If your beloved puppy has red eyes, you're likely concerned about what could be causing the issue. While there are a variety of potential explanations for why their eyes may take on a reddish hue, it's important to understand this common condition before taking any action. In this blog post, we'll explain why puppies can develop redness in their eyes and how to treat it properly, so keep reading if you want to get your furry friend back to their normal selves.

6 Common Causes of Red Eyes in Puppies

We will look closer at the common causes of red eyes in puppies and what you can do to help your furry friend.

  1. Allergies: Just like humans, puppies can also have allergies. Common irritants like pollen, dust, and mold can cause red eyes in dogs. Keeping an eye on your puppy's surroundings can help you identify the allergen irritating. Visiting your vet for allergy testing and shots can also provide long-term relief for your pup.
  2. Eye Infections: Eye infections are one of the leading causes of red eyes in puppies. Bacteria, viruses, fungi can cause an infection, or a foreign body in the eye. Symptoms to look out for include discharge, swelling, and redness. Do not ignore an eye infection, as it can lead to vision loss. Your vet will likely prescribe antibiotics or antifungal eye drops for treating an eye infection.
  3. Epiphora: Epiphora is a condition where your puppy's eyes water excessively, leading to tear stains and red eyes. Some common causes of epiphora include blocked tear ducts, allergies, and infections. If you notice your puppy's eyes watering more than usual, visit your vet to diagnose and provide relief.
  4. Trauma: Puppies are known for their playful nature, and they may accidentally hurt themselves during playtime or while exploring their surroundings. Any trauma to the eye can cause redness, swelling, and discharge. If you suspect your puppy has injured their eye, contact your vet immediately for treatment.
  5. Glaucoma: Glaucoma is a severe eye condition that can lead to vision loss. It occurs when there is a buildup of pressure inside the eye. Symptoms include redness, cloudiness, and sensitivity to light. If you notice any of these symptoms, schedule an appointment with your vet for immediate evaluation.
  6. Uveitis: When the tissue in front of your dog's eye is inflamed and causes redness and pain, it is called uveitis. If left untreated, this condition can result in blindness.
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More Serious Causes of Red Eyes in Puppies

It is essential to be aware of the different serious causes of red eyes in puppies to prevent them from becoming dangerous health problems. If you see unusual redness in your puppy's eyes, read on to learn more about the potential causes you should be aware of.

  1. Corneal Ulceration: Corneal ulceration is one of the most serious causes of redness in puppies' eyes. This is caused by an injury or abrasion that penetrates the eye's cornea. Bacteria and fungi can also cause corneal ulceration. As the condition progresses, the eye becomes inflamed, and the puppy experiences pain, discomfort, and excessive tearing. If left untreated, corneal ulceration can lead to vision loss or even blindness. Treatment for this condition involves medication, surgery, or a combination.
  2. Cherry Eye: Cherry eye is a common condition in puppies that causes a red protrusion near the inner corner of the eye. This is not considered life-threatening, but if untreated, it can cause problems like dry eye syndrome, conjunctivitis, and corneal ulcers. Cherry eye can be corrected through surgery, but it is essential to get a veterinary consultation to determine the best course of treatment.
  3. Conjunctivitis (Pink Eye): Dogs frequently experience conjunctivitis, which typically affects one eye. This condition causes inflammation of the tissue surrounding the eye, resulting in redness of the eye.

When to Seek Veterinary Care for a Puppy with Red Eyes

As a new puppy owner, it's important to keep an eye out for any signs of illness or discomfort. One common issue that you may encounter is red, inflamed eyes. While some cases can be mild and self-resolve, others may require veterinary attention.

  • Consistent Redness: If your puppy's eyes appear consistently red and inflamed, it may be a sign of a more serious issue. This could be caused by an infection, allergies, or even a corneal ulcer. In these cases, scheduling a visit with your veterinarian is important to get a proper diagnosis and treatment plan.
  • Discharge or Crustiness: Red eyes coupled with discharge or crustiness around the eyes could indicate an infection such as conjunctivitis, commonly called "Pink Eye." This is highly contagious and may require antibiotic eye drops to treat. Your veterinarian will be able to determine the appropriate course of treatment for your puppy.
  • Swelling: If your puppy's eyes are swollen along with redness, it may be a sign of an allergic reaction or even a foreign object lodged in the eye. It's important to seek veterinary care in these cases, as allergic reactions can be severe and foreign objects can cause damage and even blindness.
  • Discomfort and Rubbing: If you notice your puppy pawing at its eyes or rubbing its head frequently, it may be a sign of discomfort or pain. Red eyes accompanied by these actions could indicate a more serious issue and should be evaluated by your veterinarian as soon as possible.
  • Changes in Vision: If you notice any changes in your puppy's vision, such as cloudiness or lack of focus, it is important to seek immediate veterinary care. This could be a sign of a more serious issue such as glaucoma or cataracts. Early intervention is crucial to prevent permanent vision damage or loss.

How to Treat a Puppy with Red Eyes

Puppies are adorable, but it can worry a new pet owner when they show unusual symptoms such as red eyes. Red eyes can indicate a minor irritation, an infection, or a serious medical condition. Whether your puppy's red eyes are severe or minor, taking immediate action is essential.

