Blepharitis in Dogs: Causes And Treatments

Blepharitis in Dogs

Here’s a breakdown of blepharitis in dogs, including causes, treatment, and how to prevent this eye condition:

Understanding Blepharitis in Dogs

  • Inflamed Eyelids: Blepharitis means inflammation of a dog’s eyelids, often affecting the glands responsible for healthy eye lubrication.
  • Types: Can be acute (sudden) or chronic (ongoing), and may affect one or both eyelids.
  • Complications: If left untreated, blepharitis can cause discomfort, worsen eye health, and potentially lead to vision problems.

Causes of Blepharitis

  • Infections: Bacterial or fungal infections are a major cause.
  • Allergies: Reactions to substances like pollen, dust, or food ingredients.
  • Parasites: Mites or lice on the eyelids.
  • Genetics: Some breeds (Bulldogs, Cavalier King Charles Spaniels) are predisposed.
  • Anatomy: Droopy eyelids or elongated papillae can increase the risk.
  • Weak Immune System: Makes dogs more susceptible to infections.

Treating Blepharitis

  1. Veterinary Diagnosis: Your vet will examine your dog and may run tests to determine the cause.
  2. Home Pre-Treatment: If severe, you can gently clean eyes with saline or antiseptics to prevent further injury before vet visit.
  3. Vet Treatment Varies Based on Cause:
    • Cleaning & Removal of Crusts: Softening and gentle removal of any buildup.
    • Eye Ointments: To reduce swelling and inflammation.
    • Antibiotics: For bacterial infections.
    • Surgery: In rare cases, for tumors triggering the condition.
    • Allergy Management: Diet changes and minimizing allergen exposure.
  4. Herbal Aids (Consult Vet First): Chamomile or other herb washes can provide additional soothing.

Prevention is Key

  • Hygiene: Keep your dog’s living area clean and wash bowls regularly.
  • Parasite Prevention: Regular flea, tick, and deworming treatments.
  • Vet Checkups: Catch any eye issues early.
  • Healthy Diet: Supports immunity and overall well-being.
  • Vaccinations: Protect against diseases that can weaken the immune system.

Key Takeaways

  • Blepharitis is treatable, but early intervention is crucial. Don’t ignore swollen, red eyelids in your dog.
  • Causes are diverse, so vet diagnosis is essential for the right treatment.
  • Prevention focuses on hygiene, parasite control, strong immunity, and regular checkups.

What Is Blepharitis in Dogs?

Blepharitis is a disease characterized by inflammation in the eyelid area of a dog. The causes of the development of pathology can be all kinds of pathogenic bacterial microorganisms, fungi, or allergic reactions.

The dog owner’s task is to contact a veterinarian as soon as possible. Failure to provide timely assistance to your pet can cause complications, one of which is vision impairment.

With blepharitis, the outer layer of the skin is often inflamed. It is not uncommon that the pathological process spreads to the mucous part, causing conjunctivitis. Quite quickly in the eye area, one disease turns into another, more complex one, provoking corresponding changes and symptoms.

Causes Of Blepharitis In Dogs:

Blepharitis in dogs can have several causes and often develops as a result of a combination of factors.


One of the main causes of blepharitis is bacterial or fungal infections that affect a dog’s eyelids. This may occur due to poor hygiene or contact with contaminated surfaces.

Allergic Reactions:

Some dogs may develop blepharitis as a result of an allergic reaction to certain substances, such as dust, pollen, food ingredients, or chemicals.


The presence of parasites in a dog’s eyelid, such as mites or lice, can cause irritation and inflammation, which will eventually lead to the development of blepharitis.


Some dog breeds are more susceptible to developing blepharitis due to genetic factors. For example, bulldogs and Cavalier King Charles spaniels often have this disease.

Anatomical Features:

Some dogs are more susceptible to blepharitis due to their anatomical features. For example, dogs with drooping eyelids or elongated papillae may be more prone to developing this condition.


