Eyeless pooch that never stops smiling becomes an internet sensation after doting strangers pay for life saving op
An eyeless pooch who never stops smiling has become an internet sensation after doting strangers paid for her life saving op.
Pedigree Whippet, Kiera, was diagnosed with a hereditary condition called ‘dry eyes’ and for the first three years of her life, she battled numerous severe eye infections.
Kiera was miserable and unsociable but that all changed when devoted owner, Tracey Haywood, 45, from Leicester, set up a fundraising page for eye removal surgery.
It took just four hours for selfless strangers to surpass Tracey’s fundraising goal of £1000.
Documenting her recovery on Facebook, Kiera has now racked up over five thousand followers online and receives hundreds of supportive messages every day.
Tracey has since claimed that Kiera is the happiest dog in the UK and never stops smiling since becoming blind.
The sales assistant is hoping her story will show other dog owners that their pets can have an amazing life even without eyes.
Tracey said: “Now that Kiera is eyeless and pain free she is a completely different dog, she’s full of life, loves going for walkies and socialising with other breeds.
“I could believe we raised £1500 in four hours, that was £500 more than we needed, it was incredible that so many strangers were willing to help.
“Kiera has been given a second chance at life, her eyes had become so sore that she would scratch them until they’d bleed and they’d develop ulcers.
“I needed cotton wool and hot water to bathe Kiera’s eyes every morning just to get them open, it was horrific and so painful for her.
“I felt physically sick when I made the decision to have her eyes removed but looking back it was the best decision I could have made, putting a young healthy dog to sleep was never an option.
“She has adapted so well that she doesn’t even need a lead on when we go for walkies, she just follows the sound of m bell.”
Tracey believes Kiera’s eye condition was caused by the breeding process as she tracked down her brother’s owners on Facebook and he had the same condition.
She added: “It’s heart breaking that Kiera’s eye condition wasn’t treated straight away as a puppy as she might not have lost her sight, as her brother is fine now.
“Not that it would’ve made Kiera any happier and she’s full of life now but it would have prevented the years of suffering beforehand.
“It’s a huge responsibility to take on a dog with a disability but when a friend showed me Kiera, I fell in love and adopted her straight away.
“I tried every possible eye drop for her, I even contacted American vets, spending thousands and selling laptops and personal belongings in a bid to fund her medication, but nothing helped.
“The final straw was in November, she had blood all over her paws and her eyes were so red and infected.
“I couldn’t afford the operation myself so I knew I would need to set up a fundraising page.
“I donated the extra £500 to charities that help blind dogs and I have since started making coats for dogs to donate to those in need.”
Since Kiera’s life changing operation, Tracey has seen her Facebook page flood with new followers and messages.
Tracey said: “Kiera now has over five thousand followers, it’s amazing.
“I share advise and help save other blind dogs from being put down by educating other owners.
“Kiera is a shining example of why an eyeless dog should be alive, she loves being cuddled, going on walkies, and playing with her toys and never stops smiling.
“I make sure she wears her ‘I’m blind’ harnesswhen we are out, just in case other owners aren’t aware.
“You would think Kiera would be walking into everything but she doesn’t, she has a great sense of direction without her eyes.
“I hope my story gives hope to anyone who has a pet with a sight problem, Kiera’s life is only just beginning.”
“Dogs help us humans with our disabilities so why can’t we humans help dogs with theirs?”
Do you, or someone you know, have a similar story to tell? Get in touch today to earn £££ and raise awareness.