How to treat a dog’s eye infection

Table of Contents
How to treat a dog's eye infection

In this article we’ll explain what it takes to treat an eye infection in a dog, by answering the following questions:

  • How can I treat my dog’s eye infection at home?
  • Can a dog eye infection heal on its own?
  • How do vets treat dog eye infections?
  • How long can a dog eye infection last?
  • Dog eye drops recommendations

Disclaimer: Please refer to the information in this article as a guide only. If you think that your dog may have an eye infection, it’s best to contact your veterinarian for a proper diagnosis and treatment. It’s never recommended to try and treat potential infections without following a veterinarian’s advice. 

What are the signs of an eye infection in a dog?

We’ve listed some signs that a dog may have an eye infection below:

  • Material (discharge) exiting the eyes.
  • Itching, redness or swelling near the eye.
  • Blinking more than usual.

It’s good for pet parents to know that the above signs are not just specific to eye infections. This means that they can be caused by a range of other problems in the eye. If you notice any changes in your dog’s eyes, it’s best to contact your veterinarian.

What can cause an eye infection in a dog?

There are a variety of things that can contribute to eye infections in dogs, which we’ve listed below:

  • Infectious diseases – such as those caused by bacteria, viruses, and parasites.
  • Autoimmune and immunosuppressive conditions – if your pet’s immune system doesn’t work properly, they may be more susceptible to problems with their eyes
  • Inherited conditions – for example, conditions which alter the eye’s normal anatomy and make it harder to protect itself.
  • Foreign materials – such as dirt, dust, plant seeds, and chemicals.

You can read more about eye infections in our article How to Prevent and Manage Dog Eye Infections.

How can I treat my dog’s eye infection at home?

If you suspect that your dog may have an eye infection, the best thing to do is take them to your veterinarian for proper diagnosis and treatment, rather than try to treat it at home. This is because attempting to treat it at home is unlikely to help, and may even make things worse.

Although it may seem tempting (and cheaper) to try home remedies, they are often ineffective, can delay your pet’s recovery, and increase veterinary costs in the long run.

Can a dog’s eye infection heal on its own?

It’s unlikely that a dog’s eye infection will heal on its own. As we mentioned earlier, if you suspect that your dog has an eye infection, it’s best to take them to your veterinarian for a proper diagnosis and treatment. 

It’s also good for pet parents to know that sometimes eye infections can be linked to diseases which affect the rest of your pet’s body.

How do vets treat dog eye infections?

When you take your dog with a suspected eye infection to your vet, the first thing they will do is ask you questions about your pet’s general condition and the events surrounding the infection.

After that, they’ll examine your pet from toe to tail, and of course, pay specific attention to their eyes. They will likely use an instrument called an ophthalmoscope and may perform other tests such as those related to their tear production, using special dyes or taking blood. 

Depending on their findings they may then prescribe one of the following treatments:

  • Eye drops – these drops may contain medication such as antibiotics, lubricants or agents to affect tear production.
  • Oral medication – if your dog’s eye infection is secondary to another problem, then oral medication may help them.
  • Surgical correction – some eye infections are a result of eye abnormalities which can only be corrected surgically. 

How long can a dog eye infection last?

The duration of a dog’s infection can be influenced by the following factors:

  • Your pet’s general condition – if they have any other health conditions
  • Breeds- some breeds of dogs are more susceptible to eye infections, especially those who have hair with a tendency to grow into their eyes
  • Treatment application – the thoroughness and regularity of administering your dog’s medicine will affect how quickly they recover. 

The best way to ensure that your pet makes a thorough and fast recovery is to follow the instructions from your veterinarian as closely as possible. 

Conclusion

We hope that after reading this article you have the information to help get your pet back to normal. Although it’s tempting to try home remedies for your pet, it’s always best to take them to your veterinarian for a proper diagnosis and treatment.

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