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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov. 13, 2003
    Location
    NJ
    Posts
    1,785

    Default PLEASE HELP - Pony may lose eye

    My pony came in on Jan 6 with a slightly puffy eye with a little tearing. Nothing major, and certainly something he has come in with more than once before. I wasn't concerned, and administered some opthamlic anitbiotic ointment. The next day, not too much change, but a slight increase in puffiness and a yellow discharge. At the time I thought, crap, well, the vet's coming in the morning (this was Thursday evening) I'll have him look at it then.

    Friday morning I walked in and almost fainted. His eye looked like it exploded. It literally turned itself inside out. WARNING : PICTURES ARE GROSS

    Pictures here: http://s524.photobucket.com/albums/c.../Arties%20Eye/

    Vet looked at it and said he thought he had injured the eye and was going to be blind in it, from what he could see. Started on Naquazone, bute, genimycin drops and vetropolycin ointment. After 2 days of treatment, there was no change, so I took him to the animal eye specialist.

    The drastic red you see in the pictures is due to glaucoma. Initially we thought he whacked it very hard during turnout and this caused the eyeball to swell and push the insides of the eyelids out. The pressure in his eye at the time registered as an 84 when normal is between 12-20.

    We immediately started him on Acetazolamide to reduce the pressure. We saw immediate improvement, we could actually see the eyeball. At his one week checkup, the eye doctor determined that he had actually managed to puncture the eye and it of course, was now infected. We were unable to see the puncture initially due to the dramatic swelling.

    He has been on antibiotics (500mg cephalexin 3x/day) now for about 2 weeks.

    My vet came out and looked at the eye. There is green/yellow infection type stuff within the eye itself. It is still discharging a yellow goo. We will continue him on the antibiotics for a few more weeks. My vet commented that he may have to have the eye removed if the infection doesn't clear up.

    At this point, I financially can't do that. I also don't think emotionally I could do that to him. He is 20 years old, and breaking down behind as well.

    Has anyone here seen anything like this? What timeline would you give before making that decision?

    ETA: sorry if it's not detailed enough. I am very tired tonight and tired of telling this story at the moment. Your thoughts, experiences, and words of encouragement are welcome. Your criticism will not be welcomed.

    Please don't yell at me for not getting the vet out immediately. This is a pony that would regularly get a puffy eye for playing too rough while turned out. He had another eye issue a few years ago in his now "good" eye where he scratched the cornea. He also has a weird way of rolling and scratching his head where he actually manages to get dirt in the middle of his forehead. So this wasn't too out of normal for him until his eye turned inside out.
    Life is hard. After all, it kills you. - K. Hepburn



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr. 7, 2007
    Location
    Tennessee
    Posts
    3,035

    Default

    Holy cow. I'm not gonna yell at you because I would have done the same thing. But before you go jumping ahead of yourself, having the eye removed might be cheaper than all you just went through to try to make it better. It can be done in the field. I haven't gone through it myself (knocks feverishly on wood) but I've asked a vet about it before and remember thinking 'gosh, that's not bad at all (thinking under $300 but I could be WAY off, it's been a few years and my memory sucks). I can send jingles and cyber hugs. Wish I could offer more



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov. 13, 2003
    Location
    NJ
    Posts
    1,785

    Default

    I kinda had the same thought that it might not really be that expensive.

    There are questions I have before I do that if necessary. Like the risk of spreading the infection.

    I will certainly consider it if it means he can live a normal one-eyed horse pain free existence for several more years. If I'm lucky it will cost less than having him euthanized. So far I've spent About $700. I don't have the bill from my vet yet
    Life is hard. After all, it kills you. - K. Hepburn



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug. 14, 2002
    Location
    the far side
    Posts
    2,281

    Default

    There are plenty of happy, healthy horses out there with one eye. It sounds like that may be the way to go since it sounds like you are financially and emotionally tapped out - no more medications, no more frequent rechecks with the vet.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul. 21, 2010
    Posts
    79

    Default

    I spent some time this summer on a jumper pony with one eye - she didn't let it slow her down one bit!



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec. 31, 2000
    Location
    El Paso, TX
    Posts
    14,214

    Default

    We had a therapy horse at the barn with one eye. He had no more pain, and seemed to feel much better almost immediately. Did fine without it.



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug. 9, 2007
    Posts
    9,361

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by GatoGordo View Post
    There are plenty of happy, healthy horses out there with one eye. It sounds like that may be the way to go since it sounds like you are financially and emotionally tapped out - no more medications, no more frequent rechecks with the vet.
    She and jaimebaker are right. Your horse will be fine with only one eye and can function for riding, etc. My first horse was blind in one eye (bought that way) and ran barrels, jumped, rode all over the county back then on roads, etc., and was a great horse for me.
    No yelling, but any eye problem can soon develop into a major issue or can be a major issue and look like a scratch at first.
    Good luck. He'll be fine. Eye removal probably sounds traumatic to you, but as other posters say, it will be worth it.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov. 7, 2010
    Posts
    281

    Default

    I know I had always been told that eye issues can happen quickly, but looking at your pics, it happened very quickly! Wow.

    I don't really have anything to say except good luck and many prayers to you and your pony.

    They certainly do things at the worst possible times!



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb. 9, 2006
    Location
    ol Virginny
    Posts
    1,649

    Default

    Earlier this month I got a quote of $1000 for eye removal. I live in southeastern VA.
    Save lives! Adopt a pet from your local shelter.



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep. 1, 2004
    Location
    north of Atlanta GA
    Posts
    3,751

    Default

    This is why I always kind of freak out over even the most innocuous eye problem. I had one go downhill fast also. It was a corneal abrasion that got a fungal infection. The pony spent weeks at the vet hospital and the eye was saved but it was touch and go and very expensive.

