As a dog parent, you should strive to keep your dog’s eyes healthy. After all, eye health matters just as much as general health.
Unfortunately, canine eye health isn’t at the top of many dog parents’ health check-up lists. But since our furry friends have such incredible eyesight, it’s crucial to protect it as best we can.
It’s never easy to deal with your dog having eye problems, but detecting warning signs early on can decrease the chances of it leading to total blindness. Contrary to popular belief, it’s not just older dogs that experience eye problems; there are various conditions that can affect all ages across all breeds.
In today’s blog, we’re going over the six most common eye problems to watch out for so that you can keep your dog’s eyes healthy.
1. Pink Eye (Conjunctivitis)
As a parent to an adorable pup, you may have heard of pink eye, but do you know what it is exactly? Pink eye, which is scientifically known as Conjunctivitis, is the inflammation of the conjunctive tissue. Several issues can result in this condition, such as:
- Infective virus
- Irritation caused by excessive dust
- Exposure to fungi
It can result in irritating side effects, such as liquid drainage in the eyes and overall discomfort. We advise you not to treat this condition at home, as treatment isn’t one-size-fits-all and will depend on the cause of the pink eye. We recommend taking your fur baby to a trusted veterinarian who can give them a proper diagnosis and provide your pooch with adequate treatment. A prescribed medication is almost always necessary.
2. Cherry Eye
Did you know your dog has three distinct eyelids? In fact, the third eyelid is where dogs have a gland that produces tears. Sadly, the ligaments that hold a dog’s third eye in place can start to deteriorate, resulting in droopy eyes. Often, this results in the third eyelid being exposed, and it usually looks like a bright cherry color, aptly named Cherry Eye.
Remember how we said that eye conditions don’t only impact older dogs? This particularly rings true for Cherry Eye, as it’s most common in younger pups. You’ll be relieved to learn that this condition isn’t painful; however, exposure of this normally moist gland to the air can irritate it and make it dry. The only way to treat this condition is through surgery to restore it to the proper position.
3. Dry Eye (Keratoconjunctivitis Sicca)
Sometimes, our tear glands just stop working the way that we need them to, and dogs are no different. When a dog is diagnosed with Keratoconjunctivitis, it means that their tear glands are unable to produce the necessary tears to keep their eyes moist. You may think this isn’t a big deal, but this matters because tears can wash away common irritants, such as dirt.
Furthermore, this condition can result in even bigger problems, such as eye pain and corneal ulcers. If you suspect your precious pup has a case of dry eye, you’re safest bet is to take them to the vet. Treatment usually involves a dog taking medications to help their bodies produce tears. In extreme cases, surgery will be required.
4. Dog Cataracts
You’ve likely heard of cataracts and associate them with the elderly, but you should know that your pooch is also susceptible to this condition. As our fur babies grow older, the risk of cataracts exponentially increases. Depending on how severe they are, cataracts can impact your dog’s eyesight, which can eventually result in complete blindness. You’ll be able to tell if your little one is developing cataracts before it turns into a bigger issue because the signs are obvious. They include the following:
- Cloudy eyes
- Eye inflammation
- Adopting new, unhealthy habits due to loss of sight
Fortunately, most cataracts in dogs are minor and usually only partially affect their eyesight.
Glaucoma develops when the fluid pressure in your dog’s eyes increases due to their body’s inability to properly filter liquid through their eyes. The worst part is, the exact cause of this condition is unknown. Sadly, it can result in painful side effects, such as the following:
- Cherry Eye
- Overactive tear glands
- Enlarged eyes
- Dilated pupils
If you’re concerned that your fur baby may have this condition, we advise you to call your veterinarian immediately. Delayed treatment can result in blindness, so this condition must be addressed as urgently as possible. Treatment usually involves surgery and various medications.
6. Damaged Corneas
Much like humans, dogs are prone to getting debris stuck in their eyes. If your dog loves playing outdoors, then you know that grass and dirt are common culprits. Corneal damage occurs when dogs try to alleviate their irritation by scratching their eyes with their paws and accidentally injuring themselves with their nails. The following signs may indicate that your pooch is dealing with corneal injury:
- Excessive eye tearing
- Eye redness
- Pawing of the eyes
If you believe your pup is dealing with cornea problems, you need to take them to the vet immediately. They’ll evaluate the injury and can help prevent infection.
If you love your pup (and we know you do), taking preventative measures to prolong their health is the best way to show them you care.
The Best Way to Keep Your Dog’s Eyes Healthy
It’s worth reiterating that your dog’s eye health is equally as important as their general health. For this reason, you should be using dog-friendly eye drops that can help combat certain common conditions, such as cataracts. Now, we’re not suggesting that eye drops are a substitute for routine veterinary care; however, they can certainly keep preventable diseases at bay. By giving them canine-friendly eye drops, you can ease any eye irritation they may be experiencing.
Plush Paws Products Offers the Best Dog-Friendly Eye Drops
At Plush Paws Products, we know that keeping your dog’s eyes healthy is imperative. Our GMP-certified, advanced eye drop solution is manufactured in a state-of-the-art veterinary facility in compliance with best manufacturing practices, so you can trust its quality and effectiveness. The combined power of lanosterol and N-acetylcarnosine helps clear cloudiness caused by cataracts and provides antioxidant support.