Healing the blind...one eyedrop at a time
In case I ever needed one good reason to be a vet, Minino is it. I always promise you updates on the cases I highlight and I’ll admit—sometimes I forget to comply. Today, however, I’m not only updating, I’m giving you some more happy news (as if the dog rabies success story wasn’t enough).
Remember the little blind kitten I told you about in this bittersweet post about a month ago? He was ringworm, mange, hookworm and roundworm-infected—not to mention flea-infested. His too-pink skin was visible beneath the sparse white haircoat. In truth, he looked more like an anorexic, cancer-ridden lab rat than a kitten.
The surface of Minino’s eyes were cloudy and bluish—he couldn’t see a darn thing. What’s worse, he had this Stevie Wonder sort of bounce to his head—as if he couldn’t quite get a handle on anything in his environment. In short—he was developmentally disabled.
Things hadn’t proceeded normally in Minino’s brain, due perhaps to the failure of normal nerve pathways to form. This can happen in blind babies due to poor stimulation of the visual nerves. (Everything in the brain is interconnected).
After cleaning him up and taking him to the ophthalmologist, I’d been able to get the right advice for treating him. Though things looked pretty grim in terms of the recovery of his sight, at least we had a plan.
After a couple of weeks of healing his corneas (with topical antibiotics) and stimulating his pupils to dilate (with topical Atropine) he was finally able to track movement. If I grabbed a bright toy and moved it back and forth in front of him he could follow it. Now, almost six weeks later, he can get around pretty well.
Minino still gets plenty of eye medication and his ringworm isn’t completely resolved, but he’s well on his way to normal catdom. I predict that in a year he’ll look like a completely normal cat.
From blindness and near-death to deadly-cute kitten status, Minino makes up for all the stress and heartache of recent weeks. Cases like his are the reason we all went to vet school. If only they all could do so well!