Why Regular Eye Exams are Important for Lhasa Apsos

As a Lhasa Apso owner, you want your furry companion to live a healthy and happy life. One important aspect of their health that should not be overlooked is their eyesight. Do you know that Lhasa Apsos are prone to certain eye problems that can lead to blindness if not detected early? That’s why it’s crucial to schedule regular eye exams for your furry friend. In this article, we’ll delve into the anatomy of a Lhasa Apso’s eye, common eye problems, the importance of regular eye exams, when to schedule them, what happens during an eye exam, and how to prepare for it. Let’s explore the world of Lhasa Apso’s vision together!

Anatomy of a Lhasa Apso’s Eye

Anatomy Of A Lhasa Apso’S Eye
The eyes of a Lhasa Apso are a crucial component of their well-being, as they rely heavily on their vision to navigate the world around them. Understanding the anatomy of a Lhasa Apso’s eye is essential to recognize potential problems that may arise. Each part of the eye, including the eyelids, cornea, lens, and retina, has a specific function, but they all work together to provide the Lhasa Apso with clear vision. Without proper care and attention, eye problems can develop and cause discomfort, pain, or even blindness. In the upcoming sections, we will delve into each component of a Lhasa Apso’s eye, and learn more about identifying common eye problems.

The Eyelids

The eyelids are an essential part of a Lhasa Apso’s eye anatomy, and their primary function is to protect the eyes from outside elements such as dust, debris, and infectious agents. Lhasa Apsos have two sets of eyelids, namely the upper and the lower eyelids, which work together to keep the eyes moisturized and healthy.

The upper eyelids: The upper eyelids of Lhasa Apsos are an extension of the skin and contain several muscles. They have the crucial role of covering the eyes and conveying expressions of emotions. They provide shape and structure to the eyes.

The lower eyelids: The lower eyelids of Lhasa Apsos are a continuation of the upper eyelids and also contain muscles. They have the function of closing the eye and distributing tears over the cornea to keep it moist.

One of the most common eyelid-related issues in Lhasa Apsos is eyelid inflammation or blepharitis, which is characterized by swelling, redness, and discharge around the eyelids. Blepharitis can cause discomfort to Lhasa Apsos and can lead to eye infections if left untreated. It is important to keep an eye on your Lhasa Apso’s eyes and take prompt action if you notice any signs of irritation or inflammation.

Regular eye exams are an essential part of maintaining good eye health for Lhasa Apsos, which can help detect and prevent eye problems. For instance, eye exams can help diagnose and treat common eye problems in Lhasa Apsos such as cataracts, glaucoma, dry eye syndrome, cherry eye, and progressive retinal atrophy. You can read more about these eye problems in Lhasa Apsos by following this internal link: /lhasa-apsos-eye-problems/.

Proper eye care can prevent eye infections and promote general eye health in Lhasa Apsos. You can find useful tips on how to prevent eye infections and treat dry eye syndrome and irritated eyes in Lhasa Apsos by following these internal links: /lhasa-apso-eye-infections/, /treating-dry-eye-syndrome-lhasa-apsos/, and /home-remedies-for-irritated-eyes-lhasa-apsos/.

The eyelids play an important role in protecting and maintaining the health of Lhasa Apsos’ eyes. It’s vital to keep a close eye on your Lhasa Apso’s eyes and schedule regular eye exams with your veterinarian to ensure their overall well-being.

The Cornea

The cornea is one of the most important components of a Lhasa Apso’s eye. It’s a clear, dome-shaped structure that covers the front part of the eye. Its main function is to refract light that enters the eye, which helps to focus images on the retina. The cornea is also responsible for protecting the eye from dirt, dust, and other foreign elements.

