Signs your pet is experiencing vision loss

A common side effect of aging or disease in pets is vision loss. As a pet owner, you should be aware of signs that may indicate impaired vision, as well as how to care for your pet after they have been diagnosed.

Symptoms

For the most effective treatment of impaired vision, it’s best to catch it early on. There are a few signs you should recognise as indicators of vision loss, including:

• Clumsiness
• Disorientation
• Inability to locate food or toys
• Refusal to go outside at night
• Getting easily started

If you notice any of these, bring your dog, cat or other furry companion to an animal hospital as soon as possible.

Causes and treatments
There are many possible causes for loss of vision, including:

• Diabetes
• Glaucoma
• Cataracts
• Progressive retinal atrophy
• Suddenly acquired retinal deterioration syndrome
• Tumors
• Epilepsy

If your pet is suffering from blindness, he or she will require treatment at an animal hospital. There, a veterinarian will recommend the best course of action, be it medication or surgery.

Impairment versus blindness

Gradual vision loss is much easier for animals to cope with than sudden onset blindness. If they suffer from vision impairment, they’ll eventually learn to adjust and rely more on their other senses. Suddenly going completely blind, on the other hand, is a far more jarring experience and is likely to cause your pet to experience depression or anxiety.

How to help your pet adjust

Luckily for your pet, they have you there to help them adjust to their vision loss. To keep them safe from hazards such as stairs, you can install baby gates in your home. You can also help them learn to navigate your house without sight by limiting them to only one or two rooms at first. Once they’ve acclimatized, you can slowly increase their access to the rest of the house. Initially, you’ll have to guide them and help them find their food, cage and toys. They’ll eventually learn how to do this independently. Most importantly, shower them with love and attention so that they aren’t afraid as their sight leaves them.

An animal hospital in Toronto you can count on

If you think your pet is experiencing vision impairment or blindness, bring them to Brimley-Lawrence Animal Clinic today. Our experienced team offers a multitude of services to keep your pet feeling great. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us here.

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