Eye Injuries in Dogs: Signs, Cause, Treatment and Prevention


A complicated eye injury is more major and includes a perforating injury to the cornea or sclera in addition to other structures of the dog’s eye.

Dogs’ love of play and natural curiosity makes them prone to scrapes and injuries from time to time. So even the most well-behaved dog can wind up with an eye injury. This can take place from rough play, going after little animals through the underbrush, or just digging in the garden.

Often the outcome of blunt injury, eye injuries generally require immediate veterinary care. Some eye injuries can be thought about emergencies, especially if the loss of vision is a threat.

As a dog owner, familiarizing yourself with the different kinds of eye injuries helps you better react to one when or if the issue emerges.

Symptoms of Eye Injuries in Dogs

Several eye diseases can impact dogs. Ocular symptoms can emerge even without an injury. Nevertheless, if your dog’s eye has an apparent injury on or around it, perhaps accompanied by blood, it’s best you get it checked out. Other symptoms of eye injuries consist of squinting, twitching or spasming of the eyelid, pawing at the eye area, blinking quickly, or excessive tearing. Some injuries might even impact your dog’s capability to open its eye. A bloodshot look in the white of the eye might show injury or irritation. A yellow or greenish discharge can indicate an infection.

Eye Injuries in Dogs

Other types of eye problems can lead to an inflammation of the mucosal membrane surrounding the eye, cloudiness in the eyes, prolonged pupil dilation, asymmetrical look of the eyes, and light level of sensitivity. Signs might exist in one or both eyes, which can often confirm if it’s an injury or another problem.

If you discover your dog experiencing any of the above symptoms, seek veterinary attention as quickly as possible. Do not try home take care of eye issues unless recommended to do so by an expert. Because eye problems can be much worse than they look – and can progress very rapidly – don’t risk your dog’s vision or tolerance for pain.

Dog eye scratches or injuries are commonly seen when he:

  • Is pawing at his eye
  • Is blinking quickly – and his eye is swollen and inflamed
  • Has blood in his eyes and eye bleeding
  • Has a blood-fill sac or mass in his eye (subconjunctival hematoma) – which might be remaining from a sealed cut in your dog’s eye
  • Has a foreign object in the eye that you can in fact see
  • Has a distorted pupil (the little black part) that responds unusually or is formed differently
  • Has a protrusion of eyeball or the front clear covering of your dog’s eye.

Causes of Eye Injuries

An eye injury occurs when something enters into contact with your dog’s eye and causes damage. A dogfight or run-in with another animal, a feline’s claw swipe, or a kick from a horse can all easily hurt a dog’s eye. Numerous natural threats likewise trigger injuries to the eye. Tree branches, insect bites, and dirt scratches can harm or irritate the external portion of the eye. Dogs that hang they go out of the cars and truck window are at threat for particles blowing into their eyes, triggering irritation. Chemicals sprayed or spilled near your dog can cause a momentary sensitivity in the eyes. Sharp objects like furniture corners, fence parts, fishhooks, and tools can likewise present a danger to the fragile tissue of the eyes and the surrounding area.

Itchy eyes due to allergic reactions or a moderate irritation can cause eye injuries if your dog is pawing at the eyes or rubbing on something. If this behavior continues, an ulcer or scratch can form on the cornea.

Eye injuries range from mild to extreme and can typically be diagnosed by your veterinarian with some easy tests. Typical eye injuries include corneal laceration (cut or scratch to the eye surface), corneal ulcer (from chemicals, debris, or rubbing), puncture wound (from any foreign object), eyelid trauma, or proptosis (when the eye pops out of its socket).

Treatment for Canine Eye Injuries

If your dog has an eye injury, call your vet. Please do not try to treat it in your home without speaking first to the veterinarian’s workplace.

If instructed to administer emergency treatment, a vet may suggest eliminating the eye or using a cold compress. Upon suggestion, use a sterilized saline eyewash solution to flush out your dog’s eye. Do not use contact lens solution. Keep in mind to be gentle! It is likely your dog is experiencing some degree of pain. Employ another family member to assist you to hold your dog while you thoroughly take care of the eye. A restroom flooring, tub, kitchen area flooring, or patio area can work well. Choose an area that provides you easy access to your pet and can take a damp spill. Place smaller sized dogs up on a table, a counter, or even the sink to aid the ease of cleansing. Wrap a towel around the dog, hold the dog’s eye open with one hand, and apply a stream of eye wash with the other. Use a little towel or cloth to catch the saline streaming out of the eye.

Eye Injuries in Dogs

After that, take your dog to the vet. The vet will ask the information of the injury, followed by an examination with numerous eye tests to evaluate tear production, search for ulcers or lacerations, and determine the intraocular pressure of the eye. Depending on the medical diagnosis, straightforward treatment of eye medication and a follow-up test might be suggested. Nevertheless, serious injuries may need a recommendation to a veterinary ophthalmologist for surgical treatment. In extreme cases, surgical extraction of the eye (enucleation) might need to be performed. However, your veterinarian will do everything possible to save the eye. Do note, nevertheless, that some injuries may cause irreversible loss of sight.

If your dog is sent out home with eye medication, apply it precisely as recommended. If more than one eye medication is prescribed, put drops in before using ointments. Be sure to wait about 5 minutes between each eye medication. Many dogs with eye injuries will also require to use an E-collar (the infamous cone) to avoid from pawing or rubbing at the eye. The collar will also assist protect the eye from risks around the home. The E-collar must be used at all times unless your vet provides you exceptions.

Do not skip or delay follow-up sees. Eye issues need close tracking and can weaken without you recognizing it. If your dog’s eye looks even worse and it’s not yet time for a checkup, call your vet right away instead of waiting.

How to Prevent Eye Injuries in Dogs

Accidents occur, however keeping your dog safe and avoiding injury resides in your hands. Socialize your dog and take measures to prevent dog fights to avoid expensive medical costs down the road. Teach your cat and dog to get along to decrease the chance of a claw swipe. View your dog outdoors, specifically in areas with lots of underbrush. Do not permit your dog to stroll free. It’s also best to teach your dog not to hang its go out of the vehicle window while you’re driving (even though it’s enjoyable). Always keep hazardous chemicals out of reach.

Canine Eye Injury Aftercare

Deep or broad penetrating wounds that have not been sutured require to be reconsidered every 24 to 48 hours for the first numerous days. If the permeating injury is superficial, rechecking every three to five days up until it is healed is advised.

As to avoidance, take care when presenting new young puppies to households with felines. Discourage your dog from running through thick plants. Minimize a visually impaired or blind dog’s direct exposure to dense vegetation. If you remain in an area that carries the danger of having particles transmitted to the eyes, like wooded areas, beaches, and so on, it would be a good idea to have a bottle of saline eyewash to irrigate foreign particles from the eye.

Many eyes with corneal lacerations or a retained foreign things in the cornea are salvageable — the more back the injury, the weaker the prognosis for retention of vision. Cases that would call for a wrong diagnoses, for instance, would be an injury to the white, external membrane of the eyeball, the sclera, or to the fluid part, the vascular layer of the eyeball; if there is no light perception; a perforated injury including the lens; a significant hemorrhage in the vitreous, the clear gel that fills the space between the lens and the retina of the eyeball; or, retinal detachment. Penetrating injuries usually have a better prognosis then tedious injuries, and blunt injuries bring a poorer prognosis than acute traumas.


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