Your vet has diagnosed your dog with eyelid entropion. But what is it all about? Entropion in dogs is also common disease.
It is an inward winding of the free edge of the eyelid. And, it can involve the upper eyelid, the lower eyelid, or both. It can affect only one eye as often both, symmetrically or not.
Entropion can have several causes
- The first and most common is a hereditary cause. Many breeds are predisposed, among which the Shar Pei, the Chow-chow, the Newfoundland, the Boxer. It appears in young dogs (sometimes even as soon as the eyes are opened!). Generally, it appears before the age of 1 year. This happens when the eyelid is too long, too flabby, too thick. It also happens when the eye is too deep in the socket;
- Entropion can follow a painful phenomenon in the eyes. It causes a very strong and continuous contraction of the eyelids, we speak of spasmodic entropion;
- Any poorly healed eyelid wound or leading to eyelid deformation can also create secondary entropion. It is said to be scarred;
- Finally, we see an entropion appear in some old dogs (Cocker breed in particular) following a relaxation of the tone of the eyelids.
Is it serious doctor ?
The twisting of the eyelid causes direct contact of the skin, eyelashes and hair on the eye. This permanent rubbing is initially painful for the dog, as if a dust was permanently present in his eye. The dog will blink his eye more often, sometimes even not wanting to open it. Because the pain is so severe, and his eyes run profusely.
The damage caused by entropion on the eye can be dramatic. It ranges from simple conjunctivitis to the dreaded corneal ulcer. However, the severity of symptoms varies with the intensity of the curl and its location. Only your vet can tell you if your dog’s entropion has caused damage to his cornea and if it needs to treat.
What treatment (s)?
To treat entropion, eye hygiene remains essential. Care should be taken to clean the eye with a suitable solution every day. Also remember to clean the skin in the inner corner as entropion often results in tearing. It can tend to macerate, especially if your dog has long hair. Secondary bacterial infections may require the use of antibiotics topically. Ulcers should be diagnosed and treated with the utmost care. Careful veterinary monitoring is often necessary.
Surgery is the treatment of choice, it is this that will treat the cause of entropion. It consists of removing the excess skin on the eyelid and placing it correctly on the eye. Different techniques exist; this is because there are different types of entropion. Your veterinarian will choose the surgical technique best suited to your dog. He will also decide when to operate on your dog. If it is a puppy and the entropion is not too marked, we can wait until the end of growth. But in the majority of cases, surgical repair does not wait. And it can be done even in a very young animal. Several surgical interventions, more or less spaced in time, can sometimes be necessary.
A technique using eversion threads may be proposed in some cases. It makes it possible to postpone the surgery or to remove the painful spasm. It is a temporary solution, rarely definitive.
Means of prevention of entropion
As most entropions are genetically linked, careful selection of breeders by the breeder is necessary. Animals that have presented this problem should be excluded from breeding. So, in order not to transmit this defect to their offspring. Despite everything, there is not yet a reliable genetic test, so it is quite possible that at the time of purchase your puppy was unharmed (veterinary certificate of good health not indicating any eye problem) and that the entropion appears during its growth.