Your dog is scratching at its eye. It has pretty much happened to all of us at some point in time and we’re sure it has happened to you. You see your dog rubbing or scratching at his face but you don’t know why. Most likely he’s just trying to get an itch out, but what about when this becomes a daily thing? Or what if there is something stuck on its fur around the eye area? Here are some of the most common reasons why dogs scratch their eyes: -Allergies: The reason behind many unexplained behaviors such as excessive chewing and licking of paws and general itching. Allergies can be caused by anything from grasses and trees, household cleaners, food, etc… Just like children, dogs can develop allergies to foods, flea bites and more. -Infection: Dogs can get pink-eye (conjunctivitis) like we do. Symptoms of pink eye include swollen eyes and discharge from the eye area. -Corneal Abrasion: Sometimes dogs will rub or scratch at their eyes because they have an abrasion on the cornea, which is located on the eyeball right under the thin transparent eyelid called the conjunctiva. Corneal abrasions are very painful for your dog so you will notice them trying to alleviate this pain by chewing or scratching at their face. If left untreated these scratches can cause scarring or damage to parts of your dog’s retina, so it is important to have your dog seen by a veterinarian if you suspect an eye injury. -Foreign Bodies: Just like people, dogs can get little bits of dirt stuck in their eyes! Rubbing and scratching at the eye is its way of trying to dislodge what ever it is on his fur around his eyes. If it cannot be easily removed with water, then your dog should see a vet as soon as possible. -Infectious disease: Viral diseases such as the distemper virus or bacterial infections from from chlamydia or lyme disease can cause chronic conjunctivitis which will result in excessive itching and inflammation around the cornea. Again, if left untreated this could lead to vision problems for your dog so take them to a veterinarian if you suspect they have an infectious disease.
-Cancer: Tumors and cancer can cause excessive scratching of the face and eyes as well. If your dog is chronically scratching their face or if there is a lump around the eye area, they should be seen by a veterinarian for diagnosis.
So we know that our dogs scratch because it itches, but why do they itch? There are many reasons including allergies to fleas, grasses, trees and more….just like us! Eye infections such as pink-eye (conjunctivitis) or abrasion of the cornea also cause itching along with foreign bodies on fur around their face. Other causes include tumors, viral diseases and other types of infections so it’s important to see your veterinarian if the itching becomes a daily thing or there is a lump around their eye area.
Will a dog’s scratched eye heal on its own?
If the problem is caused by allergies, then the eye will heal on its own. If not, then you may need to take your dog in for further testing and possible medications if they have an infection or tumor.
Is it okay to let my dog’s scratched eye heal on its own?
If the reason behind the scratching involves allergies, then letting it heal on its own is fine. However, if there is an underlying cause such as infection or tumor, then your dog could worsen and this isn’t something that can be left untreated.
What types of damage can occur from a scratched eye?
Scratching of the cornea (the transparent part of the eyeball) allows bacteria and viruses to enter the eye which can lead to infection or even scarring and vision loss.
When should I take my dog in for scratched eyes?
If you notice your dog constantly scratching their face, if there is a lump around the eye area or they have an abrasion on their eyeball, then it is best for them to be seen by a professional for diagnosis.
What can my veterinarian do about scratched eyes?
Your vet may prescribe medication to help ease the itching and swelling around your dog’s eye or they may perform surgery if there is an abrasion on their eyeball. Your vet will also recommend all of the proper cleaning techniques for you so that you are able to keep your dog’s eye infection free.
Most of the time, dogs will have an immediate reaction when you try to flush out their eyes with water. They will shake it off and back away from you because they are scared! You MUST be careful with this method as sometimes more damage is done by flushing the eye out. If the eyes have been scratched, then they should be seen by a veterinarian. Flushing the eye with water is best used on dogs who get something stuck in their eye such as a bug or grass that needs to be washed away immediately rather than waiting for your vet appointment.
In order to prevent future scratches from occurring, you should use an ointment or gel to protect your dog’s eyes if they are frequently itching. This will help reduce the amount of bacteria that enters the eye and prevents corneal scratches in most dogs.
Is a dog eye scratch an emergency?
No it’s not. However, if your dog is constantly scratching their eye or you see a lot of swelling around the eyeball area, then they should be seen by a professional for diagnosis. That being said, if there is an object stuck in their eye that has yet to come out or that looks lodged in the eye socket, then this would be considered an emergency and you should go right away to your local veterinary hospital.
If my dog has a scratched cornea is it serious?
It’s not always that serious, however if your dog is constantly scratching their eye or there are larvae growing near the eye then they should be seen by a veterinarian for diagnosis. A scratched cornea is also very painful for your dog so the sooner they are seen by a veterinarian, the better.
