Top 5 Best Foods for Dogs with Seizures

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Seizures can be caused by a myriad of things. The most common cause is idiopathic epilepsy which is genetically passed down to puppies. The seizures are usually unprovoked and occur when the brain receives a sudden burst of abnormal nerve signals that interfere with normal brain function. Other causes of seizure disorders in dogs include brain injuries, contact with toxic chemicals, liver or kidney problems, heart problems, and brain tumors among others.

Apart from seeking veterinary care, owners opt to manage the condition through diet in an effort to reduce the frequency of the seizures and improve the quality of life of the dog. Most prescription diets for epileptic dogs are geared towards reducing stress on the liver resulting from epilepsy medication such as phenobarbital. Below we outline our top 5 picks of the best foods for dogs with seizures.

1. Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diet

Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diet

Purina Pro Plan is a dry food prescription diet specifically formulated for dogs with neurological conditions. It is made from medium-chain triglycerides and high-quality ingredients with high nutritive benefits.

Key Features

  • Dog dry food
  • Made from a chicken meal and chicken
  • Contains Omega 3 fatty acids
  • Used for both puppies and adults
  • Contains antioxidants such as vitamin E, A and C as well as selenium
  • Contains DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) and EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid)
  • Very tasty

This food is high in protein from chicken, fish and dried eggs. This help in the growth of lean muscle especially in active dogs.

The medium-chain triglycerides (MCT) are easily digestible putting less stress on the liver which is greatly affected since it helps in the metabolism of antiepileptic drugs.

Omega 3 fatty acids also help to increase immunity and reduce the high number of blood triglycerides, a side effect of using phenobarbitol.

DHA and EPA help in brain development and have anti-inflammatory properties that help protect nerves.

Vitamin A, C, E and selenium act as antioxidants that also protect neurological tissue from damage by free radicals.

Pros

  • It contains DHA and EPA which help in brain development and inflammation of the nerves respectively common in epileptic dogs.
  • It contains Vitamin A, C, E and selenium which are good sources of antioxidants which help protect the nerves from damage by free radicals.
  • It contains omega 3 fatty acids and MCTs.

Cons

  • Expensive

Purina Pro Plan is specifically formulated for dog with neurological and cognitive disorders. DHA and EPA actively help maintain the integrity of the neurological conditions while MCT and Omega 3 fatty acids help reduce blood triglycerides which are a side effect of phenobarbital.

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2. ROYAL CANIN Canine

ROYAL CANIN Canine

Royal Canin Canine is a prescription veterinary diet dry food for adult dogs. It’s formulated to give a complete and balanced diet and rich in easily digestible protein.

Key Features

  • Formulated for adult dogs
  • Protein-rich diet derived from potato, rabbit and hydrolyzed soy.
  • Contains omega 3 fatty acids
  • Contains DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) and EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid)
  • Contains Vitamin A, B, C and E and select amino acids e.g. Taurine, niacin
  • Contains natural preservatives.

Omega 3 fatty acids found in this food help in reducing blood triglyceride levels which shoot up as a side effect of the use of antiepileptic drugs. They are also essential for neurological function and brain development.

DHA is essential for optimal brain development and protects neurological function.

EPA has anti-inflammatory properties that help protect the nervous system from inflammation.

It contains Vitamin B (thiamine) which enhances nerve regeneration.

Niacin helps in lowering blood triglyceride as well support brain function. Taurine also an important amino acid that helps in nerve regeneration.

Pros

  • Available in varies sizes
  • Contains Omega 3 fatty acids, DHA and EPA which are essential optimal nerve function
  • Contains thiamine
  • Naturally preserved to maintain freshness.
  • Grain-free and gluten-free
  • Good for hyperallergic dogs especially skin allergies
  • Good for healthy growth of the skin
  • Contains easily digestible protein for repair of muscles
  • Good for dogs with gastrointestinal problems as well.
  • It contains taurine which also helps in nerve regeneration.

Cons

  • Price is a bit on the higher side.

Canine Selected Protein Adult PR dry dog food not only helps in nerve regeneration, optimal brain function and reducing blood triglyceride levels, it also helps prevent allergies and bowel problems.

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3. Royal Canin Size Health Nutrition Dry Dog Food

Royal Canin Size Health Nutrition Dry Dog Food

This is a dry dog food specifically made for adult small dogs between 9 – 22 lbs from 10 months to 8 years of age.

Key Features

  • Kibbles are small in size, tasty and with a good aroma.
  • Are majorly made from corn and chicken
  • Contain L-carnitine.
  • Rich in DHA and EPA
  • Made for adult small dogs between 10 months and 8 years
  • Very satisfying and formulated to give a complete balanced diet.

This dry food offers the best of both worlds for small adult dogs which are known to be fussy eaters and very active. It’s rich aroma and taste make it very acceptable. Additionally, it’s made proven kibble technology which helps prevent dental tartar at bay, therefore, helps prevent gum disease.