Structure of the Cornea

The cornea is made up of five layers, each with its own function:

EpitheliumThe outermost layer that acts as a barrier to protect the cornea from infection
Bowman’s layerA thin layer of connective tissue that provides structural support
StromaThe thickest and strongest layer that makes up 90% of the cornea’s thickness
Descemet’s membraneA thin layer of collagen that acts as a barrier against infection and injury
EndotheliumThe innermost layer that pumps out excess fluid to maintain the clarity of the cornea

Common Corneal Problems in Lhasa Apsos

Corneal problems can arise due to injury, infection, or underlying health conditions. Here are some common corneal problems that Lhasa Apsos may develop:

  • Corneal Ulcers: These are open sores on the cornea that can occur due to injury or infection. Symptoms include redness, tearing, discharge, and squinting.
  • Keratitis: This is an inflammation of the cornea that can occur due to injury or infection. Symptoms include redness, tearing, discharge, and sensitivity to light.
  • Dystrophy: This is a genetic disorder that causes abnormal deposits of material in the cornea, which can lead to cloudiness and vision loss.

It’s important to take your Lhasa Apso for regular eye exams to detect any corneal problems early on. With early detection and treatment, many corneal problems can be managed effectively.

The Lens

The lens is a vital part of a Lhasa Apso’s eye, playing a crucial role in focusing light onto the retina. This small, clear structure is located behind the iris, suspended by tiny fibers that hold it in place. The lens is of particular importance for aging Lhasa Apsos, as it can become cloudy and opaque, leading to vision impairment or even blindness.

Age-related cataracts are a common ailment in aging Lhasa Apsos, where the lens becomes discolored and hazy over time. This can happen due to a natural breakdown of proteins within the lens, but can also be accelerated by factors such as poor nutrition or injury. Cataracts can progress slowly, but it’s important to catch them early through regular eye exams. Surgery to remove the affected lens and replace it with an artificial one may be necessary to restore clear vision.

In addition to cataracts, lens luxation is another common issue that affects Lhasa Apsos. This occurs when the fibers that hold the lens in place break down, allowing the lens to shift or fall out of position. This can result in pain, inflammation, and secondary glaucoma. If caught early, surgery may be able to reposition the lens and prevent further complications.

Regular eye exams are crucial for catching lens-related issues in Lhasa Apsos before they progress too far. During an eye exam, the veterinarian will examine the lens for signs of cloudiness, opacity, or displacement. Specialized tests, such as ultrasound, can also be performed to get a clearer view of the lens and any potential issues. By catching these problems early, treatment options can be pursued, resulting in the best possible outcomes for your furry friend’s vision and overall wellbeing.

To summarize, the lens is a crucial structure in a Lhasa Apso’s eye, but it’s susceptible to a number of issues that can cause vision impairment or even blindness. Regular eye exams are the best way to catch lens-related problems early, allowing for prompt treatment and better outcomes.

The Retina

The retina is a vital part of a Lhasa Apso’s eye, responsible for capturing and processing images. This thin layer of tissue is located at the back of the eye and contains millions of photoreceptor cells called rods and cones. When light enters the eye, it passes through the cornea and lens, ultimately landing on the retina. The rods and cones then convert the light into electrochemical signals that the brain can interpret as images.

Rods are sensitive to dim light and motion, while cones are responsible for detecting color and fine detail. Lhasa Apsos have more rods than cones, which makes them particularly adept at seeing in low light conditions, but their color vision is not as sharp as that of humans or other primates.

The retina also contains two other important types of cells: the bipolar cells and the ganglion cells. Bipolar cells are responsible for transmitting signals from the photoreceptors to the ganglion cells, which then send the signals to the brain via the optic nerve. The ganglion cells are also responsible for processing other visual information, such as depth perception and motion detection.

Unfortunately, the retina is also susceptible to several eye problems, including progressive retinal atrophy (PRA). This genetic condition is characterized by the degeneration of the photoreceptor cells in the retina, ultimately leading to blindness. Lhasa Apsos are particularly prone to PRA, which is why regular eye exams are crucial in detecting the condition early on.

Other common eye problems that may affect the retina include retinal detachment, inflammation, and tumors. These conditions can cause a variety of symptoms, including blurred vision, floaters, and a loss of vision.

Regular eye exams are essential in maintaining your Lhasa Apso’s overall health and well-being. An experienced veterinarian can examine your pup’s eyes and catch any potential problems before they become serious. The retina is a vital component in your Lhasa Apso’s visual system, and it deserves the same level of care and attention as any other part of their body.

