Here's a video from earlier this year of JoJoe our
beautiful black Shar Pei we rescued from a shelter in SW Michigan
in August 2008 after spotting his picture on PetFinder.com. We realized, while
still at the shelter, that JoJoe was completely blind. No one at
the shelter appeared to have noticed.
Upon taking JoJoe to our vet the next day, we discovered that his
right eye was completely covered with pigmentation from an
untreated condition very common in Shar Peis called Entropia.
This condition causes the eyelids to curl inward causing the
dog's eyelashes to rub against his eyeball which causes an ulcer
to form on the cornea and eventually total pigmentation of the
His left eye had a large ulcer in the center of his cornea caused
by the same condition. Someone had allowed this dog to go blind.
Perhaps they couldn't afford it, or were just plain ignorant of
the medical conditions that frequently plague these very special
dogs. It would appear that his previous owners bred him, at least
once. Any reputable breeder of shar Pei would never breed a dog
with as many faults as JoJoe has (dont get me wrong, he is a very
good looking dog, as far as shar pei go, but there are a lot of
little flaws that would keep him and his offspring from the show
That wasn't the worst of it. - JoJoe had tested positive for
heart worm. A death sentence if left untreated.
Our desire to get the best possible veterinary care for JoJoe led
us to the Michigan State University Veterinary Teaching Hospital
in East Lansing. The availability of specialists played heavy in
Heart worm Treatment involves a series of injections given
monthly over several months each followed by a 24 hour
observation phase. JoJoe was not pronounced heart worm free until
this past January. Some dogs don't make it through the
While at MSU, JoJoe saw some specialists who recommended tacking
his eyelids temporarily to allow his ulcer to heal 'possibly'
leading to some return to vision. Surgery to alter his eyelids
(entropion Surgery) would have to wait till after the heart worm
infestation was cured.
After the corneal ulcer in his left eye healed, We noticed
something wonderful - JoJoe could see! OK maybe Just a little,
but he could see well enough to see obstacles and not have to
rely entirely on his 'scent map' anymore. Now, he can see well
enough to chase a toy around, or follow your hand if you are
We figure JoJoe has recovered 30 to 40% of his vision in his left
eye - still mostly blind. For 8 months or so we dosed his eyes
with a ophthalmic lubricant 3 times per day. He had the entropion
surgery the day after this video was shot (July 09) and is doing
great. No more eye lube 3 times a day, and the vet said we might
see 'some' return of vision on his right eye (the badly pigmented
one). That would be great! It's hard to describe the satisfaction
Holly and I feel when we see JoJoe staring intently out the front
window at the neighbor across the street's kids playing in their
driveway... 250 ft away...
The original video was shot using the inexpensive ($179) Sony HD
'Webbie' video camera (Model: MHS-CM1) in 1280x720 30p mode (the