HomeCat HealthpoisonAuditory Induced Reflex Seizures in Cats

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Auditory Induced Reflex Seizures in Cats — 16 Comments

  1. This happens to my 18 year old cat. It’s any clicking notices. If I were to open a bag of chips she would go into a full seizure. The seizure starts with her running without control, sometimes right into a walk, and ends with her in the floor with everything thrashing without control. Lasts for a few minutes. Very frightening. The doctor said there’s no cure, only control with sedation if it gets bad enough. It’s odd that you would express doubt and suggest motive to lie simply because you haven’t seen this for yourself. Do you doubt the existence of epilepsy too?

  2. These seizures are real.

    I found a cat 1.5 months ago. Age unknown, but has been around the neighborhood for at least 3 years.

    I noticed he was emaciated, so I took him in, and took him to the vet a couple days later. He tested positive for Feline HIV, so I isolated him from the other cats for a month and he has retested negative.

    But before I took “Bob” to the vet the first time, I noticed that when I made little kissing sounds while in bobs face his ears would jerk, and react to each time.

    Then 1 time I did it and he went into what seemed panic, and at the same time his ears started twitching uncontrollably, he then went down on his side, and proceeded to go into a seizure for at least 30-45 seconds. No Bowel Loss. But there was a small amount of mouth drool.

    He also had another 1 a week later, and it was Longer, and was brought on by the Clicking of the Computer Mouse.

    Same ear twitching ect.

    Sometimes the sounds don’t bother Bob. But most of the time there is some kind of reaction, even if not a full seizure. Sometimes it appers like an electric shock.

    I would gladly let any vet look at Bob.

    My vet isn’t convinced, because she had a clicker that didn’t elict response. She says it has to happen all the time.

    I don’t agree, and am kind of frustrated at her response.

  3. I found your blog and this thread while goggling for information on what may have caused a seizure in my Mom’s elderly cat. Today, she said the cat had a severe, lengthy seizure…she said he fell down on the floor, his legs jerking wildly as if he was running and his head banging against the floor so hard she was afraid of him hurting himself.
    She had been cleaning food out of his china feed bowl with a metal spoon and noticed him beginning to jerk and spasm with the clinking of the spoon against the bowl. Before she could stop, he fell down with the seizure.
    She had seen him seizure like this one other time, a couple of months ago, when she was balling up an empty potato chip bag. He had the same kind of spasms with the crinkling noise before the seizure began though it didn’t last as long as the one today.

    • Thanks a lot Anne-Marie for adding to this page. Certainly your mom’s elderly cat had one of these auditory induced seizures or it seems like that. I guess she’ll have to ensure that the type of noises causing these fits are removed from the environment when her cat is around.

  4. i have had two cats with reflex epilepsy. first there was Oliver who had a full seizure every time we crinkled a plastic bag (even showed this to my sceptical vet). it was especially odd for me to connect the sound with the seizure because Oliver was deaf. but my vet kept Oliver for tests and said that even in a silent and controlled environment, he only had seizures with that sound, and it was every time.
    the second cat is Onion, i still have her now. she has a different reactive stimulus. her seizures are caused by touching certain areas on her body. it happens whether i touch it, a dog sniffs it or even when she grooms the area herself. again my vet has confirmed it is reflex epilepsy.
    so two out of the six cats i have owned have had confirmed reflex epilepsy. it may not be as common or sensational as other conditions but it is real.

    • Thanks Tilly for sharing. Your comment is very interesting. Perhaps it is not as rare as I had believed or your vet seems to have believed. Do you have photos of your 2 cats with reflex epilepsy? I think I’ll make a article out of your comment and add some research of my own.

  5. It does seem odd and exaggerated and attention seeking to me too.
    The trouble is that a lot of people read stories like this and believe them, instead of thinking it out for themselves.

    • I think you’ll find that in due course this story will be seen as a news item rather than a serious bit of information about cat health.

      • My Gigi in Canada would get very scared of the sound of a fizzy drink being poured over ice and the many bubbles that come with it. She would literally run out of the house and to the other side of the garden. She was very frightened by it.

        • I think this is the fizz sound, which I think is a hard wired hated sound for lots of cats because it sounds like a snake. That is my theory. There is a close association between snakes and cats.

          Wildcats attack and kill snakes and their hiss is mimicking a snake.

          My Charlie does not like the rustle of plastic bags, a similar sound.

  6. Nope. Not accepting of this in a cat that doesn’t already have a diagnosed seizure disorder. Those diagnosed ones can, certainly, be triggered by noises.
    I think the “symptoms” described are exaggerated. Many healthy cats display a neurological reaction to some noises due to severe anxiety and fear that aren’t seizure-like, ie. trembling.

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