Common Eye Problems in Lhasa Apsos

Common Eye Problems In Lhasa Apsos
As much as we love our furry friends, Lhasa Apsos are not immune to eye problems. These adorable dogs are prone to various eye conditions that can cause discomfort and even lead to vision loss. It is important for every Lhasa Apso parent to be aware of the common eye problems their pets may face to provide the best care and treatment. In this section, we will discuss the different eye conditions most commonly seen in Lhasa Apsos.


Cataracts are a common eye problem for Lhasa Apsos that can significantly impact their vision. These occur when the lens of the eye becomes cloudy and obstructs light from passing through. If left untreated, cataracts can progress and eventually lead to blindness.

Symptoms of cataracts can include cloudiness or opacity in the affected eye(s), an increase in clumsiness or reluctance to navigate familiar spaces, and changes in the color of the affected eye(s). Since cataracts can occur gradually, it’s important to have regular eye exams to catch them early.

Treatment options for cataracts depend on the severity of the condition. In some cases, changes in diet or the use of supplements may slow the progression of cataracts. However, surgery is often necessary to remove a severe cataract and restore vision. During this procedure, the cloudy lens is removed and replaced with a clear artificial lens.

Prevention of cataracts can be promoted through good eye care habits. Regular eye exams can detect cataracts early and provide treatment options. Additionally, protecting your Lhasa Apso’s eyes from harmful UV rays by using dog-safe sunglasses or limiting exposure during peak sun hours can also help prevent cataracts. Providing a healthy diet rich in antioxidants may also help prevent cataracts from developing.

It’s important to note that while cataracts are relatively common in Lhasa Apsos, they can impact dogs of any age or breed. Keeping a vigilant eye out for symptoms and seeking prompt veterinary care can ensure the best outcome for your furry friend’s eye health.


Glaucoma is a serious eye condition that can cause vision loss or even blindness in Lhasa Apsos. It occurs when there is a buildup of pressure in the eye that damages the optic nerve over time. Glaucoma often goes undetected until it is in the advanced stages, making regular eye exams even more important for Lhasa Apsos.

There are two main types of glaucoma: open-angle glaucoma and closed-angle glaucoma. Open-angle glaucoma is more common and happens when the drainage canals in the eye become clogged over time, causing a buildup of pressure. Closed-angle glaucoma is less common and happens when the iris is too close to the drainage canals, blocking the flow of fluid in the eye and causing pressure to build up rapidly.

To help detect glaucoma during a Lhasa Apso eye exam, the veterinarian will measure the pressure in the eye using a tonometer. Typically, normal pressure ranges from 10-20 mmHg, but anything above 25 mmHg is considered high and should be monitored closely. In addition to measuring pressure levels, the veterinarian will also examine the optic nerve for signs of damage or deterioration.

Below is a table outlining the key features of glaucoma:

Open-angleGradual clogging of drainage canals in the eyeNo symptoms until advanced stages; then, vision loss, eye pain, and redness
Closed-angleBlockage of drainage canalsIntense eye pain, headache, eye redness, nausea, and vomiting

Glaucoma is a serious eye condition that can cause irreversible vision loss if not detected and treated early. Regular eye exams for Lhasa Apsos are crucial for catching glaucoma in its early stages and to prevent any irreversible damage to their eyes. Consult your veterinarian immediately if your Lhasa Apso exhibits any symptoms of glaucoma.

Dry Eye Syndrome

One common eye problem that can affect Lhasa Apsos is dry eye syndrome. Also known as keratoconjunctivitis sicca, this condition occurs when the eyes do not produce enough tears to keep them lubricated. Tears are not just for crying; they also play an essential role in maintaining the health of the eyes. They help keep the surface of the eyes smooth, prevent infections, and wash away debris.

Dry eye syndrome can be caused by a variety of factors, including age, certain medications, and underlying medical conditions such as diabetes or immune system disorders. It can also be hereditary in some cases.

Lhasa Apsos with dry eye syndrome may experience symptoms such as redness, itchiness, and irritation in their eyes. They may also produce a thick, yellow discharge from their eyes. If left untreated, dry eye syndrome can lead to more serious complications such as corneal ulcers and vision loss.

Treatment for dry eye syndrome typically involves using artificial tear drops to provide lubrication to the eyes. Supplements such as omega-3 fatty acids may also be recommended. In some cases, medication or surgery may be required.

