Dog Eye Care

By Valdette Muller| June 4, 2018 | Blog

Eyes are very delicate but surprisingly durable. There are steps you can take to prevent damage to your pet’s eyes.

If your dog’s eyes get dirty or infected, it can lead to a scratchy, oozy nightmare and cause serious damage.

Dogs experiencing eye irritation are prone to pawing or scratching at their eyes or rubbing them against textured surfaces.

These attempts at relief easily cause injuries, including corneal scratches. Injuries such as these can get worse without proper care, potentially causing corneal ulcers and impaired vision.

Some dog breeds are prone to more sensitive eye problems then others, particularly poodles, pugs, Cocker Spaniels and terriers. These breeds often have tear-stained fur around their eyes. This is because their tear ducts do not always drain properly and the pigment from tears builds up on the fur and discolours it. Don’t stress too much if this is the case, it is completely normal.

If, however, there seems to be something more unusual happening in the eye area, such as serious seeping, red eyes or yellow/green discharge, then it is time to contact your vet.

You will also be able to tell if your dog is seriously uncomfortable if it scratches madly at it’s eyes, has discharge build-up or closes it’s eyes more than usual.

How to check your dog’s eyes

  1. A routine, weekly examination can be very beneficial for your dog’s eyes.
  2. Bring your dog to a well-lit area and look straight into their eyes.
  3. Both pupils should be the same size, the whites of the eyes should be white, there should not be any clouding or discolouration, and the eyes should be free of tears, discharge, crust, and debris.
  4. Gently pull down the lower eyelids and make sure they are pink inside, not red or white.

If you notice any irregularities, schedule an appointment with your veterinarian.

Do not forget that your dog should have a full check up at least once a year, at which time your veterinarian will examine your dog’s eyes.

Things you can do to help

Eye infections can be prevented simply by keeping your pet’s eyes clean. Here are some steps to follow to prevent infections or trauma from occurring.

  1. If your dog has longer hair growing in-front of its eyes, trim the hair back with a pair of blunt-nosed scissors. Keeping hair from getting into your dog’s eyes will help prevent bacteria from getting in there as well.
  2. Make sure the corners of your pet’s eyes are mucus-free, you may be able to prevent build of tear ducts up by using F10 Antiseptic Skin Wipes to clean skin around the eyes.
  3. Flies can also cause eye irritation. Shoo-Fly Repellent ointment can be used on the skin around your dog’s eyes, however use caution when applying as it should not be placed directly into the eyes. It can also be applied to ears and other parts where flies usually settle. Shoo-Fly ointment can be applied to open wounds.
  4. Keep your dog away from situations that may cause trauma to their eyes. Fights with other animals, exposure to irritating substances and letting your dog hang its head out of the car windows are three preventable situations where your dog could receive eye trauma.
  5. If your dog has had trauma, surgery or has to have medication placed into the eye prescribed by your vet, it is important to get a cone or vizier for your dog to prevent them scratching at their eyes. BooBooLoon Pet Recovery Collars helps keep your dog from getting at its eyes and scratching.

Your veterinarian may also have suggestions for you. Observation and prevention are the best way to avoid serious eye problems in the future.

 

Sources: http://www.animalvisioncare.com/single-post/2016/11/06/EYE-PROTECTION-OPTIONS-FOR-THE-DOG

https://www.drsfostersmith.com/pic/article.cfm?aid=166

https://pets.webmd.com/dogs/guide/eye-care-dogs#1

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