Eye Drops for Dogs: Different Types, Uses, and More

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A veterinarian administers eye drops for dogs to a beautiful golden retriever

Eye drops for dogs have multiple uses. Some treat bacterial infections, while others are used to clean dirt or mild wounds. Regardless of their purpose, eye drops for dogs have proven to be quite beneficial to our dogs.

SUMMARY VERSION: Watching your pup suffer isn’t easy, luckily here are some products that might work:  
Rated 4.50/5.00
Puralube Vet Ointment Sterile Ocular Lubricant for Dogs & Cats
$7.99
Puralube has been formulated for use as a lubricant to prevent further irritation or to relieve dryness of the eye. Puralube also serves as an excellent protectant during bathing or grooming and as a lubricant for procedures which require an anesthetic to be used.
Buy on Chewy!
Rated 4.50/5.00
Vetericyn Plus Eye Wash for Dogs
$14.99
Care for your pet in the comfort of their home with this specially formulated eye wash. It helps alleviate irritation from foreign debris, wounds and abrasions, allergies and pink eye. It can also be used for preventive and general eye care. Flush the affected eyes or saturate a dressing and apply 3-4 times per day until the condition is no longer visible. Safe for use around the mouth, nose and ears as well. NO ANTIBIOTICS OR STERIOIDS: Vetericyn products are pH-balanced and carefully formulated to care for numerous animal health and wellness issues, without any pain or burning. They don’t contain antibiotics or steroids, so there is no potential for adverse reactions over any length of time. They are safe to use on all animals, from cats and dogs to horses and livestock, and during all stages of life. These solutions are a non-toxic and safe alternative to antibiotics.
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Rated 4.50/5.00
Burt's Bees Dog Eye Wash Solution
$3.85
Tap into nature’s power with Burt's Bees Dog Eye Wash Solution. From the trusted name in natural skin care, this gentle solution is made with some of nature’s finest ingredients for your peace of mind, and to keep your dog happy and feeling great. Using saline solution that can flush out debris by mimicking your dog’s own tears, this wash can provide much-needed relief to itchy or irritated eyes. Plus, it’s all pH balanced for dogs with no sulfates or colorants.
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Dog Eye Drops: All the Different Uses

Eye drops for dogs can be a complicated topic of discussion. In veterinary medicine, dog eye drops have been used to treat a variety of eye problems. These can range anywhere from something as complex as bacterial eye infections, to something as simple as dry eyes in dogs.

  1. Cyclosporine eye drops is an immunosuppressing eye medication. It is commonly used to treat conditions such as keratoconjunctivitis sicca and dry eyes in dogs.
  2. Terramycin ophthalmic ointment is a medication used for the treatment of bacterial infections, corneal ulcers, pink eye, and keratitis in dogs.
  3. In veterinary medicine,  saline solution may be used to debride (remove damaged tissue) a traumatic eye wound. Saline solution acts as an eyewash for dogs.

Dog Conjunctivitis AKA Dog Pink Eye

Rather than being a disease itself, canine conjunctivitis is a symptom of an underlying ophthalmological disorder. Conjunctivitis in dogs aka pink eye in dogs refers to the inflammation of the conjunctiva and moist tissues of the eye.
Signs of conjunctivitis include eye discharge, redness, and fluid build-up. It is important to remember, that there are many causes of pink eye in dogs. Some common causes include bacterial and viral infections, secondary eye diseases, trauma, and allergies.

Glaucoma

Glaucoma is an eye disease that often occurs due to increases in intraocular pressure (pressure within the eye). Dogs that succumb to this eye problem can` experience pain, discomfort, and vision loss.

One of the most common causes of glaucoma in dogs is inadequate drainage of the aqueous humor (fluid within the eye ball). Yet, it can also arise from malformations or obstructions in the eye.

The treatment for glaucoma in dogs will vary case-by-case. Most treatment therapies may include a combination of drugs that decrease intraocular pressure, decrease the production of aqueous humor, or increase aqueous outflow.

Drugs to treat glaucoma may be given topically as eyedrops. Some may be given intravenously during emergency cases.

Keratoconjunctivitis Sicca AKA Dry Eye

Keratoconjunctivitis sicca in dogs is a form of inflammation that infects the conjunctiva of the eye. The conjunctiva is the mucus membrane covering the front of the eye. This form of inflammation results in dry eyes. There are a few different drugs veterinarians use to treat this condition. These include cyclosporine A eye drops for dogs and Tacrolimus eye drops for dogs. Puralube Vet Ointment Sterile Ocular Lubricant could be a useful way to help lubricate the eye and limit further irritation.

Puralube Vet Ointment Sterile Ocular Lubricant for Dogs & Cats
Puralube has been formulated for use as a lubricant to prevent further irritation or to relieve dryness of the eye. Puralube also serves as an excellent protectant during bathing or grooming and as a lubricant for procedures which require an anesthetic to be used.
Rated 4.50/5.00 by Certapet
Buy on Chewy!