Regular eye exams are essential in catching dry eye syndrome early on. During an eye exam, your veterinarian will check the tear production of your Lhasa Apso and look for any signs of irritation or inflammation. They may also recommend specialized testing to diagnose the condition.

If you suspect your Lhasa Apso may be suffering from dry eye syndrome, it’s essential to schedule an appointment with your veterinarian as soon as possible. Left untreated, this condition can lead to more severe eye problems and vision loss.

Cherry Eye

Cherry eye is a common eye problem in Lhasa Apsos that occurs when the gland that produces tears and lubrication in the eye’s third eyelid becomes inflamed and protrudes from its normal position. This condition is also known as prolapsed gland of the third eyelid and is characterized by a reddish lump on the inside corner of the eye.

If left untreated, cherry eye can cause discomfort, dryness, and irritation in the affected eye, and can also lead to more serious eye problems such as conjunctivitis and corneal ulcers. It is essential to schedule an eye exam with a veterinarian as soon as you notice any symptoms of cherry eye in your Lhasa Apso.

Symptoms of cherry eye in Lhasa Apsos:

Bulging, reddish lump on the inside corner of the eye
Excessive blinking and rubbing of the affected eye
Tearing and discharge from the affected eye
Conjunctivitis and/or corneal ulcers in severe cases

Treatment for cherry eye in Lhasa Apsos:

In most cases, cherry eye can be treated through a minor surgical procedure called a “tacking” or “pocketing” procedure in which the prolapsed gland is repositioned and sutured in place. This procedure is typically performed under general anesthesia and has a high success rate in resolving cherry eye in Lhasa Apsos.

Additionally, eye drops or ointments may be prescribed to keep the eye lubricated and prevent dryness and irritation in the affected eye following the surgical procedure. It is important to follow your veterinarian’s post-operative care instructions carefully to ensure proper healing and prevent any complications from occurring.

Preventing cherry eye in Lhasa Apsos:

While cherry eye cannot always be prevented, there are some steps you can take to reduce your Lhasa Apso’s risk of developing this condition. Regular eye exams and maintaining good eye hygiene can help identify any early signs of cherry eye and prevent its progression. Additionally, avoiding rough play that may cause trauma to the eye area and providing your Lhasa Apso with a well-balanced diet and proper hydration can also help maintain proper eye health.

Progressive Retinal Atrophy

Progressive Retinal Atrophy, also known as PRA, is a genetic eye disorder that affects Lhasa Apsos and many other dog breeds. This disease causes the retina, a layer of sensitive cells at the back of the eye, to slowly deteriorate over time. As a result, the dog may experience vision loss and eventual blindness. Here are some key points to understand about PRA:

  • Causes: PRA is caused by a mutation in one or more genes that control the development and function of the retina. This mutation can be passed down from a dog’s parents, so it’s important to research the health history of potential breeding partners before breeding a Lhasa Apso.
  • Symptoms: In the early stages of PRA, the dog may not show any symptoms. As the disease progresses, the dog may experience night blindness or difficulty seeing in low light conditions. The dog may also have a noticeable decline in visual acuity and depth perception. Eventually, the dog may become completely blind.
  • Diagnosis: PRA can be diagnosed through a comprehensive eye exam performed by a veterinary ophthalmologist. The exam may include tests to evaluate the function of the retina and determine the extent of any vision loss.
  • Treatment: Unfortunately, there is currently no cure for PRA. Once a dog has been diagnosed with the disease, the focus shifts to managing the symptoms and preserving the dog’s quality of life. This may include modifying the dog’s environment to accommodate their vision loss, providing a specialized diet, and working with a veterinary ophthalmologist to monitor the disease’s progression.
  • Prevention: Since PRA is a genetic disease, the best way to prevent it from affecting Lhasa Apsos is to ensure that only healthy dogs are bred. Screening breeding partners for PRA and other genetic disorders can help to reduce the risk of passing on the disease to future generations.

If you suspect that your Lhasa Apso may be experiencing vision loss or other symptoms related to PRA, it’s important to schedule an appointment with a veterinary ophthalmologist as soon as possible. Early detection and treatment can help to slow the progression of the disease and preserve your dog’s quality of life.

