Dogs and Glaucoma

I got this really good heads-up from Dakota a few days ago.

Just wanted to put an FYI out there. Took my dog to the vet for an eye infection. A week later turns out she has glaucoma.

Today, just came back from the ophthalmologist, good news her pressure went from 55 to 32. Still need to bring that down but we will. Turns out my 5 year old Bella is now blind in her right eye. I was told by the ophthalmologist that this common in Shiba Inu’s.

Once they get it in the one eye, Bella is predisposed to getting it in they other eye. We are doing preventative measures now. But GET YOUR SHIBA’S EYE PRESSURE TESTED. I haven’t stopped crying since I got home. My biggest fear, what do I do if she goes blind in the other eye?

Get your doggies tested!!!!!

** NOTE – I am not a vet so all the information in this article is based on my readings on the internet and chats with other dog owners.

What is Glaucoma?

As I understand it, Glaucoma is a condition of the eye where the optic nerve suffers damage as a result to increased fluid pressure inside the eye.

In particular, there is a fluid called aqueous humour between the cornea and the lens of the eye. This fluid is constantly produced and is normally drained out into the bloodstream through the drainage angle (Iridocorneal angle).

Problems occur when the drainage is obstructed, thereby cause a buildup of fluid and therefore pressure in the eye.

If left untreated, this could lead to permanent damage of the optic nerve and may even lead to blindness.

Dogs and Glaucoma – Should We Be Concerned?

In general, there are two types of dog glaucoma –

  • Primary glaucoma is hereditary. Dog breeds specifically mentioned include –

    Primary glaucoma occurs in many breeds of dogs, including the American Cocker Spaniel, Basset Hound, Chow Chow, Shar Pei, Jack Russell Terrier, Shih Tzu, and Arctic Circle breeds (including the Siberian Husky and Elkhound). Primary glaucoma is rare in cats.
    ~~[Animal Eye Care LLC]

    This is likely not a complete list. Dakota mentioned in her comment that Shiba Inus may also be susceptible. Since I have a Shiba and two Sibes, I am definitely concerned.

    The key problem with primary glaucoma is that the symptoms are usually mild and may not be easily observable, even by a regular vet. By the time that it is detected, it could already be too late, and there could already be permanent damage to the optic nerve.

  • Secondary Glaucoma usually occurs as a result of some other kind of eye disease such as inflammation in the eye (uveitis) or advanced cataracts. Since the dog is under vet care for the initial eye disease, this type of glaucoma is more easily detectable. Presumable we can also perform an eye pressure measurement test after our dog has recovered from the initial eye problem.

Detecting Glaucoma in Our Dogs

The first thing that I did after looking up dog glaucoma is to contact my Siberian Husky breeder. I asked her if she has experienced glaucoma before with her Sibes.

Since the less detectable type of glaucoma, (Primary Glaucoma) is hereditary, I wanted to check the family tree of my two Sibes. If their family tree is free of glaucoma, then they are probably less at risk of inheriting it.

My Sibe breeder tells me that none of her Huskies have gotten glaucoma before. Her mom’s Basenji had glaucoma, but that was a secondary effect from having cataracts when she was 14 years of age. My breeder also tells me that the Basenji had a lot of tearing (tears) before being diagnosed with glaucoma.

According to this very useful article on glaucoma in Samoyeds,

The early signs of glaucoma, which may not be recognized as such, may consist of mild conjunctival inflammation, which can mimic conjunctivitis; increased tearing and pain; and photophobia (sensitivity to light which results in some “squinting” of the eye).

My Shiba Inu’s breeder is not all that great and was uninterested in keeping contact with Sephy. I may get my vet to do an eye pressure test on him during his yearly exam.

Testing and Treatment for Glaucoma in Dogs

For the testing and treatment of dog glaucoma, it is best to consult with your vet or with a veterinary ophthalmologist.

