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Wild Child
Neapolitan Mastiff

health page about eyes
Some useful info you might need to know
There are a number of conditions seen in Neapolitans worldwide, and it is our belief that dogs should be routinely tested and/or checked for eye conditions, including:

Cherry eye Where the third eyelid protrudes over the eye itself. This condition is easily rectified, but if infection is already present, complications can arise. There are a few lines that have endeavoured to eliminate this from their stock.

Entropian Seen regularly in many breeds, but Neapolitans tend to be more prone due to their excessive wrinkle and thickness of skin causing their eyelid (in particular, the upper lid) to roll in and rub against the eye. If left unchecked, it can cause corneal ulceration and blindness due to abrasion of the lashes and hair on the eye itself. Speaking from experience, corneal ulceration is VERY painful and despite many dogs being apparently unaffected by their ulcers, once the entropian is surgically fixed, their relief is obvious!

Ectropian Also seen regularly in many breeds, eg bloodhounds and bassetts, creating the 'haw' appearance of the lower lid. It occurs when the eyelid, usually the lower, rolls out, exposing the pink conjunctiva. It is acceptable in many breeds, including Neapolitans, but it can look unsightly and may cause tear staining of the face and corneal ulceration due to dry eyes.
Progressive retinal atrophy PRA involves degeneration of the retina causing blindness, which can develop over a relatively long period, but there is no pain involved, so the condition can go unnoticed until the latter stages. Some owners remark on an increase in the 'glow' of the eye at night and in photos, and the condition often begins with night blindness. There are DNA tests available for dominant PRA in mastiffs, so any breeding stock should be tested prior to breeding!

Canine multifocal retinopathy This disease causes 'wrinkles' or 'blisters' in the retina, but no obvious blindness occurs. CMR has been seen in mastiffs overseas, but unfortunately, due to the small number of breeders testing and checking for diseases, we are not yet sure that this disease is prevalent in the Neapolitan mastiff. If any puppy bred by ourselves is diagnosed with CMR by a veterinary ophthalmologist, we will be happy to take samples and pay for testing.

Persistent Pupillary Membrane It is not clear if this disease is inherited, but it is regularly tested for overseas and affected dogs should be excluded from breeding programs. PPM clinical signs can range from nothing to complete blindness &/or cataracts. It can be seen in young dogs as white spots on the iris or may show as cataracts or vision impaired. There is no treatment available for the strands themselves, but in cases of severe cataract formation it can be surgically assisted by veterinary ophthalmologists

To read more information about EYE Issues click here.

The information on this page was written
by our friend
Dr. Rebekah Day -
the Veterinarian, Neapolitan Mastiff  Breeder in Australia, the Owner of
The Peritas Kennels
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PRA affected retina
Normal Retina