Corneal ulcer is a disease commonly found in dogs. This disease affected the eyes. Actually cornea is a clear membrane that form the front of the eye. Corneal ulcer refers to damage this clear membrane layer. The deeper the ulcer, the more layers are damage. It is very important to know about the disease because untreated ulcer can deepen and eroded the surface of the eye, in case dog become blind in that eye.
Causes of corneal ulcer
The cause of this ulcer are scratches and other injury to the eye is the most common reason. Ulcer arises with Ingrown eyelashes, dirt and other material in the eye, and chemicals can injure the eye and cause an ulcer. Smoke and infection also can cause corneal ulcers. Dogs that get excitable easily can be at risk of injuring their eye.
Pugs, Bulldog, Boston Terrier, Boxer, Shih Tzu and Pekingese are the breeds with prominent eyes and flat, smoothed faces. They are found at the high risk of corneal ulcer because of the tendency of eyelashes to irritate their corneas.
Recognize the corneal ulcer
To diagnose the disease you must recognize the symptoms. There are many ways to recognize the symptoms of corneal ulcer.
When you find your dog rubbing her eye that is your first clue. You should be conscious with the problem that the dog’s eye will bother her because it hurts. Your dog may do this along the ground or rubbing at the eye with a paw.
The other sign is squinting an eye, your dog might squint with that eye, holding it partially closed. If you find one eye is smaller than the other eye, the dog may be squinting. This could be a second clue you find for corneal ulcer.
The third clue you find the watery eyes. The pain and discomfort may cause the eye to water. You always found your dog eye wet.
Red or milky appearance
This sign can normally seen as the clear surface of the cornea appear red and cloudy, or you can say a milky appearance in the eye.
Discharge from the eyes
The bloody and pus- filled discharge from the eye is another sign of corneal ulcer. The discharge accumulate in the cornea of the eye, near the nose.
Sensitivity to light
With the pain and discomfort, dog show sensitivity to bright light. Dog may keep the affected eye closed.
When you recognize these symptoms are nonspecific, so regardless of the cause, the dog needs to see a vet in order to diagnose the problem and be relieved of pain.
Diagnosing a Corneal Ulcer
To diagnose the disease you first closely inspect the surface of the eye to look for broken or shattered reflections. In case of corneal ulcer the smooth surface of the cornea will have a disruption. This can be clearly visible in bright light. If the eye looks misty, the dog need to check by vet.
Inturned eye lashes
The vet will look for eye lashes. Rubbing an eyelashes cause ulcer. The vet will look at both eyes to determine which eye is the problem, and how inflamed or sore it is.
To diagnose corneal ulcer, vet will do a dye test to diagnose corneal ulcer. This test uses a special dye which changes color in the presence of damaged corneal epithelia. The vet will place a few drops of fluorescein into the eye, and wipe away the excess with dampened cotton wool. The eye is then observed both with and without magnification. The dye orange color turn green. A corneal ulcer will stain green, and will show the size, depth, and shape of the corneal ulcer.
UV light test
Pinpoint ulcer is difficult to see, in case UV light is used to diagnose corneal ulcer. This test is performed in a dark room. Your vet will switch off the lights and will shine a UV light source onto the eye. This test will make easier to see the affected area of the eye.
In corneal ulcer the dog should give the proper surgical treatment. It is very important that the dog should not rub her eye, cone collar should be given. An eye drop containing antibiotic is also given to dog. These eye drop form a protective layer over the surface of the cornea. This will help healing pain and discomfort of the ulcer.
Keeping follow-up appointments is essential since the health of your dog’s eye is at stake.