We all know that a dog’s nose is the most sensitive of its organs and often guide its actions, but his eyes are also equally important. Hence maintaining a healthy vision for your dog is equally important if you want your pet to be healthy and happy. Cataract in dogs is something that every pet owner should recognize and try curing it. Cataract is defined as a visionary defect that affects the lens of the eye-obscuring the vision. The size of a cataract may vary from pinpoint which goes un-noticed in many dogs to a size that covers the entire the lens causing blindness.
Learn more about dog Cataract Treatment and what causes cataracts in dogs and what you can do to help your dog if he has them.
What Causes Cataracts in Dogs?
The eye lens is comprised of specialized cells that produce fibers made of protein as doctors say it. Cataract in dogs occurs when these cells or protein fibers are damaged. High blood sugar levels alter the metabolism of the cells in the lens and hence diabetes in dogs can cause cataracts to develop. As in human beings, the most common reason for cataracts development is exposure to ultraviolet light. Though in dogs ultraviolet light does not contribute directly it has its effect partially. Another cause of cataracts in dogs can be traced to their gene structure. Research shows Breeds like Poodles, Cocker Spaniels, Siberian Huskies, and Yorkshire Terriers, in comparison to other breeds, develop cataract due to their hereditary defects. Hereditary cataracts can form in dogs even at a very young age—between 1 and 5 years old.
Are Dogs with Cataracts Able to See?
Yes most of the time, dogs with cataracts can still see. However, canine cataracts can be categorized in three ways
- Incipient cataracts cover less than 15 percent of the surface area of the lens. Being very small they go unnoticed and rarely undergo surgery.
- Mature cataracts that cover the entire lens. Dogs with mature cataracts can only see changes in light and must undergo cataract surgery.
- Immature cataracts belong to something of a gray area creating significant vision deficits covering 75 percent of the vision.
Dog Cataract Treatment and their Prevention
Cataracts can’t go away on their own and they need to be removed surgically. If you see or suspect that your dog has a cataract, consult your vet or a veterinary ophthalmologist to discuss whether surgery is right for your dog. Because so many canine cataracts are hereditary, there’s not much an owner can do to prevent them, but a high-quality diet with an antioxidant supplement may help. For example, omega-3 fatty acids, such as those found in fish oil, promote eye health, as well as heart, brain, joint, and skin health. You can also help prevent cataracts in dogs by blocking harmful UV rays. Immediately after cataract surgery, your vet will likely start your dog on a routine of anti-inflammatory cataract eye drops. After the procedure, the drops will ramp up for about four to six months. You’ll also likely need to schedule regular vet appointments to recheck your dog’s eye.
But remember to keep your dog healthy, you need to keep him happy too. Spend time with your dog, cuddle him and play with him, believe me, it works better than any medication. Finally, make moments with your dog more memorable with dog mom shirts from us at PupnPaws.