Cloudy eyes in many dogs are due to cataracts and can have a big impact on vision and quality of life. Here at Animal Eye Care we recognise the importance of the human-animal bond and the desire for many owners to help their precious companion animals.
In many cases cataract surgery is an option to restore or improve vision. Surgery is complicated and at Animal Eye Care is performed only by a veterinary eye specialist with use of specialised equipment and an operating microscope. The nursing team are highly experienced in veterinary ophthalmology surgery and expert at monitoring your pet during and after surgery.
The first step in the process is to book an appointment for a consultation with a veterinary ophthalmologist to examine your pet’s eyes. A thorough examination is performed of the entire eye to determine whether your pet is a suitable candidate for cataract surgery.
If cataract surgery is an option we will dispense some eye drops to prepare the eyes for surgery. We will also liaise with your regular veterinarian about your pet’s general health, dental health and whether they are sufficiently healthy for a general anaesthetic.
The success rate of cataract surgery is around 90-95% in most cases. The caring team at Animal Eye Care take great delight in restoring the vision of blind animals and several of our nurses say that it is the favourite part of their job!
Diabetic dogs are at greatly increased risk of developing cataracts. Here at Animal Eye Care we have dedicated procedures and protocols for dealing with your pets special health needs.
To make an appointment for examination of your pet’s cloudy eyes please contact Animal Eye Care on (03) 9563 6488 to arrange a suitable time and location.
CATARACTS AND CATARACT SURGERY IN MORE DETAIL
What is a cataract?
A cataract is an opacity of the lens. The lens is normally clear and transparent. When a cataract forms the lens itself goes cloudy. A cataract is not a film or coating of the eye, but the inside of the lens – the lens protein goes cloudy. A cataract can affect just a small part of the lens, or it can affect the entire lens. Small cataracts may not have any affect on vision. If the cataract involves the whole lens in both eyes then vision will be affected. In more severe cataracts you may notice that the pupil, which normally appears black, has undergone a colour change and becomes bluish or white.
CATARACTS SURGERY POST-OPERATIVE CARE IN MORE DETAIL
Cataract surgery is a complicated procedure that takes place inside the eye. The post-operative instructions are strict and should be adhered to for best results.
A minimum of 4 visits are required over the first 4-6 weeks after surgery. Usually these after the day after surgery, around a week after, two weeks after and a month after. We may recommend extra visits if we are concerned about complications.
The first six weeks of visits are included in the surgery fee. There is no charge if we see your pet at East Malvern during regular clinic hours. Post-op checks seen at out-clinics (Point Cook, Essendon, Frankston, Corio, Moe) will incur a charge of $30. Post-op checks seen out of regular hours at East Malvern will incur an emergency fee.
After the first six weeks we then recommend a revisit at three months after surgery and then 6-12 monthly to ensure the health of the eye. There is a charge for these consultations.
Medications after surgery: Eye drops to control infection, pressure and inflammation are given immediately after surgery. Some of these may be required long term. Anti-inflammatory oral medications are given for six weeks.
Activity after surgery: Strict rest is required for the first 7-10 days after surgery. It is important to
- Keep the E collar on for 7 days
- Try to stop or minimise barking
- Stop ball games or toys that involve shaking the head (for six weeks after surgery!)
- Lead or harness walking for toileting only
Gentle lead walking along quiet streets is allowed after 7-10 days.
Off-lead exercise is allowed after 4-6 weeks.
Bathing is allowed two weeks after surgery.
Contact us if you see any of the following:
- Poor vision
- Watery or mucky discharge
- Cloudiness or a blue haze to the eye
We will show you how to perform a menace test to check vision and how to use a bright light to check normal response by the pupils.
If you are at all concerned we would like you to contact us promptly. During clinic hours you can call 03 9563 6488
Outside of clinic hours you can call 03 9572 1966 (there is a vet on call until 10 pm weekdays or 6 pm weekends). Please leave a message outside of these hours or see an emergency veterinarian if very concerned.