    I used to ride a one eyed horse and it never seemed to bother her or slow her down. The only difference in handling her was that you always spoke before touching her on her blind side.

    Good luck with your pony.
    Sarchasm: The gulf between the author of sarcastic wit and the person who doesn't get it.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr. 6, 2010
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    2,084

    Default

    My very first mare was completely blind in one eye and had been for most of her life. We had no idea until we did the PPE and the vet who did the PPE was the mare's vet that had done her for years and never knew! By the time we got her she was starting to go blind in the other eye and she adjusted really well. We had bells that hung on her door and just talked to her. Buddied her up with a pony and she even hauled and was my game pony for years. Losing an eye for MOST horses isn't a big deal. There is a bit of adjustment and I'll see if I can find the article I had that helped me deal with helping her make the adjustment to complete blindness.
    Adoring fan of A Fine Romance
    Originally Posted by alicen:
    What serious breeder would think that a horse at that performance level is push button? Even so, that's still a lot of buttons to push.



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul. 16, 2003
    Location
    Guthrie, OK
    Posts
    1,601

    Default

    Sanctuary
    You have a PM. Contact me.
    Meghan



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Sep. 7, 2009
    Location
    Lexington, KY
    Posts
    23,299

    Default

    I don't screw around with eyes. For good reason. Puffy and tearing, I look at the eye, if I don't see anything, I give a dose of IV Banamine. No improvement and hour later gets an emergency call to the vet.

    Things can go bad in a hurry, as you found out.
    Join the Clinton 2016 campaign...Hillary For America. https://www.hillaryclinton.com/



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Sep. 2, 2005
    Location
    Upstate NY
    Posts
    13,955

    Default

    Have you gotten a price from the vet on having it removed? It might not be as expensive as you think.

    I too have known several one eyed horses and all do fine with one eye.



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jul. 16, 2003
    Location
    Guthrie, OK
    Posts
    1,601

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by LauraKY View Post
    I don't screw around with eyes. For good reason. Puffy and tearing, I look at the eye, if I don't see anything, I give a dose of IV Banamine. No improvement and hour later gets an emergency call to the vet.

    Things can go bad in a hurry, as you found out.

    Ditto. Esp horse eyes. Horses don't produce as much tears as other species so any damage to the eye is less protected and gets less "healing properties" from tears than do other species.

    Also the comment about "you put some ointment in it". Never ever keep old, left over eye ointment to use later. For one, if it contains a steroid of any sort and you put in an eye with any infection in it (ie ulcer, laceration, puncture, etc), ESP IN A HORSE, you will make the infeciton worse. Or cause an infection even if there wasn't one to start with since the cortisone stops the eye's immune response to fighting infection.
    Old eye ointments also get contaminated and can actually SPREAD an infection, even if it does not contain as steroid.
    Horses are also very susceptable to fungal eye infections. Antibiotics do nothing to treat these and there is some thought that killing off all the bact may let fungi take hold.

    So if a horse has a bad eye, call a vet. IMHO, it is as much an emergency as is colic, founder or a fracture.



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jun. 1, 2005
    Location
    Floral City , Fl.
    Posts
    4,258

    Default

    I have had 3 mares who for various reasons have had their eye removed. Its not a big deal and almost pain free for them. BELIEVE ME.............its harder on you then on them!!! I have put 10k into an eye and still had to have it removed. I have put 6k into one and she ended up without hardly any scar (and she was a broodmare). Go figure, it it was my fancy fancy hunter pony I can almost guarantee it would not have been as good an outcome.
    Sandy
    www.sugarbrook.com
    hunter/jumper ponies



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Aug. 28, 2007
    Location
    Triangle Area, NC
    Posts
    6,727

    Default

    The cost of eye removal and the cost of euthanasia are with about $200 of each other. Take a long, hard look at the photos you took and ask yourself if it's fair for him to spend another day trying to save an orb he won't be able to see out of IF it heals?
    Get that eye OUT. He will be fine, it builds character
    www.destinationconsensusequus.com
    chaque pas est fait ensemble



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Feb. 6, 2000
    Location
    MA
    Posts
    13,107

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by MeghanDACVA View Post

    Also the comment about "you put some ointment in it". Never ever keep old, left over eye ointment to use later. For one, if it contains a steroid of any sort and you put in an eye with any infection in it (ie ulcer, laceration, puncture, etc), ESP IN A HORSE, you will make the infeciton worse. Or cause an infection even if there wasn't one to start with since the cortisone stops the eye's immune response to fighting infection.
    Old eye ointments also get contaminated and can actually SPREAD an infection, even if it does not contain as steroid.
    Horses are also very susceptable to fungal eye infections. Antibiotics do nothing to treat these and there is some thought that killing off all the bact may let fungi take hold.

    So if a horse has a bad eye, call a vet. IMHO, it is as much an emergency as is colic, founder or a fracture.
    This bears repeating.
    Amen.
    "It's like a Russian nesting doll of train wrecks."--CaitlinandTheBay

    ...just settin' on the Group W bench.



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jul. 31, 1999
    Posts
    3,176

    Default

    There is an equine ophthalmologist at New Bolton Center -- Dr. Mary Utter. It might be worth giving her a call just to find out what all your options are (and the prices for each).



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Mar. 6, 2009
    Posts
    9,189

    Default Jingles for your horse and you ~

    Just Jingles for your horse and you ~

    JINGLE JINGLE JINGLE & AO ~ ALWAYS OPTIMISTIC ~
    Zu Zu Bailey " IT"S A WONDERFUL LIFE !"



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