Pardon the pun, but you don’t have to be blind to see that your pet’s eyes are very important!
Eye issues can be serious. That’s why, if you notice anything unusual about your pet’s eyes, it’s best to have them checked out ASAP. Conditions like conjunctivitis, corneal ulcers, uveitis and glaucoma can be very painful and, if left untreated, can go downhill rapidly.
Things to watch out for:
- Discharge from one or both eyes
Mucoid, sticky, yellow or green discharge is not normal. Any one of these may be a sign of infection, or other diseases like dry eye.
- Squinting or excessive blinking
Similarly, this may be a sign that your pet is in pain.
- Increased redness on the white of the eye
Infections and irritation can lead to an angry looking eye. Likewise glaucoma, an increase of pressure in the eye, can lead to redness.
- Swollen eyelids or swollen eye
Infections, trauma, allergies or the presence of a foreign body can cause swelling.
- Your pet is repeatedly rubbing their eye
Itchy eyes, a foreign body or any type of irritation can make your pet scratch or rub their eye/s. As a result, this can lead to further trauma (often due to a scratch on the eye) and even corneal ulcers.
- Your pet’s third eyelid is easily visible
Or is swollen, or very red. The third eyelid is usually hidden in the corner of the eye, but changes in its appearance may be a sign of: pain, a corneal ulcer, a foreign body or even a condition known as ‘cherry eye’.
- Your pet is suddenly bumping into furniture or walls or seems disoriented
This can indicate a change in vision and may be due to the presence of cataracts, glaucoma or retinal diseases. A sudden loss in vision may also occur with high blood pressure (hypertension)
- Behavioural changes
Eye conditions can be very painful. This can lead to changes in behaviour and demeanour – as well as constant tiredness in your pet. It’s amazing how often (after treatment) fur-parents realise just how much the condition was affecting their pet’s demeanour.
Above all, resist the temptation to use any leftover ointment or drops (human or animal) that you might have at home on your pet. Some medications can actually make conditions worse – and leave your pet in serious discomfort.
Most importantly, the best thing you can do is bring them in to us, and let us determine the cause of any eye problems.