5 Common Side Effects of Dog Eye Drops

5 Common Side Effects of Dog Eye Drops

Just like us humans, dogs get eye problems too. To address these eye concerns, it’s common for us to reach for eye drops. However, as with any medication, eye drops can have side effects.

Here are the five common side effects of dog eye drops:

  • Mild irritation or redness
  • Stinging sensation
  • Twitching of the eyes or eyelids
  • Frequent urination and increased thirst
  • Swelling of the eyes or face
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    In this article, we will discuss these side effects in greater detail and explore eye conditions in dogs and how to address them. Read on!

    1. Mild Irritation or Redness 

    Upon applying eye drops, it’s possible to see some irritation or redness. This is a common reaction to medicine in eye drops and is no cause for worry. This should go away in a few minutes. 

    However, because your dog may feel uncomfortable or simply curious, it may start pawing at its eyes. This behavior is dangerous because it could cause trauma to the eyes, leading to infection.

    To keep this from happening, you can put protective goggles or a cone on your dog right after applying the eye drops and take them off only when you see no more signs of irritation.

    Signs of Severe Irritation

    Your dog should only experience mild irritation after administering eye drops. If side effects worsen, it’s time to contact the vet.

    Here are common signs that the irritation has worsened:

    Eye Redness Persists or Worsens

    Eye drops should not make dogs’ eyes red, at least not for a long time. If it’s been an hour and your dog’s eyes are still red, don’t wait any further. Something in the eye drops could be causing severe irritation.

    Uncontrollable Itching

    Dogs are naturally curious beings. So even if they are not feeling itchy, they may paw at their eyes just because they are curious about the new medicine. However, if your dog continues to paw aggressively at its eyes or begins to behave violently, it may be because their eyes are giving them extreme discomfort.

    Also, if your dog is not wearing a cone or protective goggles, it may scratch its eyes and cause severe damage.

    Infected Eyes

    Dog’s eyes can get infected when bacteria or dirt gets inside their eyes’ surface, such as scratching. But they can also get infected when their eyes get in contact with irritating substances like chemicals or when an existing inflammation is not addressed right away.

    Infected eyes are typically characterized by the following:

    • Redness and inflammation
    • Increased eye discharge that is yellow or green
    • Swollen eyelids
    • Itchiness

    When a dog’s eyes get to this point, it usually means that the infection has advanced. Do not attempt to self-medicate. Talk to your vet about what antibiotics to use and how to administer them.

    How To Avoid Eye Infection or Irritation in Dogs

    Eye infections can be a hassle, not just for your dog, but for you too. An infection can affect a dog’s overall wellbeing and attitude. And treating it can cost you time and money.

    Here are some simple and effective ways you can avoid that altogether:

    Administer Eye Medicine Properly

    The most common mistake dog owners make when applying eye medicine is letting the tip of the eye drops or an applicator touch the dog’s eyes.

    As a general rule, you should not allow an applicator to touch any surface of the dog’s body unless it has been sanitized before use and sanitized again afterward or if it is meant for single use.

    The applicator may collect bacteria or dirt that can then be transmitted into the dog’s eyes on the next application of the medicine. Rather than making the dog well, this can aggravate the situation.

    If you use the same medicine applicator for another dog in the household who shares more or less severe symptoms, it may result in reinfection.

    Aside from using a clean applicator, keep the dog’s face clean to avoid debris from getting into the eyes.

    Do Not Use Human Eye Drops On Dogs

    While it can be tempting to do this (and some human medicines may be used on animals), some ingredients in human eye drops are harmful to dogs. Using human medicine in dogs may even cause blindness. 

    Use human medication for your pet only if your vet prescribed it or confirmed that its ingredients are safe. 

    Maintain Good Grooming

    This is especially important for breeds that have long or very thick fur: Trim your dog’s fur regularly so that it does not get into the eyes. Dog hairs may look harmless and soft, but they can do significant damage to the cornea.

    Another important thing is to keep your dog clean, particularly its face, so that whatever dirt that may have stuck to its hairs does not get into the eyes. Little stones or chunks of dirt easily stick to dog fur, so make a habit of wiping your dog’s face down, especially after playtime outdoors.

    Use Protective Gear When Needed

    It’s essential to keep protective gear such as a cone and goggles at home for times when your dog might need them. 

    As mentioned previously in this article, you can put goggles or a cone on your dog when applying eye medication or when your dog has a wound in the facial area.

    This protective gear not only protects your dog from themselves (like when they paw at their faces) but also from their environment. 

    Store Away Any Irritants

    Keeping a dog also means making your home a safe environment for it. This means you should store any products (especially chemicals) out of the reach of your dogs to prevent them from causing harm.

    Dogs are curious creatures, but they can also be pretty cautious. So there’s a big chance that if they perceive that something’s not good for them, they’ll stay away from it. However, younger dogs may not be as keen about their environments yet. 

    2. Stinging Sensation

    After administering the eye drops, your dog may feel a mild sti