Can My Dog Get Cataracts?



We love our dogs and we know that humans get cataracts but do dogs get cataracts too?  Well, dogs and many other animals can lose their vision to cataracts.  Medical Optometrists diagnose many cataracts a day in examining their patient’s eyes.  We know when a cataract is ready to be removed.  We can detect cataracts in animals eyes as well.

What Are Cataracts?

In people and in dogs, a cataract is a clouding in the lens.  In a dog, this causes him to have blurry vision. In advance stages your dog may have difficulty in seeing or go blind.  If the cataract is small, it won’t likely disturb the dog’s vision too much, but cataracts must be monitored because the thicker and denser they become, the more likely it is they will lead to blindness.

What Causes Cataracts?

Cataracts can develop from disease, old age and trauma to the eye, but inherited conditions are the most common cause. Cataracts may be present at birth or develop when a dog is very young-between one and three years of age. A high-incidence of cataracts is also often attributed to diabetes.  This is true in both humans and adults.
How Can I Tell if My Dog Is Developing Cataracts?

If your dog’s eyes look cloudy or bluish-gray, you should take him to the vet for an exam. Be aware, though, that it’s natural for a dog’s lens to become cloudy, or gray, with age.

Which Dogs Are Prone to Cataracts?

Though dogs of all ages and breeds can develop cataracts, they are more commonly found in Smooth Fox Terriers, American Cocker Spaniels, Havanese, Bichon Frise, Silky Terriers, Miniature and Standard Poodles, Miniature Schnauzers, and Boston Terriers. Dogs with diabetes are also especially prone.

How Are Cataracts Diagnosed?

A preliminary eye exam by your veterinarian will tell you whether you are dealing with a cataract or another condition that causes cloudiness in the eye.

Take care of your vision by eating healthy and wearing prescription or non prescription sunglasses recommended by your eye doctor.  Have your eyes examined yearly for healthy or unfortunately unhealthy eyes.  As to your dog, the same recommendations apply if you can keep sunglasses on your dog!   Call for an eye exam to see if you have healthy eyes.  Dr. Warren Johnson| Dr. Do Nguyen

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