Dog has red eyes and discharge

Does your dog have red eyes and discharge? What can it be? What should I do? To answer these questions, this blog post will talk about the health of the dog’s eyes, and how to proceed to avoid diseases aggravation that can lead to dogs blindness.

What can be red eyes and discharge in dogs?

Red eyes and discharge are common symptoms of some diseases such as:

  • Allergy;
  • Conjunctivitis;
  • Keratoconjunctivitis sicca;
  • Glaucoma.

Because it has several causes, the animal should be consulted by a veterinarian for diagnosis and appropriate treatment.

Dogs’ eyes are very delicated and can be irritated by various particles such as dust, pollen, foreign bodies and even microorganisms such as viruses, bacteria and parasites.

Eyelashes and tears are biological defense mechanisms of the eyes, preventing the entry of particles or microorganisms, which can irritate and lead to injuries and diseases in the dog’s eyes. 

However, the excess of these particles can lead to local eye changes, which culminate in inflation that causes the eyes to become red, itchy and increase secretions.

Dog allergies

Some allergy attacks can result in red eyes and discharge. Several causes can lead to allergy, among them the most frequent is the pollen of flowers at flower seasons and dust, especially in the driest times, it can lead to a local reaction in the dogs eyes. The irritated eye can be the gateway for microorganisms that will lead to conjunctivitis.

Dogs’ conjunctivitis

Conjunctivitis can be viral, bacterial, fungal or by toxic agents. These microorganisms and toxic agents lead to local damage, resulting in symptoms such as eye secretions that can be translucent to purulent and redness of the eye. If conjunctivitis is not treated properly, the disease can progress, even causing blindness.

Keratoconjunctivitis sicca can have several causes, including systemic disease as distemper, immune-mediated diseases, use of some antibiotics, among others. If not treated properly it can lead to irreversible damage to the dog’s eyes.

Dogs’ glaucoma

Glaucoma in dogs is a disease that occurs when there is an increase in intraocular pressure, which leads to the death of eye cells, which can make the dog blind.

Inside the eyes of dogs is a liquid called aqueous humor. This fluid is produced and excreted every day, and when there is a change in this process it can result in an increase in eye pressure, resulting in the disease called Glaucoma.

Glaucoma can have several causes and that’s why you should consult a veterinary specialist in ophthalmology, so she can diagnose the causes and treat each animal properly.

What is the dog’s eyes secretion?

Dogs’ eyes produce a natural secretion popularly called rheum. Normally, dogs wake up with the presence of this secretion, and some even produce rheum during the day.

The rheum is dry tears and is characteristic for being thicker and yellowish. It is considered a natural process, that is, all dogs will present blemishes at some point in their lives. However the excess of rheum may indicate some disease and the veterinarian should be consulted.

Reddened eyes, itchy and itchy can be a symptom of some diseases, in these cases the vet doctor should be consulted.

What to do if my dog has any of these symptoms?

Therefore, whenever red eyes and secretions are observed in dogs, it is recommended to take the animal to the Veterinarian. The veterinarian  will make a general consultation and, through exams, will diagnose the dog, and thus start with an appropriate treatment for the animal’s condition. 

Some dogs will need more specific exams and therefore may be indicated for treatment by a veterinarian specializing in ophthalmology. The veterinarian specializing in ophthalmology works mainly with dogs and cats. Veterinary ophthalmologists are responsible for the diagnosis and treatment of all diseases that affect the eyes and their tissues.


Numerous diseases can affect the dogs eyes resulting in red eyes and discharge. You should always look for a veterinarian or an veterinarian specialist in ophthalmology for an evaluation and the correct treatment of the disease, thus avoiding aggravation and even loss of dogs vision.


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): Dog has red eyes and discharge

What is the secretion in the dog’s eye?

It may just be a smear that is completely natural, but in excess it can be indicative of some diseases such as allergies, irritations, or infections. As a precaution, take the animal to the veterinarian.


When does the dog have red eyes?

Redness can indicate eye disease or a consequence of a systemic disease as distemper. Among the health problems, allergies, conjunctivitis, keratitis and others can make the dog’s eyes red.

How to treat inflammation in dog eyes?

Treatment is with eye drops or ointments, antibiotics, and anti-inflammatories. A veterinarian should be consulted for adequate treatment.


Sebbag, L., Soler, E. A., Allbaugh, R. A., & Mochel, J. P. (2020). Impact of acute conjunctivitis on ocular surface homeostasis in dogs. Veterinary Ophthalmology, 23(5), 828-833.

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