Ask Seth: Milk Fever in Dogs

The last time my lab had pups she developed some kind of milk fever. I had to take her in to an emergency clinic because she was stumbling, shaking all over and vomiting. What's this all about and why does it happen? 

Canine eclampsia is the correct term even though this abnormality in blood calcium levels is often called milk fever. These patients often have a high temperature (104 or higher).  The body temperature rises from the continuous muscle tremors and spasms, excitement and panting. Also called hypocalcemia, these episodes are emergencies and must be dealt with immediately.  Usually the patient will have to be admitted for treatment

Most commonly, this is seen in small to mid-sized bitches a few weeks after whelping, this condition should be watched for closely. It typically occurs after whelping (a few days to a few weeks) and has a sudden onset of pacing shaking and disorientation.  The most common signs are muscle tremors, restlessness, panting, incoordination, body temperature as high as 106 and seizures.

Do you have any experience with milk fever in dogs? Tell us about it in the comment section!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>