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Terrier’s Epilepsy is Relieved with Medication

By Christy True
published: April 26, 2022 - updated: January 20, 2023 • 2 min. read
Biewer terrier

Diagnosis: Idiopathic epilepsy
Claims Covered: $1,706 | Healthy Paws paid: $1,365
Coverage options: $250 deductible | Reimbursement: 80%

Key Takeaways

  • Guapo, a tiny terrier, developed epilepsy at the tender age of two.
  • While not curable, Guapo’s seizures are under control with the help of anti-seizure medication.
  • Pet insurance has helped cover the ongoing costs of Guapo’s epilepsy treatment.

Guapo is a four-year-old Biewer terrier with the most affectionate personality and an adventurous spirit that allows him to adapt well to new people and places.

Having hailed from Ukraine when he was only three months old, he is quite the world traveler. While he lives in San Francisco, he went on a 7-month-long vacation with his pet parents to South America, where they visited Mexico, Costa Rica, and Chile last year.

“He has a group of friends of the same breed, and when he gets together with his friends, he is the happiest. His favorite things to do is play ball or tug with a toy. He loves to go for walks, go to the beach, go fishing with daddy, and just travel everywhere we go,” said his pet parent Blanca.

Sudden onset of seizures signals a problem

Biewer terrier

The seemingly healthy, playful little dog started suffering seizures when he was only two years old. The episodes came on quickly and recurred frequently – three to four times a week, and some would last as long as 11 minutes.

Blanca took him to two veterinarian neurologists, and they did a series of tests, including head scans, an MRI (brain scan), blood work, and heart function. Everything came back normal, which led the vet to diagnose him with idiopathic epilepsy, meaning the cause is unknown. Blanca contacted Guapo’s breeder since epilepsy is often genetic, but his parents and littermates had no such issues.

There is no cure for epilepsy, but it can be managed with anti-seizure medications (anticonvulsants). Guapo takes four anticonvulsants a day to control his epilepsy. While he still has seizures, they occur much less frequently and are less intense, and he is otherwise happy, healthy, and playful, Blanca said. She said that Guapo has even adjusted to taking the meds and seems to enjoy it. 

Blanca and Guapo are working to raise awareness of epilepsy and recently participated in a fund-raising walk for the Epilepsy Foundation in Northern California.

Protect your pet

How pet insurance helped with epilepsy

Biewer terrier
Blanca and Guapo have participated in fundraisers for the Epilepsy Foundation.

Blanca wisely signed up for pet insurance as soon as she adopted Guapo since the need for medication and regular check-ups will continue throughout his life. She has made 15 claims related to his epilepsy so far and has been reimbursed for 80 percent of the costs.

“We didn’t want to wait until we had an emergency to get insurance. We heard too many stressful stories of dog owners going through so much with their dogs, so we knew right away to get insurance. We decided to go with Healthy Paws because of the recommendation of a friend, and we have referred this insurance to at least ten friends,” Blanca said.

The claim scenarios described here are intended to show the types of situations that may result in claims. These scenarios should not be compared to any other claim. Whether or to what extent a particular loss is covered depends on the facts and circumstances of the loss, the terms and conditions of the policy as issued and applicable law. 

Insureds providing testimonials in this report have not received compensation for their statements.

Christy True and Tomas
By Christy True

Christy has been writing about pets for Healthy Paws for 28 dog years. She also coordinates media requests and manages the Healthy Paws Foundation. A background in journalism may be why she enjoys writing about offbeat animal studies and the latest viral pet trends. She has been owned by several dogs, and she volunteers with a local dog rescue. Outside of work, she can usually be found sliding down a mountain near her home in Bend, Ore.

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