Common Dog Eye Issues and What to Look For

Just like humans, a dog’s vision is very important. Dogs however, are prone to numerous eye problems during their lifetime that threatens their overall health and ultimately the quality of their life. Some of these problems are hereditary while others are due to viral or bacterial infection. As pet lovers, understanding these problems, how to spot them early, and how best to treat them before they become severe can help keep our precious little friend’s eyes gleaming and healthy. Here are some common dog eye problems.

Glaucoma

This condition is mostly characterized by an anomalous increase in pressure inside the eye causing the eye to swell or protrude. If left untreated for a long time, Glaucoma can lead to eventual blindness for your pet because it damages the optic nerve and decreases blood flow into the retina.

Early signs include redness in the eyes, light sensitivity, enlarged eyeball, and pain. Depending on the stage of infection (primary or secondary), Glaucoma can be treated surgically or temporarily through eye drops. What is most unfortunate about this condition is that, by the time glaucoma is detected the infected eye is already blind.

Cataracts

This largely genetic condition affects the lens of the eye, causing a film to form. This makes the lens of your dog’s eye appear cloudy. As cataracts mature, they can cause eye blindness.

Often, cataracts are confused with nuclear sclerosis, a condition that leads to graying and hardening of the lens in older dogs. Most dog breeds are susceptible to cataracts. Fortunately, cataracts can be removed surgically.

Entropion

This condition causes dogs top eyelid to turn inwards causing the eyelashes to rub against the eyes leading to severe irritation. Entropion is believed to be hereditary, so it is vital that you research your breeder first hand. Surgical treatment can help correct the condition.

Dog Dry-Eye

Just like in humans, dry eyes occur in dogs. Dry eyes result when the eye does not secrete enough tears to keep the eye moist. It occurs when the third eyelid’s tear duct is damaged, swollen, or exposed. This results in yellow mucus discharge from the eyes, corneal ulcers, and sometimes blindness. Treatments involve eye drops or surgery.

Dog eye problems can be a nuisance if not treated early. Visit your veterinarian often for regular examinations to detect any serious issues.


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