Our 1year old Shih Tzu started salivating / drooling excessively a week ago, and it happened almost daily for 3 days or so. so we took her to the vet. The vet seemed to rule out other causes such as food poisoning etc so she confined our dog for 3 days two nights for observation.

She saw one episode, and seemed to be convinced that our dog was having seizures.. the very mild kind since the dog did'nt exhibit any other symptoms.

She the prescribed Phenytoin (Dilantin) treatment for a week and monitor the episodes by marking it on the calendar.

Today I am having second thoughts about starting the treatment because I am not entirely convinced that the excessive drooling are actual seizures because our dog's behaviour didn't change 1 bit, even during "drooling" sessions. Apetite was good, and she was focused, etc.. She was absolutely normal except for the excessive drooling part..

While the vet said that seizure symptoms can be "just that", just the drooling, i can't seem to find any information online to co-relate that. Most posts I read states accompanying symptoms, not just the excessive drooling part.

Our choice of trust worthy vets are limited where i'm from so i wanted to ask a around online about this.

I am holding off the Dilantin because I don't want to start treatment for fear of actually inducing seizures by use of the drug if our dog isn't having seizures in the first place (is that possible?)

Hoping for some advises.

1 Answer 1


The problem is that "seizure" is a fairly general description of a class of symptoms, and not by itself a diagnosis of type, severity, or what might be causing the seisure. "Grand mal" seizures are the ones that get discussed most because they're so dramatic and unmistakable, but there are certainly quieter varieties, and it may take a vet to recognize a pattern that leads to this diagnosis.

If you aren't convinced by the diagnosis, asking the internet is probably much less helpful than getting a second opinion from another vet. We can't examine your dog in detail, and I at least am not a vet myself, just a semi-uninformed layman.

Meanwhile, unless you have reason to be afraid of the drug (I haven't checked its possible side effects In humans, never mind dogs), my inclination would lean toward starting treatment. If episodes become less frequent, and then return when/if you eventually stop the treatment, that would tend to confirm diagnosis. If the drooling doesn't stop, you know this isn't the right drug for this case.

If you don't treat, at least gather the data on when, where, and what the dog had been doing, so you have a baseline for comparison with when you start treatment... this treatment or another.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.