The Importance of Regular Eye Exams

The Importance Of Regular Eye Exams
As a dog owner, it’s important to ensure that your furry companion is healthy and happy. One aspect of a Lhasa Apso’s health that is frequently overlooked is their eyes. Your Lhasa Apso’s eyes may seem fine at first glance, but there could be underlying issues that only a professional eye exam can detect. Regular eye exams are crucial for maintaining your Lhasa Apso’s ocular health and overall well-being. In this section, we’ll dive into the importance of regular eye exams for Lhasa Apsos, including how they can detect eye problems early, prevent blindness, and improve your pet’s quality of life.

Early Detection of Eye Problems

Regular eye exams are crucial for early detection of eye problems that may happen to your Lhasa Apso. Early detection can significantly increase the chances of successful treatment and preservation of their vision. One of the most common eye issues among Lhasa Apsos is cataracts, which can be effectively managed if detected early on. Other eye problems like glaucoma and dry eye syndrome can also be detected and treated before they cause irreversible damage to the eye.

However, since Lhasa Apsos are susceptible to inherited eye diseases such as progressive retinal atrophy, early detection is especially important in this breed. By detecting these problems early on, veterinary ophthalmologists can manage and possibly slow down the progression of the disease before it leads to irreversible blindness.

These diseases often develop gradually over time, meaning your Lhasa Apso may not show any overt symptoms until it’s too late. Regular eye exams can detect subtle changes in your dog’s eyes that cannot be observed with the naked eye. Through a comprehensive eye exam conducted by a veterinary ophthalmologist, any changes in your Lhasa Apso’s eye condition can be detected and treated promptly.

Early detection of eye problems is vital when it comes to preserving the vision of your Lhasa Apso. By scheduling regular eye exams with a veterinary ophthalmologist and following their recommendations, owners of Lhasa Apsos can ensure that the early stages of any eye problems are detected and treated appropriately.

Preventing Blindness

One of the most important reasons why regular eye exams are crucial for Lhasa Apsos is preventing blindness. Lhasa Apsos are prone to various eye diseases that can cause permanent blindness if left untreated.

According to the American Kennel Club, cataracts are a common eye problem in Lhasa Apsos that can lead to blindness. In fact, Lhasa Apsos have a higher risk of developing cataracts compared to other dog breeds. Cataracts cause the lens of the eye to become cloudy, eventually resulting in vision loss if not treated promptly.

Another eye problem that can lead to blindness is glaucoma. Glaucoma is a condition where the pressure inside the eye increases, damaging the optic nerve and eventually causing blindness. Lhasa Apsos are also at a higher risk of developing glaucoma compared to other dog breeds.

Dry Eye Syndrome is another condition that can lead to blindness if left untreated. This condition occurs when there is a lack of tear production, resulting in dryness of the eyes. If not treated in time, it can cause ulcers and corneal scarring, eventually leading to vision loss.

Cherry Eye is another common problem in Lhasa Apsos. It is a condition where the gland in the third eyelid becomes exposed, causing a red or pink mass to protrude from the eye. While this condition is not usually painful, if left untreated it can cause damage to the cornea, leading to vision loss.

Lastly, Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA) is a genetic condition that causes a gradual deterioration of the retina, eventually leading to blindness. Lhasa Apsos are at a higher risk of developing PRA compared to many other dog breeds.

To prevent blindness in Lhasa Apsos, it is essential to schedule regular eye exams with a qualified veterinarian ophthalmologist. During these exams, any eye problems can be identified early on and treated before they progress to cause permanent damage. By doing so, you can help your furry companion maintain their vision and quality of life.

Eye ProblemRisk in Lhasa ApsosPreventive Action
CataractsHigher risk compared to other breedsSchedule regular eye exams, consider surgery if necessary
GlaucomaHigher risk compared to other breedsSchedule regular eye exams, manage pressure with medication or surgery if necessary
Dry Eye SyndromeNo elevated riskSchedule regular eye exams, manage with artificial tears and medication if necessary
Cherry EyeNo elevated riskSchedule regular eye exams, monitor for changes in the third eyelid, consider surgery if necessary
Progressive Retinal AtrophyHigher risk compared to many other breedsSchedule regular eye exams, genetic testing can help identify carriers early on

Overall Well-being

Regular eye exams aren’t just important for preventing serious eye problems, but they also contribute to your Lhasa Apso’s overall well-being. Our furry friends need their eyesight to engage fully with the world around them, and by making sure their vision is in top shape, you’re ensuring they can navigate their environment safely and comfortably.

