Protecting Your Pooch’s Peepers

  • BY Lainie Petersen

Like humans, dogs can suffer eyesight problems and need good vision care. The difference between you and your dog, however, is that he is completely dependent on you for eye health protection and care. He also relies on you to identify any signs of vision loss and to get him to the vet right away.  Here are some tips for protecting your dog’s eyesight:

  • Don’t let your dog hang her head outside your car window while you are driving. While your dog may enjoy the ride, her eyes are vulnerable to injury while you are in motion.
  • According to an article in NewsOK, it’s not a good idea to use old eye medications to treat an eye condition that has just cropped up. Talk to your vet each time your dog has an eye condition and use the medications that your vet prescribes.
  • If you notice that your dog’s eyes are red, teary or that your dog is frequently rubbing his eyes, contact your vet right away.
  • The ASCPA urges dog owners to keep an eye out for signs of vision loss in their dogs. Getting prompt veterinary attention is crucial for protecting your dog’s eyesight and preventing unnecessary pain and suffering. Typical signs of vision loss in dogs include unusual clumsiness, falling, and becoming easily startled. Your dog may also appear to lose confidence and be reluctant to move from place to place in your home.


Getting Help & Finding Resources

If you don’t have a vet, ask your friends for a referral, or check out review sites like Yelp. If your dog does have a serious vision problem, your vet may refer you to a veterinary ophthalmologist, a veterinarian who specializes in treating the eye. The American College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists can assist with referrals as well. In addition, its website contains a wealth of information on pet eye health issues.

Final Word

Just as many of us humans ignore eye problems until we have difficulty seeing or experience a serious medical condition, it’s easy to ignore the signs of vision and eye health issues in your pet. Take the time to observe your pet’s behavior throughout the day so you’ll have an easier time identifying changes that may suggest vision problems or eye disease.