1. Geriatric Onset Idiopathic Epilepsy

    By Jay McDonnell, DVM, MS, Diplomate ACVIM (Neurology) When older pets (age 10 year or older) have a seizure, the owner's first thought typically is, "This has to be a tumor or something else bad. This must be a death knell for my pet." I'd like to assure you: This isn't necessarily true. Every week in my practice I see geriatric pets that have had seizures. When we do a work-up with MRI and spi…Read More

  2. An Introduction to Canine Degenerative Myelopathy

    Degenerative myelopathy (DM) is a poorly understood, progressive neurodegenerative disease seen in many dog breeds. Onset of the disease is typically is seen in dogs age 8 to 14.  Degenerative myelopathy begins with the spinal cord in the chest. The degeneration is two-fold: demyelination, i.e. the stripping away of the protective covering (myelin sheath) that surrounds nerve fibers in the spinal…Read More

  3. Important Information for Referring Veterinarians: Research on Canine Degenerative Myelopathy

    A much anticipated study describing the distribution of Canine Degenerative Myelopathy (DM) across a huge spectrum of canine DNA covering 222 breeds has been released. The genetic marker SOD1 alleles has previously been associated with the progressive neurological disease of Canine Degenerative Myelopathy. DNA samples from over 35,000 individual dogs representing 222 breeds and and cross-bred dogs…Read More

  4. Six Questions About Idiopathic Head Tremors

    By Laura Landstra and Jay McDonnell, DVM, MS, Diplomate ACVIM (Neurology) 1. What are idiopathic head tremors? Idiopathic head tremors are a series of repetitive, horizontally (“no” gesture) or vertically-directed (“yes”), involuntary muscle contractions involving the head and neck. A typical episode lasts about three minutes (yet may seem to last much longer as you are watching it!). Dogs…Read More

  5. Degenerative Lumbosacral Stenosis: An Article in Review

    By Megan Davis, DVM The Article: Clinical signs and outcome of dogs treated medically for degenerative lumbosacral stenosis: 98 cases (2004-2012) Steven de Decker, DVM, PhD; Lauren A. Wawrzenski, BVetMed; Holger A. Volk, DVM, PhD JAVMA, Vol 245, No4, August 15, 2014 Degenerative lumbosacral stenosis (DLSS) is a disorder that creates narrowing of the lumbosacral region and compression of the caud…Read More

  6. Great Danes and Cervical Spondylomyelopathy: An Article in Review

    By Megan C. Davis, DVM The Article: Magnetic resonance imaging features of Great Danes with and without clinical signs of cervical spondylomyelopathy Paula Martin-Vaquero, DMV, PhD, and Ronaldo C. da Costa, DMV, PhDJAVMA, Vol 245, No 4, August 15, 2014 Given the highly sensitive nature of MRI in evaluating the spinal cord and vertebral canal stenosis, potential for over-interpretation of the st…Read More

  7. Spinal Cord Diseases in Cats

    By Drs. Randy Cross, DVM and Jay McDonnell, DVM, MS, Diplomate ACVIM (Neurology) Spinal cord diseases in cats can be incredibly frustrating.  The adventure starts with the uncooperative patient, winds its way through the dreaded neurologic examination interpretation, and ends in the sea of diseases that could be causing the clinical signs. It’s not easier for a board certified neurologist, but …Read More

  8. Dementia in Dogs: When An Old Dog Can’t Remember Old Tricks

    DEMENTIA IN DOGS: WHEN AN OLD DOG CAN’T REMEMBER OLD TRICKS By Jay McDonnell, DVM, MS, Diplomate ACVIM (Neurology) Dementia—a clinical state in which cognitive function declines—is well-known as a disease that afflicts aging humans. There’s less awareness that dementia is a disease seen in companion animals, especially dogs. In fact, dementia, also known as senility or cognitive dysfunctio…Read More

  9. Canine Epilepsy: An Information Guide

    By Jay McDonnell, DVM, MS, Diplomate ACVIM (Neurology) Epilepsy, convulsions, fits, and seizures are alarming and disturbing events to both dogs and their owners. A seizure can have several manifestations, from a far-away look or twitching in one part of the face to a dog falling on its side barking, clenching and unclenching its teeth, urinating, defecating and paddling all four limbs. Seizures c…Read More

  10. Seizures in Cats

    By Megan Davis, DVM and Jay McDonnell, DVM, MS, DACVIM The Article: Clinical Characterization of Epilepsy of Unknown Cause in Cats. A.M.Wahle, et al. J Vet Intern Medicine 2104; 28: 182-188 This study tries to determine the prevalence of Epilepsy of Unknown Cause (EUC) in cats. Idiopathic epilepsy in dogs and humans is presumed to be genetic. [See Dr. McDonnell's previous articles, Canine Epilepsy…Read More