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Irish Setter Mu
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Irish Setter Mu is offline  
Location: Somerset, UK
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22-08-2008, 10:06 AM

Advice Please

I took one of my dogs to the vet last night for his booster. Whilst I was there I saw I lady I know who owns a Westie, Max. He is only 7 years old and he has previously had to have an eye removed.

Last night I found out that he had to have his other eye removed because that one too had ulcerated and had ruptured. He was operated on this Monday and was back last night for a check up.

My question is how will he cope - his owner (I can't remember her name!) is still coming to terms with it. He seemed in high spirits but she says he has been crying a lot more in the last few days, which I guess is understandable.

She wants to give him every opportunity and I realise as dogs get older they sometimes go blind. Do you think he will be OK? I wondered whether when he has healed a little if he would benefit from a companion? We did talk about it last night and it is something she was considering too.

Your thoughts would be appreciated and I will pass them on to Max's owner when I see her next. Thanks in advance.
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Sarah27
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22-08-2008, 10:10 AM
My friend had a blind cat which coped brilliantly. It even brought in a live robin one morning!

I think the most important thing is not to move anything (like furniture) in the house. Not sure about getting a doggy frined for him, he'll be really stressed from having both eyes removed and could get aggressive towards a newcomer maybe.
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Hali
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22-08-2008, 10:15 AM
Dogs do cope with being blind, though I think it is easier for them if they were born that way or if they loose the sight gradually.

I've seen videos of blind dogs running around like you wouldn't believe and even jumping obstacles.

I'm sure your friend has already been told, but just in case, it is very important that they don't move things round in the house and that they do walks that he is familiar with.

As for a companion, that's a dificult one. I have no doubt that they do benefit from it, depending on the other dog and how they go on but the last thing they would want is to bring in a new dog that would 'pick on' him because of his weakness. So it will really depend on how well he gets on with other dogs (is he going to be happy with a new dog in his home) and what other dog -e.g. will they 'look out' for him rather than pick on him.
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Donna_birmingha
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22-08-2008, 10:15 AM
i also agree with sarah i think he will be quite stressed anyway and getting used to not being able to see anymore the last thing he needs is a newcomer he may feel threaten by the other dog and become aggressive.

i think he will cope fine dogs adapt to things so quickly,
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Ziva
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22-08-2008, 10:42 AM
I would say a friend now would be too soon; although could work in the future depending on his personality and the personality of the proposed addition.

I would wait until he has adjusted, and come to terms with no sight. Once he's confident around the house and on walks then I think maybe start looking for the perfect companion.
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Meg
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22-08-2008, 10:51 AM
Hi Karen I would say when the pain from the operation has gone and given a few days of adjustment the little dog should be fine .

Dogs don't rely on sight nearly as much as humans, scent and hearing are just as important to them and the thick whiskers concealed within the Westies beard will help it to sense when objects are close by. As Hali says if furniture is move around it will take the dog a few days to adjust to the new arrangement.

Many years ago we used to have an old blind cocker, you would never have known she was blind she got around so well .

At the age of 7 he may not take well to a companion, it depends how well socialised he is with other dogs.
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Fernsmum
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22-08-2008, 11:13 AM
I would think he will cope really well as someone else said his sense of smell will be brilliant so he will be much better off than a blind human . I would say don't get a friend for him it would not be fair on either dog . If he had already had a friend that would have been fine but I wouldn't bring another dog in at this stage
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Irish Setter Mu
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22-08-2008, 11:14 AM
Thanks everyone for your responses - it such a shame for the poor little fella.

I felt really sorry for him in the vets last night. The worst thing was his second ulcer appeared & erupted whilst his owners were on holiday. He was being housed with a host family. He may not have been taken to the vets as quickly as he could have, but his owners were told it was doubtful it would have saved his sight. Poor little blighter!
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flowisp
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22-08-2008, 11:33 AM
Poor little thing, I would hate to be in that situation, oh.....i really hope he is ok, I really feel for him... xxxxx
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