When we started fostering Midas, it was obvious something was wrong with his left eye. The assumption was that he got into a fight in the puppy mill, and sustained an injury. That injury caused a cataract to form (relatively sure) which made his eye look cloudy. I had the vet look at it and at that time (last fall) she thought he still had most of the vision in that eye.
A few weeks ago I took him to our vet for his annual check up. She was fairly concerned about his eye, especially since she could no longer see the cataract that was noted in his file. His left eye was also larger then his right eye, which was cause for more concern. She did some more tests and announced that he had glaucoma.
I knew almost nothing about glaucoma other than that it had to do with the pressure in your eye. Turns out it’s a fairly serious condition, an emergency even. We needed to get him to a veterinary opthalmologist (I have no idea how to spell that) the next day.
When we got home from our vet I immediately did two things – posted to the Underdog Facebook group to see who else had dealt with this, and googled glaucoma in dogs. The specialist our vet recommended was also one a lot of people from Underdog use. When I called I made sure to mention that he was an Underdog. Who knows if it got us seen sooner, although our director was there just before us and I’m guessing it helped a little. Also, don’t google. I realized then that the reason they wanted us to get in immediately was so that he could be treated quickly and hopefully not lose his eye. Yikes.
Long story longer, the specialist took one look at him and with a quick test confirmed the glaucoma diagnosis. Because he is young the prognosis is good, and it can be treated with drops twice a day. What we want to happen is to have the lens of his eye drop to the back, which allows the fluid in his eye to drain, which lowers the pressure. In order to make this happen the doctor put the drop in his eye, then I held him on his back so that his head tilted back, like a baby. He was not thrilled with this position because it’s very submissive, but I rocked him and scratched his belly and he relaxed a little. About twenty minutes into this, he relaxed completely, closed his eyes and started to snooze. I knew then that the drops had worked. Poor little man! It was probably his first pain free moment in a long time. Now when we do his drops we hold him like this for five minutes or so and he loves it.
Midas will have to have these eye drops the rest of his life. He has no vision in that eye, but that doesn’t seem to slow him down. Hopefully, the pressure will continue to stay in the normal range, and he won’t have to rock the pirate look anytime soon. I’m more than a little annoyed with myself that I didn’t take him in to get checked out right after we adopted him, but I can’t turn back time so we just give him extra love now.