New Lease Of Life For Cocker Spaniel After Cataract Surgery
A virtually blind Cocker Spaniel has been given a new lease of life thanks to intricate cataract surgery by experts at an award-winning Wiltshire animal hospital.
Eastcott Veterinary Referrals, which is based in Swindon and part of Linnaeus, helped Mollie, a beloved 14-year-old family pet who was struggling with severe cataracts for several months.
Mollie’s owner Michele L’Estrange said she first noticed a cloudy film over both Mollie’s eyes last year. She then spoke to her vet and was advised to wait until the cataracts progressed a bit more before any kind of surgical route could be considered.
At the end of 2021, Mollie’s cataracts got significantly worse, her behaviour changed dramatically and her condition deteriorated rapidly.
Michele said: “It was heart-breaking to see how drastically Mollie’s personality changed as her cataracts developed up to the point where she was practically blind.
“She grew frightened to go on walks and constantly kept bumping into things throughout the day.
“Her condition got worse over Christmas as she couldn’t even find her way from inside the house out to the garden and eventually fell down the stairs one day.
“I got in touch with our vets again who referred us to Eastcott and I went to them straightaway from my home near Wokingham.”
Eastcott’s head of ophthalmology, Ida Gilbert, took charge of Mollie’s case and diagnosed her with hyper-mature cataracts which had left her lenses wrinkled and shrunken.
Ida said: “Mollie’s condition was quite severe when we first met her all those months ago. The danger in these cases is the risk of the cataracts causing chronic inflammation inside the eye and secondary glaucoma or retinal detachment, making them a poor candidate for surgery and then possibly permanent blindness.
“We obviously wanted to avoid all this from happening and wanted to give Mollie the best chance to live a full, happy and healthy life and the best option at this stage was a double-cataract surgery.
“We set out doing a number of tests on her to determine if she could have cataract surgery, and despite her age, we were thrilled that she was the perfect surgical candidate with a clean bill of health.”
Michele said she was apprehensive about surgery on her beloved companion, purely due to her age.
Michele continued: “I was fully aware of Mollie’s age and consider myself extremely lucky to have had her as part of my life for so long.
“The key thing for me is to make sure she continues to lead a happy and healthy life for as long as she can, and I knew surgery was the best option to help achieve this.
“I picked up Mollie the day after surgery and could not believe my eyes. She was like a completely different dog to the one I dropped off!
“She was so happy and bubbly and just full of life. I knew immediately that I made the best decision for her. More importantly, her eyes looked amazing and there was a notable difference in her behaviour and her personality.
“It’s not just myself who has noticed the difference, so many of my friends have commented on what a big positive change she has had since the surgery. It’s as though it has taken five years off her age and I am so incredibly grateful.
“I cannot praise the team at Eastcott enough. Every single person at the hospital has gone above and beyond to support with Mollie’s care pre- and post-surgery. It has been quite an intense time in terms of her medications and her check-ups and each time the Eastcott team deliver on a tremendous job.
“I am so happy to see Mollie is now bouncing around the house, much like a puppy until she remembers how old she is! I cannot thank the Eastcott team enough for all the advice and support, without whom I wouldn’t have got my beautiful little girl back.”
Eastcott offers specialist expert care in cardiology, dentistry, internal medicine, ophthalmology, oral and maxillofacial surgery, oncology, orthopaedics, soft tissue surgery, laparoscopy, neurology, diagnostic imaging, CT and MRI, anaesthesia and analgesia and emergency and critical care.
For more information, visit www.eastcottreferrals.co.uk or search for Eastcott Veterinary Referrals on social media.