Based on what I have read, there are two different glaucoma tests for dogs –

  • Tonometry – This is the simpler test that measures intraocular pressure (IOP). Supposedly, more vets are equipped to do this and it can be performed with just a topical anesthetic.
  • Gonioscopy – This is a more invasive test that is used when primary glaucoma is already present in one eye. This test examines the drainage angle of the remaining visual eye to see if it is also predisposed to glaucoma. It seems that this test is mostly performed by a veterinary ophthalmologist.

According to Animal Eyecare LLC, there are three classes of treatment for dog glaucoma –

  • Glaucoma Eye Drops – These eye drops help to decrease fluid production and increase fluid drainage. Apparently, it is a short term solution and is not very effective at controlling glaucoma in the long term.
  • Antioxidant Vision Supplements – These supplements can apparently help to reduce oxidative damage to the cells in the eye that are responsible for fluid drainage. It is also not a good long-term solution for dogs that already have glaucoma.
  • Surgery – It is best to consult with an eye specialist for the list of possible surgical procedures.

Dogs with glaucoma or at risk of developing glaucoma should have leashes attached to harnesses and not neck collars, to prevent pressure on the jugular veins (which can in turn increase IOP and trigger a glaucoma attack).
~~[Animal Eye Care LLC]

If you have experienced glaucoma with your dogs, please share your stories with us. If you have more information on glaucoma, please let us know as well.

Many thanks to Dakota for bringing this important issue to our attention. Big hugs and best wishes to Bella.

** NOTE – I am not a vet so all the information in this article is based on my readings on the internet and chats with other dog owners.

Some Useful Sites and Resources

Related Articles

Comments

  1. Suzie Morgan says

    I have a little jack Russell called blu he had a nasty eye and the vet said it was glucoma we put drops in every day but sadly he had to have his eye removed, he adapted really well but have to put drops in his other eye I am so scared he will get it in the other I keep looking and checking and got to have regular pressure checks don’t know what I would do if they say he is blind in that one as well

    • Anonymous says

      Hi we have the same problem with our jack Russell she is only eight had one eye removed and putting drops in the other. The vet has been very good and a straight talker which I like he said is only a matter of time up to eighteen month before she will will be blind. We are both devastated the wee dog is such a big part of our life don’t know how we will cope when the fateful day comes.

  2. Abnash says

    I have a siberian husky who is 10 months old .
    5 months ago my dog right eye had red eyes and according to the veterinary it was ekenes after doin blood test. After 3 days my dog was ok and the eyes fully open. 2 weeks ago dog developed same problem. Accordingly veterinary doctor informed same problem. But this time I saw my dog not seeing well and bumping into objects. I was not happy with the doctor explanation and met 2 other doctors but I was not satisfied . Subsequently I drove 200 km to see an animal eye doctor and he confirmed that my dog had glaucoma.
    Some medicines were prescribed but no guarantee was given that my dog would regained sight. We have given medicine for the past 5 days but still no progress. Accordingly we have to wait for 10 days before any results materialize.as informed by doctor.

    We are quite worried and would like to seek for advise on the above matter.

  3. Tina Borst says

    Hi my name is Tina and one of my Shibas has Glaucoma. I could make this email really long with all the details but I’m going to leave some out and get to the jist of our story. Kaizo was our foster dog and we decided to adopt her. She came to the rescue as a stray with both eyes. Her left eye was very cloudy so the rescue took her to an opthamologist and she was diagnosed with Glaucoma. The left eye was already blind and so they had her left eye removed so she came to us with just her right eye. She is approx. 7 years of age at this time.
    Now 2.5 years have passed and she has 2 Opthamologists that treat her. Last year she was within probably months of loosing her sight in the right eye so we had ECP procedure (Endolaser Cyclophotocoagulation) done on her on April 8, 2013 to relieve her pressure and to extend her sight. No guarantees with this procedure, she could eve wake up blind from it, the surgery cost was $3,000.00 and the recovery time was really pretty short and painless for her. She came out of the procedure just fine, he had to remove her lens so she came out of the surgery with a little less vison than she had going in but right now today she still has some sight (approx 40%)!!! We are SO happy that we chose this procedure for her!!! After the procedure she had ALOT of drops and meds to take so I just made a spreadsheet schedule and it worked out fine. In the end Glaucoma is going to win and she will go blind in this eye and we will probably have it removed also and leave it at that.
    I feel everyone’s pain, Glaucoma SUCKS!!
    POOR breeding by Puppy Mills/Pet Store dogs are the ones that end up with this disease so please don’t EVER buy animals from Pet Stores!!

