Our 11 year old Bulldog and eye removal surgery.

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Our 11 year old Bulldog and eye removal surgery.

Out 11 year old male Bulldog has been battlling cronic eye problems for over a 3 years now. We believe his problems started when he developed dry eye as a result of an anti-inflamatory (not rimadyl). His eye problems have been numerous and often. Our vet has finally advised us that the only remaining sollution is to remove both eyes (we've tried everything). Does anyone have any experience in having both of their dog's eyes removed? We're struggling with the quality of life issue and his age. He has other health issues but none are immediately life threatening.

Kelli ...

Have you seen a Vet Opthalmologist with your dog?

I certainly would get a second opinion from an Eye Vet...

What part of the Country are you in?

Re: My thoughts

Thank you both for your responses. At this point we are now trying to decide if one or both eyes should be removed. His left eye is definately the worse of the two, however the vet says that ultimately the other eye will be as bad. Of course, cost is an issue and in the long run it is less expensive to do both eyes at the same time. He is for all practical purposes blind, perhaps only being able to see shadows out of the one eye. Lastly, he is old for a Bully, and we worry about his ability to weather this "storm" (anesthesia, post op., recovery and adjustment). Will we do this procedure only to lose him shortly thereafter and/ or are we keeping him alive for our own selfish reasons? Thanks again for your kind responses. Kelli

My thoughts

If the dog is healthy enough to undertake the anesthesia, and age alone is not a factor to prohibit this, then I would go with the dog's comfort above all else. I had a dog with poor vision (I always used to say that Igor would have worn thick glasses, if they made them for dogs)because he needed lots of verbal prompting and other accomodations that became routine to make life easier for him...and you can do the same for your dog after the removal surgery. Lots of little "Hello doggie" comments when you would enter the room, tells him you are there. Little pats on the head as a sign of affection, much as you would now give a glance and a smile. "Wanna cookie?" and holding the treat under his nose, will get him to open his mouth for the treat...same with the food, "Here's your dinner" and a little tapping on the dish with your fingernail will get his attention. You can certainly start doing these things now if you are not already doing so. I'd use a harness instead of a collar when moving this dog around/small walks, and basically slowing down your movements around him so that he can get a sense of what is happening, and who is there. Dogs don't deal with long-term memory...they are more practical, and deal with today and this moment. He has no social stigma attached to 'being blind' and in fact if the eyes are a constant source of irritation and annoyance, after he heals he may be happier, and certainly one hopes, healthier!

I agree

We were stunned at the speed that Lucky recovered. Lucky had surgery at 16.00 hrs, was at home at about 18.30 hr, and when we did the last little walk for bedtime at about 22.00 hrs HIS EARS WERE STANDING ALLRIGHT AGAIN!

Lucky had his surgery due to glaucoma, which is a painfull condition, and so quickly he was feeling better again. He was about 6 years old at the time.

He has had hardly any problems with adjusting, his sight in his other eye is fairly good. He can catch food, he doesn't bump into things, and is competing in obedience again.


I think you should do one...

and my thought is that it will be a more gradual adjustment for the dog, and altho he will lose depth perception (what little he has now) with only one eye, he may not feel quite so helpless with the sudden change...and altho I don't mean this with any malice, he may not live long enough for the second eye to become as severe a problem.

Eye removal

as such is a fairly simple operation. You'll need a Bulldogvet for the aneastesia though.

How is his sight now? If he has multiple inflammations, it might be bad. If he has lost his sight, I would advice to have his eyes removed.

Lucky had one of his eyes removed due to glaucoma, and it was a quick operation. He recovered so quickly that we had to move from Rimadyl (against the pain) to pills to calm him down. He adjusted very quickly, I guess I had more problems with it, than he.

Dogs do adjust fine to being blind, allthough I would worry about the suddenness of this blindness. Don't move furniture, and keep an eye on steps etc.

How does he react to ab's? He is on a age that you could consider keeping him on ab's or another drug to keep him comfortable, without going for the surgery. It is a difficult decision, and I wish you all the strength you are going to need.


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