Cat Seizures: Causes and Symptoms

It can be scary when your cat has a seizure. You might not even be sure that the symptoms you are seeing are actually related to seizures. This can be a really hard thing to grapple with if you have a cat that is suffering from what you think could be seizures.

Knowing the causes and the symptoms of cat seizures can help you to be sure that you get your cat to the vet if they need to be looked at. Seizures are not always as obvious as you might think they would be, and this means that many owners do not know that their pet is suffering from a seizure condition. This is why educating yourself can be so important. The sooner that your pet gets support for their seizure disorder, the better.


Symptoms of Cat Seizures

There are actually lots of symptoms that can be associated with your cat’s seizures. This is part of why this can be a hard condition to diagnose on your own. You will need to watch your cat’s behavior quite carefully to be able to recognize the patterns related to this disorder.

Listed below are the main symptoms: 

Twitching of Eyelids or Face

This is the most common of the symptoms of a seizure, and it is the one that most people notice first. Your cat might have a widespread twitching of the face, or the twitches might be in the eyelids alone. This can be a very small tremor, or it can be a much more rapid and noticeable activation of the muscles.

Excessive Drooling

Drooling is also really common before, during, and after the seizure event. Some cats never show this symptom, but it can be quite common overall.

Loud Vocalizations

This is common as well, and many cats make loud noises that are related to their muscles seizing up and releasing during the seizure. These sounds can vary widely and might sound like meowing, squalling, or even grunting.


This is also quite common when your cat is struggling with seizures. Your cat might have a lack of balance or seem to be lost and not sure where they are before and after the seizure event.

Aggressive Behavior

Not every cat is aggressive when they have a seizure, but this can also be quite common. Aggression might also become a much more normal way of behaving for your cat. The aggression is often linked to the seizure event but does not have to be.

Falling Over

Many cats will fall over to the side during a seizure. This can be really shocking to owners, but not every cat shows this sign of seizure events.

Loss of Consciousness

Some cats will lose consciousness when they have a seizure which can be very frightening. This is a sign of more progressive seizure activity that is growing in severity.

Draw Head Back

The head might be drawn back into a rigid position, and the tongue might come out of the mouth as well.

Shaking Uncontrollably

This is one of the more common symptoms of a seizure, and many cats will shake violently as well as suffer from some of these other symptoms.

Causes of Seizures in Cats

Once you know what to look for related to cat seizures, you probably want to know why they are happening to your cat. You want to get your cat help and make sure that you can protect them from the damage that can be associated with seizure activity in the body and brain.

Listed below are the main causes:

Head Trauma

If your cat suffers an injury to their head or face, this might cause seizure activity that could last for a few weeks or might end up being a lifelong problem. Sometimes the seizure is just a one-time event that happens at the time of the injury.

Brain Tumors

This is one of the most common reasons for seizure activity, and cats with brain tumors might start to show seizures with increasing frequency over time. Brain tumors can also cause a sudden onset of violent seizures as well.

Toxins or Poisons

If your cat has eaten something poisonous or toxic, they might have seizures during the poisoning event. If the toxicity causes damage to the brain or spinal cord, these seizures might last for the rest of their life.


There is a wide array of seizure presentations and other symptoms associated with epilepsy. This is more common in cats than you might think, but it can often be managed with medications that are provided by your veterinarian. Epilepsy can be hard to diagnose in some cases in the early stages, so be sure that you pay close attention to your cat if you think they might be having mild seizures each day.

Heart Disease or Diabetes

Advanced heart disease or diabetes can lead to seizure activity as well. When pressure is put on the nervous system or metabolic system, seizures can be a result of these challenges to the body. Various diseases might cause seizure activity if they are impinging too much on your cat’s overall well-being.

Cat Seizures Can be Serious and Usually Require a Trip to the Vet

No matter what the cause might be of your cat’s seizures, you should make sure that you take them to the vet to be evaluated. There are many causes of seizures in cats, and you should be sure that you know why your cat is having these experiences so that they can receive treatment. Some seizure activity might be temporary in nature, while other seizure issues will be permanent for your pet.

Knowing how to care for seizures in pets can make this condition much more manageable and can also help you to feel less scared when your pet shows this symptom. Seizure conditions can often be managed fairly readily with medications or diet changes, and your veterinarian can help you to find the right treatment protocol for your pet’s needs. For more information, or if you would like to speak to a veterinarian, call EVCC by calling one of our locations. Our skilled and compassionate team members are here 24/7 for you and your pet.

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