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Progressive Eye Disease Super Support

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Cat Pupils and Unique Eyes: An Inside Look of Feline Vision

Pet Diet & Nutrition 3 min read
Photo of a white cat with really mesmerizing green eyes looking at the camera to illustrate a blog about cat pupils and eye health

Have you ever noticed how cat pupils can change so much during the day? Looking into your kitty’s mesmerizing eyes can tell you a lot about their emotional state and health. Even though pupil size and shape can fluctuate based on light, a visual change in your little one’s eye can also point out to ocular diseases like cataracts or glaucoma. 

Mesmerizing Cat Pupils and Eye Function

Our cat’s wild ancestors relied heavily on their exceptional vision to hunt. Even though most kitties nowadays have readily available food in a loving home, they still have their hunter instincts and eyesight. 

Looking into your kitty’s mesmerizing eyes can tell you a lot about their emotional state and health.

Unlike their canine friends, cats possess a wider field of view, enabling them to stalk prey with precision and accuracy. Their incredible visual acuity continues through the night when they can detect small movements even in low-light conditions.

Larger cat pupils and a higher number of rod cells in their retinas are the main reasons why cats have superior night vision capability to many other animals, including us humans. Our feline kiddos also have a well-developed tapetum lucidum, a reflective layer behind the retina that enhances their night vision.

Cat Pupils and Eye’s Vulnerability

So far, it sounds like cats have their eyes on us and are ready to rule the world, right? But unfortunately, there are a few negatives when it comes to our kitty’s eyesight.

Cats have a more limited color perception than dogs, for example. Their vision lean towards the blue and green end of the spectrum. And most importantly, the cat’s unique eye structure and several breed predispositions contribute to their susceptibility to many issues, including:

  • Conjunctivitis – an inflammation of the eye’s outer membrane, often caused by allergies, infections, or irritants.
  • Corneal Ulcers – open sores on the cornea that can result from trauma, infections, or underlying health issues.
  • Uveitis – Inflammation of the uvea, which includes the iris and other eye structures. Often caused by infections or immune system disorders.
  • Feline Herpesvirus – this upper respiratory infection can also affect cats’ eyes, leading to conjunctivitis and corneal ulcers.
  • Glaucoma – an increased eye pressure, which can cause optic nerve damage and vision loss. This condition is more common in certain breeds.

Promoting Cat Eye Health with Diet 

Photo of a cat eating some food while looking at the camera to illustrate the importance of a balanced diet for a cat pupils and eye health.

A correct diet and proper water intake help promote eye lubrication, prevent dry eyes, and improve overall eye health. Natural supplements can also make a difference in managing your cat’s eye health. Here are a few things to have in mind when planning a regimen for proactive eye support:

Nutrients and Vitamins for Eye Health

Vitamin A, present in ingredients like sweet potato and carrots, plays a vital role in your little one’s vision. Vitamin C and Bioflavonoids help strengthen blood vessels in the eyes and reduce the risk of conditions like cataracts. Despite a balanced diet, the use of nutritional supplements like NHV Multi Essentials and NHV OcuLove can help ensure your little one has the correct intake of these vitamins for healthy eye function. 

Prioritize Food & Formulas With Antioxidants

Antioxidants, such as lutein and zeaxanthin, help protect the eyes from damage caused by free radicals. For added support, NHV Turmeric offers antioxidant properties that can help slow down vision loss and progressive eye disease.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids for Added Support

Found in fish oil or flaxseed oil, omega-3 fatty acids have anti-inflammatory properties that support eye health. If you are looking for an easy alternative, NHV PetOmega 3 is a vet-formulated fish oil blend designed specifically for animals. And most kitties love the taste!

Taurine Is Essential For Cat Pupils & Eye Health

Kitties require sufficient levels of taurine, an essential amino acid that they need to get from the meat in their diet. Low levels of taurine in a cat’s body can lead to eye issues, digestive problems, and a weakened heart and can cause delayed growth in young kittens. 

If you notice any changes in your cat pupils or suspect an eye problem, consult with a veterinarian for a proper diagnosis and appropriate treatment. In the meantime, please know that we are here to help you in any way! Click the button below and start talking to someone in our team of pet experts for support. 

Dr. Amanda Nascimento DVM, MVSc, PhD

Dr. Amanda Nascimento DVM, MVSc, PhD

Dr. Amanda completed her undergraduate degree in veterinary medicine in 2010 and graduate studies in veterinary pathology (MVSc. 2012 and PhD 2016) at the School of Veterinary Medicine, University of São Paulo. She completed her post-doctoral training at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine – University of Saskatchewan in 2018. Dr. Nascimento will be hosting her own blog series and sharing her knowledge with our extended NHV family.

Published: June 20, 2023

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