Yorkshire Terriers are notorious for having eye problems and conditions. If these go untreated, it can make things worse for them while increasing any accompanying pain, which can include blindness. They can suffer from inflammation, irritation, tearing and cataracts, to name a few.
But there are some things you can do to help your precious Yorkie in such a state, albeit disheartening to say the least. However, it’s first important to have a discussion with your vet for recommendations and prescriptions. If you’re able to catch eye problems before they start, your Yorkie will have a better chance.
Table of Contents
- Which Eye Problems Are Most Common for Yorkies to Have?
- Why Do Yorkies Have Eye Problems?
- Is It Genetic for Yorkies to Get Eye Problems?
- Are Yorkies Prone to Contracting Entropian?
- Are Eye Boogers Common for Yorkshire Terriers?
- What Is the Cause Behind Yorkies’ Eyes Tearing Up?
- Do Yorkies Get Cataracts?
- Is It Frequent for Blindness to Occur in Yorkies?
- Do Yorkies Get Dry Eye?
- Can You Prevent Any Eye Problems a Yorkie Might Experience?
Which Eye Problems Are Most Common for Yorkies to Have?
Infection and inflammation are the two most common eye problems for Yorkies to have. This is evident with watery discharges, excessive blinking and acute light sensitivity. Their eyes might also turn red, blue or have an iris that’s dull in appearance.
Why Do Yorkies Have Eye Problems?
Yorkies’ eye problems could be due to allergies, Lyme disease, Brucellosis or even fever. It could happen because of genetics or due to a dust particle floating into its eye. Plus, the Yorkie’s long hair doesn’t help, since it can scratch and scar all parts of the eyes.
Your vet should be able to supply you with some anti-inflammatory eye drops or other prescription eye rinse to help you treat the condition at home.
Is It Genetic for Yorkies to Get Eye Problems?
Most of the eye problems that a Yorkshire Terrier experiences is due to genetics. So, it’s imperative that owners stay on top of this and monitor the dog’s eyes often. This includes taking the Yorkie to the vet the moment any eye inflammation or irritation worsens.
Other genetic eye problems Yorkies can experience is progressive retinal atrophy and corneal dystrophy. Retinal atrophy will include things like night blindness with a reluctance to move in low light situations. What’s more, the Yorkie may experience cloudy eyes, vision impairment, decreased alertness and green-looking eyes.
Corneal dystrophy will have symptoms such as corneal clouding and vision impairment. Both of these conditions can lead to absolute blindness. Unfortunately, there is no real treatment for Yorkies with either corneal dystrophy or progressive retinal atrophy.
Are Yorkies Prone to Contracting Entropian?
Yorkies are very prone to developing droopy eyelid syndrome, clinically called Entropian. While not the most common condition, it does tend to manifest in more mature dogs. They get this due to environment or genetics. But it could also be from eye trauma, infection, dry eye syndrome or corneal ulceration.
The skin around the eyes sag and this forces the eyelashes to consistently graze the eye’s surface. This will accompany eye irritation, watery discharges, infection and inflammation. Eye drops will help alleviate the inflammation, but surgery will be necessary in more severe cases.
Are Eye Boogers Common for Yorkshire Terriers?
Yes, eye boogers, or “watery discharges,” are frequent for many Yorkshire Terriers. The natural position of their eyelids is what makes this occur often. The eyelashes from the edges of the eyelid are usually the culprit for this. They’re abrasive and scratch the eyes which results in irritation and inflammation.
Anti-inflammatory eye drops can easily treat this condition. But owners should consistently monitor their Yorkie’s eyes for any worsening of symptoms.
What Is the Cause Behind Yorkies’ Eyes Tearing Up?
Because Yorkies have abnormal eyelashes, this is the cause for all of their ocular woes. This is due to the tiny hairs coming from the edge of their eyelids and eye ducts. All this contributes to a host of eye problems that include squinting, consistent blinking, corneal abrasions, scarring and discharge.
Do Yorkies Get Cataracts?
Yes, unfortunately Yorkies are incredibly prone to getting cataracts. This can start at too young of an age as well. What’s more, this is a genetic condition. This means it will only be a matter of time before cataracts begins to develop in almost any Yorkshire Terrier.
Is It Frequent for Blindness to Occur in Yorkies?
Blindness is frequent in Yorkies and occurs often. However, this is usually the result of untreated issues that have already developed over time. For instance, leaving them with droopy eye syndrome or not getting eye drops for simple infections will eventually develop into blindness.
Do Yorkies Get Dry Eye?
Yes, Yorkies will get dry eye. This can turn their eyes brown complete with scar tissue, visible blood vessels, redness, inflammation and sensitivity. You may notice a Yorkie rubbing or pawing at its eyes along with squinting, intense blinking and/or hypersensitivity to light.
This can happen due to excessive dehydration (ie in winter with heat on all the time), lack of nutrition, eye virus or be a side effect of recent medications. It often occurs after anesthesia or other eye trauma. But, it can also be the result of hypothyroidism, distemper, arthritis or even conjunctivitis.
Diabetes can also be a cause of dry eye. Your vet should prescribe eye lubrication drops but more severe cases may require surgery, especially if the tear ducts become damaged or blocked.
Can You Prevent Any Eye Problems a Yorkie Might Experience?
There are many things a Yorkie owner can do to help prevent, or at least lessen, the eye problems of their dog. As always, talk to your vet when you notice eye problems developing in your Yorkie. They will either provide a prescription or suggest OTC products you can use.
Therefore, it’s important that you keep the eyes clear and free of discharge, particles and hair. When you groom your dog, pay attention to the hair around the eyes and guide it away. Keep your dog’s eyes safe from injury or trauma, especially to the tear glands and ducts.
In the case your Yorkie has diabetes, you must be meticulous with eye care. Wipe the eyes twice per day after meals but don’t let the eyes remain wet. Also, keep the Yorkie clear of high winds. This also means removing allergy triggers as much as possible.