If a dog’s immune system is weakened, he may be more susceptible to developing blepharitis. Immunodeficiency can be caused by various factors, such as chronic stress, poor diet, or the presence of other diseases.

Treatment Of Blepharitis In Dogs:

Before prescribing treatment, a qualified veterinarian examines the patient. It is necessary to carefully examine the affected area and prescribe a series of tests to determine the infectious nature of the origin of blepharitis.

  • If you suspect that a dog has an allergy that has caused blepharitis, it is necessary to find out what type of specific reaction the animal has. In the case of oncological pathologies, tumor tissue is collected for further biopsy. This makes it possible to adjust the treatment regimen.
  • If severe inflammation is detected in the pet’s eye area, the owner can provide first aid at home. The eyelids are treated with sodium chloride (saline), a solution of miramistin or chlorhexidine. This is necessary to prevent scratching and further injury to the eye. You can also use a special immobilizing collar.
  • Serious medications are not recommended to be purchased and used without a veterinarian’s prescription.
  • Treatment in a veterinary clinic is carried out only after diagnostic measures. The treatment regimen is as follows:
  • The purulent crusts are softened and then carefully removed. Use a cotton pad previously soaked in chlorhexidine.
  • Apply a special ointment to the affected eyelids, up to several times a day. Various eye ointments can relieve swelling and inflammation from the affected areas.
  • To eliminate bacterial pathogenic microflora, an ointment containing an antibiotic is used. The course of therapy is prescribed individually by a doctor but usually ranges from 3 to 5 times a day.
  • In case of tumor processes detected in the eye and triggering the development of blepharitis, surgical intervention is prescribed. The affected tissues are excised and appropriate therapy is administered.
  • If the cause of bilateral inflammation of the dog’s eyelids is an allergy, an elimination diet is prescribed (excluding suspicious foods and feeds), and the animal is protected as much as possible from contact with a potential allergen.
  • At home, you can use decoctions and infusions of medicinal herbs. They should be used exclusively as adjuvant therapy. You can wash the affected eyes with chamomile solution and also use various lotions from infusions of medicinal plants.
  • Chamomile solutions prepared at home have proven themselves well in the treatment of blepharitis. They have a pronounced antiseptic property. The infusion is cooled and washed in the morning and evening. An infusion of cornflower and marshmallow root is also used to wash the eyes.
  • In order to prevent the development of blepharitis in a pet, it is necessary to adhere to certain rules. An important point is the conditions of detention. Most often, blepharitis occurs in dogs living in unsatisfactory conditions.
  • Dusty rooms, poor quality food, lack of timely vaccinations, and dewormings lead to the development of not only bilateral inflammation of the eyelids but also other problems with the body.

Prevention Of Blepharitis In Dogs:

Measures to prevent blepharitis are aimed at maintaining the dog’s general condition at a high level. They consist of regular diagnosis and timely elimination of all sources of inflammation in the body. Equally important are proper nutrition, proper rest, and sufficient physical activity.

It is necessary to monitor the hygiene of the dog’s resting place and wash its dishes in a timely manner. It is important to rid your dog of helminths and skin parasites in a timely manner.

To prevent diseases, you should regularly examine your pet’s eyes and wash them if signs of inflammation are detected. Keep your sleeping area clean.

To keep the immune system active, vaccinate your pet according to the vaccination plan. Regularly carry out deworming, as well as destroy fleas and other ectoparasites.

Feed your pet professional food of at least premium class or a feed mixture of similar quality made from natural products and mineral and vitamin supplements.


It is impossible to completely protect an animal from the risk of developing the disease, but it can be minimized. Vaccinate your pet in a timely manner, undergo anthelmintic treatment, and provide the tailed one with comfortable, clean conditions.

Aapt Dubey
Aapt Dubey

Aapt Dubey, a devoted canine enthusiast and experienced dog Owner, brings boundless passion to our team. With a heart full of love for our four-legged friends, Aapt is dedicated to sharing insights on dog care, behavior, and training to make every pup's life happier and healthier at

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