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Dogs typically have bright, clear eyes. Of course, with age, a dog’s eyes may appear a different color or look a little cloudy. This is a normal occurrence of age. A small amount of discharge from the eye is typically not a cause for concern. Many dogs have eye discharge in order to get rid of any dust particles or allergens. If the discharge is clear and happens sporadically, then it may not be a problem.
Weeping eyes can include clear, watery eyes, to a thicker, discolored discharge. Weeping eyes can also itch, have redness, and just be uncomfortable. Occasional weepiness is normal with dogs; they may have had wind blowing in their face and contact with dust particles, or another allergen or foreign object. However, dogs that have one or both weepy eyes that have discharge for more than a few days should be seen by a veterinarian.
There are several different reasons dogs can have weepy eyes. Typically the reasons are not too serious and can be treated with medication. There are a few more serious issues which can cause weepy eyes, and your veterinarian will communicate these with you and, of course, give you treatment options. Reasons for weepy eyes may be:
Weepy eyes can be mild to severe. Severely weepy eyes can have a thick, yellowish discharge. Causes may include:
An eye irritation can occur if your dog has a foreign object in the eye. This can be dust particles, sand, or any other foreign object that has possibly scratched the surface of the eye. An irritated eye can cause discharge, typically a clear discharge, unless it becomes infected.
If your dog has allergies, the pollen and other irritants can cause a discharge in the eye. This eye discharge will most likely be clear, unless an infection occurs due to a specific allergen. If your dog has allergies, weepy eyes may occur during specific times of the year, namely when pollen or other allergens occur more often.
Conjunctivitis is more of a symptom, but can signal an eye infection. If your dog has conjunctivitis, he will show signs of one or both eyes being very red with a mucus discharge. The discharge may be yellow in color and may be very thick.
Epiphora, or watery and teary eyes, can occur due to many reasons. Inflammation of the eye, allergens, or even ulcers within the cornea can cause excessive tearing. Epiphora is a symptom of several different eye abnormalities.
Glaucoma occurs when your dog’s optic nerve becomes damaged. This is usually caused by the buildup of fluid on the outer part of the eye. Glaucoma is characterized by weepy and watery eyes.
If your dog is having weepy eyes, make an appointment with your veterinarian. Your veterinarian will ask you questions about your dog’s symptoms, namely when they began and how severe they were. He will also want to know other symptoms your dog has been having, even if they have not been directly related to his eyes. Your veterinarian will then take a close look at your dog’s eyes in order to form a diagnosis.
Your veterinarian may then check your dog’s medical history and do a complete examination. This examination will typically include urinalysis, fecal analysis and biochemistry profile. These tests will be conducted in order to see if your dog has an underlying illness.
The medical professional may administer eye drops to the eye to make it numb in order for him to examine it more closely. He may check the eye for scratches to the surface or foreign bodies that have become lodged within the eye. He may also check for blockages within the ducts.
Once your veterinarian has come to a definitive diagnosis, he will explain the cause for the weepiness within the eye and then give you several treatment options.
Monitoring your pet while outside is recommended and if you have accessibility to a leash free area, avoid tall grasses in an effort to protect your canine’s eyes from scratches. A dog who exhibits symptoms of redness or weepiness in the eyes should be evaluated without delay as infection can become serious quickly.
Additionally, an annual examination by your vet is recommended; If he sees any type of eye abnormalities, treatment can begin before your dog has any excessive eye discharge.
The approximate cost for diagnosing and treating glaucoma in dogs is $900. Conjunctivitis may be treated with medication, with the cost averaging about $500.
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