Red eyes in dogs are a reaction to defense following an attack on the eye of various origins. Although the cause is often benign, eye disorders are sometimes a sign of disease underlying. Are Ophthalmic Problems In Dogs Serious? How there remedy ? Can we prevent them? Our responses.
Red eyes: dog breeds more sensitive than others
All dogs are susceptible to eye problems during their lifetimes. However, some breeds are predisposed to it for reasons related to their anatomy. This is particularly the case for dog breeds brachycephalic (with a flattened face), like the pug, the bulldog or the boxer whose tears are more difficult to evacuate and then flow outwards. Stored in the corner of the eye, the tears then form a support conducive to the development of bacteria. Dogs whose long hairs hide their eyes are also concerned, as are breeds with drooping eyelids: Basset Hound, Saint-Hubert, Cocker Spaniel, etc.
Red eyes in dogs: the most common causes
Many reasons explain red eyes in dogs. Among these we can cite:
- A tear duct disorder. The lacrimal glands secrete tears which hydrate and lubricate the cornea, also protecting it from external aggressions. However, tear ducts can be clogged by the intrusion of a foreign body: eyelash, dust, sand, earth, spikelet…;
- A conjunctivitis. The conjunctiva is a mucous membrane that covers the inner surface of the eyelids. It can ignite due to an allergy or in the presence of a foreign body. This common condition in dogs is usually benign ;
- A corneal injury. Outer layer of the eye, the cornea is in direct contact with the environment (bushes and other irritating plants). Injuries of this nature are relatively common in a dog;
- A corneal ulcer. The ulcer is a wound that heals badly because it is associated with a loss of substance of the tissues which disintegrate and no longer regenerate. Left untreated, this lesion can have serious consequences by progressing in depth until the perforation and loss of the eye;
- A uveitis. Inflammation of the vascular lining of the eyeball leads to redness with pain and miosis (narrowing of the pupil);
- A glaucoma. This complex pathology of the eye results in an increase in intraocular pressure damaging the optic nerve and the retina. This serious impairment requires urgent consultation and appropriate treatment, at the risk of leading to blindness ;
- A eyelid condition. The eyelids are sometimes subject to malposition, such as entropion (the eyelid rolls inward and the eyelashes touch the cornea) or ectropion (the eyelid is turned outward, exposing the conjunctiva) . The treatment is surgical;
- The blepharitis. The eyelids can be the site of an inflammation called blepharitis and resulting from trauma, tumors, an abnormality of the eyes, an infection or an allergic reaction;
- A eye cancer. In addition to redness, signs of canine eye tumors usually involve swelling and strabismus, with no overt pain. The majority of tumors being malignant, the dog’s long-term vital prognosis is often involved.
What if my dog has red eyes?
Many dog owners tend to view red eyes as a condition. benine. While the most common causes are not a medical emergency, care should be taken to ensure that the irritation is not part of the duration. Complications of an untreated red eye can have serious consequences for vision of the animal or its general state of health. Beyond 48 hours, it is advisable to consult a veterinarian providing as many details as possible such as:
- Observation of others symptoms (swelling of the eyelids, tearing, purulent discharge, difficulty opening the eye, presence of a veil over the eye, pain, fever, sneezing, runny nose, etc.);
- Has the dog been shocked or sniffed any product toxic ?
- How long has he had red eyes?
- Have you tried to treat it on your own? If so, with which product?
To establish the diagnostic, the veterinarian will use an ophthalmoscope allowing him to examine the eyes of the animal. Depending on the origin of the inflammation, the specialist will prescribe dog eye drops and eye ointments. In case of severe irritation painful, cortisone therapy may be given. The professional is also likely to perform a blood test or any other examination complementary considered necessary because, as seen above, an eye disorder sometimes reflects a serious underlying pathology.
Red eyes in dogs: preventive measures
While it is strongly recommended not to try to treat your dog on your own, you can however prevent irritation by adopting daily actions that fall within the scope ofinterview animal current:
- If you have a long-haired dog, make an appointment with a groomer who will give him a chopped off allowing to clear his eyes;
- Do not let your pet stick its head out of the window of the car when you ride. This bad habit is one of the main causes of lesions and dry eyes in dogs;
- Clean your pet’s eyes with physiological serum specifically designed for dogs and sold in veterinary clinics, pet stores or pharmacies. This action will remove all residues and other dust gleaned during the walk;
- Never use eye drops to human or for animals prescribed during a previous illness. In some cases, an unsuitable product may worsen the situation;
- Regularly remove tears and secretions accumulated in the corner of the eye with a compress sterile, sold in pharmacies. Never reuse it and do not use the same gauze to clean both eyes.