    • shibashake says

      Thank you for sharing Kaizo’s story with us Tina. It is good to see first-hand details on the ECP procedure, as well as what to expect during recovery. Very helpful.

      I am glad that your girl is doing so well. Big hugs!

    • Anonymous says

      My litter of Labrador receiver was 7 there was a very small pup so i paid a little more attention on her she used to loll her head a lot i thought it was because it was because she was underwent, one night she started screeming an her eyes went blank an popped out, i rushed her to d vet an he treated her with eye drops that wasv2 weeks ago now he says she has glucoma in one eye an is still not sure about d other eye too i am really sorry an don’t know what to do.

  4. Misty says

    3 months ago I found a 12 week old bright blue eyed husky/lab puppy wandering in the woods in a remote location. It was a common place to dump puppies, so I took her home and named her Emma. She took to training like a star and never seemed sick.

    Last week, I was preparing her outdoor kennel before work and noticed she was lethargic and vomiting. The night before she played hard like normal, so I wasn’t sure what was wrong. Then, I noticed her right eye was rolled to the side with a dilated pupil. She was barely moving and seemed confused. I rushed her to the animal hospital and she was diagnosed with uveitis and told to come back in 10 days after medication. By the next morning, Emma’s eye was clouded and she wouldn’t open it. Even closed, I noticed remarkable swelling so we went for a second opinion.

    She ended up seeing a specialist who diagnosed her with glaucoma. Her pressure first spiked at over 60, when the normal range was 15-25. She received more meds, but by the fourth day she was officially blind in her right eye. She just endured enucleation (eye removal) and is healing beautifully. We’ve begun preventative treatment in her remaining eye as she has primary glaucoma and have started harness use.

    If your dog is already blind from.glaucoma, I recommend enucleation. It is the only method to avoid future pressure spikes and ultimately make your dog feel better. Pressure spikes cause severe migraines and are very painful. We are at day four of post surgery and Emma seems like her happy normal self again.

  5. AHuskyNamedTaz says

    I have a sibe who was doing fine (no tearing, infection, anything) he acted completely normal. I layed down and woke up at 2am to him whining and pacing back and forth. I couldn’t figure out what was wrong until I noticed he wouldn’t open his right eye.
    We made an appointment at the vet at 9am he was givin eye drops, pain pills, and antibiotics (she even took pictures because she had no idea what was wrong, and we had no idea about glaucoma or pressure). After all the meds were done we noticed he was back to his regular self, the cloudiness went away, but his pupil was constantly dialated.
    Finally after taking him to a vet that specializes in eyes and getting a referral to a ophthalmologist we discovered he had primary glaucoma (after doing research before seeing the ophthamologist we thought it was secondary- due to injury because he does shake his toys).
    So far we have him on latanaprost in his bad (right) eye 1x a day and an eye drop that starts with a T (forgive me I forgot the name) in his good (left) eye 1x a day. His pressure was 46 and dropped to 41 before treatment then 1 month after treatment was down to 16. The highest his good eye has been is 16 and lowest of 15. We go back in 3 months to have it checked again but we notice a dramatic difference in his eye with the drops in (his pupil shrinks drastically), but we were told his lens has drifted out of place due to the pressure being so high for so long.
    Were praying his other eye stays healthy and we can keep the pressure In his right eye down. He’s such a happy puppy and has adapted to seeing out of one eye so well.

