Unlike other dogs, Frenchies have a different eye structure. Their eyes bulge, and their short snout offers little protection against scratches and impact. With this, they are susceptible to a variety of French Bulldog eye problems. These conditions require proper care and attention to prevent any complications.
If you’re a Frenchie pawrent, you must watch out for the following conditions:
This condition is the most common eye problem among bulldog breeds. It will make the eyes irritated, reddish, and with a tissue protruding on the corner of the Frenchie’s eyes.
Cherry eye happens in the third eyelid of the French Bulldog. If you don’t know it yet, bulldogs have three eyelids: top, bottom, and the third one in contact with the cornea. This third eyelid protects against irritations by serving as a wiper of the eyes.
The condition takes place when a tear occurs on the third eyelid. This tear will swell, and the affected eye will appear reddish. Over time, the pinkish tissue will be large enough that it looks like your dog has a cherry on the side of the eye, thus the name of the condition.
The good news here is that cherry eye isn’t extremely painful. However, it will be so itchy that the dog won’t stop rubbing it. And this is where more problems ensue.
If not addressed right away, the cherry eye will lead to further complications. The dog’s incessant rubbing will aggravate the condition. You should seek the help of a veterinarian to deal with this problem.
Of all possible French Bulldog eye problems your dog may experience, a corneal ulcer is probably the most serious. Also known as ulcerative keratitis in the medical world, this condition can lead to blindness if not addressed early on.
Corneal ulcers happen when the deeper layers of the eye’s epithelium become eroded up to the stroma. When this happens, the tears will be absorbed directly by the stroma, which will give a cloudy appearance to the eyes. The deeper the erosion is, the more serious the condition becomes.
Unlike the cherry eye, corneal ulcers are extremely painful to dogs. Also, the pooch will rub its eyes as an effort to relieve the pain. This will make matters worse.
Remember that corneal ulcers are usually preventable since the leading cause is physical trauma. In rare occasions, corneal ulcers are secondary to viral infections and other diseases.
French Bulldogs may suffer from the dry eye when it doesn’t produce enough tears to lubricate the eyeballs. It can be due to the removal of the cherry eye, medication, or a congenital disease.
When dryness occurs, the cornea of the eye will become inflamed. The surrounding tissues will also become swollen, which will make the eye produce a yellow or green discharge. Such discharge is thick and can be bothersome for your pet.
Dry eye is a painful condition on which your dog will appear squinting or finding it hard to open its eyes. This will require treatment or continuous application of artificial tears to combat the dryness.
Remember that dry eyes shouldn’t be dismissed as a mere irritation. You should bring your Frenchie to the vet right away for the right solution. In the long run, this will save you more money from medical bills as advanced dry eye can lead to other complications if not treated early.
Entropion is a condition that is often observed among breeds with droopy eyelids, just like French Bulldogs. This condition causes the eyelid to roll toward the eye. When this happens, the eyelashes will rub on the eyeball, which is absolute torture. The eyelashes will scratch your dog’s eyes every single time it blinks.
A case of entropion that hasn’t been treated right away will cause the cornea to bulge due to swollen blood vessels. This will branch out to a more serious condition that will cause further pain to your pooch.
To treat this condition, a veterinarian will conduct a surgical operation to remove the affected eyelashes. Most of the time, this surgical treatment yield successful results. After the operation, the vet may prescribe an eye drop to help abate the swelling.
Remember that entropion is a genetic issue. If you’re planning to get a new pup, you should check the parents first.
With this condition, the bottom eyelid sags or even rolls outward. This will expose the third eyelid together with the sensitive tissues in your dog’s eyes. Usually, both eyes will be affected if your pet has ectropion.
Take note that ectropion can make the eyes dry, which may potentially lead to cherry eye, dry eye, pink eye, corneal inflammation, and other painful complications. There will also be a heavy and slimy discharge as the eyes try to dispel any foreign matter that gets into it.
In some cases, Frenchies will have mild ectropion, which is tolerable and will not require special intervention. However, if the sagging of the eyelids is severe, the only way to fix it is through a surgical operation.
Like entropion, ectropion is transmitted through genetics. Any affected dog should be spayed or neutered so they won’t pass on the defect to their offspring.
Tips in taking care of your Frenchie’s eyes
Prevention is always the key to reduce your Frenchie’s susceptibility to any of the aforementioned conditions. To make sure that their eyes are in good shape, you must do the following:
Regular eye checks
Some eye problems won’t show symptoms until it’s too late. You should bring your doggo to the vet regularly for in-depth eye checks. The dog doctor will conduct physical and medical examinations to see if your Frenchie is at risk of any eye problem. If any symptoms are pointing to an eye condition, the vet can treat it immediately.
Do you know that the accidental application of shampoo in your dog’s eye may result in an eye problem? With this, you must observe safe eye cleaning. When bathing your dog, you should avoid rubbing shampoo on its facial area.
Also, you can ask the vet for an ointment or drop that will clean your dog’s eyes safely. You should always remove eye boogers gently and avoid poking your pooch’s eyes. For tear stains, there are special wipes made to remove the marks without any side effects.
Many French Bulldog eye problems can be prevented through regular check-ups and proper care. If you spot any irritation on your dog’s eyes, you should schedule an appointment with the vet immediately. When it comes to your dog’s health, a proactive approach can save a life – or an eye for that matter.