My Dog Has An Eye Infection What Should I Do
The fact is that if your dog is experiencing any eye sensitivity, irritation, or pain it’s time to head to your vet.
Your veterinarian will be able to conduct a thorough eye exam to determine the cause of your pup’s symptoms and provide effective treatment to help your dog’s eyes feel better. Left untreated eye infections can become severe and may result in loss of vision.
Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet’s condition, please make an appointment with your vet.
If your canine companion is suffering from a painful eye issue contact us right away! Our team of Tucson emergency and specialist vets can provide advanced diagnostics and treatments to help your dog’s eyes feel better.
How Do Dogs Get Eye Infections
Dogs can get eye infections if foreign objects get stuck in their eyes.
Dogs usually get eye infections from having something such as feces, sand, plant debris in their eyes, Dr. Bustamante told The Dodo.
And when these irritants make your dog scratch at his eyes, that just allows bacteria to get in there, which can also cause infection.
In addition to bacteria and foreign objects getting stuck in the eye, other causes of dog eye infections include:
- Corneal scratches
Does My Dog Have An Eye Infection
Eye infections in people and dogs have many of the same symptoms, and your dogs additional symptoms can be the result of the fact that dogs eyes are anatomically different. Dogs have a third eyelid, a nictitating membrane, which can be closed to protect their eye but which they can see through. This was of great use for a predator that used to be on the hunt, or hunted, and needed to see and protect their eye from debris at the same time. Inflammation of eye membranes in dogs can include this nictitating membrane and associated structures. Otherwise, symptoms of eye infection in both species are pretty similar including:
Redness in the eye
Itching and irritation of the eye
Clear, opaque or purulent discharge
Sensitivity to light, frequent blinking and squinting
Pawing at eye to relieve irritation
In addition to symptoms, causes of eye infection in dogs, and humans are also similar. There are a variety of causes for eye infection including:
Bacteria such as streptococcus or staphylococcus
Injury or scratch resulting in bacterial contamination
Structural abnormalities in the lid or tear duct making bacterial infection more likely
Fungal or parasitic infection
Lyme disease bacteria
The following guides provide more information on eye infections in your dog:
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Will My Dog Recover From Conjunctivitis
Most dogs have an excellent prognosis in most cases of conjunctivitis. Severe, chronic, or recurrent conjunctivitis may have a guarded prognosis, depending on the definitive diagnosis. Conditions such as KCS and immune-mediated disorders may require lifelong therapy.
|Contributors: Tammy Hunter, DVM Ernest Ward, DVM|
How Do Dogs Get Conjunctivitis
There are various possible causes for conjunctivitis, and the cause will dictate treatment.
Allergies: May be seasonal, and not contagious.
Virus: If caused by a viral infection, conjunctivitis can spread easily and take up to three weeks to recover from.
Bacteria: If caused by a bacterial infection, conjunctivitis may spread.
Injury: Caused by a foreign object, debris, or some kind of physical trauma.
Dry eye: Keratoconjunctivitis sicca , also known as canine dry eye, impairs a dogs natural ability to produce tears that keep the eyes properly lubricated.
Dogs can develop conjunctivitis in numerous ways, which makes it challenging to prevent. Allergens, bacteria, and viruses are all around, so its not an uncommon issue.
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Treatments For Eye Discharge In Dogs
The treatment for eye discharge in dogs depends on the cause of the eye discharge. If the eye discharge is caused by a dog eye infection, then your veterinarian will prescribe dog eye infection drops which are essentially topical eye antibiotics specially formulated for use in dogs. Some of the most common antibiotics prescribed by veterinarians include tobramycin ophthalmic, triple antibiotic ophthalmic ointment , or ofloxacin ophthalmic. Within a few days, your dogs eye should be improving drastically.
You may be wondering how to treat a dog eye infection at home. Unfortunately, there are no safe or effective home treatments available for dog eye infections. Do not use apple cider vinegar for dog eye infection or any other home remedies for dog eye infections described on the internet. Substances like vinegar can be extremely harmful if applied to the eye and can cause severe damage to the eyes. I do not recommend putting any substance into your dogs eye unless you first speak with your veterinarian to make sure it is safe to go in the eyes.
Steps for Applying Your Dogs Eye Medication
Once your veterinarian has prescribed your dog eye medication, you will have to learn how to apply the medication to the eye. This job is much easier with two peopleone person to hold the dog and another to apply the medication. If you are doing it by yourself, to apply dog eye infection medicine like an eye antibiotic, follow the steps described below.
How To Keep Your Dogs Eyes Healthy
Your dog’s eyes are precious. Keep them healthy with a few simple practices. First, if your dog has long hair, keep it trimmed around her eyes to avoid irritation. Always use blunt-tip scissors held parallel to the eye and trim only when she’s calm and still.