  • Identify the Cause of Red Eyes: Red eyes can be a symptom of various conditions, including allergies, infections, injuries, or congenital disabilities. Observe the puppy to spot the cause. If your puppy has red eyes accompanied by discharge, swelling, or squinting, immediately take them to the vet. Make sure to note any changes in the puppy's environment, food, or activities that could be irritating.
  • Administer Appropriate Eye Drops: If the vet diagnoses your puppy with a minor eye infection or irritation, they may prescribe antibiotic eye drops or ointment. Always follow the vet's instructions when administering the medication. Some eye drops require refrigeration, while others must be kept at room temperature. You'll need to administer medication for several days to a week, depending on the severity of the condition. Proper use of the eye drops will help resolve the red eye issue quickly.
  • Provide a Comfortable Environment: Puppies are playful and active, but they need a relaxing and comfortable environment when they suffer from red eyes. Protect the puppy from dust, smoke, and other allergens that could irritate their eyes. Avoid exposing them to direct sunlight or cold drafts. Make sure their bedding is clean and comfortable. Please provide them with plenty of water and nutritious food.
  • Use Natural Remedies: If your puppy's red eyes are due to allergies or a minor irritation, you can try some natural remedies to help soothe their eyes. A saline solution from boiled and cooled water and salt can help flush out debris and prevent further irritation.
  • Prevent Red Eyes from Occurring: Preventing red eyes in puppies is better than treating them. Regular grooming, including cleaning their faces, can prevent eye infections and irritations.

Natural Remedies for Red Eyes in Puppies

Here, we will explore some of the natural remedies that can be used to alleviate red eye in puppies.

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  • Keep their eyes clean: Keeping your puppy's eyes clean is the first and most important step to prevent red eyes. Regularly cleaning your puppy's eyes helps remove any bacteria or dirt that may drift in and cause red eyes. Use a clean washcloth dipped in lukewarm water, then wipe their eyes from the inside to the outside. Do this gently and calmly to avoid causing any further irritation.
  • Chamomile Tea Bags: Chamomile tea bags are a natural remedy that can help soothe your puppy's eyes if they have been irritated. The antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties of chamomile tea work wonders in reducing the redness of their eyes. Dip the tea bags in lukewarm water and place them gently on your puppy's closed eyes. Leave the bags on for 5-10 minutes, and repeat the process twice a day.
  • Honey Water: Honey is a great natural antiseptic that acts as a fantastic remedy for red eyes in puppies. Mix a teaspoon of raw honey into a cup of warm water and bathe your puppy's eyes with the mixture using a cotton ball. You can use this solution twice a day for a couple of weeks until the redness subsides.
  • Coriander Seeds: Coriander seeds have antibacterial and antifungal properties that help soothe the redness and irritation in your puppy's eyes. Boil one teaspoon of coriander seeds in half a cup of water and let the solution cool. Strain the seeds, then use a dropper to put 2-3 drops into each eye twice a day for a week.
  • Aloe Vera: Aloe vera has cooling properties that help reduce the inflammation that causes red eyes in puppies. Cut the aloe vera into small pieces and extract the pulp. Apply a small amount of this pulp to the red areas around their eyes and leave it on for 10-15 minutes. Do this once a day for a week to see results.

10 Tips for Preventing Red Eye in Puppies

While it's normal for puppies to experience red eyes now and then, it's important to take steps to prevent it from happening too often. Here are 10 tips for preventing red eyes in puppies, so you can keep your furry friend happy and healthy.

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  1. Keep your puppy's eyes clean: Make sure to clean around your puppy's eyes daily to remove any dirt or debris that may cause infection. Use a gentle, non-irritating eye cleaner specifically designed for dogs, and be sure to follow the instructions carefully.
  2. Adjust your puppy's diet: Feeding your puppy a balanced diet with plenty of essential vitamins and nutrients will help promote healthy eyes. Talk to your vet about the best food choices for your puppy's specific needs.
  3. Use a humidifier: If you live in a dry climate, using a humidifier can help keep your puppy's eyes moist, reducing the likelihood of redness and irritation.
  4. Avoid irritants: Keep your puppy away from chemicals and other irritants that can cause redness and irritation. This includes cigarette smoke, pollen, and cleaning products.
  5. Limit exposure to UV rays: Dogs can get sunburned just like humans, so limit your puppy's exposure to direct sunlight, especially during the hottest parts of the day.
  6. Regular vet checkups: Regular vet checkups will help ensure that your puppy's eyes are healthy and free from infection or other issues. Your vet can also advise you on the best preventative measures for your furry friend.
  7. Avoid over-vaccination: Over-vaccination can have negative effects on your puppy's immune system and can also lead to redness and other eye issues. Talk to your vet about limiting unnecessary vaccinations.
  8. Protect your puppy's eyes during playtime: If your puppy loves to play, make sure to protect their eyes from potential injury. This means avoiding rough play, using safe toys, and keeping an eye on your puppy's behavior.
  9. Eye drops: In certain cases, your vet may prescribe eye drops to reduce inflammation and prevent redness. Follow their instructions carefully and use the drops as directed.
  10. Treat underlying health issues: Many underlying health issues can cause redness and irritation in your puppy's eyes. Working with your vet to identify and treat these issues can help keep your puppy's eyes healthy and prevent long-term damage.


When your puppy's eyes are red, you should take them to the vet. While most cases of red eyes aren't a cause for concern, it is good practice to get your pet checked by a veterinarian in case something serious happens behind the scenes. There could be any number of underlying causes that require professional medical attention to prevent complications – getting your pup treated early can save you hassle and heartache. In addition to visiting the vet, if your puppy's eyes are red too often, try keeping their fur trimmed away from their eyes to reduce irritation and provide additional comfort for them during everyday activities. Practice preventive measures and observe your furry friend for any changes in behavior so that both of them can live a long and happy life with you.