    (Sorry for spelling and punctuation issues, I’m on my phone)

    • shibashake says

      Glad to hear that Taz is feeling much better after the eye-drops. Thanks for telling us your experiences and what to look out for. If you have the time, please let us know how things go in the next check-up.

      Big hugs to Taz.

  6. Jenny Wren says

    I have a 3 year old BC who is blind in one eye due to birth deformity. It’s been giving him some discomfort so we are considering getting it removed, however I’ve been told one risk is that during the operation, it could put pressure on the good eye and make him blind in his good eye. This has scared me. I cant find this risk on the internet and wondering if anyone has heard of it? I can only find general risks for surgery. Thank you

    • shibashake says

      It may be best to visit with an animal eye specialist.

      I have visited with two specialists for my dogs, one for teeth and one for bones. It was very helpful. Both specialists-
      1. Accurately diagnosed the issue.
      2. Gave us a list of possible treatment options and the risks involved.
      3. Gave us information on the worst case scenario, likely outcomes, post-op care, and more.

      Those were really difficult times, but it helped a lot to have all the options laid out clearly, by an expert in the field. I made sure to prepare a list of questions before the consultation, so that I wouldn’t forget anything.

  7. pam says

    My 14 year old Cocker Spaniel was diagnosed with glaucoma in his right eye yesterday. His left eye is unaffected. The IPO was at 57 in the right eye. He is on blood pressure medicine and allergy pills due to other issues. From research both these drugs can bring on glaucoma quickly. My primary vet sent me to an emergency eye vet yesterday. They started him on pain meds and eye drops. He has a follow up in 2 weeks. I am heartbroken, scared, and feel like I missed the signs. Both vets assure me this can happen quickly with no warning. I would do anything for this dog- we have been through so many medical issues including liver cancer three years ago. (He had a liver lobe removed and it was thankfully curative) I cant stand the thought of my boy losing his eye or going totally blind. My primary vet said the meds have gotten better and he can be made comfortable. I did not get the same feeling from the specialist. He said the disease was horrible. He can make the dog comfortable and we can try drugs but the surgery may be needed. I dont know what my questions are at this time. I cant seem to process the news. My boy acts like himself. He is getting around with no issues. The eye is very red and swollen and looks painful to me. I am praying the meds work.

    • shibashake says

      Hello Pam,

      Thanks for sharing your experiences with us. Try checking out this Yahoo Group. I think there are many people on the list who have gone through glaucoma with their dog.

      Big hugs to your Spaniel. Shania also sends her love, support, and many Husky licks.

  8. Jessyca Bercot says

    I have a 13-14 year old Poodle Shihtzu mix. He is 6.5 pounds and I have had him since he was 6 weeks. I cannot imagine losing him. I took him in Tuesday 4/16/13. They flushed out his eye and gave an Antibiotic ointment. I took him back this morning 4/20/13, The vet was holding back for a moment on telling me it was Glaucoma. I am so beside myself. I have been crying off and on all day, I was so hellbent on doing something else for him I almost spent the money I didn’t have to take him to the closet ER hospital. I read that it could be a year until his other eye is affected or days/weeks etc. I am not sure what to do, I am going to make an appt. on Monday for an animal hospital for a second opinion. He wasn’t acting like himself until yesterday/today. He is on stronger antibiotic ointment that has a steroid in it… WHAT is everyone else opinion? What can I do for my old man as surgery is NOT an option at his old ripen age. He is actually playing etc. so I am assuming he is feeling lots better, what if his other eye gets it? When do you make the choice. How do you know it’s the right one? I can’t imagine being without him.

    • shibashake says

      I think this Yahoo Group has people who have gone through glaucoma and followup care with their dog. It may be a good resource.

      The related website also has useful links and information.

