Is he blind?

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Is he blind?

This is a discussion on Is he blind? within the Horse Health forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category

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    02-02-2009, 02:52 PM
Super Moderator
Is he blind?

How can you tell if your horse is blind? I have been thining for a while now (maybe a year) that my old black horse is blind. I'm not going to call the vet out to check because he's 30 and if he's blind, he's blind...although, if I have her out I'll get her to look at him. I completely forgot to ask when they did shots.

Some days I think he's blind. If I talk to him or make noise he looks at me. But on occasion when I walk into his stall w/out noise at night (I shut his door last so it's open for up to 30 minutes before I go to the house) he'll jump. I can't decide if he's in his own world or blind.

Just curious, I've done the finger test and he blinks but I'm not sure if that's because he can feel my hand comming towards him or if he's blind. His eyes look normal to me...
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    02-02-2009, 03:37 PM
Green Broke
There is another "test" you can do that is probably a bit more accurate than the finger test.

Have someone help you. Cover one eye (let's say the right eye), and stand on the left a few feet away. Have someone hold him and toss cotton balls at his left eye. Repeat to the right. No flinching ect... probably blind or partially blind. At his advanced age, I don't think it would be at all a surprise that some sight is gone.

Can you see any blue clouds in his eyes? Do his eyes water in sunlight?
Other than his jumping if he isn't aware you're there, has he misjudged anything in his environment and bumped or knocked into it? If you're walking next to him (without a lead on) has he inadvertently crowded you?
    02-02-2009, 03:48 PM
Super Moderator
He has bumped into the side of the barn door but I'm not sure if that is eagerness to get in or misjudging. His eyes do water in sunlight. I think they are pretty bright but I'll look in them today for clouding. He does have that ridge that looks like a canyon wall but I think they all have that somewhat in the pupil area...
He has never been one to crowd me... for the winter he's in a small paddock so if he is blind, he knows his boundaries. He also comes in and go's to the 3rd stall on the right every night. The other night I had my Rhino in the aisle way for lights and he kind of snorted so maybe he sees some?
    02-02-2009, 03:58 PM
Green Broke
He probably does have some sight, shapes ect... , his eyes watering in the bright sunlight is encouraging for that reason. Because they' re watering might mean you want to make him comfortable and possibly prevent further loss, if possible.

A sight I went to while researching T's sight issues was "the guardian mask". Even my vet was very impressed with this sight and the info was so very helpful in making T comfortable.

Wish I knew how to put this sight in so you could just click and get there, but I am very tech challenged and my tech husband isn't here to help me, sorry.
    02-02-2009, 03:59 PM
Super Moderator
I'll google it! Thanks!
    02-02-2009, 04:08 PM
GRRRR, this site is annoying today, keeps logging me out. This is the third time I've posted here.......

Anyhoo, we have a 30+ pony who does what your describing. She's even walked into the gate of her paddock after we gone out and closed it.

This year when we had all the snow on the ground she was reluctant to wander her paddock. It seemed like all that white disoriented her.

That said, she's the first one to see someone walking down out road, so it only seems to be things close up.

Some days her eye's look cloudy to me and then other times they look normal.

Were like you farmpony, if the vets out then we'll get her looked at. She gets around her space just fine.

The Guardian masks are really good, we have one for another horse, albeit expensive.

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