That Eye Doesn't Look Very Good: 3 Steps To Care For A Canine Eye Infection

Posted on: 15 September 2016

If your dog has been pawing at its eyes, it probably has an infection. This is particularly true if the itchy eyes are accompanied by redness and swelling. Luckily, you can usually tell what's caused the infection by looking at your dog's eyes. If one eye is swollen, and it has a yellow or green discharge, the infection is probably due to some type of injury or embedded foreign object. If both eyes are affected, the infection is probably caused by a virus. If your dog has an eye infection, there are some steps you can take to alleviate the discomfort.

Remove the Discharge

Take a look at your dog's eyes. If you can see green or yellow gunk, you'll need to remove it as soon as possible. Once the discharge dries, it can be much more difficult to remove. Not only that, but it can cause increased eye irritation. Fill a large mixing bowl with warm water. Place a clean wash cloth in the water.

Wring the excess water out of the wash cloth and place it directly over the affected eye. Leave the cloth on the eye for a few minutes to soften the discharge. Use the cloth to wipe the discharge off the eye. Be sure to wipe away from the corner of the eye to avoid spreading the infection. You might need to rinse the cloth out in the bowl several times to thoroughly clean the eye. If both eyes are affected, clean one eye at a time, and use a different cloth for each eye.

Wash the Eyes

After you've removed the discharge, you'll need to wash your dog's eyes. You can do this with a sterile saline solution that you use to wash contact lenses. Fill a small syringe with the sterile saline solution. Using your thumb and forefinger, hold your dog's eye open. Use the other hand to squirt a small amount of sterile saline solution into your dog's eye. Repeat the process on the other eye. Be sure to wash your dog's eyes several times a day until they clear up.

Visit the Vet

If your dog is still suffering from the symptoms after a day or two, or the symptoms appear to have gotten worse, be sure to contact the veterinarian. Serious infections can lead to blindness if not treated promptly. Some signs of serious infection include:

  • Fever
  • Eyes that have swollen shut
  • Smelly discharge from the eyes

If your dog has an eye infection, use the tips provided above to help alleviate the symptoms. Be sure to contact your veterinarian as soon as possible, if symptoms persist. Contact a clinic like Howard County Animal Hospital for more info.