Dog Conjunctivitis (Pink Eye)

Dog Conjunctivitis (Pink Eye)

Pink eye, also known as conjunctivitis, is an infection of inflammation of the conjunctiva, the outermost layer of the eyeball and inside of the eyelids.  This is the most common type of dog eye infection.  Most of the time, dogs experience this condition in one eye but may contact it in both.  Much like humans, dogs that are experiencing a cold or upper respiratory infection may have drainage from the eyes which is mainly caused by a virus.  On the other hand, pink eye can be caused by bacteria or even allergies!

The most common question is, “Can dogs get pink eye from humans?”.  The answer is YES!!!  Therefore, if any one of your human family members has pink eye, you’ll want to take precautions to prevent the rest of the household from contracting it.  Be sure to wash hands frequently, sterilize shared spaces, and most importantly avoid contact with the eyes.

How can you tell if your four-legged friend has pink eye?  Watch for these symptoms:

  • Redness or bloodshot appearance
  • Puffy eyelids
  • Discharge
  • Crustiness
  • Watery eyes
  • Eyelids sticking together
  • Pawing at eyes

You will have to take different routes to treat pink eye depending on how it was contracted: viral, bacterial, or allergies.  If your dog has bacterial conjunctivitis, your vet will most likely prescribe antibiotic eye drops or ointment.  For viral conjunctivitis, which results from the common cold and upper respiratory infection, your veterinarian may prescribe steroid eye drops or artificial tears to help wash out the goop.  For a case of allergen-induced pink eye, vets might prescribe an antihistamine, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, steroid eye drops, or artificial tears. It is very important to act quickly once you notice any symptoms related to conjunctivitis.