      This is a message board on dogs with glaucoma but it has not been active for a while, so I am not sure if it is still being actively maintained.

      Big hugs to your brave furry companion. Let us know how things go with the animal hospital. If you find other support groups or related resources, please let us know as well.

  9. Christyne says

    We have a 3½ year old Samoyed that lost her first eye to primary glaucoma in December and the second one not even 3 months later. Right now she has latanoprost, dorzolamide and maxidex twice a day but can’t seem to get the pressure under 40 in one eye. We can’t afford to remove and put prosthetics eyes. She pants a lot during the night and can’t sleep much, otherwise she gets around the house very well but is quite mopey (she used to spend her day looking out the livingroom bay window). Doesn’t play with our other dog anymore but still begs for food, lol. Is there anything else we can do? We really don’t want to put her down but don’t want her to live with migraine either.

  10. Laurie says

    We have a small shi-poo13 years old. He developed glaucoma in 1 eye 1 1/2 years ago. Got it in other eye 6 mos ago. By the time we got him to specialist it was too late. We feel he may see shadows but runs into stationary things. He is our baby. I am constantly looking for something that may help him. I know I know the sight is probably gone. The last visit to specialist the pressure was 9. I am curious. We give him latanoprost 2times per day & 1 drop dorzolamide per day. What are most of u treating your dogs with? Debbie what kind of pill do you give your dog? Thanks for any info!

  11. Linda says

    I have 5 huskies (4 were rescues). My youngest, Saba, was dianosed with uveitis and glaucoma when she was 1 1/2 yrs old (on Halloween 2011). We caught it early (as I noticed a slight bluish haze over her brown eye and was winking a lot (she has one blue & one brown eye); but even so, both eyes were effected in the beginning. Her blue eye’s pupil did not dialate and stayed in one position. Her ‘bad eye’ (brown one) never really got any better and we got lucky with her now ‘good eye’ (the blue eye). The pupil broke free and finally started dialating normally again after all the meds/eye drops. The doggie eye doc has been great and treated the disease aggressively in the beginning so we could try and save both eyes. At this point, nearly two years later, Saba is now on two diff tablets 2x/week to keep the uveitis under control. She gets 1 eye drop in the good eye 3x/week and 3 diff eye drops 2-3x/day in the bad eye. But unfortunately, after trying to keep her pressure in the bad eye under control these last two years, we are at the point where eye removal seems like the best/only option for her brown eye. I took it hard even though I know deep down that it would probably come to this. I feel I failed her. I know its for her best and it will eliminate the pain/headaches she has when her pressure spikes. So, at 3 yrs old, she’ll have one eye removed this month :( But I know she will be okay…its me that is having a hard time, lol.

    • shibashake says

      But I know she will be okay…its me that is having a hard time, lol.

      Yeah, I know what you mean. I also worried a lot about Shania when she had to go through leg surgery. Even today, I still wish we could have saved her leg.

      Meanwhile, Shania is getting on with running, wrestling, and living life to the fullest. It is wonderful and amazing to see. I tell her that my job is to do the worrying for her, and her job is to be a happy Husky. :D

      Big hugs to Saba and the rest of your furry gang. Shania sends her love and lots of wet Husky licks.

  12. pjdd says

    Hi,

    Our baby, Dexter who is 7 years old, pointer mix was diagnosed with glaucoma 4 days ago and we’re still trying to figure it all out. He was seen by an animal eye specialist and is currently on two eye drops and pills to reduce the pressure. He has lost vision completely in one eye and has some vision in his other eye. I’ve read that a lot of other dogs eventually had to have their eye removed? If we continue on the medication, will he have to have his eye(s) removed? At this point, we are hoping for the best.. Thanks

