Eye injury

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Marsha Cassada

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About every 6 months Dapper Dan gets something in his eye. Last week his eye was swollen so I did all the usual things: flushing, antibiotic ointment, banamine. Over the weekend it just wasn't better so took him to the vet yesterday. The vet showed me Dapper Dan had an ulcer on the eye. Luckily, it is not a deep one. He showed me that the pupil was contracted--I don't think I ever knew that before. He gave me a regimen of antibiotic and atrophine and banamine for the next few days. The ulcer should clear up quickly.
I've been making a saline with water and salt. I did not know regular, non-medical folk could buy saline. It is in the contact section of the pharmacy. His was medical, so I did not recognize the same thing when I went to look at the pharmacy. The contact lens section has a dozen different kinds. I finally picked one that seemed to have the simplest ingredients. The labels don't actually call the product a "saline solution", and all had several other ingredients.
Just thought I'd share what I learned. Glad I took him to the vet, as I don't delay with eye injuries. It was a long afternoon, for Dapper Dan and myself. Hour travel time both ways. Plus the vet had to sedate DD so he could look at the eye better. A drop of sedation really affects poor DD; it took a half an hour for him to wake up enough to get into the trailer. Poor little guy. Almost dark when we got home and Billy had worked himself into a sweat with anxiety.
It is an equine hospital. The other patients were a filly who had skin harvested from her belly for a skin graft on her leg. Another had broken the epiglottal (?) bone in his throat, which had caused swelling so he lost an eye. Another had a tracheotomy.
 

Dragon Hill

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Sorry to hear Dapper Dan had an eye injury, but glad you got him the care he needed. Eye injuries are no fun, but at least he wasn't there for something worse like the others. I hope he'll heal quickly.
 

HersheyMint

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So glad the eye will heal . I have never heard of that. Did the vet think it would come back? Do you think the ulcer has been the issue in the past with his eye?
 

Standards Equine

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Ugh poor dude! We're seeing a lot of goopy eyes up here now. The flies get so bad at this time of year and it seems the horses are sick of keeping fly masks on. You're exactly right to use regular salt in water for saline for your purposes. I teach equine first aid and that's what we teach to use for flushing wounds. I had a physician tell me to do an eye flush with regular salt water too. I use polysporin pink eye treatment quite a lot with the goopy eyes. You guys down south have a little better access to drugs over the counter than we do up in Canada.
I hope DD recovers quickly. And good on you for taking urgent action to get him attended. We just don't mess with eye injuries!
 

Marsha Cassada

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So glad the eye will heal . I have never heard of that. Did the vet think it would come back? Do you think the ulcer has been the issue in the past with his eye?
He had a piece of wheat beard stuck on his eyeball about 15 years ago. The vet was able to get it off and there was an ulcer. There was a little scar for a while but it is all healed now with no sign of it. This ulcer he said was not deep, luckily, so it should heal well. If you shine a flashlight on the eyeball you can see it. The main thing is not to use a steroid ointment on an eye ulcer--learned that the hard way several years ago.
Vet told me he has such large eyes and that is why he gets into trouble so much. I stopped putting hay in a tub because he would burrow down to the bottom and that would cause eye trouble. Who knows how they get into trouble.
 

HersheyMint

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He had a piece of wheat beard stuck on his eyeball about 15 years ago. The vet was able to get it off and there was an ulcer. There was a little scar for a while but it is all healed now with no sign of it. This ulcer he said was not deep, luckily, so it should heal well. If you shine a flashlight on the eyeball you can see it. The main thing is not to use a steroid ointment on an eye ulcer--learned that the hard way several years ago.
Vet told me he has such large eyes and that is why he gets into trouble so much. I stopped putting hay in a tub because he would burrow down to the bottom and that would cause eye trouble. Who knows how they get into trouble.
Oh what pretty, big eyes he has though 😍 I'm glad he will ok Thanks for the info.
 

Marsha Cassada

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How is DD doing today?
Well, not as well as I had hoped. Still swollen. Antibiotic 4 times a day and the atrophine 2X. I flushed it this evening with saline and gave banamine. He seems fine, but I can tell he is a little cranky because he bullies Billy. Usually he doesn't. But he is his usual headstrong self. I've never had it go on this long before. Maybe because he is older??
 

Cayuse

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Did they culture the eye or stain it to see if it might be a fungal infection?
 

Marsha Cassada

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He did stain it. Thats how we saw the ulcer. I don't think anything was suggested about a fungal infection. Never heard of that.
 

Cayuse

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If it's not improving maybe call the vet and ask about an antifungal oinment. I had a mare with an eye ulcer and it ended up with a fungal infection. Long story short, she needed surgery to save the eye. It's not super common, the vet said they see it once or twice a year, but when it happens it can get nasty. I hope today he has turned the corner and is feeling better! He's such a good little man.
Edit to add: If I remember correctly, they stain they use for fungal infection is different than the regular one they use, they would always stain my mare twice (she had those BIG eyes and got lots or scratches) with 2 different stains, the usual one and one called "rose bengal" to check for fungal infection.
 
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Marsha Cassada

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If it's not improving maybe call the vet and ask about an antifungal oinment. I had a mare with an eye ulcer and it ended up with a fungal infection. Long story short, she needed surgery to save the eye. It's not super common, the vet said they see it once or twice a year, but when it happens it can get nasty. I hope today he has turned the corner and is feeling better! He's such a good little man.
Edit to add: If I remember correctly, they stain they use for fungal infection is different than the regular one they use, they would always stain my mare twice (she had those BIG eyes and got lots or scratches) with 2 different stains, the usual one and one called "rose bengal" to check for fungal infection.
Thanks for heads up. I will give him another day or two and see how he does. He seems better today. In the future I will inquire about the fungal stain.
 

Marsha Cassada

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No. I've been leaving the fly mask on, but I'm wondering if that is a mistake. He is supposed to wear the mask after atrophine. I'm going to leave the mask off for a while. I hope to have husband take a picture of the eye this evening and send it to the vet. Never had an injury take so long to heal before. I'm wondering if the treatment was too aggressive.
 

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