We've been dealing with a little problem around here. It all started back two years ago when my dogs had cryptosperidium. It's a terrible disease that never goes away. Just when you think it's over, something else happens that leads back to it. Samba and Sky both died from it, five days apart. They virtually starved to death because the disease prevented them from absorbing food.
We thought everyone else was OK, but then both Noah and Fudge started having intestinal problems. Noah was diagnosed with colitis and Fudge with leaky gut syndrome, both the after effects of the crypto. They're now both on special diets designed to be easily digestible. They also take antibiotics, Fudge takes Metronidazole daily and Noah took sulfasalazine.
Everything was going along nicely for awhile, then Noah started having red, goopy eyes. The vet had warned me that dry eye could be a side effect of the sulfa drug. The first time I noticed it, we tested the dryness of his eyes and they were OK. We used an ointment to sooth them and they seemed to get better.
Then Noah's eyes got red and goopy again and didn't respond to the ointment. Dr B tested them again and this time his left eye was too dry. This meant he could no longer take the sulfa drug for his colitis. We switched him to Metronidazole along with Fudge and he adjusted well, but his eyes weren't getting better. We tried some steroid drops and they seems a little better but we were looking for "Happy Eyes" and his weren't.
Again we tested for dryness and the left one was still too dry, so we started him on Severin's solution which is a combination of Mucomyst, Pilocarpine, Gentamicine and artificial tears. This solution is supposed to promote tear production and sooth the eyes. We got home and I put a drop in each eye. They immediately turned bright red and he started pawing at them. I waited a while hoping they would settle down but they got worse and he wouldn't open his eyes. Back to the vet.
Apparently Noah is sensitive to Pilocarpine which is the important ingredient for tear production. Dr B stained his eyes and checked for ulceration. There was none, so he cleaned Noah's eyes and told me to put warm compresses on his eyes several times a day. He said to use an antibiotic ointment twice a day till his eyes were happy again. Then we would try another batch of Severin's that he mixed up with a smaller amount of Pilocarpine.
Unfortunately, Noah's eyes didn't get happy. They got even worse and Monday I was afraid he might be losing his vision in the left eye. It was very red and cloudy looking and he was squinting again.
Noah was showing a sensitivity to the neomycin in his ointment, so we're now doing tobramycin drops three times a day along with warm compresses a couple times a day. Noah is also wearing a cone so that he doesn't scratch his cornea.
It's too early to tell if this is going to work but he's not trying to rub his eyes and he's not shaking his head or squinting. He has both eyes open and it looks like the redness is coming down a little. We'll be doing this thru the weekend, then Dr B and I have a meeting scheduled for Monday. If Noah's eyes are happier by them, we'll start him on the lower dose Severin's solution for the dryness. If his eye is still red and goopy on Monday, he'll go visit with Dr B on Tuesday. He'll sedate him and take a closer look to see if something else is going on in that left eye.
Noah is being a doll about all this. We know it's painful and he wants to rub his eyes a lot, but when he sees me pick up his eyedrops, he comes and sits in front of me and lets me put them in without a complaint. When the doctor puts things in his eyes, he just sits very still and waits till it's over.
This disease has been a nightmare for all of us. Just when we think it's all behind us, something else happens that traces directly back to the crypto. Please keep your paws crossed that Noah's eyes get happy this weekend.