Sightless on the Bayou
Located in Houston, TX, Kida was adopted by her mom, Allie, when Kida was only five months old. As a Great Pyrenees mix, the breed is often trained to become livestock guards. Kida and her other puppy brothers were adopted to help manage livestock, but Kida had other plans!
“Kida would chase and try to eat the chickens, so lucky for us, her owners decided to find her a new home!”, Allie shares. While finding a new home was absolutely the right decision for Kida, Allie shares that abandonment of the breed seems to be a recurrent problem. Due to their cuteness factor as puppies, there is a huge issue with backyard breeding. Lots of dogs later find themselves abandoned once they become too big and hard to manage without proper training. Allie has become an advocate for a few rescue programs in Texas focused solely on the breed, such as Great Pyrenees Advocates and Texas Great Pyrenees Rescue. “I always tell people they should adopt or foster through them.”
It wasn’t until Kida was 2 years old that their journey with Kida’s disabilities began, seemingly overnight. Allie noticed Kida’s eyes looked off, and took her to the emergency room with her fingers crossed she was experiencing allergies. The vet diagnosed her with pink eye and sent them on their way.
Even with treatment Kida was still acting strange, so Allie brought Kida to an emergency veterinary opthamologist. It was there they would discover that both Kida’s retinas had become detached and she had developed glaucoma. They tried all sorts of medicine and testing in efforts to help her regain her eyesight, but nothing seemed to work. “Her eye pressures kept going up and she was in a lot of pain and literally acted like a zombie, NOTHING like the crazy happy dog she was before that.”
After trying every possible medical intervention available, the vet finally had to break the heartbreaking news to Allie: Kida was never going to get her vision back. The best decision
they could make to help Kida feel more comfortable was to have a double enucleation, surgery to remove her eyes. While this news was very distressing to Allie, she found amazing support in some blind dog facebook groups. She went ahead and booked the surgery.
When Allie went to pick Kida up post-surgery, she was amazed by the change in Kida. “Her healing journey went great and she returned back to her old self SO fast.” Blindness didn’t dampen Kida’s spirit at all, and she has remained the beautiful, confident dog she was when she had eyes. The only change Allie has found she has had to make is remembering she can’t move furniture around so Kida doesn’t bump into it!
When asked what she wishes other people knew about dogs with disabilities, Allie said she wants people to know that even though her dog has a disability, she lives a very normal life. She also wants to highlight the importance of not having unleashed dogs run up and approach Kida, a consideration that should be given to non-blind dogs as well.
If you have any questions about enucleation surgery, Allie says feel free to reach out to her. You can find Kida on instagram at @kidathepyr and on Facebook under “Kida the Pyr.”