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Horner's Syndrome
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Horner's Syndrome

My 5 yr. old Yellow Lab has been diagnosed with Horner's Syndrome.  His eye droops, is red, and the pupil is not dialated on the outside, I am not sure how to describe it, but there is a pale ring around the outside of the pupil.
I have been told by our vet that it can last a week, a year, forever.  He has had it for 3 weeks and it seemed to have started when he was diagnosed with Conjuntivitis, which now I think was a misdiagnosis, it was Horner's all along.  I want to know if there is any pain or discomfort.  He seems to want me to rub his head alot, like he is having a headache.  I was told it could have been caused by the many ear infections he has had.  I am very worried, he is limping as well and his balance seems off.  He barks and then shakes his head violently.  What is going on?  Are these syptoms (symptoms) related?  He is also taking meds for a low thyroid.  I love him so much and my husband is deployed to Afghanistan and cannot be here to help with the stress of this, that is a whole other stressful issue... I need some information and reassurance if there is any.  My vet is vague....
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675347_tn?1365464245
It's difficult, being left alone to deal with problems. I know. First of all, all the very best to your husband who is in Afghanistan. That must be enough for you to worry about.

I have no experience of your dog's condition, and can't be a lot of help for you.
But I did find this blog (written by a Toronto vet):
http://tovet.blogspot.com/2007/07/horners-syndrome.html

I hope you find something helpful there.

It seems,  being an older dog, having hypothyroidism, and the ear infections, all have a relationship when it comes to Horner's.

Also you could post on the "Ask a Vet" forum here. There is now a small charge for this.
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(sorry, I mis-read your dog's age. I read '15' not '5'  Although Horner's does more commonly affect older dogs)
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441382_tn?1329196690
The thing with Horner's Syndrome is that it, in and of itself, is not a disease.  Rather, it is a symptom of something else.  Horner's Syndrome occurs when there has been some sort of trauma or damage.  It can be caused by a blow to the head or it can be caused by something more sinister, such as a mass pressing on the optic nerve.  In order to determine whether or not it will resolve itself, a diagnosis of the cause must first be made.  Horner's Syndrome due to a blow to the head will resolve itself when the concussion is gone.  If it's being caused by a mass pressing on a nerve, it will not resolve itself until the mass is removed and the pressure is taken off the nerve.  Ask your vet what he feels is the cause for the difference in the pupils.  There has to be something.  Horner's Syndrome doesn't occur without reason.

Ghilly
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1108024_tn?1258255685
My dog was also diagnosed with horner's syndrome...just a few month's after being diagnosed with diabetes, then hypothyroid, then tmj.  you said he seems to want his head rubbed a lot...do you notice any change in muscle tone in his head?  after years of searching and consulting numerous vets, I finally figured out what's wrong with my dog.  He has masticatory myositis, which caused his lockjaw a few years back, and gives him that sunken eye look.  The muscles in his head and jaw atrophy almost overnight.  

Keep an eye out for anything else that does not seem to be "normal".  Like Ghilly said, Horner's syndrome is a symptom of something else going on.
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My  5 year old golden retriever lab mix was just diagnosed as having Horner's syndrome. He is also a diabetic. He had this before and it went away on its own. It now just came back to his other. From what I have been told by the vet is is not painful nor does it obstruct his vision. I feel bad for him because his looks so bad but it it does not seem to bother him. Hope everything works out for you.
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Avatar_n_tn
my dog just was diagnosed with Horner syndrome 4/30/13 but my dog will not eat its been 5 days since he ate and the vet said I should just wait until the med. work but I am so worry he may be come  ill from not eating .I have try a lot of different food on him but he will not eat anything I have . tried chicken and rice and chicken soup oat meal and noting working my dog is not a a lab mix he is beagle and Staint Charles .I really need to know what going on? he was not hit  in the head or hit by a car it just came on him over night please if anyone can help I would really be so grateful
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Avatar_n_tn
my email is ***@**** about my dog with horner
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Avatar_f_tn
I think my dog has Horner's syndrome, It just happened all of a sudden, can it go away on its own? Could an emotional trauma cause this? I'm asking cause I had to leave my dog in a kennel for a week, if someone could help, thank you.
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