This type of condition usually affects larger dog breeds, including German Shepherds, Alaskan Malamutes, and Saint Bernards. Although the disorder is rare in cats, it can still affect bony breeds such as the Main Coon and Persian. In both dogs and cats, this is usually an inherited condition that occurs when the structure of the hip joint does not develop properly. The tissues and muscles around the hip joint begin to stretch and eventually become arthritic.
This condition needs to be closely monitored, usually with the help of frequent X-rays and physical examinations. Treatment options may depend on the severity of the condition and the animal’s age, weight and general health. Pain medication and surgery are common treatment options.
What is entropion and what are the causes in dogs?
Entropion is a condition in which the eyelid rolls inward, causing the eyelashes and surrounding hair to rub against the dog’s delicate cornea. The upper and lower eyelids may be affected in one or both eyes. Entropion causes eye irritation and, if not treated quickly, can lead to corneal ulceration. Entropion can be genetic or secondary to another problem.
- Breed-Specific Problems — Entropion is genetic in short-nosed, giant, and sporting breeds.
- In short-nosed breeds (e.g. boxers, bulldogs and pugs), the shape of the nose and face causes more tension on the ligaments around the inner eye. This excessive tension can cause the upper and lower eyelids to roll inward.
- In giant breeds, including Saint Bernards, Great Danes and Bullmastiffs, the ligaments around the outer corners of the eyes have excess laxity, allowing the eyelids to roll into these. area.
- Entropion affects sporting breeds, including golden retrievers, Irish setters, and Labrador retrievers, as well as giant dogs.
- In some breeds, such as the Shar pei and Cavalier King Charles spaniel, selective breeding for skull formation, facial skin folds, and prominent eyes has increased the incidence of entropion.
- Secondary Causes — Entropion can also be caused by eyelid scarring, nerve damage, infection, and excessive weight loss.
Different faces require different approaches
Dog breeds such as pugs and bulldogs develop entropion at the medial eyelid (near the nose). This can be corrected with a procedure called mediastinal surgery. In this procedure, the opening of the eye is actually smaller so that the eyelids do not rub against the cornea. Without it, the fur and eyelashes will often irritate the cornea, causing a dark brown pigment to form. This change is usually permanent and very common in brachycephalic breeds with untreated entropion. It can also lead to chronic eye soreness.
Similarly, lateral (far from the nose) canthal entropion can develop in German Shorthaired Pointers, Rottweilers and Chows. There are several relatively complex surgical procedures that can correct this type of entropion.