Conjunctivitis is a condition that affects the eye’s conjunctiva. It causes it to become irritated and sometimes swollen. Canine conjunctivitis is the same condition that can affect humans and is more commonly known as pink eye.
There are various things that can cause conjunctivitis in dogs. Sometimes, a foreign object can get in the eye and irritate it causing inflammation. Viral or bacterial infections can also cause the condition although bacterial infections are much more common. Dogs that suffer an allergic reaction may also develop it. Certain foods, chemicals like perfume, or spring weather may be to blame.
Canine conjunctivitis is very easy to spot since the eye will become noticeably pink or red. The eye will also produce a thick discharge or excessive tears. You may also notice that your dog scratches or paws at his eye a lot.
If you take your dog to the vet with symptoms of conjunctivitis, he will look over your dog closely. He will need to make sure that there are no foreign objects in the eye that are causing the problem. The eye discharge can also be sent to the lab for testing. Parasites may also be causing the problem, so the vet will need to take for them too.
If the condition is allowed to progress, your dog will likely become very sensitive to light too. He’ll avoid going out in the daytime because of this. If the membranes in the eye become highly inflamed, the eye may swell shut. It may become too swollen for your dog to blink or close his eye normally.
Conjunctivitis in dogs is usually treated with antibiotic eye drops. However, the underlying cause of the conditions will also need to be treated. Your dog may need to take all antibiotics to treat a bacterial infection. If an allergic reaction is the problem, he will be given medication to deal with that.
You should also keep the area around your dog’s eye is clean as possible. Frequently use a soft towel or cotton ball with warm water to clean around the eye. Since your dog may be sensitive to light, you should try to keep him in a dark room to make him comfortable. You can also try covering up your dog’s eyes with a warm compress.