Glaucoma is a condition in which pressure is placed on the eye, causing inadequate fluid drainage in the eye. If the condition becomes chronic or persists without treatment, it will eventually cause permanent damage to the optic nerve, resulting in blindness.

There are two types of glaucoma, primary and secondary. In primary, The fluid flow rate into or out of the eye is abnormal resulting in an increase in eye pressure. Secondary glaucoma is a separate condition causes intraocular fluid drainage to be slowed or blocked, resulting in increased pressure. It is believed to be twice as common as primary glaucoma.

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Symptoms:  Symptoms may include one or more of the following:

  • Pupils of eyes different sizes
  • Mild to severe eye pain (rubbing eye on the floor or with paw)
  • Appearance of vessels in the white of the eye
  • Redness of the eye
  • Cloudy cornea
  • Fluttering eye lid
  • Squinting
  • Tearing
  • Appetite loss and anti-social behavior (due to pain)
  • Light avoidance
  • Weak blink response
  • No response of pupil to light
  • Vision problems (bumping into objects, difficulty finding toys, walking gingerly)
  • Bulging swollen eye

Treatment Options:  Medical, surgical

 Known Mode of Inheritance:  Inherited open angle glaucoma is an autosomal recessive trait in beagles. Narrow angle glaucoma is inherited as an autosomal dominant trait in the Welsh springer spaniel. The mode of inheritance for glaucoma in other breeds has not been identified.

Age of onset:  Varies

Breeds affected: 

  • Cardigan: yes
  • Pembroke: yes
  • Other Breeds: yes

Incidence in Cardigans:  Unknown


  • Cardigans: no
  • Other breeds: yes
  • Active?: no

Registry:  Unknown 

Tests Available:  A glaucoma diagnosis is established by measuring pressure in the eye using a tonometer.

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