is from Williams and has a 9-year-old mixed breed female
dog named Alice who has recently and rather suddenly
developed some changes in her face.
head is tilted to the left and her face on the left side
seems to be drooping. She also has a drooping lower
eyelid on the left and is having trouble holding food in
the left side of her mouth. It seems that Alice was
totally normal one evening and the next morning awoke
with the described symptoms.
like to commend Jennifer for her very thorough and
detailed description of Alice’s problems. This is
something that I encourage all of you to do when you
write or email in with concerns about your companions.
It makes it much easier to try to help when I can have
as much information as possible.
course having said that, Alice’s case presents quite a
drooping face on the left along with the eyelid droop,
drooling and difficulty holding food in left side of the
mouth can all fit together with a problem in a specific
area in part of the brain. The head tilt however does
not fit with a problem in the same area of the brain.
can say with confidence that Alice’s symptoms fit with
a problem associated with her neurological system. This
is the system including the brain, the spinal cord and
all the nerves, which allow control of all motion in the
body as well as much of the sensations the body feels,
not to mention all the things going on in the body that
we do not have direct control over.
can occur from primary damage to any part of the nervous
system or secondarily if part of the nervous system,
especially the brain, is deprived of oxygen. In the case
of oxygen deprivation to part of the brain, a stroke
occurs and the area of the brain affected will cause
problems in the area of the body served by that portion
of the brain.
may have had a stroke. From the description of her
symptoms, it is possible that the brain stem may have
been deprived of oxygen and caused her symptoms. This
can happen as a result of a blood clot to one or more
blood vessels supplying this area.
possibility explaining these symptoms could be a tumor
growing in the area of the brain associated with control
of the parts of the face involved.
needs to see her veterinarian for a thorough examination
including a full neurological exam. This may be a case
for referral to a veterinary neurologist. These
specialists can perform imaging studies of the nervous
system that will aid in determining a cause. This might
include an MRI study or a CT scan, studies often used in
human medicine to determine the cause of brain lesions.
Alice’s situation will be correctable and she can
return to her normal self.