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Owners of older dogs often notice begin to notice a bluish white film start to develop over the eyes of their dog.
True cataracts are a total thickening of the lenses, so that light cannot come through the pupil and sight is lost. There is a disease, juvenile cataracts, in which cataracts appear at a very young age (as early as 1 year old), first in one eye and then in the other.
This is an inherited disease, seen more commonly in Irish Setters, Afghans and Old English Sheepdogs. In contradistinction to lenticular sclerosis, a cataract is an apparent opacity within the lens that will not allow the passage of light. The cause of canine cataracts – whether hereditary or acquired – may be influenced by many factors including the effects of inflammations, toxins, metabolic defects, trauma, radiation, and many more. It becomes obvious that the term juvenile cataracts only means that a young dog has cataracts and the condition could be either acquired or hereditary.
The videos in this article explain more about this all too common problem which tends to affect older dogs as well as the treatment, via surgery, of a canine cataract. Many eye diseases in dogs can be successfully cured surgically if non-surgical treatments do not help. If there is any function at all left, the medication will stimulate the glands to again produce tears normally. If an ulcer has resulted from the dryness and inflammation of the eyes, or from some other irritation or trauma, medication is again tried initially.
If the ulcer is a deep one or has punctured through the cornea into the eye itself, another innovative type of surgery is performed. To understand the various reasons why your dog may come down with a serious eye problem, you need know some important information on the genetic make-up of these animals. This irritation further aggravates the blinking and spasms of the muscles occur, thus completing the cycle. The object of treatment is to interrupt this vicious circle by determining and removing the initial irritant if still present. The usual method used to eliminate the aberrant hairs is “electrolysis,” in which the hairs are destroyed by electronically produced heat. Many medications that are used routinely are extremely toxic when ingested, and therefore the well-being of our children and pets should be a prime concern.
A condition of great concern to fanciers of the Poodle, Maltese, Shih Tzu, and other small, light colored dogs is “epiphora”, or excess tearing.
3) A small island of hair which may grow from the corner of the eye next to the nose, may act as a wick and tears will then overflow. 5) There may be an abnormal position of the inner corner of the eyelids next to the nose referred to as “medical entropion”. 6) There is recent evidence of a potential metabolic defect associated with porphyrin metabolism. When one reviews all of the possible causes, it becomes apparent that there is no single treatment that can cure this condition.
Some authorities recommend low levels of oxytetracyclines in the food daily, and others recommend surgical removal of the gland in the third eyelid. In summary, there is no therapeutic panacea for abnormal tearing and much more research is necessary to elucidate all the mechanisms predisposing to it, as well as treatments that will prove effective in the majority of cases.
We presently diagnose dogs as affected or unaffected regardless of the variation of eye lesions present.
Progressive retinal atrophy is a disease which is manifested in dogs usually four years old or older. The first clinical sign which may be observed is a widely dilated pupil which becomes unresponsive to any light. This entry was posted in Dog Health, Pet Health Articles and tagged canine cataracts, cataracts in dogs, featured on March 16, 2011 by Vet Gazette Editor.
To understand how nutrition plays into feeding a diabetic dog, it is necessary to understand how diabetes occurs in dogs. The fact that diabetic dogs are insulin dependent has a large impact on the feeding regimen necessary.
In diabetic dogs, the insulin dosage can and should be adjusted to keep the blood glucose within acceptable levels. Your explanation about the need for consistency in diet -- as well as exercise -- in order to keep blood sugar under control is very useful too.
Dancing Dog Blog by Mary Haight is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Conditions that cause vomiting or acid reflux, such as the eating disorder bulimia, can damage tooth enamel. Gingivitis, also generally called gum disease or periodontal disease, describes the events that begin with bacterial growth in your mouth and may end -- if not properly treated -- with tooth loss due to destruction of the tissue that surrounds your teeth. Tooth decay occurs when foods containing carbohydrates (sugars and starches) are left on the teeth.
Dental bonding is a procedure in which a tooth-colored resin is applied and hardened with a special light, ultimately "bonding" the material to the tooth to improve a person's smile.
Veneers (sometimes called porcelain laminates) are wafer-thin, custom-made shells that cover the front surface of teeth, changing their color, shape, size or length. Recontouring or reshaping is a procedure in which small amounts of tooth enamel are removed or shaped to change a tooth's length, shape, or surface.
