“Love was kind, for a time
Now just aches, and it makes me blind
This mirrors haunts, by eyes too bright
That I can’t see the others in my life”
– MUMFORD & SONS, Lover’s Eyes
In January this year, we noticed a cloudy white cataract appear in one of Tofu’s eyes and few months later, another cataract formed in his other eye. We took him to the vet were given eye drops. Eye drops neither cured it or harmed it, but helped the weepiness some. Now that Tofu is blind in not one, but both eyes, things are a little different in his world.
Cataracts (also known in bunnies as moon eyes) cause vision to become cloudy and can result in blindness. Since the size of Tofu’s cataracts fluctuate, his eyes are still searching for light which means he may see light, but the picture is severely impaired. Cataracts can appear with age and Tofu is 4 years old. While rabbits can live over 10 years, it’s hard to say how old the average rabbit lives to be these days.
Rabbits eyes are on the sides of their heads so they can see a wide range, but they have a small blind spot directly in front. Luckily, their sense of smell and many whiskers lend a hand for things directly ahead.
Animals adapt to blindness and Tofu has been doing remarkably well. If not for the cataracts, you would hardly notice his blindness.
I like to think that he doesn’t mourn the loss of his sight and that he has adapted to his surroundings.
While some bunnies do not like being picked up or cuddled, Tofu licks us tenaciously (also regarded as bunny kisses) when we pick him up, so we figure he rather likes it. I’m not sure who enjoys bunny kisses more. Us or him?
Tofu seems to enjoy being brushed more than he used to and he continues to gives us plenty of bunny kisses if presented with a nose or a hand to lick. His quality of life is good and he is still enthusiastic as ever about food.
The next 4 editions of Tofu Tuesday will be a retrospective diary of sorts on Tofu’s blindness.
Check out previous Tofu Tuesday posts here.
Poor Tofu! At least he still has his senses of smell and touch. And it sounds like he doesn’t have much, if any trouble finding and eating his food — which is so important.
Oh yes, he finds much pleasure in food. Just like me 🙂
Oh Tofu :*( I must admit, I was looking at Flatpac yesterday and she has so many whiskers! Flatpac loves giving bunny kisses too. Makes you feel like all of that cleaning and destruction is worth it 🙂
We notice how many whiskers he has in the morning when he is intent in showing us all his whiskers. They go up you nose and in your eyes when he sniffs your face.
Haha! Flatpac always does that to my feet. It’s hilarious.
I am so sorry to hear of Tofu’s blindness. Bunnies are a very resilient lot and I’m sure you will get many more good years with him. Dustie Bunny used to love to jump up in bed with me and flop over on her back so I could rub her belly while she gave me bunny kisses on the chin. She would sleep like that for a good half hour or until I finally had to get up to get ready for work!
In my experience quality of life is everything in these situations. I’ve never kept rabbits, but I’ve shared my space with a variety of cats over the years. I suspect that cats and rabbits have a few things in common. In particular, they’ll let you know pretty quickly if they don’t want to be picked up or held. I suspect that another thing they have in common is that they’re far less dependant on their eye sight than we are. After all cats are semi-nocturnal and wild rabbits would spend a lot of their time underground, so although it’s a shame Tofu has sight, it’s probably not as much ofa disability as it would be for us. Anyway, the main thing is that he’s still enjoying life.
Thank you for the encouraging words, Fekesh.
Hi there, I’m new here,my bunny, Hoppy is 8 1/2 yrs old mini lop, her one eye developed a cataract last year, and she lost her sight in that eye. Now yesterday, I noticed her other eye is cloudy so I assume the other eye will lose sight as well. It breaks my heart to see her like this, your words are encouraging regarding quality of life, she seems fine otherwise. She has her cage in the barn on a shelf where she can “watch” what’s happening around her.. lots of cats, chickens and turkeys.. but she is my best little friend that is so loving and I hate to think she is getting older, and losing her sight, and of course the inevitable, one day will pass away..
Hi Lena and thanks for dropping by. If you haven’t already taken Hoppy to the vet, now is a good time. Tofu’s quality of life is good and he really doesn’t seem to be bothered by his cataracts. He is still as sweet and mischievous as he always was. Cats have never bothered him so thats no different now. But if other animals bother Hoppy now, you may need to separate those animals from Hoppy. There are certain things that a blind bunny won’t be able to do, either for a while until they adapt or permanently. Take it slow. Be patient. I and Tofu are here if you need us.