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Smudgey's eyes - a background!

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
I've had a couple of questions about Smudgey's eyes, so thought I'd do an overview for those who don't know and are interested.

Smudgey was a tiny little runt when I first started fostering her at 3 weeks, and it was pretty obvious then that she had eye problems and we assumed was abandoned by her mother for those reasons.

These are the main problems:

1. Eyelids are not fully formed - her upper eyelids in particular only go halfway across her eyes, so don't filter stuff properly

2. The fur was growing down and touching her eyeballs. She got laser surgery at 5 months old to remove the worst of those hairs so they don't rub on her eyeballs which causes irritation and potential ulcers. She still has some fur touching her eyeballs, but not as much, and it's soft fur and irritates her a bit, but is causing no scarring, so shouldn't cause ulcers (just needs annual monitoring)

3. She has small eyeballs - the actual eyes are physically small, so even wide eyed, they're not very big. I don't know if that has any major implications, it's just part of her genetic defects.

4. Her tear production isn't very good, particularly in her left eye. So that eye is quite dry which causes irritation.

5. She has "strands" in her left pupil. When you look at her left eye, you can see all these strandy looking things all through the black part. I assume that stops her from being able to see very well out of that eye, but it's impossible to know the exact implications, it's not very common.

Ummmm... I think that's it. Poor Smudgey. She can see, but she doesn't seem to be able to have very good depth perception, and I don't think she has the best long distance vision. The 3 cats will be in the window, with Lily and Stumpy staring at a squirrel running around, while Smudge is playing with a piece of string hanging from the scratching post, or just looking confused She can chase a laser pointer, but loses the red dot fairly easily, and can't see it when it's daylight and there's not as much contrast. She won't jump up or down from anything high. She still won't jump from the top of the cat tree straight to the ground. She used to jump from the top level to the middle, to the window sill to the ground. Now she kind of walks down the tree as far as she can from the top shelf, then jumps down, so she has gotten better, but it took 2 years to get to that. She also regularly falls off things - laps, chairs, tables... she has no grace, and may be one crayon short of a box.

We give her eye drops every day, and just recently discovered she prefers eye ointment - it's just artificial tears, like humans get. The ointment lasts longer in her eye and gives more relief it seems. When we tried the first tube, she would literally bounce around the house for ages chasing Lily, or just playing on her own with her toys. She was soooo happy. We had to go back to drops when we thought it was vet specific stuff, but we finally found a human version of the ointment that's safe for cats, so we've just started that again

She is an absolute doll though. She hates getting stuff put in her eyes, the poor thing, but she's still very lovable, and loves new people, and assumes everyone in the world is going to love her attentions as much as we do
post #2 of 4
Awww! What a little darling!
And thanks for the explanation!
post #3 of 4
Aww, she's special to me too. I fell in love with her immediately upon seeing her picture. She is at this very moment on my desktop so I get to see her beautiful face off and on throughout the day and night.
post #4 of 4
I've wondered about Smudge's eyes, but never asked Poor baby with her eye issues... but she's lucky to have good people, and she looks happy in all the photos.
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