Do Cataract Eye Drops for Dogs Work?

Devoted pet owners strive to ensure the health and well-being of our furry companions and are curious if cataract eye drops for dogs work.  When faced with the distressing diagnosis of cataracts in our beloved dogs, we naturally seek out solutions to alleviate their discomfort and restore their vision. In recent years, the market has seen the emergence of various cataract eye drops claiming to offer a non-invasive remedy for this common ocular condition.

The abstract of a study which summarizes research using Can-C eye drops on both canine and human subjects is presented below. Generally speaking Can-C has been found to be effective in most but not all subjects. Effectiveness depends on the age and condition of the cataract when treated.

About Cataracts in Dogs

Cataracts occur when the lens of the eye becomes cloudy, leading to impaired vision or even blindness if left untreated. While cataracts can develop due to various factors such as genetics, age, or underlying health conditions, they often manifest as a result of aging in dogs.

Exploring Cataract Eye Drops: The concept of cataract eye drops as a treatment for dogs stems from the desire to provide a non-surgical alternative to traditional methods such as surgery.

Consulting with Veterinary Professionals

As responsible pet owners, it’s essential to consult with veterinary professionals before pursuing any treatment for your dog’s cataracts, including eye drops. Veterinarians can provide valuable insights into the severity of your dog’s condition, the appropriateness of non-surgical interventions, and potential risks and benefits.

Additionally, veterinarians may recommend complementary approaches to managing cataracts, such as dietary supplements, specialized diets, or lifestyle modifications aimed at supporting overall eye health.


While research evidence reports application of Can-C eye drops holds promise,  it’s essential to approach such treatments with a critical eye and realistic expectations. While both research and anecdotal evidence  informs benefits, scientific research supporting the efficacy of these drops remains relatively limited.

Ultimately, the decision to use cataract eye drops for your dog should be made in consultation with a qualified veterinarian who can provide personalized guidance based on your pet’s unique needs and circumstances. By prioritizing your dog’s health and well-being and seeking professional advice, you can navigate the landscape of cataract treatments with confidence and clarity.

Below is an abstract which summarizes the research on Can-C as a treatment for dogs as well as humans

Drugs R D. 2004;5(3):125-39.

Lipid peroxidation and cataracts: N-acetylcarnosine as a therapeutic tool to manage age-related cataracts in human and in canine eyes

Mark A Babizhayev Anatoly I DeyevValentina N YermakovaIgor V BrikmanJohan Bours

Study Abstract

Cataract formation represents a serious problem in the elderly, with approximately 25% of the population aged >65 years and about 50% aged >80 years experiencing a serious loss of vision as a result of this condition. Not only do cataracts diminish quality of life, they also impose a severe strain on global healthcare budgets. In the US, 43% of all visits to ophthalmologists by Medicare patients are associated with cataract.

Surgery represents the standard treatment of this condition, and 1.35 million cataract operations are performed annually in the US, costing 3.5 billion US dollars (year of costing, 1998). Unfortunately, the costs of surgical treatment and the fact that the number of patients exceeds surgical capacities result in many patients being blinded by cataracts worldwide.

Surgical removal of cataracts may not represent the optimal solution. Although generally recognized as being one of the safest operations, there is a significant complication rate. Opacification of the posterior lens capsule occurs in 30-50% of patients within 2 years of cataract removal and requires laser treatment, a further 0.8% experience retinal detachments, approximately 1% are rehospitalised for corneal problems, and about 0.1% develop endophthalmitis.

The role of free radical-induced lipid oxidation in the development of cataracts has been identified. Initial stages of cataract are characterized by the accumulation of primary (diene conjugates, cetodienes) lipid peroxidation (LPO) products, while in later stages there is a prevalence of LPO fluorescent end-products. A reliable increase in oxiproducts of fatty acyl content of lenticular lipids was shown by a direct gas chromatography technique producing fatty acid fluorine-substituted derivatives.

N-acetylcarnosine (as the ophthalmic drug Can-C), has been found to be suitable for the nonsurgical prevention and treatment of age-related cataracts. This molecule protects the crystalline lens from oxidative stress-induced damage, and in a recent clinical trial it was shown to produce an effective, safe and long-term improvement in sight. When administered topically to the eye in the form of Can-C, N-acetylcarnosine functions as a time-release prodrug form of L-carnosine resistant to hydrolysis with carnosinase. N-acetylcarnosine has potential as an in vivo universal antioxidant because of its ability to protect against oxidative stress in the lipid phase of biological cellular membranes and in the aqueous environment by a gradual intraocular turnover into L-carnosine.

In our study the clinical effects of a topical solution of N-acetylcarnosine (Can-C) on lens opacities were examined in patients with cataracts and in canines with age-related cataracts. These data showed that N-acetylcarnosine is effective in the management of age-related cataract reversal and prevention both in human and in canine eyes.

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