Laser in Cat's Eye

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Old 07-26-06, 12:18 AM
J
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Laser in Cat's Eye

I like to play laser tag with my cat. I let the laser light reflect on the floor and wall surfaces, and he goes bananas trying to catch that little critter. A bad thing happened tonight, or at least I think it was bad, but perhaps it's nothing to worry about. I'll let you decide.

As I was pointing the laser beam over his head behind him, he moved his head up into the path and focused in directly on the beam. How do I know this? Because as the light entered a cat's eye, it illuminated a bright color. This is what the beam produced. It must have been close to a direct hit on the retina and once I knew what was happening I quickly jerked the laser light away (1/2 second exposure at most).

My question is if the brief episode of laser exposure is a permanent damage to the cat's eyes, or will the photoreceptors/retina, etc make a full recovery? I am very worried about this and we will from now on have to play other forms of tag that doesn't involve intense light.
 
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Old 07-26-06, 12:24 AM
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Does he show any signs that it damaged his eye like excess watering half closed or closed all together.Or always rubbing it.
 
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Old 07-26-06, 12:45 AM
J
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I haven't seen him yet since it happened. This was about 45 minutes ago. I just hope he didn't go blind. If he did, I'll never be the same, knowing I did something in some way cause harm to an innocent, whether it be intentional or unintentional.
 
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Old 07-26-06, 04:54 AM
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Your cat's eyes are likely just fine.
Even though a laser can damage an eye, laser pointers are very low in output power.
If the exposure was for only a brief moment I don't believe you have anything to worry about.
 
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Old 07-26-06, 04:55 PM
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Hi JD.

Here's what I found and it sounds like your cat should be fine.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/34229.stm
http://www.laserpointer.net/laser-pointer-safety.html

Newt
 
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Old 07-26-06, 05:15 PM
J
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Hello Newt,

Thanks for those links. I looked last night too for such info, but I kept dead ending. And thanks to everyone for helping to put my mind at ease. I haven't seen the cat since that incident, but then again he always disappears when the weather is above 90 and won't reappear until the sun sets.
 
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