Caring for Your Dog’s Eyes

It’s said that the eyes are the windows to the soul. We think the saying applies to dogs, too. Who can resist puppy-dog eyes?

Protect those adorable peepers by learning how to spot the signs of eye problems and possible eye infections in dogs. Early recognition of eye problems will allow you to get help before small issues become big.

Who gets eye problems? Any dog can develop problems with his or her eyes.

Your dog’s propensity for developing eye problems may depend largely on his or her breed. Certain physical characteristics, such as more prominent eyes, loose facial skin, or big nose folds and facial wrinkles, can contribute to certain types of eye issues. The breeds in which these characteristics are common include:

  • Pugs
  • Pekingnese
  • Boston Terriers
  • Shih Tzus
  • Lhasa apsos
  • Chihuahuas
  • Labradors
  • Bulldogs
  • Bloodhounds

In addition to physical characteristics that can contribute to eye disease, there are other conditions that often lead to problems with the eyes. These include:

  • Allergies
  • Diabetes
  • Low thyroid function
  • Cushings disease
  • Dry eye
  • High blood pressure
  • Dryness

How to recognize potential eye problems

If you’re like most pet parents, chances are not a day goes by that you don’t take a few moments to play with your dog. During these times, take a close look into his or her eyes. If your dog is squinting, if your dog has discharge coming from the eye and/or if the eye(s) are cloudy and red, these could be signs that there is a serious problem with his or her eye(s). If you see any of these signs, you should bring you dog to your family veterinarian or seek emergency care so the problem can be identified and treated as soon as possible. Treatment for eye infections and other eye problems can range from medicated eye drops to corrective surgery. The type of treatment your dog needs depends largely on what’s causing the problem. Having him or her checked can pinpoint the issue and determine if there is a serious underlying problem.

Potential problems with your dog’s eyes should never be overlooked. Eyes are delicate and permanent damage can occur quickly. If you have concerns about your dog’s eyes, schedule an exam with your family veterinarian. If the problem is severe, your family veterinarian may refer you to a BluePearl veterinary ophthalmologist for additional care.