My article in the Withernsea & District Community News distributed to 9000 homes in East YorkshirePoppy’s Pets
Cats and dogs can suddenly go blind or develop impaired vision. Hypertension is one cause and should be treated as an emergency with your vet.
Signs of blindness:
1: Pupils are dilated (black area of the eye) and do not change (to black slits)
2: Disorientation in normal surroundings
3: Bumping into furniture and objects it would normally walk around
4: Crouch walking and head hung low
5: Startled easily (especially if deafness is a factor)
6: Stumbling with steps, etc, and reluctance to walk downstairs
8: Weight loss
Hypertension is high blood pressure and if a vet diagnoses this, your pet’s systolic pressure is probably above 160mmHg.
Various veterinary websites advise that cats under 7 years old have blood pressure measured yearly so any potential condition can be detected early, and from 7 years old the test should be twice a year.
Secondary causes – kidney, liver or hyperthyroid
Idiopathic – unknown causes
The cause of hypertension can be secondary causes or Idiopathic. A vet will check your pet’s eyes, take a blood pressure reading, withdraw blood and test for kidney disease, hyperthyroid and liver problems to ensure those factors did not cause hypertension. A urine analysis may be required too. If the results are clear, then hypertension is idiopathic, which means the hypertension is from unknown causes.
A pet may experience a personality change while blood pressure is high:
- Unresponsive brain fog
Please listen to your vet. Lifetime medication will be prescribed to manage hypertension, your pet will need a series of blood pressure tests until the systolic pressure is normal. To help with costs, you can buy a prescription from your vet and purchase medication from an approved online pet pharmacy. Without giving your pet the necessary medication, the illness can cause serious damage to the eyes, heart, kidney, brain and nervous system.
My elderly cat regained some sight because I sought veterinary help quickly and now has an everyday happy life. We are now a year on and Tabitha has blood pressure taken every three months. During this time
I am not a veterinary professional. This article does not give a diagnosis but purely awareness as my cat developed hypertension. Other illnesses can cause blindness so if you have concerns about your pet, please contact your vet directly.
Article appeared in the Withernsea District & Community News – 2022