Aside from avoiding potential injury, a regular eye exam can help catch eye health issues that affect your Lhasa Apso’s comfort, happiness and quality of life. For example, untreated eye infections or chronic dry eye syndrome can lead to itching, redness, and pain in your pet, causing them to become agitated and uncomfortable. An eye exam can help detect these issues early on, preventing discomfort and improving your pet’s quality of life.

Lhasa Apsos are sensitive dogs that bond closely with their owners, and their overall wellbeing is tightly connected to their social and emotional wellness. If an eye problem causes a decrease in their social interaction, such as making them too uncomfortable to be around people or other animals, it can lead to depression, anxiety, and more serious behavioral issues.

By taking your Lhasa Apso for regular eye exams and addressing any issues that may arise, you’re ensuring their mental and emotional well-being, which goes a long way to keeping them healthy for years to come.

Benefits of Regular Eye Exams on Overall Well-being
1. Prevent discomfort: Early detection of eye infections or chronic dry eye syndrome can prevent your pet from experiencing pain, redness, and itching that can decrease their overall comfort and happiness.
2. Improve Quality of Life: Treating potential eye problems ensures that your pup can see their environment clearly, interact with others without discomfort, and remain active and engaged throughout their lifetime.
3. Protect against depression and anxiety: Because Lhasa Apsos are sensitive dogs who need to be a part of their family’s lives, any health problems can lead to social isolation and depression.

When to Schedule Eye Exams

When To Schedule Eye Exams
As a Lhasa Apso owner, it’s important to keep up with regular eye exams to ensure your furry friend stays healthy. But when is the best time to schedule an eye exam? The general recommendation from veterinarians is to have your Lhasa Apso’s eyes examined once a year. This frequency is recommended for dogs of all ages, from puppies to seniors.

However, there are certain situations where it may be necessary to schedule an eye exam more frequently. For example, Lhasa Apsos that are more prone to certain eye conditions, such as glaucoma, may need to be examined more frequently. Additionally, puppies should have their eyes examined shortly after birth to check for congenital issues that could lead to vision problems later in life.

If you notice any changes in your Lhasa Apso’s eyes, it’s important to schedule an exam as soon as possible. Signs of eye problems can include redness, tearing, cloudiness, or any noticeable changes in vision. Lhasa Apsos can be prone to conditions such as cataracts and progressive retinal atrophy, so it’s important to stay on top of any changes in your furry friend’s eyesight.

Finally, it’s important to schedule an eye exam if your Lhasa Apso is going to undergo any major medical treatment or surgery. Certain medications and procedures can impact your dog’s eyesight, so it’s important for your vet to closely monitor their eyes during these times. By staying on top of regular eye exams, you can keep your Lhasa Apso healthy and happy for years to come.

What Happens During a Lhasa Apso Eye Exam

What Happens During A Lhasa Apso Eye Exam
Going for an eye exam can be a daunting experience for both humans and pets. You may be wondering what to expect during a Lhasa Apso eye exam, and how you can prepare your furry friend for it. Understanding the process can help ease any anxiety you may have and ensure that your pet receives the necessary care. This section will guide you through the step-by-step process of what occurs during a Lhasa Apso eye exam, what types of exams may be conducted, and how to prepare for the appointment.

The History and Physical Exam

During the history and physical exam portion of a Lhasa Apso’s eye exam, the veterinarian will ask you questions about your pet’s overall health and any past eye problems or symptoms they may have experienced. This information can help the vet in determining what specific tests and procedures are necessary during the ophthalmic exam.

Some questions that may be asked during the history portion of the exam include:

  • When was the last time your Lhasa Apso had an eye exam?
  • Have you noticed any changes in your pet’s eye appearance or behavior?
  • Has your pet been squinting, pawing at their eye, or rubbing their face on surfaces?
  • Have you seen any discharge, cloudiness or changes in their vision?
  • Is your Lhasa Apso on any medications or supplements that may affect their eyes?

