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Cat loosing eyesight...kind long sorry

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
Although I am new here, some of ypu know I took in a stray that managed to find his way to my house. he was in very rough shape when I got him. He is doing exceptionally well. WE have been calling him cat because we couldn't think of a name to suit him..we decided on Baldar last night. Because when he meows or talks to us he sounds like Dan Akroids Character Baldar from Saturday Night Live ..The Cone Heads. Any way..we noticed he is having some trouble with his vision, last night we gave him a little test and determined that he can really only see clearly about 5-8ft. After that it seems to be he knows your there and calling him or what ever but he will just turn around and around like he cannot determine exactly where you are. Also if you hold a treat in front of him and show it to him and then drop it. He has no idea that it has been dropped . Almost like if something moves to fast he looses it. Right now he is mostly ans outdoor cat and comes in at night and sleeps in our mudroom and is perfectly content with that. We need to however start thinking about a time when he cannot see. 1) Can a vet give an eye exam to cat? maybe this is the worst it will be. 2) any thoughts on how to get him acclamated to being an indoor kitty if he cannot see. Anyone have any thoughts or live with a blind cat?
post #2 of 10
Bump - did not want you to get lost!
post #3 of 10
Well basically there's enclosures you can make that would be possible to keep your new friend outside, and than he wouldn't have to get used to being an indoor cat. However, if you are going to deal with a cat that is blind, I dealt with blind horses and if it works for them it will have to work for your cat. First of all, try to get him to the vet to make sure its not something that possibly correctable. You never know with technogically these day, it can be amazing. But basically start out with keeping your friend in the bathroom after you take him for a health check. Your city should have some low cost places (Petsmart is great, or your local city pound might have referrals) if money is an issue, and if he's a male make sure he's neutered. But vet check first this is so important.

Next, confine him to a small space, and gradually increase his area. This way he doesn't spray everywhere or end up missing the litterbox. One particular point is that you shouldn't move furniture around if he is blind, as he will have to memorize where things are so he doesn't walk in to walls or other objects. Keep him away from dangerous areas and think about safety. Even with my son and cat I get on my hands and knees and crawl around. You're at a better level and can see things that might be a danger at this level.

Its not hard to keep a disabled cat, and there are plenty of blind cats in homes living comfortably and without injury.

But before you do anything get him into a vet, as they can tell you whether or not his eyesight is progressive and how blind he is. Honestly, he's in real great danger of getting injured if he is allowed to run outside unsupervised.
post #4 of 10
Yep, they can do eye checks on your kitty! And like the above people have said, its a good idea to get him checked out as soon as possible - the eyesight could even be a sign of other problems.

A blind cat can do very well. Keeping furniture in the same place is good - they get used to where everything is. My parents have a farm and their very old blind cat has even caught a mouse last week in the horse hay! I agree about outside life being dangerous - my parents live in a sheltered area, far from the nearest road and the cat is only outside under supervision. He also lived there for many *sighted* years so he knows his way around.
post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 
Yep..a vet check is first on my list to see if it is progressive, stable or correctable. We have been letting him in the house for extended periods of time and we let him wander about, so he can get used to the layout of the house and so the other cats can get used to him. Plus we are trying to determine if he decides on a favorite place in the house and we wil make that his. As far as him being outside is definately a concern, especially since we realized how bad his vision is. Fortunately, we live way out inthe country on 10 acres, surrounded by anouther 50 acres of tree farm and horse pasture. Wild animals are an issue, but one of the things we first noticed about him was after we found him, he will not stray away from the house more than 20-30 feet unless we are with him. We thought it was a food thing at first (starving stray.."hey man I am not going anywhere). But the more we watch him , he only moves around and always keeps the house in sight. We have also started to toss treats to him outside of his vision range , which is forcing him to "smell it out" to sort of fine tune what senses he does have. ( hearing not the greatest either), figuring that will help him in the house as well. He did use the litter box I put on the porch for him though ( only will pee in it ) and he still goes and poops in my garden ..seems to prefer the pumkins . So baby steps with that, at least he has started to use it.
post #6 of 10
Thread Starter 
Oh yeah I forgot, my husband wants to invent "Kitty Kontacts" what do you guys think....
post #7 of 10
I wish you all the best with this kitty...I can tell you vets can do eye exams, and there are even veterinary opthamologists they can refer you on to if necessary (Tyler sees one...he's lost the vision in one eye and has retinopathy in the other...so we may well have to deal with some of the issues you are discussing).
post #8 of 10
Good luck with this old boy, facing similar problem here with a kitten.
She only has one eye and bad eyesight as well as bad photosensitivity, no clue yet if her eye will stay as it is, or worsen.

Keep us updated
post #9 of 10
I agree with what all has been said so far. My neighbour had a cat named Baby that was blind. He knew enough to never leave the property and was a very friendly cat! He would bump into trees and things of that nature every now and then but for the most part he just went slow and was content. I'm not sure about housetraining or anything like that. If memory serves me he was either blind, or partly blind at birth, and was completely blind before the end of the first year. I think he lived to be 16. It's hard to remember to many details, as i last saw him about 5 or 6 years ago. Good luck!!
post #10 of 10
Thread Starter 
Baldar has used the litter box on the porch 3 days in a row now, and yesterday he used the doornob to let him self in. ..interesting. I may not have to acclamate him as much as I thought I am very curious about the whole eye exam thing. How on earth do the vets tell about the eyes sight. Its not like the cats can tell them .."no..still blurry, stiiilll blurry oh thats good I can see now"
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