There is a registry for eye diseases called the Canine Eye Registration Foundation (CERF).  A dog must be checked by a Board Certified Ophthalmologist, who examines the eyes for any signs of disease.  The registration is good for one year only, as many eye diseases that are inherited can develop as the dog ages.

Ectropion / Entropian

These conditions cause the eyelids to roll out (Ectropian) or to roll in too tightly (Entropian).  Some dogs have both problems in the same eyelid.  Poorly fitting lids may cause excessive tear production or allow the eye to become too dry, damaged or infected.  Depending on severity, the impact on the dog may be controlled with eye-drops and lubricants or corrected surgically.  This is considered to be an inherited problem and dogs that have surgical correction of their lids are not allowed to compete in AKC conformation shows.


In this disease the lens of the eye becomes cloudy, impairing the dog’s vision.  Some dogs can be born with this condition (called congenital or juvenile cataracts) and this form is generally considered to be inherited in most breeds of dogs.  Other cataracts develop only in old age and are particularly common in dogs with Diabetes Mellitus.  They can be surgically removed.