slow progressive cases, the seizures only last for a few minutes and then don't occur again for weeks. In between these episodes, affected pugs seem normal and healthy. In rapid progressive cases, the seizures happen frequently, and in between seizures, the pugs exhibit additional symptoms.
What causes pug dog encephalitis?
Recent research has shown that pug dog encephalitis is a genetic disease. According to UC Davis Veterinary Medicine, 11% of pugs carry two copies of the gene markers associated with this disease, and one in eight of these dogs will develop the disease at some point during their lives. Genetic testing can be performed to find out if your dog has these genes, but since the test only shows that they have a raised risk of the disease, no that they will definitely develop it, it may cause unnecessary anxiety for you and your family. Your vet can help you decide if genetic testing is a good option for your pug.
Can pug dog encephalitis be treated?
Pug dog encephalitis can't be cured, so sooner or later, all pugs that are affected by this disease will eventually succumb to it. However, treatments are available to control the symptoms and help your pug live a healthy life. These medications include anti-inflammatories, immunosuppressives, and anti-convulsants. If your pug needs to take a lot of medications, use a pill tray and an alarm clock to keep track of their doses. Try hiding their pills inside favorite snacks, like cheese or peanut butter, to make them think they're getting a special treat.
If your pug is suffering from seizures, take them to a vet, like Robert Irelan DVM, right away. Seizures can be a sign of pug dog encephalitis, a serious genetic disease of pugs.