Equine Ophthalmology By: Josie Steaples

Equine Ophthalmology is the chronic study of horses' eyes. Ophthalmologist specialize in vision care, and treatment of horse eye diseases, and try to find preventives to eye injuries.


There are many types of common eye injuries found in horses such as Corneal Ulcers, Eyelid Lacerations, and Orbital Fractures. A Corneal Ulcer is a scratch on the surface of the eye caused by trauma. The second common type of injury is an Eyelid Laceration that when the eyelid gets caught on a sharp object it separates the eyelid for the skin. The third type of incident is an Orbital Fracture, this is when the bone around the eye (the bone holding the eye in the socket) is fractured and this is usually caused by trauma. The last common eye injury is Foreign Body, this is when something that doesn't belong in the eye is in the eye. Such as hay, seeds, grass, thorns, burrs, and possible wood.

Top Left: Corneal Ulcer. Bottom Left: Orbital Fracture. Top Right: Eyelid Laceration. Bottom Right: Foreign Body.


If a horse has experienced a past injury that was never taken care of... the eye injury will slowly turn into Moon Blindness. Moon Blindness is a chronic, painful eye disease, and is he most common type of blindness found in horses. When a horse has developed this blindness it might become spooked (scared) to somethings that have never bothered him before. When a horse as all the sudden become spooky this means that the Corpa Nigra in the eye begins to loosen and move around, so when your horse takes a step or moves in any way the Corpa moves too.


There are many different types of resolutions to eye injuries, but the main one is reconstructive surgery. But before any surgery can take place 2-3 months of post-operative surgery in required. And sometimes after the regular medicating if the eye in the 2-3 months the eye is healed and no surgery is required!


Did you know!

1. Horses can see 360 degrees around himself.

2. Horses have NO depth perception.

3. Horses can see better at night than during the day.

4. Horses' eyes are nine times larger than a human's.

5. Horses have the biggest eyeball out of all land animals.

6. Horse can't burp.

7. Horses can't vomit.

8. A horses heart weighs on average around 10-15 lbs.

9. Horses drink around 25 gallons of water a day depending on the weather.

10. There is one tooth in the mouth of a horse that is bigger than its brain.











Created with images by christels - "horse eye mirror"

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