Why my dog ​​has red eyes


He eye is a crucible, or as they say, it is "the best mirror of the soul." The most common case is foreign bodies, which has accidentally penetrated in the eye structures. Spikes, hairs, thorns and plant debris, earth, sand, etc. are some of the examples. «After a thorough exploration we can find them, sometimes extremely hidden in the conjunctival sacs, behind the nictitating membrane (3rd eyelid) or in The cornea itself. The affected eye is red, lachrymal in excess, and there is usually blepharospam (reflex closure of the eyelids). In addition, our faithful friend is sad and comes to us for help, ”says our veterinarian Javier Álvarez de la Villa.

Foreign bodies can ulcerate or injure the cornea (corneal ulcer). But things can get even worse, and the affected animal, in an attempt to eliminate the problem, may «Self-traumatize» the eye with your nails or rubbing on furniture and fixtures with frenzy. The diagnosis is essential. A local anesthetic of the eye will allow an ophthalmologic review by spot light and magnification glasses. Once the "intruder" foreign body has been discovered, it will be delicately removed and then, the use of topical medication will completely solve the problem.

Another case, not uncommon, red eye It is glaucoma. It consists of the increase in intraocular pressure. In severe clinical cases, the eye may appear red with large blood vessels that converge towards the episclera (the outermost layer of the sclera). In addition, the owner sees it as bluish. This effect is secondary to the cornea, which loses transparency, and to the pupil that dilates, presenting the dog or cat on many occasions, pupils of different sizes if the problem is unilateral.

In addition, the eye may be dilated and very tense to digital palpation. In these cases the Veterinary service is essential. A rapid diagnosis, supported by tonometry (measurement of intraocular pressure) will give us an early diagnosis. Consequently they are implemented urgent measures aimed at lowering the intraocular pressure that, if it remains, will damage the retina and optic nerve, and consequently, the vision itself. A curious case of red eye is Thelaziosi. Formerly called Eastern worm disease, as it appeared on the Asian continent.

In recent years it has appeared in European countries and, among them, Spain. «Consisting of a nematode worm of the genus Thelazia that it is transmitted by the fruit fly when it feeds on the lacrimal secretions of carnivores and humans. It is therefore a zoonosis, that is, disease transmitted from animals to man through an intermediate host, the fly, ”says the veterinarian of the Víctor de la Serna Veterinary Center. Naturally, the eye is red, irritated, and the animal feels upset. In the Veterinary consultation, after the pertinent exploration, they appear fine white larvae that rebel, twist and mobilize quickly. They need to be removed with the help of Addson clamps, profuse irrigation and ophthalmic sticks. Subsequently, the eye is relieved and a topical and systemic product with anti parasite effect is used. This disease cause, so to speak, repelús and rejection but, luckily, it can be prevented and cured effectively.

Health mirror

Another case that will sound They are allergies. There are some curious facts that will be taken into account. Allergies are usually seasonal, when different types of pollen and allergens they emerge and become present in the environment. As with the human being, the eye of our small pets appears red, irritated. «They are upset, they close their eyelids and they try to rub and relieve with their legs, as well as rubbing against furniture, floors, walls, etc. Far from improving the problem, it can get worse, even with the formation of a wound or corneal ulcer, ”says Javier Álvarez de la Villa.

It is also interesting that the problem is usually symmetric and bilateral, that is, will affect both eyes and, on many occasions it may be accompanied by itching in other parts of the body and even the usual and typical allergic sneezing. Thanks our dear dog or cat, a palliative and etiological treatment, which will return the usual eye comfort. Now we show the eye as a mirror of health. Many systemic diseases such as Leishmaniosis, tick-borne diseases, tumors, endocrine diseases, severe uterine infections, infections of the teeth and oral cavity may be reflected in the health of the eyeball.


These pathologies "inflame" at a distance The inside of the eyeball. If the cause is not discovered with haste, our canine or feline companion may lose vision completely, but in addition the primary disease may seriously threaten your health and even his life. This ocular pathology is known as Uveitis (inflammation of an inner layer of the eyeball itself very vascularized). The causative agent has been able to reach the capillaries and small blood vessels of said layer and there it settles, to produce inflammation and destruction at a distance. As always, early diagnosis and identification of the primary disease, which we will deal with expeditiously, in addition to the symptomatic and intense treatment of the eye itself. We will be saving not only vision, but also preserving your health.

