Idiopathic Head Tremors

by Kerry K.
(Springfield, IL)

Our 9 month old male Mini Aussie has had two episodes of this. From what I can gather it is called idiopathic head tremors. It is not harmful to the dog but still scary to watch.

My question is: has anyone else's Aussie had this and if so did they outgrow it? It has happened both times after being home from camping.

He is alert while his little head is bobbling and it only lasts about 2-3 minutes tops. After he is perfectly normal, I know it is not an epileptic seizure I have had dogs that have so I know the difference.

I would just like to know if this is something he will grow out of.

Comments for Idiopathic Head Tremors

Click here to add your own comments

The fix
by: Phyllis

My dog suddenly had tremors, (My dog didn't like what was happening to him) I researched online, and what I found was you need to Increase calcium intake. Whole milk 2 times a day, along with cottage cheese. If bad After adding this my dog stopped the tremors after about 5 days. During a tremor you can: Take rubber bone or toy with hole in it, fill the hole with peanut butter, and freeze. Give to your dog during the tremor and their focus will stop the tremor (muscle spasm).

Idiopathic Head Tremors
by: Kerry

Thanks, I will have to try the milk. The tremors have stopped but then we haven't gone camping where there is activity all the time. The last tremor session he had was a month and a half ago, so maybe he is outgrowing them. He is now 1 year old.

My 20 month old Aussie
by: Anonymous

My 20 month old Aussie just started doing this. It lasts 10-15 seconds and after that it's completely normal. It scares the living crap out of me every time. I took her to a vet, blood work came out find but they referred us to a neurologist. My husband and I are traveling across the US To see a pet neurologist who can figure out what's going on. I wouldn't wish this on any dog.

Head tremors
by: T mom

Our 15 m/o Aussie started these tremors at 12 months with a second episode at 14 months. I'm curious - the people who posted above - did your dogs' tremors increase in severity or intensity or stay same? Any new info? Thanks.

Changes for the better
by: Kerry

Thanks for all the comments. Our Aussie is now 2 years old and hasn't tremors for quite a while so I am assuming he outgrew them. When he did have them I did give him a treat or a toy and that stopped them immediately. I wish the rest of you well and Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays.

by: Anonymous

My 2.5 yr old Aussie has been doing this since he was a puppy. It definitely doesn't happen as often now that he is older. When I first noticed it I had the full gamut of tests run and nothing abnormal. Still completely freaks me out! Sometimes his arms tremble as well.

Aussie head tremors
by: Anonymous

I got my female Aussie when she was 7 mo.old. She was in a Service Dog program when the tremors started. The admin. of the program decided she had epilepsy, kicked her out of the program, and put her up for sale.

She is now 8 yrs. old and has had 5 episodes in the 7 years I had had her. My vet says that the episodes are nothing to worry about; they are not damaging, and there seems to be no cure. Many purebred Aussies have them.

by: Anonymous

Our 3 years old male also has head tremors a few times a year. It seems to happen after he has been excited and as he starts to sit and calm down. We can't seem to figure out anything that is causing it, and our breeder (who has been showing and breeding Aussies nationally for 20 years) has never seen this in one of her dogs.

But we seem to have stumbled on a treatment... cheese! I happened to be cutting some cheese one day, saw him tremor, and felt bad for the guy so I gave him a very small piece of cheese. As soon as the cheese touched his mouth, the tremors stopped... instantly! I could not believe it! My husband and I have now witnessed this 3 times, and it is an instant treatment.

I doubt it is anything in the cheese itself, but maybe it has to do with calming him down, or giving him something really tasty to focus on? Has anyone else seen this?

Click here to add your own comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Australian Shepherd Q & A. icon

Guide To Australian Shepherd Training & Care

Have Dog Training Questions?

Check out these introductory dog training videos...

I want some help training my new puppy.

I want my dog to stop barking at everything.

I want my dog to walk nicely and calmly on the leash.

I want my dog to listen and come every time I call!

I want my dog to stop being aggressive.