The eyes of a dog are the most specialised sensory organs in this animal. They are high sensitive to infection, disease and injury. The biggest disadvantage with dogs is that they cannot verbally relate to their owner, the pain or irritation in their eyes. Only when the dog’s actions reveal the fact that it has gone blind, does the owner come to know, but by then it is too late.
Dogs with bulging eyes are at risk of contracting diseases because of lack of protection. Drooping eyelids in dogs can become a repository of bacteria, which can slowly infect the eyes and lead to serious complications.
Almost all eye problems in dogs arise when their eye is irritated or traumatised, leading to excessive inflammation. This is the first alarming sign that the dog’s eye is infected and requires immediate medical attention.
If the tear producing ability in the dog’s eye ceases to exist because of inflammation of the tear ducts and glands, then there is a strong chance of an ulcer developing in the eye.
Inflammation of the Cornea
Eyelashes which are grown inwards or presence of foreign bodies in the eye, are some ways in which the dog’s eye can cause serious infection and lead to a condition called Keratitis, or inflammation of the cornea. Dog owners should also regularly examine the eyes of their dogs for checking possible inflammation or redness, and take immediate remedial steps on detection.
Glaucoma can lead to Blindness
An inflamed eye can lead to the most serious condition in a dog’s eye, called Glaucoma. When the fluid draining passage of the pupil becomes too narrow, it increases the fluid pressure within the eye, leading to Glaucoma. If left untreated, this serious condition can lead to permanent blindness. The warning signs are significant redness in the white part of the dog’s eyes, larger than normal size pupils and when the dog continuously rubs its eyes.
Eye Lid abnormalities
Eye inflammation is the most common cause of infection in the dog’s eye. This condition can be caused due to various reasons, the main ones being Ectropian in which the eyelids turn outwards, and Entropian where the eyelids turn inwards. These conditions can be corrected with an uncomplicated cosmetic surgery.
When the pet dog crosses 10 years in age, a bluish white coat of film usually starts forming over the pupils and progresses slowly. When the eye lenses become totally opaque, surgery becomes necessary for removing to preventing blindness.
When you closely observe the inner eye corner of some dogs, you will see dark stained strands of facial hair. This is caused when tears which are supposed to collect in the tear ducts, flow onto the dog’s face. When the stains start increasing, surgery may be required for removing the third eye lid for increasing the tears flow area.
Tauseef Hussain is a media blogger and writes for Orbit Eye Hospital located in Mumbai. You can interact with Tauseef Hussain on twitter @usef4u