Why are the eyes of dogs swollen? Most dog owners have the same issue with their pets at some point. This is simply explained as a dog’s eye swelling. Why does this happen, and what should you do if it happens? Below, we are going to give you the answers to the questions and also explain everything else you need to know. If you have a dog, this topic is definitely something to invest your time in and learn about.
Reasons Why Are The Eyes Of Dogs Swollen
As you can assume, there is not just one reason why a dog’s eye or eyes will be swollen. In most cases, both eyes are affected but not always. It can be scary to see dog eyes swollen and all red and almost closed. But, usually, there is no need to panic. Below you can see the three main reasons why this happens in dogs.
Of them all, conjunctivitis is the most common. This affects the lining of the eye or eyes. It can be common in most dogs and there are numerous reasons for that. For instance, viral and bacterial infections can cause it. Keep in mind that if these infections are the cause, both eyes will be swollen. If an allergen affected your dog, only one eye may be affected. Yes, two eyes can be affected as well. The most common symptoms of conjunctivitis in dogs include:
- Red eye
- Swollen eye
- Repetitive blinking
- Mucus from the eye/eyes
- Nasal discharge
- Redness of the eyes
Recovery time will depend on the type of conjunctivitis your dog has. For instance, an allergic type is caused by pollen or even dust and it won’t affect other dogs. It occurs in a specific season such as spring. Viral conjunctivitis is a huge issue for all other dogs and it is very contagious. Your dog may need up to one month to recover. Bacterial conjunctivitis is also a problem for other dogs. It is contagious and your pet will need one month to recover. These are the most common types but there are many more out there.
It sounds like a severe issue and a problem for your pet. Glaucoma means that the drainage of the aqueous fluid is affected and it doesn’t operate properly. You can see primary and also secondary glaucoma. Primary glaucoma usually affects dog breeds such as Beagle and Basset Hound. It means that the pressure inside the eye will get too high and can lead to permanent blindness!
Keep in mind that other dog breeds can develop the same issue as the result of trauma, inflammation, or other reasons. In this case, you have to take your pet to a vet immediately.
Secondary glaucoma happens when the intraocular pressure is present due to a previous injury or disease. For instance, a disease called lens luxation can cause this issue. Breeds that are at a higher risk from secondary glaucoma are Terriers, Shar-Pei, and also Chinese Crested Dogs.
In both cases, your dog may display some of the following symptoms. These include:
- Pain in the eye
- A cornea that is cloudy
- Watery discharge
Chronic glaucoma will display one symptom at a time and you will need to wait a long time before you see multiple ones. Acute glaucoma will display all of the symptoms at once.
3. Foreign Object
There is no need in telling you that dogs are too active and they like pushing their head in almost anything. A foreign object on the eye is extremely common. This may include dust, sand, grass awn, and almost anything else. You will notice symptoms such as:
- Rubbing the eye
- Excessive blinking
Keep in mind that you will have to take a dog to a vet immediately. He will use dye to see if there are any injuries or issues within the eye caused by the foreign object. This is done to check for any ulcers or lacerations that are caused by the object. Proper treatment may be needed or a vet will give your pet a collar in order to prevent other complications.
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What Should You Do?
The first thing you will have to do is to take your pet to a vet. A dog eye swollen is a huge issue and as you were able to see all three causes are a bit problematic to diagnose and hard to treat. Eye is an extremely sensitive organ which makes things even more complicated.
Your vet will examine the dog. He may even use dye to see minor damages and find the main cause. Secondly, your vet will be able to pull out the foreign object that is in the eye of a pet. Almost always anesthetic will be given to your pet in order to eliminate any discomfort.
If conjunctivitis is the cause, your pet will get medications. For instance, if the allergy causes conjunctivitis, antihistamines will be provided. On the other hand, if conjunctivitis is caused by a bacteria or virus your pet will get antibiotics. In the second case, eye drops may be added as well. These are all given to eliminate all the symptoms and also the main cause. If or when conjunctivitis is caused by fungus your pet will get anti-fungal ointment. In rare cases, surgery may be needed to correct the main issue and help your dog recover.
When Glaucoma Is Present
You are looking at a different picture. First of all, you need to take your pet to a vet immediately. As you know by now, increased pressure in the eye is present and it can cause permanent blindness. Your vet will prescribe medications that can decrease the pressure. Analgesics are also given to a dog but in order to decrease the overall discomfort of the condition.
Once again we can see that in rare cases surgery may be needed. This will be offered even if your dog has already developed blindness. It can still help and recover vision partially. Surgery may be needed in order to remove the eye as well. This is done in extreme situations and the goal is to eliminate pain completely. Surgeries are always used as the last resort and when no other treatments are effective. It is less-likely your dog will need one.
How To Prevent All Of This?
Believe it or not you can do a lot in order to prevent these issues and make your dog’s life more comfortable. First of all, you can protect your pet from conjunctivitis. Regular vaccines and also being able to locate all the chemicals and other treats that can cause it should be done. Avoid contact with dogs who already have viral or bacterial conjunctivitis!
When glaucoma is the case, you won’t be able to do a lot of things. First of all, you don’t know when this is going to happen and you cannot prevent it before it happens. But, you can react fast once you notice the first symptoms and you can prevent further complications.
In a nutshell, regular eye exams are needed and these can be the most effective method of prevention than any other. You will help your pet by eliminating any issue or complication and make sure his eyesight is not affected. Don’t forget about vaccines. These are more important than you may believe and they can have a huge, positive effect on all of this.
Issues Are Expensive To Treat
In more severe cases you are looking at very high numbers which are actually common in the case of glaucoma. Conductivities are much cheaper to treat and much easier in general. Of course, the cost of the treatment will depend on the location where you live and on the severity of the issue.
Due to the high cost of the treatments, most dog owners are looking for a thing or a method that they can do by themselves at home and eliminate going to the vet. This is not a wise idea. First of all, there are not a lot of things you can do. You can use a warm towel to remove the discharge from the eye and you can use sterile saline to apply if your pet has an infection. This is a short-term solution and usually doesn’t work well. Always remember that eye drops for humans must not be used in dogs and they can cause severe complications.
Increase Care For The Eyes Of Your Dog
Perhaps this sounds funny but it is important for dogs who have issues with eyes on a regular basis. You will have to use an irritant-free solution to make his eyes clean and remove any irritants that may get inside. Yes, this should be done on a regular basis.
The best thing you can do is to increase care for the eyes of your dog if he is prone to these issues. Look for all the symptoms that are present and if you deduce that something severe or even if you don’t know what happens to your dog, take him to a vet. Still, professional help is always needed and can be the best and the most appealing option.
These treatments are not free. However, they are not very expensive and obviously, your dog must get them. The prices vary from place to place and obviously are different according to the condition that is getting treated. The most expensive option is treating glaucoma which can reach thousands of pounds. Luckily it is not as common as other issues from this list so odds are low that your pet will need surgery or treatment.
The Final Word
Why are the eyes of dogs swollen? A dog eye swollen is a common thing these days. Allergies, bacteria, viruses, and conditions may cause this problem. The first thing you should do is to take him to a vet and find the cause and then provide the treatment.
Most of these conditions are easy to treat and cure completely if diagnosed soon. Trying to cure the issue while at home, all by yourself is not a good idea and usually, you will still have to go to a vet and get help. The only thing you can do while at home is prevention.