Why consider a visit to an animal eye clinic?

Why consider a visit to an animal eye clinic? A general veterinarian can manage many eye problems. However, the skills of a veterinary ophthalmologist may be required for complicated or on-going eye conditions.

An animal eye clinic is staffed by board certified and residency trained veterinary eye doctors (ophthalmologists). After completing veterinary school, the resident doctor undergoes a 3-4 year residency program at a veterinary university or certified veterinary ophthalmic hospital. The resident trains under board certified veterinary ophthalmologists. During the training program, the resident learns to recognize and diagnose a multitude of eye conditions in all species of animals. Veterinary ophthalmologists take care of multiple species of animals. So training starts by learning the many differences in the eyes of the species. For instance, the pupil shapes are different among cats, dogs, horses, and goats. Retinas have a different appearance between species.

The resident learns to use specialized equipment for examination of the eyes. A different piece of equipment is used to examine the front part of the eye (cornea/iris) versus the back part (retina).  The resident must become proficient in various surgeries for eye conditions requiring surgical intervention. The resident learns to handle very delicate eye tissues, to use suture material as small as a strand of hair, and to utilize an operating microscope. Finally, for board certification, the resident must pass an examination testing knowledge and skills at the program completion.

Your pet’s eye needs are the focus of an animal eye clinic. The veterinary ophthalmologist will work closely with the general veterinarian with the goal of keeping your pet happy and healthy.

For more information on board certified veterinary ophthalmologists and animal eye clinics, check out the American College of Veterinary Ophthalmogists website, ACVO.org.


dog getting an eye exam.


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Our veterinary ophthalmology specialty practice serves southwest Florida with offices conveniently located in Estero and Naples and office hours Monday through Friday.