What causes a dog to have a stroke?


Quick Answer

Dog Health Today states that there are two types of strokes in dogs, with different underlying causes. Ischemic strokes are the result of diseases such as high blood pressure, Cushing's or tumors. Hemorrhagic strokes may be the result of poisoning or head injuries.

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Full Answer

Vet Specialists describes an ischemic stroke as a sudden lack of blood to the brain and a hemorrhagic stroke as a bleed in the brain from a burst blood vessel. According to Pet Wave, whichever type of stroke a dog suffers, it results in a lack of blood and oxygen delivery to the brain. The site also states that there is no known prevention for strokes in dogs. However, owners can make sure their dogs remain as healthy as possible, treating any illnesses as soon as they present themselves and being on the alert for signs of poisoning or head injuries.

Dogs suffering from a range of diseases, including hypertension, tumors, kidney disease, liver issues, heart disease, obesity, and thyroid disease, are at a significantly increased risk of suffering from ischemic strokes. Dog Health Today states that blows to head or blunt force trauma to the head and neck of a dog puts the dog at high risk of suffering a hemorrhagic stroke, as does the ingestion of some poisons, such as rat poison, and some medications, such as phenylpropanolamine.

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