Dog eye care may not be part of your dog that you think of naturally to tend to on a daily basis. But your dog’s eyes are vital. Just like your eyes, they help your dog see and navigate the world. The goal is to keep them healthy and free of needing extra vet care, which means extra money spent.
For example, my dog, Henry’s eyes became a focus of my daily care for him a few years years after he was attacked by a couple of dogs. He nearly lost his left eye and his life. But I learned a lot that I use to this day. It’s kept his eyes (left and right) healthy and away from additional surgery. I’m thrilled with his process so far. Moreover, I want to share my tips with you. So, today, let’s dig in and I’ll reveal how my best dog eye care routine saves me money.
Budget tip: The power of a warm compress has saved me more money than I can even imagine. Thanks to this simple little tip, Henry didn’t have to undergo more eye surgery. Additionally, when Henry’s eye gets a bit worse, I can increase the number of warm eye compresses and improve the eye in no time. That saves me a vet trip and medication. Plus, I’m inspecting his eyes daily to make sure they are healthy. It’s a great win-win for Henry and for my budget.
How do I best care for my dog’s eyes daily?
Admittedly, I got a crash course in dog eye care when, as I just mentioned, Henry was attacked by two large dogs and nearly lost his left eye (or affected eye). While the eye was saved, the tear duct was crushed. That meant his affected eye lacked tear production ability.
However, he could produce lots of goo. He spent over four months in a cone while the eye healed. Unfortunately, as part of the healing process, the fur now grows into the left eye. Additionally, that eye can’t properly flush itself with tears. However, it does produce the weirdest goo I’ve ever seen. As such, his vet helped me develop a daily eye routine. It includes:
1. Gently applying a warm eye compress
This simply means holding a warm cloth with no pressure at all on the eye for a few minutes until the goo loses. Henry loves this most of the time. I always do this to both of his eyes.
2. Wiping crusties or eye boogers away
This prevents him from pawing at them. Sometimes this isn’t possible until after the compress has loosened the discharge. But I always use a soft cloth to do this as gently as possible.
3. Fish oil daily for eye support
His vet recommended fish oil for heart, eye, and allergy support. As such he gets it daily.
4. Clearing away fur that grows into his left eye
As mentioned, since Henry’s attack and subsequent emergency eye surgery, his fur grows into his left eye. This is just the way the eyelid was stiched back together. His vet emphasized it is essential to make sure his fur doesn’t scratch his corona. Although he could undergo surgery and have the fur removed permanently, there’s a high probability it could grow back. Thus, I stay on top of this daily.
Of course, the last step you most likely won’t need to do for your dog.
How do I know if I need to provide my dog with eye care?
While I apply a warm compress to Henry’s eye multiple times daily, your dog most likely won’t need this much eye care. In fact, you could simply do it once daily as you brush or clean your dog’s teeth. I generally apply a warm compress at this time for Henry. Additionally, I’ll inspect his eyes at this time as well.
NOTE: Admittedly, even with the best eye care, you may not be able to prevent every eye issue or eye disease such as glaucoma, cataracts, cherry eye, retinal detachment, eye ulcer, pink eye, and blindness, which can be breed-related. However, you can still keep on top of other eye issues and provide your dog with great eye care. Moreover, you will be able to note any changes in your dog’s eyes by providing daily care. However, many other eye conditions such as watery eyes and allergic eye problems can be addressed with these tips.
What symptoms and signs should I look for when I am caring for my dog’s eyes?
There are a few things to pay attention to when caring for your dog’s eyes. You’ll want to look for any eye condition which includes any of the following:
- Sensitivity to the warm eye compress. Remember you aren’t applying any pressure at all. Thus, it shouldn’t be painful and should feel soothing. I even did this right after Henry’s eye surgery and he loved it!
- Color change of your dog’s eyes
- Cloudy appearance of eyes (This could be the start of cataracts)
- Whites have a red or yellow appearance
- Swollen eye socket
- Eye sunken into the eye socket
- Visible third eyelid
- Lump or bump on or near the eyelid
- Yellow or green discharge or goo
- Excessive watering of eyes
Note: If you have a Cocker Spaniel, Poodle, and smaller dogs are also prone to tear stains and watery eyes. However, a water compress can help. Additionally, there are products that can help remove tear stains.
What could cause an eye infection in my dog?
There are many things that can result in dog eye infections. These include:
- Infections in the body like Lyme Disease
- Virus such as canine influenza
- Wood smoke
- Second, third, or passive smoke
- Debris like dirt or grass
- Scratch of the cornea caused by dirt, pawing, playing, or fight
Could there be any underlying issues when my dog has an eye issue?
- High blood pressure
- Virus-like distemper or canine influenza
- Bacterial infections such as Leptospirosis or Lyme disease
- Toxicity or allergy to some medications such as Ivermectin
When should I call my vet when my dog has an eye issue?
Personally, I always say when in doubt check in with your vet. But for a minimum you’ll want to call your vet if your dog is doing or experiencing any of these issues:
- Eye color change
- Cloudy eye(s) (which as stated above, could be the start of a cataract)
- Excessive tears or goo, especially with a yellow or green tint or sealed eyelid
- Swollen eyelid
- Pawing at the eye(s)
- Eye shut and unwilling to open it or squinting
- Lining of the eyelid is yellow or red
- Eye is sunken into the eye socket
- Third eyelid is visible
- Sensitive to light
Is there anything to avoid when giving my dog eye care?
I learned this one when Henry and I were on vacation. Unfortunately, Henry’s affected eye started getting worse. As such, I called his vet. He advised me to gently apply a warm compress more often and watch it carefully. I asked about washing his eye out or applying an antibiotic ointment, which I still had from his surgery.
Shockingly, this rattled his vet. He strongly advised against it since he wasn’t sure if there was a scratch or any debris in his eye. If there were either it could make the issue much worse very quickly. Of course, that was something I hadn’t considered. Thankfully, the compresses solved the issue in about three days.
Morale: Never, ever put anything in your dog’s eyes such as eye drops without first consulting your vet. You may open a hornet’s nest. Stay the course with warm compresses.
How much can I save by providing my dog with good eye care?
This is always the fun part. Honestly, I think the dollar and cents brings everything home. Or at least, I hope it does and puts it in simple terms. With that said, consider the following related eye conditions and expenses:
|Dog eye specialist (veterinary ophthalmologist)||$300-350|
- 10 Steps to Find the Best Vet
- How Can Fish Oil Cut Dog Costs?
- Secondhand Smoke for Dogs: Facts You Need!
- How To Find Vet Approved Low Cost Dog Vaccines
- 15 Red Flags-Time For a New Vet!
- Is your Dog Colorblind? 5 Min. Test.
Summary of how best dog eye care saves money
Honestly, before Henry’s attack, I wasn’t as focused on his eyes as I am now. However, I have learned that with just a warm compress, I can help Henry and save money. Here’s a bonus tip: If your eyes are feeling tired or sore, put a warm compress on them. It will feel just as soothing.
Plus, it’s free. I admit, I love a great tip that helps Henry while saving money. Dog eye care is one of them. Although I’m a bit surprised at how much or how quickly a warm compress will help, I’m always pleased. However, if I ever have any questions or issues, I always call his vet. In conclusion, dog eye care is a great health benefit for Henry and a wonderful budget savings for me.