Damage to the Cornea or Sclera

Damage to the cornea or sclera is a critical condition in dogs. Treatment may include antibiotic therapy and pain relief.

mixed breed dog with a dog eye infection

Eye Infection, Dog Tears, Dog Eye Irritation. All the Causes of Dog Eye Troubles

Eye problems and eye discharge have become fairly common in veterinary medicine. There are many causes of dog eye troubles. These can be due to inherited disorders, breed predisposition, or infectious disease. In this article, we’ll cover a few of the most common causes of eye problems in dogs.

Allergies

Environmental allergies are a common cause of conjunctivitis in dogs. Allergies can often cause itchiness, redness, and mild inflammation around the eyes. Common causes of allergies include pollen, grass, dust, or even insect bites.

If you believe your dog is developing itchy eyes due to allergies then you should not give then any over-the-counter eye medication. Rather, we recommend consulting your veterinarian for information.

Foreign Objects

Dogs are notorious for getting into trouble! Sometimes, dogs can develop eyes problems due to trauma by foreign bodies. Trauma to the eyes can be incredibly painful, in fact, it is a critical condition that should only be handled by a veterinary ophthalmologist.

keep your dog's eyes clean

When Your Pooch has Dog Eye Problems: Can You Use Eye Drops for Humans?

The eye of a dog is a delicate organ that requires meticulous handling. Dogs that develop chronic or acute eye problems should always see their veterinarian or veterinary ophthalmologist no matter the case. Although some human medications can serve as eye drops for dogs, we do not recommend that pet owners use any eye drop medication on their pets as they can cause more damage than good.

Do I Need a Prescription for Eye Ointment for Dogs?

Eye drops for dogs is a general term that confuses many pet owners. As we mentioned above, there are many different types of eye drops for dogs available on the market.  The type of eye drop your dog will receive will depend solely on the eye disease they are diagnosed with. In general, only a veterinary ophthalmologist can prescribe either antibiotic eye drops or steroid eye drops to your pet.

Safe Solution: Saline Eye Wash

applying eye drops for dogs to a small snub-nosed dog

Saline solutions are not a specific type of ophthalmic ointment. Rather, they are used to clean eye wounds. Veterinarians may often use saline solution as an eye wash when foreign bodies may have entered the eye. Saline solution can also be used to clean chemicals and dirt off an eye. Vetericyn Plus Eye Wash for Dogs can be used to flush infected or dirty eyes. The pH balanced Burt’s Bees Dog Eye Wash Solution is made from only natural ingredients. Mimicking your dog’s tears, this saline solution is a non-invasive and gentle way of cleaning your pooch’s eyes.

Rated 4.50/5.00
Vetericyn Plus Eye Wash for Dogs
$14.99
Care for your pet in the comfort of their home with this specially formulated eye wash. It helps alleviate irritation from foreign debris, wounds and abrasions, allergies and pink eye. It can also be used for preventive and general eye care. Flush the affected eyes or saturate a dressing and apply 3-4 times per day until the condition is no longer visible. Safe for use around the mouth, nose and ears as well. NO ANTIBIOTICS OR STERIOIDS: Vetericyn products are pH-balanced and carefully formulated to care for numerous animal health and wellness issues, without any pain or burning. They don’t contain antibiotics or steroids, so there is no potential for adverse reactions over any length of time. They are safe to use on all animals, from cats and dogs to horses and livestock, and during all stages of life. These solutions are a non-toxic and safe alternative to antibiotics.
Buy on Amazon!
Rated 4.50/5.00
Burt's Bees Dog Eye Wash Solution
$3.85
Tap into nature’s power with Burt's Bees Dog Eye Wash Solution. From the trusted name in natural skin care, this gentle solution is made with some of nature’s finest ingredients for your peace of mind, and to keep your dog happy and feeling great. Using saline solution that can flush out debris by mimicking your dog’s own tears, this wash can provide much-needed relief to itchy or irritated eyes. Plus, it’s all pH balanced for dogs with no sulfates or colorants.
Buy on Chewy!

How to Apply Eye Drops for Dogs

  1. Securely hold your dog in place. If possible, we recommend one person hold the dog while the other keeps the medication in hand.
  2. When ready, the person handling the dog should gently grasp the head of the animal. The handler should gently hold the dogs’ eyes open.
  3. The person with the medication should then carefully place a few drops (required amount) into the corner of the dogs’ eyes. It is important to remember not to place the tip of the dispenser directly on the eye.

Prevention is Better Than Cure: Keep Your Pooch’s Eyes Clean

Although it may seem tempting to purchase an eyewash from your local pet store. Very rarely do dogs ever need their eyes washed on a regular basis. So, we never recommend washing your dog’s eyes with ointments. That being said, if you do believe your dog is developing a chronic eye problem, then we highly suggest you talk to your veterinarian about eye drops for dogs.

Common Questions on Eye Drops for Dogs

What can you give a dog for an eye infection?

Can you use human eye drops for a dog?

How often should I clean my dog’s eyes?

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