Eye Disorders in Cat and How to Treat Them

Generally speaking, your cat’s eyes are just as tough as your own. Except in the most extreme circumstances, you should not anticipate any difficulties. Only a few eye diseases, such as glaucoma and cataracts, are inherited, according to the National Eye Institute. 

Cats’ eyes may develop a chronic discharge that lasts longer than the normal “washing out.” This is one of the first indications that anything is wrong with them.

Additionally, the cat will shake its head in addition to pawing, scratching, and rubbing the corners of its eyes. A clear discharge may indicate a vitamin or mineral deficit, which may be treated with a vitamin-mineral supplement in certain cases. It is possible, however, that the scratching and pawing are caused by a foreign substance in the eye, a scratch on the cornea, or a problem with the third eyelid, which all cats have, or that the cat is suffering from a simple inflammation of the eyelids. 

If any of these symptoms occur, contact your veterinarian as soon as possible to receive treatment.

Use only sterile cotton soaked in an eyewash to wipe away any discharge from your eyes. Do not experiment with any other home treatments. You won’t know what to do until you figure out what the problem is first. It’s also possible that you’ll unintentionally exacerbate or irritate the illness. 

Cats who are allowed to wander freely in the country or suburbs may develop a variety of eye problems that are both bothersome and dangerous. The eyes of a rural cat roaming free may be scraped by branches and twigs, or whipped by long grass, if it is not careful. When compared to its rural relative, the city cat is subjected to fouler air and more dust, but it has less chances to sustain direct eye damage, particularly if it is an apartment pet. 

CATARACTS (Not Common in Cats) 

Cataracts are a partial or full opacification of the crystalline lens, which is the portion of the eye immediately below the pupil that gives the eye its china-blue color. Cataracts may occur in either the left or right eye. Cataracts are possible in elderly cats, although they are very uncommon. They may also be passed down through families or be caused by an injury, which is more uncommon.

The development of cataracts in cats may be delayed in certain instances, but the disease often results in a progressive deterioration of vision until the cat is completely blind. Due to the gradual progression of blindness, the cat may be able to see for the most, if not all, of its remaining days. 

CONJUNCTIVITIS

A mucous membrane is found on the inner surface of the eyelids, which helps to keep the eyes clean. Conjunctivitis is a condition in which the membrane around the eye becomes inflamed. A foreign body (fumes, wind, dust, smoke, pollen) or a bacterial infection in the eyelid are the most common causes of foreign body eye irritation.  It is characterized by tearing, inflammation, and increased sensitivity to light; either one of these symptoms, or all three, may occur. If the problem is just a foreign item in the eye that can be removed with a piece of sterile cotton, flush the eye out with warm water or an eyewash once you have completed the procedure.

Although an eye ointment may be calming in certain cases, it is always advisable to contact a veterinarian before putting anything in your cat’s eyes.  It should be possible to recover from the inflammation within a few days after removing the foreign item. If the redness continues for an extended period of time, the eye should be examined by a veterinarian. It is not necessary to explore around for a foreign item in the eye, nor is it necessary to attempt any home treatments if you do not find one.

Among the types of conjunctivitis that may occur is follicular conjunctivitis, which is a persistent condition that is difficult to treat. A follicle in the conjunctiva (the mucous membrane covering the inner surface of the third eyelid) that does not respond to therapy and may take months to remove is the hallmark of this condition. 

GLAUCOMA

Glaucoma is characterized by a rise in pressure inside the eyeballs. An enlarged eyeball occurs when this fluid is unable to exit in a regular manner. There is an associated deterioration of eyesight, which progresses to the ultimate loss of vision. The illness may be hereditary, and it often manifests itself only when a cat reaches middle age, but it may manifest itself at any age.

If glaucoma develops in just one eye, it may be possible to preserve the other eye by removing the affected eye. However, even in this case, there is no assurance. It is possible that the situation may improve with therapy and that removal will not be required.  Your cat will not be helpless, despite the fact that he is blind. It maintains its familiarity with its environment via the use of its nose and whiskers. 

EXPANDING OF THE RETINAL APPENDAGES 

Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA) is a genetic eye disease that causes blindness, which typically begins as night blindness in the early stages. Your cat’s veterinarian can examine him to see whether he has this problem. There is no therapy available. The membrana nictitans is a tissue located next to the nose, in the inner comer of the eye, and it is responsible for maintaining vision.

When conjunctivitis is present in the eyelids, the third eyelid (the nictitating membrane) becomes inflamed as a result. It is possible for the eye to discharge excessively. Because the symptoms are so similar to those of other eye diseases, including follicular conjunctivitis, this is a problem that should be diagnosed by your veterinarian.

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Tom Creative Space
A cat enthusiast who loves to talk about cat wellness.
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