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Ocular Surgery

By bond vet

An ocular surgery is a surgery that is performed directly on an eye, or in the eye area. Common examples include “cherry eye” surgery, eyelid mass removals, and procedures to help a corneal ulcer (an abrasion on the surface of the eye) heal.

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What is Ophthalmology?

In veterinary medicine, ophthalmology is a specialty that focuses on pets’ eyes. This includes diagnosis and treatment of eye problems like injuries, dry eye, glaucoma, cataracts, eyelid abnormalities, and more.

Below are common eye conditions in pets. If you suspect your pet may be suffering from one of these conditions, reach out to us for a surgery consultation. We’ll help diagnose your pet and determine the next steps.


Entropion is a condition in which the eyelids roll inward toward the eyes. One or both eyes may be affected on the upper eyelid, lower eyelid, or both eyelids.


Ectropion is the opposite of entropion. With ectropion, a pet’s eyelids roll outward, rather than rolling in toward the eye. This gives a pet a very droopy-eyed appearance, where you can usually see the pink on the inside of their eyelids.

Cherry Eye

“Cherry eye” refers to the appearance of a pet’s eye when their third eyelid gland is prolapsed.

Dogs and cats have three eyelids. The third eyelid not only provides an additional layer of eye protection, but also plays a very important role in tear production. However, sometimes the tear-producing gland of the third eyelid can “prolapse,” or flip out of its normal position.


An enucleation is the surgical removal of an eye. This is usually done for conditions in which the eye is chronically painful, especially if the eye no longer functions visually.

What does recovery look like for eye surgeries?

Specific instructions may vary, depending on which procedure was performed, and on your pet’s individual needs. But common things you’ll see after an eye surgery include:

  • Pet-safe medications from your vet for pain and inflammation, and possibly antibiotics.
  • An Elizabethan collar, and possibly a bandage over the eye area. The collar is necessary to prevent scratching and rubbing as much as possible, so your pet doesn’t accidentally remove their sutures too early or scratch the surface of their eye while trying to reach an itchy eyelid.
  • A recommendation for bed rest until the sutures are removed.
Vet Nurse examining a pup's eyes
Vet performing a recheck on a cat

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