How long does it take for a scratch on a dog’s eye to heal?
If your dog has a scratched cornea, then it will heal on its own. If the scratching continues, then that is likely an allergic reaction which can be serious if not treated immediately. However, most of these cases are just allergies and the eye will heal after being flushed with water from your sink or through a simple ointment prescribed by your veterinarian.
Is it okay for my dog to go outside with a scratched eye?
If your dog is scratching his/her eyes frequently, then they should stay inside until cleared by a veterinarian. This prevents any bacteria or other objects from entering the eye and causing more damage. If there is an object stuck in their eye, then this would need to be removed by a veterinarian. However, most cases of scratching is just allergies which can become serious if not treated immediately with an ointment prescribed by your vet.
If my dog has scratched his/her eye, is it possible for them to scratch their other one?
Yes! If your dog keeps scratching their eye or there are larvae growing near the eye, then you should see a veterinarian immediately for diagnosis. This is especially true if there are larvae in the eye. There have been cases where dogs have scratched an eye so much that they have ended up scratching their good eye as well!
What kind of diseases can be passed on when my dog has a scratched cornea?
There are a couple of diseases that can be passed on depending on the damage done to your dog’s cornea. As stated above, most cases of scratching is just allergies which means that there isn’t any kind of contamination in their eye. However, if the scratch is very bad then they will need antibiotics prescribed by your veterinarian to prevent an infection or disease from growing in the eye.
How do I know if my dog has a scratched cornea?
If your dog is constantly scratching and/or there are larvae in their eye, then they may have a scratched cornea. If you notice any type of infection or foreign object near the eyes, then they should be seen by a veterinarian immediately.
Can I use hydrogen peroxide on my dog’s eye if it has a scratched cornea?
No! Hydrogen peroxide is only to be used if there are visible foreign objects in the eyes. If your dog keeps scratching or there are larvae growing near your dog’s eyes, then you should go see a veterinarian for diagnosis.
When do I take my dog in to see a veterinarian for a scratched cornea?
If your dog has been scratching or there are larvae growing near their eyes, then you should take them to the veterinarian immediately. If you noticed any type of infection or foreign object in their eye, then it is much safer for you and your pet if you get them to a veterinarian immediately for diagnosis.
How are dog’s eyes different from human’s eyes?
Dogs see things differently than human beings do so it is very hard to diagnose an infection or disease in their eyes without seeing your pet in person. If you suspect that your dog has a scratched cornea, then the best thing to do is to take them to a veterinarian for diagnosis.
What kind of treatment is used for a scratched cornea?
If your dog has a scratched cornea due to an allergy, then it will heal on its own after a couple of days. However, if the scratch is very bad or there are larvae growing near their eyes then they will need antibiotics prescribed by your veterinarian.
Can I use human medication on my dog?
No! It is very dangerous to give human medicine to dogs because it can cause serious infections or diseases in them which may lead to death. If you think that your dog has a scratched cornea, then you should take them to the veterinarian immediately for diagnosis.
What are the symptoms of a scratched cornea?
The symptoms of a scratched cornea in dogs depend on how bad the scratch is. If your dog is constantly scratching or there are larvae growing near their eyes then you should take them to your veterinarian immediately for diagnosis. This especially true if they have been scratching an eye so much that it is hurting the other eye.
How is a scratched cornea diagnosed?
If your dog constantly scratches their eyes or there are larvae near them, then you should go to the veterinarian for diagnosis. There are various tests that will be run on your pet including blood testing and urine analysis to determine what kind of infection or disease they have.
Can I use human eye drops on my dog if they have a scratched cornea?
No! It is very dangerous to give your dog anything for their eyes without the supervision of a veterinarian. There are medications that can cause serious infections or diseases in dogs which may lead to death. If you suspect that your dog has a scratched cornea then it is best to take them to your veterinarian immediately for diagnosis and treatment.
What is the prognosis of a scratched cornea?
The prognosis for a scratched cornea depends on how badly your dog’s eye was scratched or if there are larvae growing near it or not. If you see any type of infection around their eyes, then it is best to go see a veterinarian for diagnosis and prognosis.
What happens if the cornea of my dog’s eye becomes scratched?
If your dog has a scratch on their cornea, then they may be in pain or it may cause them to become blind temporarily. If you notice any type of infection or foreign objects near their eyes, then you should get them to a veterinarian immediately for diagnosis and treatment.
How long does it take for the cornea of a dog’s eye to heal?
It usually takes about 5 days or so for the cornea of your dog’s eye to completely heal. However, if there are larvae growing near their eyes then this may cause an infection which can prolong the healing process. If you suspect that your dog has a scratched cornea, then it is best to get them to a veterinarian immediately for diagnosis and treatment.