Posts Tagged ‘conjunctivitis’

Today we present a guest post by Dr. Heather Brookshire, a veterinary ophthalmolgist at the Animal Vision Center of Virginia.
By Dr. Heather Brookshire
Animal Vision Center of Virginia
It’s so much fun to bring our pets to the beach or park, but we can occasionally see ocular problems such as conjunctivitis (“pink eye”) or corneal ulcers from the irritating effects of sand and wind-borne grass and particles on the surface of the eye. Pets are especially prone to these medical issues since they are so much closer to the ground! 
As an example, meet Ein*. We saw this 10-month old Corgi earlier this year to examine a non-healing corneal ulcer. His owner had been treating him for the past two weeks, with no improvement. When he told us that Ein loves to bound through the grassy fields near home, we discovered the culprit – a large and bristly grass awn that had become imbedded behind his third eyelid. As you will see in this video, it took just a moment to retrieve the irksome grass particle. Ein, and his owner, were quite relieved!
There are many months ahead for our pets to enjoy a romp in the great outdoors, so please keep the following solutions close at hand to administer relief to irritated eyes:
  • To flush out sand or wind-born particles, use a sterile saline eye-irrigating solution to rinse out your pet’s eyes if your notice any squinting or redness.   
  • Try using an over-the-counter topical lubricating drop (such as Genteal gel, Refresh pm, Blink, and Systane) after a long day at the beach to help sooth your pet’s irritated eyes.
  • If your pet is used to spending most of their time indoors, a sudden change in the amount of time spent outdoors during the summer can occasionally cause a flare-up of allergies (both systemic and ocular). Ocular signs of allergies can include increased redness, itchiness, pawing at the eyes and increased discharge from the eyes. Use one of the lubricating drops mentioned above, or try an over-the-counter topical antihistamine drop such as Zaditor, Allaway, Naphcon-A, or Claritin-eye to temporarily alleviate your pet’s discomfort. 
  • Finally, and this is very important, if your pet does not get better after 1-2 days of trying these at-home remedies, seek urgent veterinary care from either your local family veterinarian or veterinary ophthalmologist, as eye conditions can progress very rapidly.

Reprinted with permission.

This article is not intended to diagnose or treat any medical condition and is not a substitute for an examination by your pet’s veterinarian.

Your pet’s eyes are delicate organs. If you have a concern about your pet’s eyes, Contact Us to schedule an appointment with our veterinarian.

*Ein is a patient of AVCV; Little Creek Veterinary Clinic is not associated with this patient or its treatment.

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