November 21, 2017

Dr. Anne Chauvet explains Pet Neurology

Dr. Anne Chauvet

Pet Neurology is the study of the nervous system and the brain in animals.  A relatively young field,  there are less than 300 veterinarians across the globe that are focused in this highly specialized area.  Pet Neurologist,  Dr. Anne Chauvet, Founder of Critical Care and Veterinary Specialists of Sarasota shares her insight to this intriguing field, how she came to choose it, and what it can mean for your dog.

Hear the amazing story of Serendipity and her miraculous recovery as relayed to our Rover Reporter.

Dr. Chauvet’s colleagues across the globe are a tightly knit group and share updates and information on a regular basis as well as through their annual meeting.

Critical Care and Veterinary Specialists of Sarasota is now open 24 hours a day, 365 days per year providing an exceptional level care to pets in our area.  Located across from The Landings at 4937 South Tamiami Trail. 941-929-1818

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  1. victoria kotz says:

    Dear Dr.Chauvet,
    My 2 years old pomerian had head and body twitches 3 times over the last 6 months. The episodes would last for hours. 1 of the 3 episodes was extremely worse then others, where our dog was completely unresponsive. We rushed her to the hospital, where all blood work was normal and neurology consult was recommended.
    Today I visited a neurologist in West Islip, NY and was very very disappointed! The doctor wanted to prescribe medication that would treat seizures and her nervous system?! I asked the doctor why would we give her medication without a diagnosis? I asked what else we can do, what symptoms to look for, what to feed her and the doctor was unprofessional and said we are neglecting our dog.
    I am asking for your assistance please. Could you please recommend a doctor that we can take our dog to in queens ny or long island ny?
    Our dog is our second child! We love her very much and want to find out whats wrong with her. Taking medication without a diagnosis doesn’t sound like a solution and I disagree with what the dr also said to me: When we have a headache, we take aspirin. Well not for every headache and aspirin is not a solution!
    Thank you for your time
    Regards,
    Victoria

    • talkscout says:

      HI Victoria,

      We received this reply from Dr. Chauvet:
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      Victoria,
      our dogs are family and I would explore the cause of the seizure further. I am assuming, of course, that what you are describing are seizures. In general, for I must stay general when advising on line, we aim for less than one seizure every 6 weeks but none is best. The causes of seizures can be due to extracranial causes (outside the brain problems but influencing the brain). In this category, there is liver shunt and renal/kidney disease, toxins and such. I always advise getting bile acids testing and ammonia levels post prandial (post eating blood samples taken two hours after a meal). this will tell you if the liver is working well or if your dog may have a bypassing vessels of the liver thus leaving toxins in the blood after digestions. This is very common problem in small dogs and it is called portosystemic shunt. The second main category of causes of seizures in intracranial or in the brain. In a two year old, we usually think idiopathic (in english, it means we do not know the cause). However, immune mediated disease (body turning against itself), infections and other conditions can exist.

      I always advise to get full blood work done with bile acids and ammonia in young dogs. if normal, blood pressure should be evaluated in case hypertension is a cause of seizures. Then MRI of the brain and spinal tap/fluid evaluation. If all of this is normal, then we have, by rule out, the diagnosis of idiopathic epilepsy. For some breeds, like Labradors and Dachshunds, it can even be in their line or inherited.

      Medication is elected on a case per case basis, dependent on the owner’s comfort with the frequency of seizures, the diagnosis, the dog’s wellbeing. There are many medications available. The response is evaluated closely and levels of medication monitored for effects on the body. Recently, though, I must admist straying from western medicine and as long as I do not have a metabolic problem causing the seizures (liver shunt), and no cause in the brain, I try ketogenic diet (pumped up Atkins diet). It is used a lot in children with great success.

      I hope this helps. let me know.

      Anne Chauvet, DVM, DACVIM Neurology

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