51 Leicester Road Hinckley Leicestershire LE10 1LW

Email: enquiries@fairfieldvets.co.uk

Fairfield Pet Stories

Fairfield Veterinary surgeons Terry Dunne and Geraldine Young write "Interesting Pet Stories" articles for the Hinckley Herald, published by the Hinckley Times.

View our Pet Stories below from dogs, cats and all kinds of other pets and wildlife. The stories are all genuine cases from the Fairfield archives.
Warning: Some images may be upsetting for some viewers.

View our archive Pet Stories Here

"Jack" - Golden Labrador with Progressive Retinal Atrophy

It was just as my consultation with "Jack's" owners was coming to an end. We had established through a fine needle biopsy that a lump they had discovered was a benign fatty tumour and not something of any great concern. Then, just as they were walking out the door they mentioned that they thought "Jack's" pupils were more dilated than they had been previously.

Rather than dismiss their observations, I sensed immediately that there might be a more sinister explanation and invited them back in to my consulting room for a more detailed ophthalmic examination. It soon became clear that "Jack" had an incurable disease that would inevitably leave him completely blind.

Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA) is a genetic condition that causes a deterioration of the cells at the back of the eye (retina) that are involved in processing the visual image. As his receptors began to fail the pupils dilated in an effort to attract more light into his eye to improve the processed image. Sadly, there are no treatments available for this condition which although painless leaves the patient without any sight. The mainstay of controlling this particular disease is through identifying affected genetic carriers through eye testing. It is a great personal frustration that so many puppies are sold in the United Kingdom where the available Kennel Club health schemes(link opens in a new page) have not been utilised to the detriment of so many pets and consequently their owners.

Currently,"Jack" can still see although his vision will be somewhat blurred. Fortunately, the process of degeneration can be relatively slow, occurring over a period of many months. This will allow "Jack" an opportunity to acclimatise and reboot his other senses, some of which are already highly tuned. His favourite toy may well have to be coated with a fine layer of marmite to allow him to track it down for at the age of 6 years "Jack" still has plenty of frisbee hunting to come!

Terry Dunne
BVMS, Cert SAO, MRCVS

"Fudge" - Chocolate Lab with Cruciate Ligament Rup...
"Jackdaw" - Bitten by Cat

How to find us

Fairfield Veterinary Centre

51 Leicester Road,
Hinckley,
Leicestershire
LE10 1LW

Tel: 01455 637 642
Fax: 01455 631 898

enquiries@fairfieldvets.co.uk

Emergency Number
0116 255 6360

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