Is My Dog Going Blind?
A dog might lose her sight in one or both eyes, suddenly or gradually over time. Unless your pet has always been blind, this loss of a necessary faculty will come as a shock and will take her some time to adjust to.
The most common sign of your dog going blind is bumping into objects and people. When she first begins to lose her sight, she will still be relying on visual feedback to tell her where things are placed. Her steps will be careful and gradual as she realizes that she needs to be more cautious. Over time, she will learn to remember a map of her home and yard and her clumsiness will decrease accordingly.
Objects like food bowls and water dishes suddenly become indispensable landmarks to dogs. You will see her return to them often, throughout the day, just to orient herself to her surroundings. To help her adjust quickly, make sure that everything is always kept in the same place. The less the clutter, the more normally your dog will be able to move around.
She will rely a lot more on her sense of smell and hearing You may find her tracing a scent map of the house, or re-examining a known object with her nose to memorize the scent. She might sit in one place for hours, listening to and relearning sounds. On walks, her hearing and sense of smell will become her primary guides, while you act as her eyes. It’s best not to let her off leash in unfamiliar parks or open roads.
Your dog’s behavior towards your guests might suddenly seem a lot warier. She will wait for the reassurance of sounds and smell before relaxing when someone new or less familiar comes in. Ideally, explain the situation to your friends and re-introduce them to your dog and let her sniff them and interact with them until she feels secure.
Many dogs suddenly become a lot less adventurous about going to new places. They realize that their security is in large parts due to their familiarity with their homes and new territories require diligent mapping before they can become safe. She may show reluctance to go anywhere new and will need you to be patient with her fears.
Your dog will also display changed behavior towards other animals, and will require you to play referee to their interactions. You must be ready to intervene in case other dogs decide to get aggressive with your blind pet, since she can no longer respond to the behavioral cues given by her compatriots. Separate them whenever you’re out of the house and keep them under supervision at all other times.
Losing her sight will be a tremendous disadvantage for your dog, but nature has equipped her with a few other exemplary senses and she will learn to compensate for the lack. Until she adapts, you must show patience and understanding to your dog, while making her world safer and more secure.
About Chem-Dry of Auburn/Lincoln
Chem-Dry of Auburn/Lincoln in Placer Co. offers carpet cleaning safe for pets and a healthy alternative to steam cleaning and chemical processes. Learn more about P.U.R.T.®, our pet urine removal treatment.