The First Symptoms of Pink Eye in Dogs and What to Do

You can sometimes recongize this disease by noticing the changes in your dog's behavior. Once you've determined this is what it is, then you begin the treatment.
The First Symptoms of Pink Eye in Dogs and What to Do

Last update: 29 September, 2018

The symptoms of pink eye in dogs are quick to show up. Knowing what they are and what you can do to treat them can make a big difference in regard to the pain and discomfort your dog experiences, as well as how long they last.

What is pink eye?

This disease occurs when there is an inflammation of the conjunctiva, which is the mucous membrane surrounding your eye. The conjunctiva is meant to keep the eyes lubricated. So when it swells, the eyes dry out, causing irritation and pain. Even blinking can be painful.

It’s normal for dogs to get infections, because they’re always exposed to the outside world. That’s also why pink eye is so common in this species.

pink eye in dogs

The symptoms of pink eye in dogs

As you know, dogs tear up constantly. However, don’t confuse their tears as a symptom of pink eye. Below are some of the changes your dog’s eyes will experience if they have pink eye:

  • Difficulty blinking. Due to the membrane being inflamed, your dog has less space to open and close his eyes. You’ll spot it in a second if your dog is having this problem.
  • Sensitivity to light. Another clear symptom of pink eye is not being able to handle the light. Dogs love being in the sun — it provides them with warmth and light — but they’ll avoid it if they have pink eye.
  • Not wanting to walk. Due to the sensitivity in its eyes (e.g. the light), your dog will refuse to go outside. That’s the defense mechanism of the brain and body against the brightness of light because it will damage the eye.
  • Constantly touching its eyes. Pink eye irritates, which leads to itching. So one of the first visible symptoms is that your dog can’t stop scratching that part of its body.
  • Pus. In serious cases of pink eye, your dog’s eyes might start to pus.

How to deal with the symptoms of pink eye in dogs

If you ever notice that your dog’s eye is pussing, then go straight to the vet. That means the pink eye has gotten serious and could cause major damage to your dog.

dog getting eye drops for pink eye

If that’s not the case, there are a few home remedies you can try:

  • Clean around their eyes. A little bit of saline solution can clean your dog’s eyes. Just put a few drops in his eyes and it won’t just relieve the discomfort, it will also provide it with moisture. Remember, never give your dog human medications.
  • Ask your vet for eye drops. Ask them what kind is best to reduce the swelling in your dog’s eyes.
  • Put an Elizabethan collar on your dog. If he’s scratching around his eyes too much, then you should put an Elizabethan collar around his neck to prevent him from causing harm to his eyes.

Look out for any changes in your dog’s body and take all necessary steps to help him out and relieve the symptoms. As you’ll see, nothing is as hard as it seems at first.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.