Indolent Corneal Ulcers in Boxers

A specific type of slow-healing (indolent) ulcer is found in Boxers and some other breeds, including the Samoyed, Dachshund, Miniature Poodle, Pembroke Welsh Corgi, Wire Fox Terrier, and Shetland Sheepdog. Most affected dogs are neutered males or females over the age of 6.

The indolent ulcer is caused by lack of a binding substance normally present in the basement membrane of the cornea. (The basement membrane is a thin layer of cells between the outer and middle layers of the cornea.) When this binding “glue” is missing, the epithelium peels away, leaving a concave ulcer.

Treatment: The treatment is prolonged – often six to eight weeks or more. It involves paring away the poorly adherent corneal epithelium and treating the ulcer as described in Corneal Ulcer. Your veterinarian will need to do this. Expect your dog to be on frequent doses of eye medications and wearing an Elizabethan or BiteNot collar.