During the physical exam portion of the eye exam, your veterinarian will:

  • Check your dog’s overall health status by listening to their heart and lungs, and feeling their abdomen
  • Assess any abnormalities in the eyelid or eyelashes
  • Check for abnormalities in the pupil size, shape, and response to light
  • Examine the surface of the eye and the conjunctivae(white part of the eye) for redness or signs of irritation.

The history and physical exam is an essential part of the eye exam process, as it can provide the veterinarian with valuable information about your Lhasa Apso’s general health and any underlying conditions that may be affecting their eyes. Answering these questions truthfully and accurately to your best abilities can help ensure that the exam is thorough and any potential issues are identified as early as possible.

The Ophthalmic Exam

During the ophthalmic exam, the veterinarian will assess the health of your Lhasa Apso’s eyes in greater detail. This exam will include the following steps:

  • Visual Acuity Testing: The veterinarian may use special charts to assess how well your dog can see at different distances. They may also use a light to check how well the pupils react to changes in lighting.
  • External Eye Evaluation: The vet will examine the outside of your dog’s eyes, looking for any visible signs of injury, infection or disease. They may also assess the overall health of the eyelids and surrounding tissues.
  • Internal Eye Evaluation: The vet will use an ophthalmoscope to look inside your dog’s eyes, examining the lens, retina, optic nerve and other structures for any signs of abnormalities, including cataracts, glaucoma, and inflammation.
  • Tonometry: To check the pressure within the eyes, the vet may use a tonometer. Elevated eye pressure may be a sign of glaucoma.

It is important to note that the ophthalmic exam is a non-invasive procedure that does not cause any pain or discomfort. However, some dogs may squirm or resist the exam, so it is essential to prepare your Lhasa Apso ahead of time by getting them used to being touched around the eyes and ears. This can be done through gentle handling and positive reinforcement training.

The ophthalmic exam is a crucial component of a comprehensive eye exam for your Lhasa Apso. By identifying eye problems early on, you can help prevent serious eye conditions from developing and ensure that your furry friend remains healthy and happy for years to come.

Specialized Testing

During a Lhasa Apso eye exam, there may be a need for specialized testing to further evaluate any potential eye problems. Some of the specialized tests that may be used during an eye exam include:

  • Tonometry: This test is used to measure the pressure inside the eye. High eye pressure can be an indication of glaucoma, which can lead to blindness if left untreated. Tonometry can help detect glaucoma at an early stage, making it easier to treat.
  • Fluorescein Staining: This test involves applying a special fluorescent dye to the surface of the eye. The dye will highlight any scratches or abnormalities on the cornea, which can help diagnose conditions such as corneal ulcers.
  • Electroretinography (ERG): This test measures the electrical activity of the retina. It is typically used to diagnose inherited retinal diseases such as progressive retinal atrophy.
  • Gonioscopy: This test involves using a special lens to examine the drainage angle of the eye. It can help diagnose conditions such as glaucoma and determine the best course of treatment.

It’s important to note that these specialized tests may not be necessary for every Lhasa Apso eye exam. Your veterinarian may recommend or perform these tests if they suspect an underlying eye problem that requires further evaluation. Trusting your veterinarian to guide you through the testing process is crucial in maintaining the overall health of your Lhasa Apso’s eyes.

How to Prepare for a Lhasa Apso Eye Exam

Preparing for a Lhasa Apso’s eye exam is an essential part of ensuring the exam yields optimal results. Here are some tips to help you prepare:

Determine the Right Time for the Exam: Schedule your Lhasa Apso’s eye exam for a time that works well for both you and your dog. Consider factors such as their feeding and exercise schedule, and try to book the exam for a time when they are more likely to be relaxed and cooperative.

Gather Information: Gather any previous medical records you have for your Lhasa Apso and bring them to the appointment. This can be helpful in determining any changes in their eye health over time. Also, be prepared to answer questions about your Lhasa Apso’s medical history and any symptoms they may be experiencing.

Cleanliness and Grooming: Clean your Lhasa Apso’s face and around their eyes before the exam to make it easier for the veterinarian to examine their eyes. Trim any hair around their eyes or face that may obstruct the exam, but avoid shaving the hair down to the skin.

