Recently, my otherwise healthy dog was exhibiting some terrible seizure-like symptoms. After researching incessantly online, I have concluded that the direct cause was the Purina brand, Beneful, dog food.
I feel obliged to post this with such a blunt web title because during my research online I found other people's posts to be incredibly helpful, and I want to add to the testimonies online so that others can avoid this particularly stressful experience.
While seizures or seizure-like symptoms in canines can be caused by many things, I want to focus on dog food being a cause of a seizure and/or neurological reaction that caused "seizure-like" behavior.
Story and Symptoms:
I have a very, very healthy Italian Greyhound that is less than 1.5 years old. For the past 6 months she has been eating Innova dog food (dry and wet food combination). In the past few weeks, I had noticed that she was getting a little sick of her food, which has happened in the past - and thought I might try a new food. She has never had trouble switching to other foods in the past, and has never had any strange issues with her stomach.
I gave her half a cup of Purina Beneful on a Tuesday night. Later that evening, she threw up. We immediately switched her back to her regular food. Starting on Wednesday morning, she began to be shaky and off-balance, and seemed to be a little dizzy. While the Italian Greyhound breed is generally timid and shaky - this was an abnormal amount of shaking. She was bumping into things and wobbling as she turned corners.
I brought her to the Vet on Thursday morning. He was not much help. He said she looked fine, and said that the change in food is probably why she wasn't feeling great, which I already knew. He was not concerned about the shaking, and honestly seemed to not believe me.
The shaking seemed to be getting worse, and on Saturday morning my dog had some kind of a seizure. She was shaking uncontrollably and turned on her side. She became stiff with all of her arms and legs out during this seizure-like behavior, as well. I took her to the animal hospital where they did blood work and, again, found nothing.
The most important thing I came across during my research was this video on YouTube:
This was exactly what my dog looked like during her "seizure", however it didn't last as long. For my dog, it maybe lasted 10-15 seconds. However, I read online that some seizures can last 5-10 minutes.
In any event, I read each comment under this video and found that one woman had the exact same thing happen to her Italian Greyhound when she switched to Beneful or any other Purina brand dog food.
She and I chatted online, and I learned that her dog was also a very healthy Italian Greyound - however she noticed that her dog exhibited these same "seizure-like" symptoms when she switched to Purina Beneful. When her Vet put her IG on a prescription diet food (Canine ID), she never had another seizure again.
After I brought my IG to the animal hospital on Saturday, they also gave me prescription diet food (Hill's Prescription Diet Canine W/D). Since then my IG seems to be doing a lot better.
It seems that the unnatural ingredients in Purina Beneful, such as the artificial dyes, can really do a number on a dog's neurological system, as well as to their stomachs.
I am saying with 100% honesty that my dog has always been healthy and happy until this change in dog food to Purina Beneful.
If I have any more information on this, I will be sure to post - however, I felt it necessary to let others know in case they are experiencing something similar.
Feel free to post comments!