Posted by: notdeaddinosaur | September 9, 2007

When Barking Dogs Don’t

A patient was telling me about the 15-year-old Canine American who shares her home. While she was on vacation, the dog had a seizure. Or maybe a stroke. According to the vets, it can be hard (ie, impossible) to tell the difference in a dog.

I can understand.

(Insert Scrubs-style fantasy of a doggie neuro exam: “Follow my finger. Can you hear this? Stick your tongue out. Hold your leg up and don’t let me push it down.”)

But then she added, “I haven’t heard her bark since it happened.”

Whoa! Aphasia in a dog? Do doggie brains have a speech center? What about a Broca’s area?

More: “It’s kind of sad. She just stands outside the door when she wants to come in, but doesn’t bark anymore.”

It boggles the mind.


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