A dog's eyes can be beautiful, soulful, and bright. One thing they shouldn't be is hazy. If you notice a cloudy spot on your dog's eye, bring him to the vet as soon as possible. Causes of such spots in the eyes can vary; some of the causes are serious, requiring immediate veterinary care to prevent your pooch from experiencing vision loss.
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Glaucoma in Dogs
Glaucoma is a condition in which the fluids of your dog's eye cannot drain properly and the pressure within the eye increases to a point that can damage the optic nerve or the retina. Symptoms of glaucoma include a cloudy spot on a dog's eye, redness, appetite loss, lethargy, excessive blinking, and a dilated pupil, in one or both eyes according to the American College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists. Only your vet can diagnose glaucoma using special tools to measure the pressure in your pup's eye. Treatment may involve drug therapy or surgery to lower the pressure in the eye.
Lipid Keratopathy in Canines
Lipid keratopathy, also known as corneal dystrophy, occurs when fatty substances accumulate in the cornea causing a white spot on a dog's eye. This condition can occur for several reasons, including genetics, high cholesterol levels, and hypothyroidism. Symptoms include a white or grey spot on a dog's eye, usually near the center, according to Cavalier Health.
Your vet can diagnose this condition through an eye exam. This is crucial to prevent potential vision loss or further degradation of health due to underlying medical conditions according to Northwest Animal Eye Specialists. Treatment usually involves feeding your dog a low-fat diet to lower his cholesterol levels or treating an underlying cause such as hypothyroidism.
If there's a cloudy spot on your dog's eye, he could have canine cataracts. Cataracts occur when the lens of your pup's eye becomes cloudy, usually due to age, genetics, diabetes, or a traumatic injury. Cataracts can cause vision loss according to Pet Coach.
Your vet will determine if your pup has cataracts using specialized optical equipment. She or a veterinary ophthalmologist can determine if the pup's lens is simply hardening with age or if a cataract is present. The only treatment for cataracts is the surgical removal of the lens.
Uveitis in Canines
If your pup's eye is red, cloudy, tearing and he keeps it shut, he may be suffering from uveitis. Your pup's uvea is made up of the iris, ciliary body, and choroid, all of which can become inflamed. This inflammation can be caused by many things, including an underlying infection, systemic disease, or an injury to the eye according to Eye Care for Animals.
Your vet can diagnose this condition by measuring the pressure in the eye. Treatment involves the use of eye drops to reduce the inflammation and eliminate any bacterial infections according to VCA Hospitals.
Doggy Dry Eye (Keratoconjunctivitis Sicca)
If your pup's eyes aren't producing enough tears, the eyes can become very dry and open to infections or corneal ulceration. Pups who blink a lot, have swollen eyes, changes in the appearance of their corneas or discharge coming from their eyes, may be suffering from dry eye according to the American College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists.
Causes include a genetic predisposition, underlying illness, bacterial infection, or medication. Your vet can evaluate your pup's tear production and prescribe artificial tears to treat this condition or perform surgery to reroute the moisture from a salivary gland to her eyes.
Keratitis in Dogs
Keratitis is the inflammation of the cornea, which can cause a cloudy spot on your dog's eye. Causes include bacteria, fungi, medication, and dry eye. Keratitis can lead to corneal ulcers and even vision loss according to the American Academy of Ophthalmology.
Symptoms of keratitis include pawing at the eye, tearing, squinting, and a protruding third eyelid, according to WebMD. Your vet will determine what type of treatment to use. Possible treatments include prescription eye drops to control inflammation, surgery to remove the cornea, radiation treatment, or cryotherapy.
Always check with your veterinarian before changing your pet’s diet, medication, or physical activity routines. This information is not a substitute for a vet’s opinion.
- American College of Veterinary Opthamologists: Glaucoma
- Cavalier Health: Corneal Dystrophy and the King Cavalier
- Northwest Animal Eye Specialists: Corneal Lipidosis
- Pet Coach: Cataracts in Dogs
- Eye Care for Animals: Canine Uveitis
- VCA Animal Hospitals: Uveitis in Dogs
- Eye Care for Animals: Keratoconjunctivitis Sicca
- American College of Veterinary Opthamologists: Dry Eye Syndrome in Dogs
- American Academy of Opthamology: What is Corneal Keratitis?
- petMD: Corneal Inflammation (Nonulcerative Keratitis) in Dogs
- WebMD: Keratitis (Cloudy Eye) in Dogs