Braces can correct crooked teeth or a misaligned bite, and can improve the health and appearance of anyone's smile, adult or child. Many teeth-whitening systems are available, including whitening toothpastes, over-the-counter gels, rinses, strips, and trays, and whitening agents obtained from a dentist. Amalgam tattoos occur when a tiny piece of amalgam filling embeds in your cheek or gum during or after dental work.


Also called aphthous ulcers, canker sores can show up on your tongue, cheek, and even your gums. Strep infection often produces a distinct pattern of white patches in the throat and on the tonsils, as well as red swollen tonsils. Small amounts of the candida fungus are present in the mouth, digestive tract, and skin of most healthy people and are normally kept in check by other bacteria and microorganisms in the body. Tonsil stones (also called tonsilloliths) form when bacteria and mucus get trapped and calcify in your tonsils’ nooks and crannies, leaving a hard piece of matter and a bad taste in your throat.
Cold sores (fever blisters) are caused by the herpes simplex virus (HSV), passed on through contact with infected skin or body fluid. You can't cure HSV or a cold sore, but you can alleviate the pain it causes by avoiding spicy or acidic foods, applying ice, and using over-the-counter remedies. Certain injuries and infections can cause cataracts, and the condition is sometimes a sign of diabetes. Much work is necessary to elucidate the potential hereditary mechanism which may be present.
In the condition in which the tear glands and ducks are not producing tears, for example, a medication is put into the dog’s food in the form of drops.
If the medication does not work, an unusual and creative operation is sometimes performed, whereby a duct of one of the dog’s salivary glands is moved so that it empties out of the eye instead of the mouth.
Logically enough, Pavlov’s theory works with slight alteration – a dog who has had such an operation cries when his appetite is stimulated! The blinking produces increased pressure by the lids on the cornea, leading to further irritation induced by the aberrant eyelashes. The use of home remedies and pet store drugs may be the most devastating mistake the dog owner can make. However, it is the opinion of many veterinarians that thorough evaluation of the entire condition is necessary in order to arrive at a definitive diagnosis and a specific treatment. We have demonstrated that all the lesions are related to one another and that the presence of any lesions incriminates genotypes. Lori Huston to first take us through the big picture and look at  other dog and human diseases that can be wrongly associated as being the same in our minds. However, when a dog has a health issue such as diabetes mellitus, nutrition becomes even more confusing.
In type 2 diabetic cats and people, dietary modification can have a significant effect on the ability to adequately regulate glucose levels and control diabetes.
The type of food is less important in controlling diabetes than the consistency in feeding, although it is still important that the diet be balanced to meet all of the dog’s nutritional needs.
I administer a forum for people caring for diabetic dogs and we see a lot of confusion on this topic. The current thought is that genetics plays the biggest role in the development of diabetes in dogs. It reminds us once again that just because dogs and humans can have the same ailments, the causes and cures can be very different and need to be addressed species specific. I just realized that the "not caused by obesity" might lead one to wonder: What does cause canine diabetes? This semi-translucent, hard, outer layer of the teeth has an important job: protecting teeth from the daily wear and tear of biting and chewing, as well as temperature extremes from hot or cold foods and drinks. Over time, the constant clenching and friction can damage teeth and other health complications can arise.  Bruxism is often worst when you sleep -- that's when you can't control it. Among the easiest and least expensive of cosmetic dental procedures, bonding can repair chipped or cracked teeth, close gaps, change the shape of teeth, or be used as a cosmetic alternative to silver amalgam fillings. The procedure is usually done to improve appearance by creating more harmony or balance in the look of the smile. The crown, when cemented into place, fully encases the entire visible portion of a tooth that lies at and above the gum line.
Otherwise your tooth could be damaged further or become infected, possibly causing you to end up losing the tooth. Many people use this opportunity to replace silver amalgam fillings with tooth-colored composites. Implants provide a strong foundation for fixed (permanent) or removable replacement teeth that are made to match your natural teeth. Braces work by applying continuous pressure over a period of time to slowly move teeth in a specific direction. Brackets -- the parts that attach to each tooth -- can be clear, tooth-colored, or multi-colored. Porcelain veneers and crowns can correct crooked teeth, an uneven gum line, and other chipped, worn, and discolored dentistry. Teeth whitening is ideal for people who have healthy, unrestored teeth (no fillings) and gums. The silver in the amalgam leaches into your mouth's soft tissue, resulting in a blue-gray "stain" that looks a bit like a tiny tattoo. However, certain illnesses, stress, or medications can disturb the delicate balance, causing the fungus candida to grow out of control, causing thrush. They are not as common, but cold sores can appear anywhere on the face, including on the cheek, chin, or nose.
