Dog eye discharge is a rather common symptom associated mostly with eye problems, such as trauma to the eye, corneal ulcers, conjunctivitis, and more. Depending on the cause, the eye discharge can be clear and watery, or it can be yellowish-green mucous, or it can be bloody.
It is not unusual for dogs to have a bit of "gunk" collected in the corner of the eye. It is just a normal response of the eye to get rid of the day-to-day foreign matter that a dog is exposed to. Tearing is a bodily function to flush and clear away the accumulated foreign matter.
But further attention and possibly treatment are needed if your dog shows any of the following symptoms:
Abnormal dog eye discharge may develop suddenly or gradually. By looking at the amount of discharge, we can tell how serious the problem is. Generally speaking, the more eye discharge a dog has, the more serious is the eye disease.
There are numerous possible causes of dog eye discharge; most of the time the discharge is an indication that there is some problem with the dog's eye. Some of the more common ones include:
Sometimes, however, health problems unrelated to the eyes can also cause eye discharge in dogs.
For example, a dog suffering from allergies (e.g. atopy) may have eye discharge. Bacterial or viral Infections (e.g. distemper, kennel cough) can also cause a dog to have eye discharge. If your dog has eye discharge and other symptoms, be sure to inform your veterinarian.
If you notice any abnormal eye discharge in your dog, put on a pair of clean rubber gloves and examine your dog's eyes and take note of the color of the discharge and check for any injury or mass near the eyes.
If your dog is otherwise healthy, showing no other symptoms, and behaving normally in spite of the discharge, try to first clean the eye and flush it with a sterile saline solution.
Closely observe your dog and the eye condition in a day or two to see if there is any improvement. If not, visit the vet.
If, on the other hand, your dog is bothered by the discharge (e.g. he is rubbing and scratching his eye repeatedly), or if you can see injury in or near the eye, get your dog to the vet immediately.
Never use human over-the-counter eye drops to treat your dog.
Herbal eyewashes can be used to clean and protect your dog's precious eyes. Herbs that are good for eyes include:
This is a soothing, all-natural eye wash that contains such herbs as goldenseal, echinacea, gotu kola that can protect and strengthen your dog's eyes. It is great for removing debris and the "gooey" substance that builds up in the mucous membranes of the dog's eyes.
This is a gentle eye rinse for dogs. It cleanses the eyes and helps relieve irritation and discomfort caused by dried mucus, foreign material, pollen and other irritants.
This is a great Chinese herbal remedy for dogs with eye conditions such as eye infections/inflammation, dry eyes, conjunctivitis, cloudy eyes, etc. It contains Chinese herbs (such as chrysanthemum, rehmannia, cassia seed) that have traditionally been used to treat eye problems. Very effective!
Abnormal dog eye discharge can be prevented by taking some simple measures to protect the overall eye health in your dog. For example:
In addition, your dog's diet is important in maintaining eye health. Feed your dog an all natural diet. To strengthen and protect the eyes, be sure to include supplements of antioxidants in the form of vitamins E and C, and beta carotene.