What Does It Mean If A Dog Can’t Keep Eyes Open? You’ve seen your dog staring at you strangely the last few days; it was more like a cute smile in one or both eyes. Today, though, you should be certain of it: your dog is actually squinting with both eyes. “My dog is refusing to open his eyes,” you reason. So, what are your options?
If your dog has an eye infection, you can take it seriously and contact his vet. Numerous eye conditions in dogs may or may not be severe. Your veterinarian will assist you in determining the root cause, whether benign or serious and in initiating the appropriate care regimen for your dog.
When pet owners come into the veterinarian’s office complaining about why their dog won’t open its eyes, most of the time, the cause is dog eye discomfort. If your pooch’s eyes are open, everything gives him discomfort, and he prefers to have them closed to relieve eye pain.
When a dog experiences eye pressure, its natural response is to squint and hold its eyes closed. Occasionally, the dog will exhibit symptoms of behavioral discomfort. Your dog can attempt to conceal it by sleeping more or by exhibiting reduced appetite, hostility, or hiding behaviors.
There are some factors to remember if your dog refuses to open his eyes; here is what you need to read.
What Does It Mean If A Dog Can’t Keep Eyes Open?
There are several possible sources of eye distress, which your veterinarian will discuss with you upon your arrival. A veterinarian will examine your dog’s eyes with specialized instruments to detect abnormalities that are not apparent to the human eye.
Your veterinarian is searching for indicators that indicate the presence of typical sources of eye discomfort. According to Merck Vet Manual, some of the more common causes of eye discomfort in dogs are as follows:
- On the top of the eye, debris or other foreign substance.
- Dog eye discomfort can be caused by iris inflammation or anterior uveitis. To cure uveitis effectively, the veterinarian will need to ascertain the underlying trigger.
- Glaucoma in dogs, which results in increased pressure on the inside of the eye, may cause a dog to experience discomfort. Their natural inclination might be to keep their eyes closed.
- Pressure can be caused by trauma to the eye tissue or the eyelids.
- Infections of the internal eye socket (orbital) are particularly unpleasant and often manifest as mouth-related problems, such as a failure to open his jaw.
- Dry eye, also known as KCS (keratoconjunctivitis), can induce a painful gritty, dry feeling on the eye’s surface in pets. This will result in the eyes remaining closed.
Symptoms and Complications of Dog Eye Pain
When the dog is experiencing eye pressure, he will most certainly show that in various ways. If you’re claiming that your dog won’t open his eyes, that’s the first indication that something is wrong. However, certain symptoms are tangible in nature, and others are mental.
Certain signs of dog eye distress can be apparent to you, although others may go unnoticed.
While some dog eye care items you may use to clean out your pet’s eyes to ensure they are clear of dirt, if your dog continues to refuse to open his eyes, a veterinarian visit is essential.
Your doctor will explain the many signs to look for when you begin treating your dog’s eyes. These are among the most frequent indications of dog eye pain, and you can get immediate veterinary assistance:
- Squint or shut your eyes
- Mucus or other pus-like discharge from the eyes Excessive weeping
- Eyes that are bloodshot or swollen
- Cloudiness, bluish haze, or filmy covering of the eye of some kind
- Pupil measurements that are dilated, constricted, or uneven
- Photophobia, or aversion of artificial lighting
- Excessive eye rubbing
- Cherry eye swelling, or red covering of the body
- Discomfort after opening the jaw
When your dog exhibits some of these dog eye pressure signs, it is time to see a doctor. This is important because, even though you do not appreciate your dog’s dislike of bright lighting or hiding activity, you understand that not all eye disorders trigger direct discomfort signals in the eyes.
Your dog could be experiencing other eye problems that it cannot articulate, such as a form of dog eye allergy. The best way to determine this is by a careful review at the veterinarian’s clinic.
Since eyes are such a delicate topic, this cannot be postponed. If you find yourself searching online for updates about my dog won’t open his eyes and have even attempted to wash them, it’s time to contact your veterinarian. Ignoring it may hinder not only your dog’s vision but also its capacity to speak.
A Comprehensive Examination of Canine Eye Pain
When your dog is seen by a doctor or expert, the first step is to review the entire medical records and do a detailed clinical evaluation. Your veterinarian will then do a comprehensive ophthalmic test.
Mostly, the dog’s eye test can only be performed until the vet administers a topical pain aid to alleviate the squinting, and even then, most pets are so fearful of the pain and treatments that certain vets elect to sedate the dog to do a more rigorous examination of the eye.
Your veterinarian will perform a series of examinations, including a Schirmer examination, a corneal fluorescein dye, and tonometry. The eyelids and surface of the dog’s eyes are examined under magnification.
Following that, the veterinarian will perform additional eye tests, such as an ocular ultrasound, as necessary. Additionally, complete blood counts are performed to rule out all such underlying disorders. Due to the possibility that eye pressure in dogs is a sign of a more serious health issue, all potential causes must be checked out by a careful evaluation and diagnosis.
Corneal ulcers are a frequent source of eye pain in dogs (NHAH, 2014). A corneal ulcer is an often fatal disease that is often triggered by trauma. Additionally, they are challenging to handle, with some veterinary reports stating that it might be impractical.
Dogs scratching their eyes on the ground or being scratched by a cat will result in an ulcer. Veterinarians use the fluorescein dye to visualize the epithelium layers to determine the depth of abrasion or ulcer in the dog’s eye.
Corneal ulcers are a very dangerous disease in dogs that need prompt medical treatment. It’s traumatic for the puppy, and the veterinarian will assist you with initiating care promptly.
Glaucoma is a chronic disease in dogs that causes eye discomfort. This disease places strain on the dog’s eye, resulting in blockages of the inner eye fluid drainage.
Glaucoma has the potential to develop into a lifelong disease. It may result in eye pressure and, if left unchecked, blindness. However, regardless of care, about 40% of the dogs diagnosed with glaucoma will go blind within a year (Slatter, D. 2001).
When you arrive at the doctor’s office with the complaint that my dog won’t open his paws, the veterinarian can administer a recovery plan for your pooch depending on the prescription obtained throughout the test. You must adhere to the program. It can involve eye drops containing steroids, drugs, or even surgery.
You must adhere to the veterinarian’s instructions. Your dog’s eyes are permanent and serve as a means of navigating existence, defending itself and you, and sharing its thoughts and feelings.
Your best buddy made an unconditional promise to you; now it’s up to you to step through and assist your dog during this medical emergency.