  13. Laura McNeilly says

    Hi All, my Shiba, Chloe was diagnosed with glaucoma 11/20/12 and on 11/28/12 she was operated on, evisceration and intraocular prosthesis on now blind left eye, endolaser on right eye that had very high pressure but ocular nerve looked fantastic. It was all so fast and very traumatic for all of us!. She has recovered so well and is like her old self again!! She will eventually be blind the optomologist tells us. We felt this was the best route for our dog and her quality of life. She has never been an offleash dog so that is no change for her when she looses her sight, so I comfort myself that we can keep her happy and comfortable for a long life as she is only five!! I just wonder how so many vets can see a Shiba with a “winky” eye and not tell you how commen glaucoma is!! FYI, her prosthetic eye looks great and is not scary at all as that was part of our decision with her surgery not to scare our grandkids who love her, she looks beautiful!! Good luck to you, we can’t say enough about, Animal Eye Clinic, Seattle, WA

    • shibashake says

      Thank you for sharing Chloe’s story with us.

      She has recovered so well and is like her old self again!!

      That is so good to hear. It helps to know what to expect after the surgery, and also in the long-term.

      Love the positive and can-do attitude of your comment. Big hugs to Chloe.

    • Becky says

      Thank you for your story about Chloe. My dog Bijou, a Shih Tzu had eye removal and evisceration an intraocular prothesis on her left eye last August. But now glaucoma is rearing its ugly head on her right eye. We are faced w/the decision of endolaser surgery…What was your experience? I hear it is complicated and there are no guarantees? I have to make the decision this week and I am scared! Your feedback would be helpful. Thank you!

  14. Debbie says

    I have a 3 1/2 year old Siberian Husky. He was diagnosed with Glaucoma in July 2012. It broke my heart when we were told. We have been putting 3 different drops in his eyes 2 and 3 times a day. He also takes a pill 3 times a day. We were told in November that he is completely blind in the left eye. The right eye isn’t as affected right now. We have now scheduled eye removal surgery on his left eye on March 27th. I am so scared of the surgery. I really thought we would have to put him down. But, with a lot of research and the help of my Vet, we are going to do whatever it takes to take care of him. Hang in there everybody. I know what you are going through. I have cried a many tear.

  15. Jen says

    I just found out that my 4 year old shiba had glaucoma. I’m doing the drops 3 times a day and hoping for the best. I’m afraid that I will have to remove her right eye in the near future. the eye doctor that we had been seeing isn’t sure if it’s primary or secondary so we are taking a road trip to get a second opinion this weekend.
    I’m sorry to read about the loss of your shiba!

  16. todd says

    My mini-dashund sadie lost her eye to glaucoma over a year and a half ago. She had it come into her remaining eye, we did do a laser surgery which bought her another 6 months of chasing frisbee’s which I wouldn’t trade for anything. It is now spiking again and I fear she’s going to lose her remaining eye soon. I think she may be ok blind, but also worry about her quality of life-my wife says there are plenty of happy blind dogs out there-I hope she will be one of them.

    • shibashake says

      we did do a laser surgery which bought her another 6 months

      That is very good to know. How long did it take for Sadie to heal after the surgery?

      Big hugs and our very best wishes to Sadie.

    • tammydan7 says

      Hey you guys…my dog Ginger (Cocker Spaniel) was diagnosed with glaucoma in her right eye. I started her immediately on ocu-glo. It’s a supplement for dogs with glaucoma. It’s suppose to eleviate the inflammation and drain some of the fluid in the eye that’s causing the inflammation. Also, helps as a prevention of her getting in her left eye. My vet thinks she is blind in her right eye..but I think she can see shadows and at times possibly more. She has been on ocu-glo for 3 months now. Her right eye was blue when I started her on Ocu-glo. But now it is no longer blue. Sometimes it looks totally normal which is brown like her left eye. Sometimes it still gets red and bulgy looking. But it look like the supplement has improved her eye a great deal. She has no problems getting around. When her eye is inflamed, sometimes I put a little teramycin and that helps prevent any other eye infections and its soothing to the eye. You can find and read the reviews about Ocu-glo at http://www.ocuglo.com

      By the way, she is not on any other medications or treatment for her eye. I hope this was helpful.

