Spaniel given second chance at life after a facelift corrected his vision

·2-min read
Bentley, the Clumber Spaniel, after his successful operation (Linnaeus Veterinary Vision Cumbria/SWNS)
Bentley, the Clumber Spaniel, after his successful operation (Linnaeus Veterinary Vision Cumbria/SWNS)

A spaniel who struggled to see the world around him has been given a new lease of life after undergoing a facelift.

Bentley, a two-year-old Clumber Spaniel, was finding it difficult to navigate the world after saggy folds of skin on his brow and around his eyes began to droop down and restrict his vision.

After Bentley walked straight into a brick bus stop, his owners Anthony and Fiona Robertson decided that drastic action needed to be taken.

Specialists at a leading veterinary eye clinic found that folds of skin were forcing his eyes inward, affecting his vision, and causing corneal ulcers.

Bentley underwent complex facelift surgery at Veterinary Vision in Cumbria to remove the excess skin covering his eyes.

Now, his owners say he is like a completely new dog.

“Before the surgery, Bentley was frequently keeping his eyes closed and actually walked into a brick bus stop one morning,” Anthony said.

“The difference after surgery was amazing. He began looking around when we walked him as if everything was new.”

He added that the surgery has also improved his confidence “although [it’s] still a work in progress, as his poor vision before surgery caused him to be very wary of strangers and dogs.

“He’s much better now,” he said.

Bentley at the vet’s, complete with folds of skin that made seeing a challenge (Linnaeus Veterinary Vision Cumbr SWNS)
Bentley at the vet’s, complete with folds of skin that made seeing a challenge (Linnaeus Veterinary Vision Cumbr SWNS)

Fiona added: “We are so grateful for the fantastic job they did for Bentley to give him a different outlook on life and a better future.

“He has been transformed and it’s lovely seeing him run around on the beach, a very happy dog.”

Veterinary Vision’s clinical director, Chris Dixon, described the surgery Bentley underwent as “challenging and complex”.

“Bentley was a challenging dog to examine before the surgery because of his restricted vision and continual ocular discomfort,” he began. “Heavy folds of skin along his brow and around his eyes were pushing hairs onto the cornea and he’d subsequently developed corneal ulceration.”

Helping Bentley to see again involved resectioning skin folds from his forehead.

“We performed a modified brow suspension to prevent the remaining skin from sliding forwards and followed this with bilateral upper and lower eyelid surgery to prevent the eyelids turning in,” he continued.

The delicate procedure required “accurate planning” as over-correction ran the risk of potentially hindering Bentley’s ability to blink normally, leading to “further complications”. Conversely, under-correction “would not improve his quality of life”.

Thankfully, the procedure was a success.

“All went well and Bentley’s recovery was excellent, and the shy, nervous, aggressive behaviour that we had experienced pre-operatively disappeared overnight,” Dixon said.

“His owners have been extremely diligent with his post-operative care and I am pleased that he is now treatment-free.

“He’s been a fantastic patient, and the whole Veterinary Vision team is thrilled that he has made a complete recovery.”

Additional reporting by SWNS