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Dogs eyes are lazy.

Species: Dog
Breed: pit bull mix
Age: 2-5 years
Within the past 2 days I have noticed my dog's eyes are turing outward, like they are lazy. She has not had any injuries. There is no discoloration in her eyes. She doesn't seem to be in any pain, and I have not noticed any difference in her vision. What are the possible causes for this, and what if anything could a vet do for this?


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

This is an unusual situation! In 12 years of practice I have never seen a dog suddenly have both eyes turn outward. I'd love to see a picture. If you can get one, you can send it to info[at]askavetquestion.com.

The medical term for an eye that turns outwards is "strabismus". There are a few possible causes for strabismus.

Some dogs are born with weak muscles and will have strabismus from birth.

A problem with a nerve to the eye can cause strabismus, but it would be really unusual to have both eyes affected.

A problem with muscle weakness could cause this, but I have never seen this happens on both sides.

I'm wondering if what you are seeing is an increased pressure in the eyes. It may be that Emma had very mild strabismus and then with an increase in pressure it was more pronounced. An increase in pressure can be caused by glaucoma and this is very serious. But, usually if glaucoma comes on all of a sudden you will see some redness and pain in the eyes.

You have me stumped! I'd love if you could send me a picture at the above address and I'll see if I can tell you more.

Dr. Marie.


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Disclaimer: Although Dr. Marie is a qualified veterinarian, the information found on this site is not meant to replace the advice of your own veterinarian. AskAVetQuestion.com and Dr. Marie do not accept any responsibility for any loss, damage, injury, death, or disease which may arise from reliance on information contained on this site. Do not use information found on this site for diagnosing or treating your pet. Anything you read here is for information only.

Customer reply:

Hello,

Since I first sent you a question, I have noticed that Emma's eyes are becoming red. I am attaching a picture with 16 different shots. It was pretty hard to get her to hold still to take a picture of her face. If you can't zoom in on any of these pictures let me know and I can separate them out for you.

strabismus


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

Thanks for the pictures! I can see in some of the pictures that Emma's eyes seem to be bulging out and looking to the side.

This looks to me like there may be an increase in pressure in her eyes. I have seen this in dogs that have an increase in blood pressure, or in dogs with acute glaucoma.

Because glaucoma is very serious I think it would be a good idea to have her see a vet right away. I really hope everything is ok!

Dr. Marie.



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Dr. MarieDr. Marie is a veterinarian who practices in a busy animal hospital in Ottawa, Ontario. She created Ask A Vet Question as a resource for good, accurate veterinary advice online. Dr. Marie treats dogs, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs, and rats. She has been a vet since 1999.

Is an online vet visit just as good as a trip to your veterinarian? No! But, many times, asking an online veterinarian a question can help save you money. While Dr. Marie can't officially diagnose your pet or prescribe medications, she can often advise you on whether a vet visit is necessary. You can also ask Dr. Marie for a second opinion on your pet's condition.