It's clear we love our pets – and they love us! But to ensure that they can always see their best, it's important to pay close attention to their eyes. Eye problems can be caused by a variety of things including viruses, bacteria, disease, injuries or just simply dust and debris. Many of these issues can not only influence how well your pet can see, but they can also be painful, below are some signs to look for if you think your pet may be suffering from eye problems:
Redness can be present on the whites of the eyes and be indicative of some form of irritant or possibly a more serious disease.
Squinting can be particularly concerning because it can mean that the eyes are painful.
Discharge from the eye
Discharge can be a symptom of many different things and can be watery or pus like.
Any change in appearance of the eye
Appearance (color, sunken look, size etc.) of the eye can be an indicator of many different things.
Outdoor pets are always encountering potential eye injuries while moving through bushes or underbrush - sticks and thorns poking them in the eye. If you suspect that your pet may be a victim to this sort of injury, you should have a veterinarian look at the injury as soon as possible. Because the eye is so delicate, waiting can make the problem worse.
If you suspect your pet has allergies, you should talk with your veterinarian to see what they can suggest. Allergens can be difficult to avoid (just like us!) and your vet will know what to recommend to help.
There are other medical conditions to be aware of as well, including:
Glaucoma is increased pressure within the eye which can be observed as cloudiness of the eye and redness of the whites, but the best symptom you can detect is an enlarged pupil (the middle, black part of the eye) caused by the pressure building up. untreated glaucoma can lead to blindness.
A Scratched / Ulcerated Eye
A scratch on the eye or an ulcer on the eye can be observed as redness on the eye where the scratch occurred, so this may be on the white, or the colored part of the eye. This may be less threatening than a disease like Glaucoma, but it can be painful for your pet.
Entropion is a condition in which the eyelid is rolled inward against the eyeball which can cause your pet's hair to fall into it's eye. This can be a very painful, but treatable condition for your pet.