Eye Discharge

Information on healthy eyes in cats and dogs and causes of ocular discharge.

Select a Topic

  1. What is Eye Discharge?
  2. What Causes Eye Discharge?
  3. Diagnosing Eye Discharge
  4. Help for Eye Discharge
  5. More Information on Eye Discharge

What is Eye Discharge?

Eye or ocular discharge is a common symptom of eye problems affecting not dogs and cats. It may be watery, yellowish-green in color, thickish mucous or bloody.

What Causes Eye Discharge?

Eye discharge develops as a result of various eye diseases. These include irritation and inflammation of the eye, obstruction of tear drainage ducts, excessive tear production, conjunctivitis, dry eyes, glaucoma, corneal ulcers, keratitis, uveitis, blepharitis or abnormalities of the eyelids.

Trauma and injury to the eye may also bring about eye discharge. Depending on the amount of discharge present will be able to determine the severity of the disease.

Diagnosing Eye Discharge

As soon as you notice eye discharge, consult your vet immediately. A thorough physical examination together with certain diagnostic tests will be performed. Tests include a complete ophthalmic examination, Schirmer tear test, fluoroscein staining and tonometry.

Further testing such as complete blood count, x-rays, cultures, CT scan or MRI may also be performed to determine the causes of eye discharge. Treatment depends on the diagnosis and cause of the eye discharge.

Help for Eye Discharge

Your vet may prescribe various medications which include a sterile eye wash, antibiotics, anti-inflammatories or tear stimulants. With early treatment, serious eye problems and complications can be prevented.

More Information on Eye Discharge

Tips to maintain eye health in your pet

Certain preventative measures can be taken to protect overall eye health in your pet and these include:

  • Feed your pet a well balanced all natural diet that includes vegetables (carrots, kale or broccoli) rich in antioxidants
  • Incorporate sources of antioxidants in the form of Vitamin E and C, and beta carotene to protect the eye tissues
  • Wipe eye discharge gently away with a moist cloth
  • Do not allow your pet to rub his eyes
  • Never administer human over-the-counter eye drops
  • Protect your pet’s eye carefully when using shampoo or applying flea repellents
  • Keep your pet’s head inside moving vehicles as foreign objects or substances may easily become lodged in the eye
  • Avoid exposing your pet to irritants such as pollen, plant seeds, toxins, chemicals, pollution and dust
  • Check your pet’s eyes regularly
  • Trim hair around the eye area to avoid eye irritation
  • Visit your vet annually for an eye examination
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