Persistent Pupillary Membranes (PPM)

I am interested in learning more about PPM. Can anyone tell me the short and long term affects of it?

Any more info would be helpful. Thanks!


I just found out today that the puppy I am suppose to be getting in a few weeks has PPM. She is about 5 weeks old now and seems to be getting along fine but my breeder has noticed PPM opacities in both her eyes.

I have no experience with this and as you can imagine I have already visited her, named her and bonded with her so my heart is breaking with the thought of not being able to keep her because of this. I have read a few things online and know the worse case scenerio seems to be blindness but wanted to know if any of you have had experience with this and how it has effected your bs life.

  • Are the vet visits costly?
  • Do you they need to see an opthomologist regulary?
  • Other health concerns due to this?
  • Would the dog be considered special needs because of this?
  • Any other concerns?

Any personal experience would be much appreciated. Even if you have a good vet in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area of MN that I could call and talk to I would much appreciate it. Thank you šŸ˜ž

PPM is not uncommon in Basenjis. It is 99% of the time never a long term health issue, it would only be really taken into consideration in breeding practices. I honest don't know of any Basenji that PPM caused blindness. Do not confuse this with PRA (Progressive retinal atrophy) which is totally different and does cause blindness.

That said I would have to think that this puppy has "heavy" PPM if they are seeing it with the naked eye, usually there might be a few strands of PPM that would be found by an Opthomologist during a puppy eye exam. If really heavy then most likely the breeder is saying that the eyes had a blue film over them, however that never grows and gets smaller with age. And she most likely saw that as soon as the eyes opened. My OJ (bless his soul) passed at 17 and 4 months had heavy PPM that you could see with the naked eye, but no blue film. However in his litter there were two with what we call "blue" eye when they opened, but their sight was not bothered by it for their life time.

That said, all dogs should have a eye exam at least every two years by an Ophthomologist and the cost is not expensive. I pay under 75.00 and that is the Bay Area of California. And IMO, they would not be considered a "special needs"

If it were me and this was/is a responsible breeder, I would request a complete Eye Exam before I purchase the puppy and a written report to make sure there is nothing else going on. Most times the eye exams we breeders have done by and eye vet is at 9 weeks.

I just talked to a local vet that specializes in eyes and he was very helpful! Thank you for your insight; much appreciated!

Again, if this is just going to be a petā€¦ you really should have no problems over the years.... only if you were considering breeding would this be a concern with heavy amount of PPM

The basenji health page on the BCOA site give a very nice general description.

Since PPM never gets worse and can get better with age, if after the puppy has been examined by a vet opthamologist there is no vision impairment then you won't have to worry about it getting worse.

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