Attention to orphaned kittens

Finally, now that autumn is coming, we remember the autumn orphaned kittens. Born at the end of good weather they will "run over" you blow the temperature drop and other rigors. Their defenses, in the hostile street and abandonment, suffer inexorably and will appear serious and complex eye problems. The shelters will be filled to the limit of these blinded orphans and many veterinary clinics will receive them, from the hands of compassionate adopters.

We said that the problem is complex, with purulent eyes, closed, blinded and very damaged corneas. Behind, an etiological complex with herpesviruses, calicivirus, clamydias, mycoplasmas, etc. that have taken advantage of the aforementioned defenses falls. Luckily, a specialized treatment can save the kitten and return its privileged and characteristic vision and eye health.

Eye redness in dogs

When we observe that our dog has red eyes, this redness is affecting a specific structure of the eyeball, in this case we will observe redness in the white part of the eye, known as episclerotic and this redness condition is medically known as episcleritis, a term that indicates inflammation of this ocular structure.

It is an inflammation that can occur as a generalized thickening in the eyeball or as a small inflamed nodule with a very defined location, we must clarify beforehand that it is usually a benign condition and with a good prognosis.

Symptoms of episcleritis in dogs

If our dog suffers from inflammation of the episclerotic We can observe in him the following symptoms:

  • Nodule in the eye or generalized thickening
  • Altered coloration of the white part of the eyeball that can range from a pink color to a brown tone
  • Irritated eyes and redness>

How do we treat eye redness in our dog?

The episcleritis It can have various causes and sometimes this inflammation corresponds to various pathologies, some of them relatively easy to handle and treat, such as conjunctivitis, but others with a more complex prognosis, such as glaucoma. The veterinary assessment It will be of great importance to determine the underlying cause and prescribe the appropriate treatment.

As we mentioned at the beginning this symptom does not usually indicate severity and its prognosis is good, but for this immediate veterinary attention is required, since complications could arise if the inflammation is not treated and spreads.

The veterinarian will prescribe eye drops and ophthalmic ointments, which may include different active ingredients, being usual to include anti-inflammatory and analgesic components, although if the inflammation is very serious, a drug containing cortisone, one of the most potent anti-inflammatory drugs, can be used, although it also has important adverse effects.

The treatment can be administered from home and the owner must commit to perform adequate therapeutic compliance as well as a follow-up of the state of your pet, going immediately to the veterinarian if there is any type of aggravation or new symptomatology.

This article is purely informative, at we have no power to prescribe veterinary treatments or make any kind of diagnosis. We invite you to take your pet to the veterinarian in case he presents any type of condition or discomfort.

If you want to read more articles similar to Why my dog ​​has red eyes, we recommend you go to our Other health problems section.


Is a inflammation of the blood vessels It is treated with eteroids.

Eye pressure that causes eye pain and inflammation, it is treated with drops, but it is advisable to implant through an operation a stent to drain the area.

Is a eye inflammation Due to trauma or as a reaction to an infection in another area of ​​the body, steroid drops are given to relieve symptoms.

Detection of the condition

If your dog has been with the dogs for more than a day Irritated eyes or it shows signs from the first moment that you have a condition, take it immediately to the veterinarian. There they will examine you with an ophthalmoscope to make a diagnosis, see the degree of irritation or inflammation you have and also take your eye pressure with a tonometer to rule out a possible glaucoma.

The one that dog have red eyesYou can't prevent it, but you can always keep it from going over to the vet quickly.

Why does my dog ​​have red eyes?

In my experience as an ophthalmological veterinarian, the most frequent reason for red eyes in dogs is corneal ulcer. It can be very serious if it goes unnoticed or the dog is not taken to the vet immediately.

The means that give transparency to the eye are susceptible to infections and degrade until perforated in a few hours, especially if the puppy is rubbed either with the hands or against sheets and upholstery.

The most frequent causes of this problem, which initially creates red eyes in dogs, are:

  • A mild trauma (blow to the eye),
  • A foreign body that entered the dog's eye,
  • Irritation caused by shampoo or other chemical agent,
  • Alterations of some of the parts of the eye.

It is very likely that the owner does not know the cause, however that is not important. The most important thing is to prevent the problem from getting worse by taking the pet to a veterinarian.

How to detect a corneal ulcer in dogs?

The first thing the owner will perceive is that the dog guides an eye and does it often. The eye quickly turns red, watery or with lagaà ± as and may be narrowed.

The dog can try to rub against objects or with its paws, as if something bothers him inside the eye.