Veterinarians often use the prescription medication phenobarbital to treat epileptic seizures in dogs, according to the Merck Veterinary Manual. Other maintenance antiseizure medications include bromide, levetiracetam and zonisamide. Veterinarians use diazepam and phenobarbital in emergencies to treat status epilepticus in dogs with uncontrolled seizures.
According to the Merck Veterinary Manual, phenobarbital requires careful monitoring for liver damage and slow increases and decreases in dosages to prevent toxicity and withdrawal symptoms. Some dogs respond better to primidone, a barbituate that metabolizes to phenobarbitol in the dog's body. Veterinarians use bromide in conjunction with phenobarbital or as a stand-alone medication in dogs with liver problems, but they often need to order it from compounding pharmacies. Among the newer generation anticonvulsants, veterinarians can use felbamate and gabapentin as sole therapy. They can use levetiracetam, clonazepam and zonisamide alone or in conjunction with phenobarbital.