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Six Eye Diseases in Dogs | Long Island Eye Doctor

Joel Kestenbaum, OD

All dog lovers know that dogs are people too.  They have feelings, they get sick, they like to cuddle and they get eye problems.  Here are just a few of the issues that dogs deal with.


·  Blepharospasm:  This is where the eyes seem to be closed or close hard.  It is not necessarily a disease in and of itself but can be a sign that there is something wrong with the lid or the eye in most cases.  Dogs can get foreign irritants in the eyes or have allergies that can cause this spasm of the lids.


·  Conjunctivitis:  We have all heard of pink eye.  This is another name for conjunctivitis which is an inflammation of a very thin tissue that covers the eye.  This can be allergic, bacterial, viral or just an irritant.  Not all conjunctivitis is contagious.  Treatment is with prescription eye drops.


·  Entropion:  The edge if the eyelid turns inward or rolls in on itself.  It can occur in the upper, lower or both lids.  Treatment is surgical if needed.


·  Ectropion:  The edge of the lid sags or rolls outward, exposing the membranes to the outside air.  This is more common in dogs than in cats and can be seen in any breed.  Bassett hounds are known for those saggy and sultry eyes………The same goes for Spaniels, Newfoundlands and St. Bernards.


·  Trichiasis:  An inward turning of the eyelashes.  Eyelashes pointing in the wrong direction can be very irritating and can cause red, watery eyes.  Treatment involves plucking the lash or in rare cases cauterizing the hair follicle.


·  Cherry Eye:  Cherry eye is seen mostly in dogs, not cats.  It is a disorder in which there is swelling to the tear gland at the base of the “third eyelid”.  This swelling causes a prolapsed of the gland and looks like a red lump in the inside corner of the eye.  It is not painful but is unsightly.  This Cherry Eye can cause dry eyes in dogs where a therapy of artificial tears would be necessary.

Regular examinations by your veterinarian will detect early signs of any of the above eye problems.  Enjoy your pet……..  I do.

Dr. Joel Kestenbaum

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