Dogs are nearsighted anyway – they can’t adapt their vision to distances – so the removal of the lens is something they can live with quite comfortably without much noticeable difference in eyesight.
Medical therapy is of no avail and surgery is necessary if restoration of vision is to be accomplished. The initial irritant may not be associated with these hairs, but will act as the exciting mechanism of a vicious circle. Because of the recessive gene, a mating of dogs with normal eyes may certainly produce affective offspring.


It is seen in English Setters, Springer Spaniels, Labrador Retrievers, Poodles, Elkhounds, Cocker Spaniels, Beagles, and others.
It can be difficult to decide what to feed a diabetic dog and there are many differing opinions. That means that the cells in the pancreas are no longer able to secrete insulin, the hormone necessary to control blood glucose levels. In these species, diets low in carbohydrates (sugars) and high in protein can be helpful in regulating diabetes.
Although it is worth noting also that certain drugs (like corticosteroids) can increase the chance of diabetes occurring, as can a severe case of pancreatitis. Although no one knows for sure, the latest research that I have seen indicates that it's hereditary - just as type 1 is in humans.
Purging can also trigger swelling in the mouth, throat, and salivary glands as well as bad breath. The same goes for any condition that causes frequent vomiting, from gastrointestinal problems to eating disorders. The bacteria, acid, food debris, and saliva combine to form plaque, which clings to the teeth.
Veneers offer a conservative approach to changing a tooth's color or shape compared to crowns, but the process is not reversible. Instead of individual crowns, some patients may have attachments on their implant that support a removable denture. Complete dentures are used when all the teeth are missing, while partial dentures are used when some natural teeth remain. Cosmetic dentists can make a dramatic difference in a person's smile and overall oral health, but the work must be carefully planned. Amalgam tattoos pose no harm, but it's not likely an amalgam tattoo if the blue-gray spot grows or changes color. Triggers include hypersensitivity, infection, hormones, stress, and not getting enough of some vitamins. A weakened immune system, antibiotics, diabetes, or certain medications such as inhaled corticosteroids can give candida a chance to grow wild. It can become present in dogs of any age but normally happens as the dog enters their senior years and it tends to progress slowly.
It continuously grows through life, but it does so in such a way that the center becomes more compact.
The syndrome has been “graded” unfortunately, and this is one of the worst mistakes that can be made in eliminating such a disease. Nothing is effective in the prevention of inevitable blindness, but there is some evidence that vitamin A therapy may delay the end stage blindness; however, this is controversial. Questions persist about whether carbohydrates, proteins or other nutrients in the food affect control of diabetes.
As a result, in order to regulate the glucose levels in a diabetic dog, insulin must be provided from an outside source.
In fact, in some cases, remission leading to the ability to discontinue insulin therapy may become a possibility when low carbohydrate diets are used. However, the diabetic canine pancreas is unable to react to changes in carbohydrate levels or other nutrients.
Variations in the feeding schedule or caloric intake will result in variations in the insulin needs, making insulin dosage more difficult. Huston also co-moderates DogTalk, a weekly twitter chat that focuses on a variety of dog topics. I had a diabetic dog that I was caring for and I had to make sure she got the same foods at every meal. One of the most frustrating things about having a diabetic dog is having people say, "Oh I know a cat that used to have diabetes and he stopped having to take insulin, so your dog may eventually be okay too." Before I knew any better, it gave me false hope. Anorexia, bulimia, and other eating disorders can also cause serious nutritional shortfalls that can affect the health of your teeth.
The American Dental Association asserts that the mercury in amalgam combines with other metals to render it safe for use in filling teeth. There are even "invisible" braces that use a series of clear, plastic molds to gradually move the teeth into alignment. Persistent, severe canker sores can be treated with numbing creams or prescription treatments. HSV-1 damages the skin as it reproduces itself, creating cold sores that last about a week. This is usually done by giving regular insulin injections, although the use of insulin pumps embedded under the skin may gain popularity in the future. This occurs because in type 2 diabetes the pancreas still retains some ability to secrete insulin, although the ability may be limited. The exception to this is the addition of fiber to the diet, which may aid in glucose regulation.
When a consistent feeding program is instituted, insulin needs will not change drastically from day to day, allowing better management of canine diabetes.
It should be noted also that drastic changes in the exercise regimen will also impact blood glucose levels and the demand for insulin.



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