Wednesday, March 16, 2005
Protecting Your Pet: Cataracts
Just like people, as our pets age, they can experience vision problems. For canines, cataracts are very common, but it can be cured. In today's protecting your pet, Marilyn Mitzel shows us the warning signs and what can be done.
WSVN -- Is your pooch having trouble finding the doggy bowl.
Buttercup's owner Ruth Ann Ramsey: "Buttercup has a very healthy appetite and she would not have done that if she could see the food."
Perhaps they're not as quick any more...
Ruth Ann: "We used to play a game where she'd catch a dog biscuit up in the air and she'd catch it really really fast, she couldn't do that and she started missing."
Perhaps the eyes aren't as bright. That's why buttercup is having cataract surgery.
Sometimes medication works - but this is her only shot at seeing clearly again.
The cloudy lens is removed the same way it's done in humans.
Veterinarian Dr. Paul Barrett: "The equipment we use is human equipment. The instrumentation is human instrumentation."
The bad lens is replaced with an artificial one. Full vision is usually restored in a few weeks.
Cataracts are common in dogs but rare in cats, and there's little we can do to prevent them.
They can be genetic or the result of an underlying disease like diabetes.
If their squinting or scratching at their eyes or bumping into things get their eyes checked.
Buttercup's owner says giving her back quality of life is the least they can do.
Ruth Ann: "Loyalty and love and unconditional love that she has shown to us is not something you want to throw away."
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