It’s also important to keep your dog’s eyes clear of debris and mucus. Keeping a dog’s eyes clean on a daily basis is similar to how to clean a dog’s eye infection: Apply a clean, warm cloth to the area to loosen and soften any eye boogers or crust in the surrounding fur. Gently wipe the area clean, being sure to avoid rubbing the eye itself.
Keep your pup happy and healthy with routine eye care and be sure to note any changes in the appearance of her eyes. And remember, eye care is just one part of your dog’s overall health. Schedule an appointment with your veterinarian to ensure your furry friend is up-to-date on all preventatives, medications, and vaccinations.
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Recovery And Management Of Conjunctivitis In Dogs
Proper management of your dogs conjunctivitis will depend on the root cause of the underlying condition. If its allergen-based, it can be helpful to prevent the dog from coming into contact with whatever is causing the reaction.
Keep your dog away from dusty, dry, and dirty areas while hes recovering, and continuously monitor his symptoms.
As mentioned above, an E-collar or cone may be needed to help protect your dogs eyes from self-trauma during the healing stage.
Medication, whether topical or oral, should be administered exactly as prescribed, even if it appears the symptoms are clearing up.
Conjunctivitis is generally a very treatable condition that most dogs recover from, as long as diagnosis and treatment occur before the disease has a chance to progress. Early detection and proper follow-up care are vital.
Can Your Pet Transfer An Eye Infection To Others
Your pet is a big part of your family. As humans, we are hard-wired to form bonds with the people and animals that play a part in our daily lives. Its no surprise, then, that we become concerned when our furry best friends suddenly start showing signs of sickness. For those with immediate families, this concerned can extend to the other members of the clan can whatever illness your pet has be transferred to anyone else around them? Are you risking your childs health by exposing them to a sick pet?
When it comes to illnesses in animals, there are some that are indeed capable of transferring to different species in a process called cross-species transmission. Zoonosis is a specific term used to describe an infectious cross-species disease caused by viruses, bacteria, and parasites. In todays blog, Animal Eye Associates will be talking about eye infections in pets and whether they can be transferred to humans and other animals.
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This is a summary of the coverages in your pet health insurance policy from Fetch. No coverage is provided by this summary nor can it be construed to replace any provision of your policy. You should read your policy and review your Declarations page for complete information on the coverages you are provided. If there is any conflict between the policy and this summary, the provisions of the policy shall prevail.
How To Give A Dog Eye Drops
If your dogs eyes need more than a gentle wipe with saline or warm water, learn how to administer eye drops or ointments efficiently.
- Clear debris from around the eyes and dry the area with a clean, soft cloth.
- To apply eye drops, tilt the dogs head back slightly. Rest a hand on your dogs head to keep the applicator from accidentally hitting the dogs eye, and squeeze drops into the upper part of the eye.
- To apply ointment, rest your hand on the dogs head, pull the dogs lower eyelid down to create a pocket, then squeeze a ribbon of ointment inside the lower lid.
- Your veterinarian can show you how to administer eye medication, as can online veterinary videos, and a friend or groomer may be able to help.
- Follow instructions for frequency and quantity of applications.
- Help your dog relax before treatment. For example, apply a pressure wrap such as an Anxiety Wrap or ThunderShirt , wrap a small dog in a towel, have rewards handy, or gently brush or massage the dog. See Tricks to Giving Your Dog Eye Medication, WDJ May 2014.
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How To Apply Dog Eye Ointment
Wash your hands thoroughly before and after giving your dog eye ointment.
Wet a washcloth with warm water and use it to gently clean the area around your dogs eye.
Cradle your dogs head .
Hold the tube of ointment using your dominant thumb and index finger, and pull down your dogs eyelid with your other thumb. You can use the rest of your fingers on that hand to support your dogs jaw.
Squeeze the prescribed amount of ointment onto the inner edge of your dogs lower eyelid. Be careful not to touch the tube to the eye.
Your dog will naturally blink a few times afterward, and the ointment should melt from the warmth of the eye. This will help spread the medicine across the surface of the eye. Ointment may naturally gather in the corners of the eye after it is applied and is nothing to worry about.
Be sure to give your pet lots of praise before, during and after the process. Encouragement is key to making everything run smoothly for both the pet and pet parent.
Can A Dog’s Eye Allergies Cause An Eye Infection
If your dog experiences chronic allergies, the inflammation and dryness associated with those allergies can trigger an eye infection.
One way to determine whether your dog’s eye infection is from allergies is to look at the color of the discharge coming from the eyes. If it’s green or yellow, it may be from bacteria or a virus. A milky white or clear discharge can indicate an allergy or debris in the eye.â
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Will An Eye Infection Change My Pets Behavior
The pain of an eye infection usually transforms a pet from a playful, affectionate companion to an irritated animal that just wants to be left alone. Pets with eye infections often want to stay in dark areas, since they become very sensitive to light. Pets may not want to eat, play, or be petted. Pets will not want you to check their eyes and may bite or scratch because of the pain. Any major behavior change warrants a trip to the veterinarian.
