Guinea Pigs Eyes
Normal Guinea Pig Eyes are clear and bright. They protrude slightly and are of the same size. Guinea Pigs normally keep there eyes open all the time, even when they are sleeping. A very few may sleep with there eyes fully closed. While Guinea Pigs Eye vision is relatively poor they can distinguish colours.
Guinea Pigs Eyes come in a variety of colours. Most breeders identify these colours as Dark, Dark with Ruby Cast and Pink. Dark eyes can be described as Brown, Blue or Black. Healthy Eyes reflect Red in a strong light. This is normally noticeable in Ruby eyed pigs as there dark looking eyes have a pronounced Red cast to them. Even more noticeable when a photograph is taken with a flash.
- Crusty Eyes
- Watery Eyes
- Cloudy Eyes
- Receding Eyes
- Protruding Eyes
- Ulcerated Eyes
These signs may include and may not be limited to one of the following conditions :-
- URI (Upper Respiratory Infection)
- Injury (Example Straw Poke)
- Teeth Problems
Upper Respiratory Infection
Crusty Eyes can be a sign of a Upper Respiratory Tract Infection. A guinea pig with a Respiratory Infection may also have a Snotty Nose, Be Lethargic and may stop eating. Respiratory Infections need to be treated with Antibiotics. Please see the Dangerous Medications List and then see your Veterinarian Immediately.
A single or set of watery or cloudy eyes may be the result of an injury. Abrasions, Cuts or Punctures of the eye can be the result of an accident, Hay Pokes or Even Fighting. Examine the Eyes closely specially round the rims. Sometimes a bit of hay can work its way up behind the eye. If its partially visible can be pulled out with tweezers. If the eye(s) show signs of an Abrasion or clouds over it in any way, or looks red in the white area, or seems to be swollen or sinking, Get your Guinea Pig to an Experienced Veterinarian.
Treat Eye Injuries Promptly To Prevent Eye Loss
Protruding eyes can indicate an abscess, elongated roots or other problem. An x-
What will my vet do?
A vet will check the eye(s) for signs of damage or disease. He/She may flush the eye and Stain it to look for Abrasions or Ulceration and prescribe an eye drop like Fucithalmic which is a double action Antibiotic Eye Ointment 2 or 3 times daily may help reduce redness. Your vet may even perform a Tear Test.
Caution must be used as Fucithalmic is not licenced for use on Guinea Pigs
Allergies are very rare in Guinea Pigs. Do not make the mistake of Self Diagnosing Eye Discharge as an Allergy.
Your Loved Pet is Depending On You. SEE A VET…
A cataracts is an opacity of the lens the eye. Cataracts can be either be inherited or the result of disease or age. Older Guinea Pigs often experience a gradual clouding of the eye. Quick Onset is also reported to be caused by Diabetes. See Diabetes
Entropion is the turning of the eye lashes and irritation of the eye experienced by some Newborns. The eye may turn milky white and develop a Corneal Ulcer. This is Normally common in Teddies, Texels and Rexes. In most cases most pups will grow out of this condition after a few weeks.
The irritation can be eased by applying a sterile eye lubricant like Stye several times during the day.
Guinea Pigs seem to have poor eyesight to begin with. Some Guinea Pigs are blind and may have many causes. This could be due to Age, Injury or even Genetics.
A Guinea Pig born blind may also have other Genetic Defects. Please See MICROPHTHALMIA Below.
Observing your Guinea Pigs behaviour in an unfamiliar environment can help determine if your Guinea Pig is blind. You will also find that a blind Guinea Pig may startle more easily. A light shone in to the eye may reflect White instead of the usual Red reflected by a normal eye.
Fatty Eye (Also Known As Pea Eye)
Pea Eye (Fatty Eye) is a Permanent Protrusion of the Conjuctival Sac, thought to be inherited. Pea Eye and Fatty Eye are frequently grouped together by vets as Conjuctival Swelling. The Conjuctival Protrusions can be removed by laser if they interfering with Vision.
Guinea Pigs with Pea Eye (Fatty Eye) generally do not seem to be uncomfortable and treatment is usually not Necessary.
In some Guinea Pigs Pea Eye (Fatty Eye) has been linked to Fluid Retention. Not all Guinea Pigs with Heart conditions and Pea Eye show changes when using Lasix but it has been Reported in a few instances that when Lasix was given the Pea Eye Swelling was less prominent.
Treating Inflamed Conjunctiva
It has been reported in some cases that Inflamed Conjunctiva has been treated with an Anti-Inflammatory Drop and Antibiotic Drop/Cream has worked in some cases better then the usual Antibiotic Drop only.
MICROPHTHALMIA is a congenital condition where the eye is either very small or non-existent. Rendering the Guinea Pig Blind. This is generally the result of breeding a Roan X Roan or Dalmatian X Dalmatian. These white cavies are also known as “Lethals”. They may also suffer from disorders of the Digestive System and the animal may be missing one or more teeth and may even suffer deafness.
“I have my own personal experience where a Guinea Pig was miss sexed as a Girl. I placed my New Guinea Pig on the floor with its other female friend. Only to find the New Cavy Mated with the Original Cavy” I was hopeful that the mate was unsuccessful only two find after a month my cavy really started to put on excessive weight and pregnancy was a certain fact. On giving Birth she gave us 4 pups. Three were ok and the remaining one was just not right. We took them to the Vets immediately to be told three were healthy and the remaining one was a lethal. The vet informed us that she was blind and possibly death and that she only had approximately 4 teeth. We purchased Oxbow Critical Care and manually fed the pup for around 6 weeks. We had no intentions on giving up on this poor defenceless animal. It became more and more difficult to keep up with the feeding and weight loss/gain was never steady. Angel as we called her tried her best to stay with us but we felt deep down this was not the best thing for our loved animal and through discussions with out Vet had our Angel put to rest at 7 weeks of age. “
“A Heart Breaking Experience that I would never want to have to go through again.”