  17. Dakota says

    Just wanted to drop you all a line. Sad to say Bella has lost her fight. Bella had her one eye removed in February. For 2 1/2 months her left eye was fine. We were outting drops in twice a day. Then we had to put it in three times a day, pressure went from 27 to 20 in a week. Great we thought. Went back in June for a check up went up to 76. We had to put drops in here eyes 6 times a day. A week later it just went down to 71. Bella lost her sight,and she never would get it back. Bella would just lay around most of the day and she had stopped barking. When your pressure is up you get a a severe headache. So i had to make that call. I know that we did every thing that would could. I like to think we did more for Bella than others might have done. I loved my baby girl very much. But were was her quality of life. I just couldn’t see getting her other eye out. I miss her dearly. But if any of you are put in this situation, my heart goes out to you. This is not easy. I know if i ever get another Shiba i will ask some serious questions. So i hope you won’t mind if i stop in from time to time to check out the latest pictures and stories. God Bless

    • shibashake says

      Hello Dakota,

      Thank you for letting us know about Bella. She sounds like a very special, brave, and awesome girl – which is to be expected, since she is Shiba! I bet she is on the Rainbow Meadow, chasing squirrels, giving Shiba war-cries, and leading all the other dogs down the path that rocks.

      Hugs to you all.

    • Cooper says

      I am so sorry to hear about your dog. I know it was a while ago and appreciate you posting it. I am going through it too with my dog and it is so hard.

    • Val says

      I am so heartbroken. My Shiba lost an eye to glaucoma in August. The opthalmologist who performed the surgery didn’t think it was primary and told us we didn’t have to worry about the other eye. Well, the other night I rushed him to the emergency room when I noticed his eye was teary and he seemed agitated. The pressure in his remaining eye was 75 or so. Drops saved the eye and his vision for now, but I am so afraid of what will happen next.

  18. Tyler says

    Glaucoma can strike at any time. Me and my girlfriend took our Sibe to the vet to be spayed at 6 months. We brought her home and she had an “eye infection” and was prescribed meds for it. They didn’t help because she had Glaucoma. We were told that she had been developing it for 3-4 weeks. She is on eye drops and I am afraid of what will happen next.

  19. Marilyn says

    I’m sorry about Bella (she is beautiful!) I can sure relate! About a month ago, my Buster was diagnosed with Glacoma by an Eye Specialist. So we tried the drops to keep his pain level and pressure down. Unfortunately, within two weeks his right eye got Glacoma and now he is totally blind. The Eye Specialist wants $2400 to take out both the eyes. He is going to have a dental this week because they are concerned about an infection. I am so emotionally drained because the Vet tells me he doesn’t need his eyes out, but the Specialist recommends it. I am so torn of what to do!! He is currently on antibiotics for his dental, two drops (one for pressure and prednisons, and two ointments we have to put in his eyes 2 times a day.) He doesn’t act too painful, so that is my dilema. He did in the beginning with his left eye, but I’m not sure if the drops are what is helping. I really don’t want to have his eyes taken out if I don’t need too! Any suggestions???? I appreciate your website because this is so heartbreaking when you love your dog so much and you want to do the right thing for him!!!

    • shibashake says

      Hello Marilyn,

      this is so heartbreaking when you love your dog so much and you want to do the right thing for him

      Yeah. My Siberian Husky was born with a crooked leg and she had to go through several operations when we tried to straighten her bones. It was a very difficult time and totally heartrending that she had to go through so much adversity. Still though, she handled it like a champ. Dogs really are very amazing.

      In the end, the surgeries did not work so the specialist recommended amputation.

      During this difficult time, we would consider each issue carefully, and get the specialist to lay out all the options and risks. I really liked our specialist – he got along well with Shania, knew his area very well, and was very clear about the risks and rewards of each choice. I thought he gave us very sound advice.

