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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone!
I have about a 7 month old golden, zara. I have noted some changes in her eyes. However, I am not sure if this is just because now that she knows how to sit, I am able to brush her teeth and get a bit closer to her face and haven’t noticed this before or if this is something I should worry about. (I will admit I am a bit neurotic about things as she’s my first pup, but I just want to make sure she is happy and healthy!)

She seems to see fine - can catch treats out of the air, watches birds in the sky, chases flies and ants, not bumping into furniture, will walk around in a dark room etc. I’ve just never seen eyes that reflect the way hers do. And it is only at particular angles of light do her eyes reflect like this!

Any info would help. She is going to the vet in 1 wk to have to looked at but any additional info or questions prior to then would be greatly appreciated!!
Dog Dog breed Carnivore Jaw Ear

Dog Dog breed Carnivore Fawn Companion dog
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Any changes in her eyes should be checked out by a Veterinary Opthalmologist, a regular vet will not have the equipment and expertise to check for some of the eye disease that Goldens are prone to. Hopefully they will find nothing serious - she should have yearly eye checks for life just to be on the safe side. There are eye issues that can cause extreme pain and progress to blindness.
Thank you! Yeah, I just need the referral from the regular vet before I can schedule with an ophthalmologist unfortunately. She does not appear to be in pain - eyes are not red, no tearing, no itching/rubbing the eyes. Have you seen this type of reflection before?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
So.... their eyes will reflect light. That part is normal...

White reflection puzzled me - but probably normal.

What I was squinting at in the pictures was the black part seemed to be edging into the brown part of the eye - but can't see very well because of the reflection.

Start with getting a peep from your vet.

Re eye vet - Where are you located? It is possible that if you are near a big show cluster taking place this weekend, you could drop in to do OFA's if they are doing them? Means like say if you were here in MI or relatively close (northern OH), you could bring your pup to the show on Sat and get her eye cert done for 40 bucks.

Other shows in other states if taking place on Sat may offer the same opportunity.

If you are near a show doing OFA clinics - I would go that route vs going to your vet.

But if you are in no man's land somewhere and no nearby shows, etc... go to your vet.
Which photo are you seeing the pupil edging into the iris? Ik their eyes will reflect light due to the tapetum lucidum; however I have never seen the upside down Y in the first photo or the white reflection, which is what concerned/puzzled me.
where would I find where/when the shows are?
mate eye certain typically more than 40 bucks?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
You don’t need a referral to go to an ophthalmologist. You can just go to any eye clinic near you and get her checked out. Or you can even make an appointment at a specialty or university and just say you need to get her eye clearance done. The latter will be more expensive, but if you’re really worried, it will give you peace of mind.

To find shows near you, you can go to the AKC event search of Infodog.com
I tried to make an appt at the animal eye care vet near me and they say I needed blood work and a referral form filled out before I could make the appt. I do see there is an eye clinic on the OFA website in a few weeks, so we will likely go to that!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
An eye exam by 4 years old was required in our contract with the breeder. I couldn't get into a ophthalmologist without a referral so someone here suggested asking for a OFA eye exam and we got right in. It was less expensive than a regular eye exam. They found uveal cysts so now we go in on a regular basis.
Is this what their eyes looked like prior to the exam?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Not at all. His eyes look perfectly normal.
Oh okay gotchya. What is the difference between the OFA eye exam and
Did you tell them you think she has a problem? What if you called and said you just need to get an OFA eye exam?

Also, it matters if the vet is a board certified ophthalmologist or not.
yes I did. They are a board certified ophthalmologist. What is the difference between an OFA and going to an ophthalmologist? Can a regular vet perform OFA eye exam?
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
No, a regular vet can’t perform an OFA eye exam.

For some reason, it seems like clinics want a referral if you call thinking you have a problem. They want the documentation.

If you go for a routine OFA exam, you aren’t necessarily going because of a problem. You’re actually going hoping for clear/normal eyes. If they find a problem during an OFA exam, then you can book a separate appointment for a more in depth exam and you won’t need a referral because the condition was diagnosed during a routine exam. Make sense?