Bring treats and Favourite Toys: Bringing treats and favorite toys for your Lhasa Apso can help them feel more comfortable and at ease during the exam. The treats also help to reinforce good behavior during the check-up.

Stay calm and supportive: As a pet owner, it is natural to feel anxious or worried during the eye exam; however, it is essential to remain calm and supportive of your Lhasa Apso. It assures them that they are in safe hands and prevents making them more anxious and restless.

By following these tips, you can help ensure that your Lhasa Apso’s eye exam goes smoothly and efficiently, leading to the best possible outcomes for your furry friend’s eye health.


In conclusion, caring for the eyes of your Lhasa Apso is essential to ensure their overall health and well-being. Regular eye exams play a vital role in detecting and preventing serious eye conditions that could lead to blindness if left undiagnosed and untreated. As pet owners, it is our responsibility to ensure that our furry friends receive the best possible care, including regular eye exams. By following the tips outlined in this article, you can help maintain your Lhasa Apso’s eye health and catch any potential problems early on.

Remember, the anatomy of a Lhasa Apso’s eye is unique, and they are more prone to developing certain eye conditions such as cataracts, glaucoma, dry eye syndrome, cherry eye, and progressive retinal atrophy. That’s why it’s crucial to keep track of your furry friend’s eye health and stay alert for any changes in behavior or appearance.

Getting your Lhasa Apso tested at the right time and in the right way can make all the difference in catching and treating any problems early, which can help prevent long-term damage and avoid costly, difficult treatments down the road.

So, if you haven’t already, it’s time to schedule an appointment with your veterinarian and get your Lhasa Apso evaluated for any potential eye problems. By taking proactive steps to care for your pet’s eyes, you can help them remain healthy, happy, and active for years to come.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the recommended frequency for Lhasa Apso eye exams?

It is recommended to schedule annual eye exams for Lhasa Apsos to ensure their eyes are healthy and catch any issues early on.

What symptoms should I look out for that might indicate a problem with my Lhasa Apso’s eyes?

Eye discharge, redness or swelling, squinting, and a change in eye color or appearance are all potential symptoms of eye issues in Lhasa Apsos.

Can Lhasa Apsos develop eye problems later in life, even if they’ve never had any before?

Yes, eye problems can develop at any time in a Lhasa Apso’s life. That is why regular eye exams are crucial even if your dog has never had any previous eye issues.

Is it true that some eye issues in Lhasa Apsos can be inherited?

Yes, some eye issues such as progressive retinal atrophy can be inherited. That is why it’s important to get your Lhasa Apso from a reputable breeder who performs genetic testing on their breeding stock.

What should I expect during a Lhasa Apso eye exam?

A thorough eye exam will involve examining the eyelids, cornea, lens, and retina. The veterinarian might also perform specialized testing such as tonometry to measure eye pressure.

Can I clean my Lhasa Apso’s eyes at home?

Cleaning the area around the eyes with a damp cloth is generally safe, but it’s best to check with your veterinarian for recommendations and specific instructions for cleaning your Lhasa Apso’s eyes.

Is it okay to use human eye drops on my Lhasa Apso?

No, human eye drops are not safe for dogs and can cause further damage to their eyes. Always use veterinarian-prescribed medication for your Lhasa Apso’s eye issues.

What can I do to prevent eye problems in my Lhasa Apso?

Regular eye exams and preventative care such as protecting their eyes from injury and keeping their environment clean can help prevent eye problems in Lhasa Apsos.

Are there any breeds that are prone to the same eye problems as Lhasa Apsos?

Yes, other breeds such as Shih Tzus, Cocker Spaniels, and Poodles are also prone to similar eye issues such as cataracts and glaucoma.

Can I give my Lhasa Apso any supplements or vitamins to improve their eye health?

It’s best to consult with your veterinarian before giving any supplements or vitamins to your Lhasa Apso as some can interact with other medications or have adverse effects.


Britta Thygesen

Britta Thygesen

A passionate dog owner and a full-time certified dog trainer. Aspires to make DogCareHacks a go-to place for all the doggo info. Shares personal experience and professional knowledge.

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