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Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 16297
Experience:  Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.
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My dog (german shepherd/golden retriever mix) keeps shutting

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Hi. My dog (german shepherd/golden retriever mix) keeps shutting one eye. I took him to the vet Sunday and was prescribed neomycin drops and an ointment. While, my dogs seems to be a little more comfortable after the ointment, he's still shutting his eye.
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. What is the dog's name and age?
Customer: Charlie, will be 13 at the end of the year
JA: How old is Charlie?
Customer: 13
JA: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Charlie?
Customer: He has epilepsy but hasn't had any episodes in some time and that was diagnosed years ago . He was recently diagnosed with Stage 2 Chronic Kidney Failure, but his spirits and energy are up. He's on a prescription diet.

Hello, I'm Dr. Kara. I have over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian and I'd like to help. Please give me a moment to review your concerns.

I'm sorry to hear that Charlie is continuing to squint despite treatment from his veterinarian.

Was he diagnosed with a corneal ulcer?

Is the ointment atropine ointment? It is the most commonly used ointment for pain as it decreases painful eye muscle spasms.

Was his tear production measured?

When does his veterinarian plan to recheck him?

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Since my dog can be a little aggressive, he could not do a full exam without stressing him. Since Charlie doesn't have a lot of swelling and doesnt seem to be tearing a lot, the vet recommended neomycin drops and the ointment was something similar to neomycin bacitrin
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Vet wanted me to call him in a couple days which would be today. While Charlie has been opening his eye more readily, it's still shut in the mornings and he paws at it. The ointment does seem to help soothe it after i put the drops in
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
I plan to ask if there's anything I can do with Charlie, since he refuses to let the the vet near him to help. The next step would be to sedate Charlie to get a full exam. But I can try to work with my vet to help without sedation

I understand.

It would be odd to use drops and ointment with the same ingredients.

With a simple corneal ulcer they generally feel much better and the ulcer is well on its way to healing 24-48 hours after treatment is started. So if this was a simple ulcer he should be much better.

Some dogs get ulcer that don't heal normally and quickly. These are called indolent ulcers. There can be indications that this may be an indolent ulcer when we stain the eye. We can see flaps of corneal tissue at the edges of the ulcer rather than a sharp edge that indicate an ulcer that may have trouble healing, or the ulcer may be deep or larger than normal, or he may have blood vessels forming on the cornea indicating the ulcer isn't a simple one.

Since Charlie is hard to examine he may need to be sedated to get the eye properly stained and treated. There may be a foreign body stuck in there that is delaying healing too.

With an indolent ulcer the best chance we have of getting it to heal properly as quickly as possible is to debride the lesion and then protect the ulcer with a temporary third eyelid flap or a soft contact lens.

If we don't treat indolent corneal ulcers aggressively they can turn into a melting corneal ulcer and the eye can rupture.

In some cases dogs have to have an even more aggressive surgery called a conjunctival flap to treat indolent ulcers and save the pup's vision.

If you are concerned that this treatment is too aggressive then you can try using oral nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories for pain and inflammation, antibiotic eye medications to prevent secondary infections and eye drops with hyaluronic acid to help protect the eye while it is healing and keep it moist. He should be rechecked in 5 days and if the ulcer isn't gone or almost cleared then you can decide to go ahead with more aggressive therapy at that time.

But given his slow healing now and dislike of being handled I would probably sedate him, stain his eye and debride it if an ulcer is there to stimulate faster healing. Then follow up at home with oral nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories for pain and inflammation, antibiotic eye medications to prevent secondary infections and eye drops with hyaluronic acid to help protect the eye while it is healing and keep it moist.

In the meantime I would add artificial tears to his regimine. Apply 2-3 drops to the affected eye every couple of hours. The more moisture the better.

Does that make sense? Do you have any further questions for me?

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
This sounds great. I will mention to the vet when I speak with him today. This has been helpful. No further questions from me. Thanks!

You are very welcome, please let me know how things go for Charlie.

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