L-carnitine a naturally occurring amino acid helps to break down fats which increase with intake of antiepileptic drugs. DHA and EPA are essential for normal brain function as well as the regeneration of neurological tissue.

It also promotes the growth of healthy skin and hair coat. High protein helps in the repair and growth of muscle and other tissues in the body including nervous tissue.

Pros

  • Rich in DHA and EPA
  • Contains L-carnitine amino acids
  • Has a rich aroma and is tasty for fussy eaters
  • Made from proven kibble technology to prevent dental tartar
  • Made for small adult dogs
  • It offers a complete and balanced diet that is satisfying.

Cons

  • Prescribed for only small adult dogs.

Toy breeds are usually fussy eaters. Royal Canin Size Health Nutrition Mini Adult Dry Dog Food offers a good option enriched with aroma and packed with nutrients that reduce inflammation of the nerves and promote regeneration and brain development.

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4. Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Grain Free

Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Grain Free

This is a 24 lb bag of Blue Buffalo which is a high protein diet formulated for large breed adult dogs. It promotes regeneration of nervous tissue, joint, and heart health as well as promote fat metabolism.

Key Features

  • Formulated for large breed adult dogs
  • Made from a whole chicken; high in proteins
  • Contains L-carnitine
  • Has Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids
  • Contains glucosamine and chondroitin
  • Contains vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants
  • Contains taurine, a natural amino acid
  • Grain-free and gluten fee.
  • Free from artificial flavors

This food is made whole chicken not chicken meal providing high quality highly digestible protein essential for growth and repair of lean muscles and other body tissues. L- carnitine helps in fat metabolism which reduces stress on the liver common in dogs on antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) which causes an increase of blood triglyceride levels.

Taurine helps to reduce the frequency of seizures and also prevents heart disease. Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids help promote healthy skin as well as reduce blood triglyceride levels common with dogs on anti epileptic drugs and also have anti-inflammatory properties that help reduce inflammation on nervous tissue.

Chondroitin and glucosamine are naturally occurring compounds that have anti-inflammatory properties that help prevent osteoarthritis common in adult large breed dogs. They help promote bone health and mobility.

Pros

  • Good source of quality protein
  • Contains L-carnitine and Taurine
  • Rich in Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids
  • Fortified with glucosamine and chondroitin
  • Contains no artificial flavors
  • Grain and gluten-free

Cons

  • For large breed adult dogs only

Blue Buffalo food not only works for epileptic dogs but also offers additional benefits that affect most large breed dogs concurrently.

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5. Purina Pro Plan Formula Adult

Purina Pro Plan SAVOR Adult

Purina Pro Plan is a 34lb bag of dry dog food for adult dogs 7 years and above. It made from high quality shredded chicken.

Key Features

  • Made from shredded chicken as the first ingredient
  • Fortified with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
  • Rich in omega 3 and 6 fatty acids
  • Contains DHA and EPA
  • Enriched with live probiotics
  • Contains glucosamine
  • Guaranteed great tasty even for fussy eaters

Omega 3 fatty acids have anti-inflammatory properties which help maintain integrity of the nervous system. They also help to lower blood triglyceride levels which usually increase due to intake of anti epileptic drugs. DHA and EPA help in brain development and the optimal functioning of nervous tissue.

It is made high quality easily digestible protein which helps in the growth and repair of lean muscle important in senior dogs. Glucosamine also has anti-inflammatory properties which help prevent and relieve arthritic symptoms such as joint pain, swelling, and stiffness.

Live probiotics found in the food help in the growth of healthy bacteria in the gut which help in the digestion of food as senior dogs are prone to bowel disturbances.

Pros

  • Rich in Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids
  • Contains DHA and EPA
  • Contains Vitamin A, C, E and selenium which are powerful antioxidants
  • Rich in Protein
  • Contains glucosamine
  • Contains live probiotics

Cons

  • Suitable for only large breeds over 7 years of age

Purina Pro Plan is a formulated diet that offers relief to dogs with epilepsy by reducing blood triglyceride levels which predispose them to pancreatitis, heart diseases, and diabetes. It also reduces inflammation on nervous tissue with the help of  DHA, EPA and Omega 3 fatty acids. It also relieves arthritis symptoms.

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Bottom Line

Diets formulated specifically for dogs with epilepsy are not yet in the market due to idiopathic epilepsy and also the fact that epilepsy has many causes. What veterinarians recommend is to offer diets that help relieve the side effects of medications as well as promote healthy nervous tissue and regeneration of the same. It’s also wise for pet owners should look for foods that contain supplements such as DHA, EPA, omega3 fatty acids, fish oil capsules, Vitamin D3, thiamine, taurine, etc.

It is also important to note the importance of keeping your dog at a steady weight since AEDs are shown to cause an increase in appetite. Low-fat diets or protein-rich diets are therefore advised. Anecdotal theories suggest ketogenic diets can help reduce seizures but no studies have proved this yet. It is therefore wise to contact your veterinarian before embarking on a keto diet for your dog.

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