Cherry eye in French Bulldogs is a common eye condition that is seen in many breeds of dogs. It occurs when the third eyelid, also known as the nictitating membrane, becomes prolapsed and presents as a swollen red mass in the inner corner of the affected eye. This condition can be caused by a variety of reasons, and it is important to understand these causes to effectively treat the condition.
Cherry eye can be caused by certain anatomical limitations that cause the third eyelid gland to weaken and become prolapsed. This can be seen more commonly in certain breeds, such as the French Bulldog, and can be more common in dogs born with long and floppy ears, as these breeds are known for having shallow eye sockets that don’t provide much support for the prolapsed gland.
Tumors can also cause cherry eye in French Bulldogs, as these masses can press on the third eyelid, making it difficult to stay in place and therefore become prolapsed. It’s important to note that not all tumors will cause cherry eye and a thorough examination, including imaging and laboratory tests, should be performed to rule out any potential cancerous, or malignant, tumors.
Trauma & Inflammation
Trauma to the eye or eyelid can cause a knock in the third eyelid that leaves it weak and leads to it being prolapsed. In addition, inflammation, such as that caused by an infection, can cause cherry eye as well. Allergies, either ocular or environmental, can also cause inflammation in the affected eye and ultimately lead to cherry eye.
Infections can also cause cherry eye in French Bulldogs, as certain bacterial and viral agents can damage the gland and make it vulnerable to becoming prolapsed. Common bacterial agents that are known to cause this condition include Staphylococcus intermedius and Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Common viral agents include Canine distemper virus (CDV) and Canine adenovirus type 2 (CAV-2).
In conclusion, cherry eye in French Bulldogs can be caused by numerous factors, including anatomical issues, tumors, eye and eyelid trauma, inflammation due to an infection, and allergies. It is important to rule out any tumors and infections with the help of a veterinarian, before proceeding with treatment. Even when these conditions are treated, it is important to remember that recurrence is always possible due to anatomical issues that make the third eyelid more vulnerable to becoming prolapsed.
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