A Look At Eye Removal Surgery For Cats

Pet owners never want their cats to suffer, experience pain or have to undergo surgery that may leave them without everything they were born with. But, sometimes it’s necessary.


At Dr. Kelly’s Vet, the high volume of surgeries we perform allows us to keep the cost of procedures in an affordable range, which can make the experience a little bit easier for pet owners during what can be a challenging and sometimes stressful time.


One of those times may be when a cat needs to have an eye removed. The procedure, known as enucleation, becomes necessary for a variety of reasons. Sometimes a cat may get into a scuffle with another cat and suffer an injury to the eye.


The cat may also scratch it or suffer some type of trauma from falling or hitting it on something sharp. Cats may also suffer pain in the eye from glaucoma, which increases pressure on the eye, or experience ulcers from herpes on the eye. 


Enucleation, essentially, is needed when an eye no longer has the ability to see, when infection or trauma becomes overwhelming or when pain becomes too much. For cat owners, the thought of their pet losing an eye can be a lot to handle. But, understanding the procedure and what to expect makes the entire process a little less stressful.


What is involved. Enucleation surgery involves a veterinarian removing the affected eye along with eye tissue on the inner lids. The veterinarian will then stitch the top and bottom eyelids closed to protect the eye socket. Cat owners can expect the entire procedure to last about 90 minutes to several hours, to account for anesthesia and recovery time before heading home. 


What recovery time looks like. Pets generally feel relief after the surgery, but will need time to heal from the incision. Cat owners can expect to be sent home with antibiotics and painkillers. Most cats are back to their usual routines within about five days, and the swelling in the eye socket should subside within a few days. 


What complications look like. Sometimes complications can arise, and most often those complications are tied to an infection. Visible symptoms would include prolonged swelling of the eye socket and drainage of pus from the incision site. If a cat owner suspects that an infection might be present, they should reach out to the veterinarian who performed the enucleation to get guidance on follow up care. 


What it will cost. At Dr. Kelly’s Vet, we often perform dozens of surgeries a week in our mobile units and at our offices. By specializing in pet surgeries, we are able to offer affordable surgeries that often cost significantly less than a traditional veterinarian, including enucleation. At Dr. Kelly’s Vet, we charge between $550 and $650 per eye for enucleation surgery. 


Dr. Kelly’s Surgical Unit is a trusted veterinary team serving the Phoenix, Peoria and Tucson metro areas, with accessible locations in each market, offering highly specialized surgery, quality spay and neuter procedures, and accessible  dental care for pets. Contact us to learn more about our specialized services or to schedule an appointment.   


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