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  #1  
Old 11-23-2017, 07:28 PM
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Default 10 year old chihuahua with cataracts

Hi all, I've posted something similar on Facebook but thought I'd post here too! Mimi has been diagnosed with cataracts, and sadly they're getting worse quite fast Unfortunately there is nothing that can be done for her, as she has heart disease and can't have anaesthetics. The vet double checked this with a specialist, and was very thorough in examining her and listening to her symptoms. She's not diabetic, so I know this isn't the cause, but I've been wondering what might be. Is it just because she's 10 years old, even though 10 isn't that old for a chihuahua? Are chihuahuas more prone to cataracts? Might her heart disease or medications be a contributory factor?
I'll be talking to the vet again next month when her heart is checked, but I suppose I'm just wondering why her? Is there a reason I can pinpoint, or is it just one of those things? Attached picture shows her 'good' eye.
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  #2  
Old 11-23-2017, 07:42 PM
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I'm so sorry that your pup has cataracts. Most dogs adapt very well to diminished vision. Especially, since she will have some time to 'get used to it' so to speak. Just make sure you don't move her bed/s and furniture around. Now is the time to teach her the command/cue 'wait/stop' or whatever you decide to use to tell her that there is danger. Use a very light leash (I use a string) and walk her around and every once in a while say "wait" and make her stop. Then say "OK" and go around a little more. Then again repeat the wait command. Repeat until she stops without you having to use the string to stop her. Good luck. Don't feel too sorry for her, dogs really adapt well. I wish I could tell you what caused the cataracts.
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Old 11-24-2017, 06:28 PM
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I'm sorry that your dog has cataracts.
I honestly don't know the cause of cataracts in dogs.
I agree with Susan about not moving the furniture around.
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  #4  
Old 11-25-2017, 04:04 PM
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I don't know that the breed is more prone to cataracts. From what I know, it is more of an individual thing, possibly genetic. There is probably nothing you could have done to prevent this from happening. As you said, it is just one of those things. As Susan said, dogs generally adapt very well to losing their vision. Sometimes they can be a little insecure in new situations, though, so that is something to keep an eye out for. If you think it might be helpful outside the house, you can buy a harness or vest that says "blind dog". It might keep people from approaching too fast. There is also a product called a Halo (I think) that acts like a bumper/buffer to keep them from running into things.
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Old 11-25-2017, 05:42 PM
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Thanks for the replies. Luckily Mimi doesn't tend to go haring around at 100 miles an hour, so a halo hopefully won't be needed! I've been looking at harnesses and leads that are colour coded and say 'blind dog' or whatever, and I think something like that may very well be useful, especially as some people like to go up to her and stroke her without asking.
I wonder, does anyone here have a blind or partially sighted chihuahua? I'm not sure how her walks in town will go as her sight deteriorates. She's already a bit nervous in town (she has a bus phobia which doesn't help) and gets tired because of her heart, so I do carry her when she asks.
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Old 11-25-2017, 06:00 PM
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Just ordered this book:
https://www.amazon.co.uk/dog-blind-l...ords=blind+dog

Hopefully it'll be good!
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Old 11-26-2017, 12:41 AM
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Does this dog have cataracts in both eyes? If not, she will do just fine with the one eye with vision. You will hardly know she is having problems. If both eyes are affected, then she will learn how to get along. I would probably keep taking her outside and see how she does. There are 'strollers' made for dogs that you may look at, instead of just carrying her?
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  #8  
Old 11-26-2017, 04:17 PM
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It is both eyes unfortunately. Her right eye is the worst, but I haven't been able to get a picture of that one. I will carry on taking her for walks as long as she enjoys them, and if she doesn't want to walk I'll just carry her. I have seen those strollers, but luckily she's a very small girl (9 inches tall and less than 5lbs) so I have a bag that she goes in. I am looking at getting another adult chi, and if we got to the point where that one needed a lot of carrying as well then I'd definitely look into getting a stroller!
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