Cataracts in Pets: Causes, Symptoms, and Surgical Options

Cataracts are a common eye condition that can affect our beloved pets, just like they do humans. Suppose you notice changes in your pet’s vision or the appearance of cloudy eyes. It is essential to understand the causes, symptoms, and available treatment options. In this article, we will explore cataracts in pets, shedding light on what they are, their underlying causes, the symptoms to watch out for, and the surgical options provided by veterinary ophthalmologists. By understanding the scope of vet services available, you will have the knowledge needed to see the proper care your pet may require, especially when it comes to eye procedures.

Understanding Cataracts

What Are Cataracts?

When cataracts significantly affect your pet’s vision and quality of life, cataract removal surgery may be recommended. Veterinary ophthalmologists in Charlotte provide advanced surgical options to address cataracts, including various eye procedures for pets:

Causes of Cataracts in Pets

Cataracts in pets can have various reasons, including:

  • Congenital Factors: Some pets are born with cataracts or have a genetic predisposition to develop them.
  • Age: Senior pets are more prone to developing cataracts as part of aging.
  • Injury or Trauma: Eye injuries or trauma can lead to the formation of cataracts.
  • Underlying Medical Conditions: Cataracts can be associated with certain medical conditions, like diabetes mellitus, nutritional deficiencies, or inflammatory diseases.

Recognizing Cataracts

Symptoms of Cataracts in Pets

It’s essential to be aware of the signs and symptoms that may indicate the presence of cataracts in your pet. Keep an eye out for the following:

  1. Cloudy or Blurred Vision: The most apparent sign of cataracts is a clouding of the eye’s lens, which may cause vision to appear hazy or blurry.
  2. Change in Eye Color: The affected eye(s) may exhibit a whitish or bluish tint.
  3. Difficulty Seeing in Low Light: Pets with cataracts may struggle to see clearly in dimly lit environments.
  4. Increased Clumsiness: Impaired vision can cause pets to misjudge distances or bump into objects.
  5. Changes in Behavior: Pets with cataracts may become more cautious and reluctant to jump or navigate unfamiliar surroundings.

If you notice any of these symptoms, it’s crucial to consult a veterinary ophthalmologist for a thorough examination and diagnosis. For comprehensive veterinary surgical treatment options, see here.

Surgical Options for Cataracts

Cataract Removal Surgery

When cataracts significantly affect your pet’s vision and quality of life, cataract removal surgery may be recommended. Veterinary ophthalmologists provide advanced surgical options to address cataracts, including:

  1. Phacoemulsification: This is the most common technique used for cataract removal. It involves using ultrasound energy to break up the cloudy lens, which is then gently suctioned out of the eye. The lens is replaced with an artificial intraocular lens (IOL) to restore clear vision.
  2. Extracapsular Extraction: This technique is employed for more advanced or complicated cataracts. The ophthalmologist removes the cloudy lens in one piece, leaving the rear portion of the lens capsule intact. An IOL may or may not be placed depending on the individual case.

Post-Surgical Care and Recovery

After cataract surgery, your pet will require attentive post-operative care to ensure a successful recovery. Your veterinary ophthalmologist will provide specific instructions tailored to your pet’s needs. This may include administering eye drops, monitoring the healing process, and scheduling follow-up appointments.


Suppose you suspect your pet has cataracts or would like to learn more about the surgeries provided by veterinary ophthalmologists in Charlotte. In that case, it’s essential to seek professional advice. Carolina Veterinary Specialists is an example of an esteemed facility where you can find experienced veterinary ophthalmologists specializing in diagnosing and treating eye conditions in pets. For more information and to schedule a consultation, visit their website to learn more about their expertise in veterinary ophthalmology.