What is Cherry Eye in Dogs, and is it Serious?

We all know how much our dogs rely on all their basic senses to explore, navigate, and enjoy their family and their world. There’s no greater feeling than seeing those tails wagging as soon as they see us come into their view. When it comes to our dogs’ vision, it’s especially important to take steps when needed to ensure the continued health of their eyes. What is Cherry Eye and is it serious?

As the name implies, cherry eye looks like a cherry pit in the corner of your dog’s eye. While the appearance of cherry eye in your canine baby can be disturbing, the good news is that it’s a treatable condition that occurs most commonly in young dogs.

Let’s explain what cherry eye is, discuss its level of severity, and review what treatments are available if your pup develops this condition.

Understanding the Structure of a Dog’s Eyes

Our beloved canine friends have many unique traits. One of the lesser-known traits is that all dog breeds have nictitating membranes, commonly called third eyelids.

The nictitating membranes are found in the lower eyelids. Since our dogs like to crash around and play when they’re younger (and maybe even when they’re older!), they rely on these third eyelids to provide valuable extra protection for their eyes.

In addition to providing extra protection, the third eyelid also contains a tear gland, which supplies much-needed moisture to the eye. Ligaments are present to keep this tear gland attached under the eyelid

How Cherry Eye Develops

Cherry eye develops when the ligaments that hold the tear gland in place under the eyelid become stretched or torn. When the strength of these ligaments is compromised, the gland prolapses or pushes out from under the lower eyelid.



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