A daily inspection of the dog is a necessary and useful activity. If the eyes fester, tears or other secretions constantly run out of them, then you need to urgently go to the veterinarian. Oddly enough, but even the seemingly harmless strabismus in dogs is also a dangerous sign, "hinting" at the possibility of some serious pathology.
Strabismus, also strabismus, is a pathology in which one or both eyes begin to look "out" or on the nose. In some cases, this disease develops along with nystagmus. Like the latter, strabismus is acquired and congenital. Acquired strabismus is the most dangerous thing, since a violation of "visual coordination" is possible only with serious pathologies.
In severe cases, the cross-eyed dog walks, constantly tilting his head in one direction, bumping into furniture and people, obscure behavioral anomalies are observed. If your dog behaves this way, then it needs to be urgently shown to a specialist. In this case, strabismus is a trifle, only indicating damage to the nervous system.
What is strabismus?
It is widely believed that strabismus affects only both eyes, but this is not so: pathology can be found only in one of them. In this case, two main options are possible: either the pupils come together, “looking” at the nose, or diverge to the sides. In the latter case, strabismus is called "scattering" or "scattered." If the eyes "point" to the nose, then we are talking about convergent strabismus.
But it so happens that the eyes not only mow, but also are directed up or down. It looks very comical ... only a dog with such symptoms should be immediately shown to a veterinarian, since such clinical signs are characteristic of severe brain damage in particular and the entire nervous system - in general.
The main causes of strabismus
Pathology is found in dogs of all breeds and ages. However, it is worth noting that congenital strabismus is more characteristic of certain varieties of these animals (for example, chihuahua). The causes of congenital strabismus have not been investigated. Here, both a hereditary predisposition and injuries sustained by the puppy directly at the time of birth can play a role. In addition, the development of strabismus against the background of severe skull injuries is not ruled out. Simply put, if a dog got under a car or bicycle, then he has a pretty good chance of becoming cross-eyed.
By the way, one of the consequences of birth injuries is hydrocephalus - and it can also lead to strabismus (for some reason this often happens with a pug). In adult dogs, the causes of acquired strabismus can be even more dangerous. In particular, cases are described when it developed against the background of botulism. Clostridium toxin selectively acts on the nervous system, so the development of strabismus in this disease does not look surprising. Are there any other reasons for strabismus in dogs?
A rather probable and common cause is also inflammation of the inner or middle ear. In the most severe cases, strabismus is caused by encephalitis or meningitis, that is, inflammation of the brain itself or its membranes. In themselves, such pathologies never arise. As a rule, the development of such serious diseases is due to the action of an infectious agent of a viral or bacterial nature.
A particularly scary cause of strabismus is carnivore rabies. The causative agent selectively affects the nervous system, resulting in a complex of neurological disorders, one of which is strabismus. Do not forget about oncology: a tumor can develop directly in the brain, eyeball, optic nerve. In addition, there is a certain probability of myositis, that is, inflammation of those muscle fibers that are responsible for eye movements.
Diagnosis and treatment
Thus, strabismus is often only a symptom, a sign of a more serious pathology. Diagnosing strabismus is easy by the totality of clinical signs, but the true task of the diagnostician is to find the pathology that caused strabismus. If it is an early sign, for example, hydrocephalus, then an in-depth analysis of the causes of the pathology can save the dog’s life. In any case, significantly improve its overall quality.
Can strabismus in a dog be cured? The question is quite complicated. If the pathology is congenital, then nothing will be done, and it is not necessary (when the dog does not experience visible inconvenience). The rest of the treatment and its possibility depend on the root cause of the disease. Inflammatory ailments are treated with antibiotics or corticosteroids, tumors are removed using chemotherapy or radiological treatment, injuries are also treated surgically.