How To Prevent Yeast Infections In Dogs
Prevention of yeast infections in dogs must include addressing the underlying cause to reduce the likelihood that the infection will reoccur.
Routine bathing with an antifungal shampoo may be beneficial. However, for shampoo treatment to be effective, the lather must sit on a dogs skin for a minimum of 10 minutes before rinsing.
Dogs with skin folds may need to have maintenance treatment to keep these areas from becoming too moist, as yeast thrive in moist, dark places such as skin folds and ears.
Dogs that have had allergy testing and are determined to be allergic to yeast can be desensitized by including yeast as an ingredient in immunotherapy .
If you suspect that your dog has a yeast infection, consult your regular veterinarian for a diagnosis and treatment plan that is appropriate for your pet.
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Types Of Dog Eye Discharge
Reviewed and updated for accuracy on February 13, 2020, by Dr. Jennifer Coates, DVM
Eye discharge is a common problem in dogs. Some types are completely normal, while others are associated with potentially serious health concerns.
In order to determine when you need to take your dog to the vet, youll need to understand the various types of dog eye discharge and what each may mean.
What Is The Cost Of Treating Blepharitis In Dogs
The cost depends on the diagnostic tests conducted as well as the particular course of treatment the initial exam and any follow-up visits will also contribute to the overall cost. At-home remedies are much less expensive than prescribed medication, while the cost of surgery is much higher. However, as mentioned above, always check with your veterinarian before trying any at-home remedies or OTC medications.
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My Dogs Eye Is Swollen What Do I Do
Its always hard to watch your dog appear to be in pain, and eye infections are some of the worst. Itchy, red, swollen eyes that are watering will just absolutely break your heart. Before getting into what could be wrong and how these issues are treated, you need to know that the first step when dealing with swollen, red eyes is to call your veterinarian and schedule to bring your dog in. Eye infections should be treated as an emergency because there are several reasons for the swelling, and some of these causes can lead to vision loss.
How Does Blepharitis Relate To My Dogs Swollen Eye
There is a particular term that your vet may use to describe eye inflammation medically. It is blepharitis, and it means inflammation of the eyelid. Blepharitis can affect dogs of any age, but some breeds are prone to it based on their heritage and conformation.
The dog breeds that are more prone to blepharitis include:
- Labrador Retriever
- Golden Retriever
If you have one of these breeds, make sure you are paying attention to their eyes regularly and looking for signs of swelling, redness, or watering.
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Can A Dog Eye Infection Spread To Humans
A common infection in dogs is called conjunctivitis. It is an inflammation of the eyes caused by a variety of viruses and bacteria. Although it most often affects the lid , Conjunctivitis can also affect the eyeball, causing it to become red, swollen, and sore. In very rare cases, Conjunctivitis can spread from dog to human. However, this is very rare and generally only occurs when there is close contact between the two species or when the infected dog has close contact with an infected human. If you think your dog may have contracted Conjunctivitis, make sure to bring him or her in for a checkup by a veterinarian as soon as possible.
Common Causes And Treatments Of Eye Discharge In Dogs
If your dog has clear eye discharge, chances are good it’s caused by allergies or something physical, like dust in the eye or wind blowing in the face. A watery discharge or mucus from one eye is often a sign of a foreign body, like an eyelash, while yellow-green or pus-like eye discharge could indicate a serious infection. Always talk to your vet to get at the root cause of your dog’s eye discharge, because some problems can result in blindness or loss of an eye if left untreated.
Conjunctivitis. Mucus, yellow-green pus, or a watery eye discharge can all be signs of conjunctivitis, an inflammation of the lining of your dog’s eye. There’s a wide range of causes for conjunctivitis, from allergies, injury, birth defects, and tear duct problems, to foreign matter, dry eye, distemper, or even tumors. Other signs of conjunctivitis include very red eyes, inflammation, blinking too much, squinting, crusty eyes, pawing at the eyes, or keeping the eyes closed.
To treat conjunctivitis, it’s important to learn what’s causing it. Depending on the cause, treatment can include: removing the irritant and soothing the area with pain medication antibiotics and saline washes to manage infection surgery to treat duct problems or birth defects antihistamines for allergies or other medications.
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What Is A Good Eye Wash For Dogs
Do you have a dog that needs to be cleaned up after playing in the rain or snow? Many people do, as dogs can get muddy and wet quickly. If your dog is susceptible to getting eye infections from dirty water, you need to find an effective way to clean their eyes.
One option is to use a commercial eye wash. There are many different types available, so its important to choose one that is gentle on the dogs eyes and wont cause any irritation. Be sure to read the instructions carefully before using the product.
Another option is to make your own eye wash. Combine equal parts of white vinegar and warm water in a spray bottle and spritz it into the dogs eyes several times. Let the solution sit for a few minutes before rinsing them with cool water.