Some conditions, like certain types of cataracts for example, don’t need a separate follow-up exam. You would just continue doing OFA exams annually and check for progression. There are a lot conditions that Goldens can get that don’t actually affect their vision.
Got it. Thank you so much for the info. I really appreciate it. I will start with an OFA exam and go from there!
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I didn't want to cause unnecessary upset but this is what concerned me. My first thought was inflammation. If this were my dog, I'd be pitching a fit to get into the Opthalmologist next week. The problem with saving money with the OFA exam is that there will then be another delay in having the dog seen the the VO who can finish testing and make a treatment decision should that be the outcome. It's quite a delay if this is a worst case scenario. The more I read and observe, the more convinced I am that early treatment done religiously is key to keeping some dogs from progressing.
What does inflammation mean? Like what is the diagnosis associated with that?
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
Goldens are at risk for more than one eye problem. These problems typically present in older dogs, but not always - which is why we recommended that you have someone who is not a regular vet see your puppy. Inflammation can be caused by an infection, allergies or an injury, it's a result of the body's immune system. I am not trying to alarm you, I am very optimistic that the age of the dog and lack of other symptoms works in your favor. Based on my own life experience and how important our eyes are, I am sharing that if this were my dog, I'd be wasting no time getting to the bottom of the mystery.
Thank you! I appreciate all of your info and advice! She has an appt with the regular vet to get the referral. And hopefully if he feels that there is a problem they can get her in sooner rather than later at the eye doc. I will call to also ask for a OFA exam at least to get my foot in the door if the wait time is long. There’s only one ophthalmologist vet near me which is still 2 hours away. but yes, I am doing everything I can currently to get her evaluated!
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
I do hope your puppy's eyes are fine. By the time mine had very visible cataracts, you could really tell he had vision problems (losing the ball while chasing it, unable to catch treats), so it's great that you haven't noticed any difficulties with her seeing things. The scary thing was that his cataracts developed so quickly, that it was only a week or so after he was diagnosed that the lens capsule ruptured in one of his eyes causing damage to the retina and intense inflammation. So if you are seeing something that seems new, that would be concerning. I hope it's nothing. 🤞
Is
I do hope your puppy's eyes are fine. By the time mine had very visible cataracts, you could really tell he had vision problems (losing the ball while chasing it, unable to catch treats), so it's great that you haven't noticed any difficulties with her seeing things. The scary thing was that his cataracts developed so quickly, that it was only a week or so after he was diagnosed that the lens capsule ruptured in one of his eyes causing damage to the retina and intense inflammation. So if you are seeing something that seems new, that would be concerning. I hope it's nothing. 🤞
is this similar to what his eyes looked like?
 

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Discussion Starter · #29 ·
Based on the second picture in your original post, that blue cloudiness is similar to what he had. But it can be hard to tell from a picture, depending on how the light is hitting the dog's eyes.



I still never got a great answer on why my young dog developed essentially old age cataracts. His parents + grandparents all have normal eyes and he is out a repeat litter from a reputable breeder. His breeder had never heard of this happening, and I believe them.

One ophthalmologist thought it was genetic from some combination of recessive genes. The ophthalmologist that did his surgery said he saw a case like this "once a week" (bearing in mind he is the surgeon that all dogs with eye problems get referred to in the PNW) and thought it was NOT genetic, but rather due to inflammation in the womb. Whether the dam had a fever at some point, or his theory was that fetal resorption can sometimes also cause things to go wrong in the other pups. I have had to let the mystery go and move on, at this point. The surgery was successful, with both lenses being replaced and one eye needing retinal surgery as well.
Out of curiosity, approximately how much was the surgery?
 

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Discussion Starter · #33 ·
Just a follow up! She was evaluated by the regular vet today, in order to get a referral to the ophthalmologist. He did note the upside down Y, which are the suture lines of her lens. This is where the lens forms and fuses together. He said that typically you are not able to see the suture line as prominently, but he was not concerned as she has no symptoms.
The blue discoloration of her eyes he noted in bright light but did not see any abnormalities on fundoscopic exam and said that it is likely just how light reflects off of her tapetum, the part of the eye that helps with night vision. He recommended that we do see an ophthalmologist as cataracts can form along the suture lines, as the can with any dog, but just to monitor and that there is nothing urgent. I told him that we are getting the OFA exam done in the meantime while we wait for the ophthalmologist as they are booking out several months in advance. I will continue to post updates as I get more info but for now, there is nothing urgently wrong as she has no signs or symptoms of vision/eye issues!
 
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