      Hopefully, Dakota and Bella will drop by and share their thoughts and experiences with us as well.

      Big hugs to Buster. Let us know how it goes.

    • Anonymous says

      I have a 10 year old shiba . We found out a few months ago he has glycoma . We administered drops three times a day but the pressure was high regardless . We did not want him to suffer so we did the surjury to remove his eye . It’s been a week and he is doing great ! He is no longer in pain . Vets have advised dogs do not rely on sight as much as they rely on scent and their hearing . As much as I dred the last eye going , I have been reassured he will be ok . Meghan

    • shibashake says

      Thanks for sharing your experiences with us Meghan. Very glad to hear that your Shiba is doing well. Big hugs!

  20. Michael Long says

    Did you see any color changes in your dog’s eyes, or a cloudy appearance. I have a German Shepperd puppy, 3 mos, that my granddaughter named Bella. Your story saddens and scares me. I just notice this on Bella’s eye a day ago. Now I am going to call my Vet. Thanks, Michael

  21. Dakota says

    Vicky, sorry to her about your pups as well. Bella just had her eye removed Thursday. Ahh the specialist wanted $2400 to removed her eye. Thank God my sister told me about her vet that she goes to. I think i am more upset about the “shaved” look around the eye that her losing it. I don’t even notice the absent eye anymore. Very scared about her other eye. But we feel like you that at that point the decision has to be made. I am greatful, no make that, I am so blessed to have Bella in my life. Bella is a special frisky lil doggie. I love her to no end. God bless all Shiba’s everywhere!!!!!!

    • shibashake says

      Thanks for giving us an update on Bella.

      Did it take her long to recover from the operation? Are you doing anything differently in terms of her day to day routine?

  22. Vicky says

    Sorry to hear about your beloved pup – no worries though – My Shiba was diagnosed in 2010. Went to bed the Tuesday before Christmas and woke up the next morning and her eye was swollen shut. Did not know about dogs and glaucoma – but called the vet and when her pressure was taken it was 80+. She was already blind by the time she was taken to the vet. Took her to an Animal Eye Consultant here in Illinois and they wanted over $1200 to have the eye removed (since it was still terribly swollen and causing pain – no amount of drops could bring the blind eye pressure down). My vet did the enunculation (eye removal-sorry about spelling) for under $450. She didn’t look that bad when I got her back, now on occassion I call her Winky as it looks like she is trying to wink at you. She is on life time treatment to try and ward off the glaucoma going into the other eye, but I know the risk is high that it will happen again. Usually it comes within 6-13 months after being diagnosed in the first eye into the secondary eye. So far over a year later – her pressure is holding strong – it has gone up a bit from 10 to 21. But when it hits 30 that is when all warning flags/bells go off – so we are constantly monitoring and of course she is on life time worth of meds (she has other medical issues … 12 years old).

    Today I bring in my second shiba to the vet for a pressure read. Her eye has been steadly tearing for over a month now, and we’ve just started noticing some swelling. Hoping it is a blocked duct or allergy. If it turns out to be the “G” again, we won’t wait around – I’ll have the eye removed immediately.

    When the glaucoma returns to the secondary eye – unfortunately I will have to make that heart wrenching decision. I have high prey driven dogs (including a Jack Russel who also is predisposed to having eye complications) – and whether it is killing a leaf or chasing a rabbit I cannot believe in my heart that they would be happy living a life in darkness. I love my pups to much to see that type of inactivity.

    Bless everyone who has to go through the ordeal of glaucoma with their pets.

    • shibashake says

      Hello Vicky,
      Thanks for sharing your story and experiences with us.

      Big hugs to your Shibas!

    • shibashake says

      Thanks so much for the two very useful links. I have been reading through all the Sibe eye info. and it is very interesting.

      Big hugs to Bowdu and Bowpi!

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