Bichon with eye irritation
by Dana Correia
(Lowell, MA, USA)
I noticed this morning that my dog Burt's eye appeared to be a bit irritated. I noticed it first thing this morning and didn't notice anything out of the ordinary last night before bed.
He is a 9 year old Bichon Frise (pure bred), neutered male. He has never had any eye issues since I've had him since he was 6 (I don't know of anything prior to that). The only thing he has had is the tear stains that Bichons have, but I've noticed it has gotten better with age. I discourage him putting his head out the window of the car when I'm driving. The only thing we did yesterday was go to the park for a walk where him and my other Bichon played with a couple of other small dogs. I didn't notice any of these symptoms in either of these dogs and my other Bichon is fine.
As you'll see in the picture, his left eye is big and bright, and the one on the right is like he's squinting. The only thing I've done as treatment was to gently push his fur back in case some fur in his eyes was causing irritation. That was earlier today, and it hasn't gotten any better. I figured I would wait to see if it would clear itself up, but it hasn't. It seems to have gotten worse tonight, which prompted me to make this submission. We went on a walk earlier this evening at the same park and he seemed okay, only squinting it a little bit. Also, this park is something we've gone to all spring, and last year as well, so it's not like there is some plant that grows there that is causing this. I should also note that he doesn't seem to be paying a lot of attention to it. Not scratching or pawing
at it. He's just laying around sleeping, which he usually does.
There is only a little bit more tearing in the eye that's bothering him than his other one. And there is no large amount of discharge coming out of it (just a drop at the corner, but nothing major at all), his eye is a little more watery than the other side. You can see sitting on his lower eyelid is a little bit of fluid, but not so much that it's coming out onto his fur. I also noticed that the eye appears to be a little bit bloodshot on the inside corner. And he tends to hold it closed when I even go to take a picture of it (no flash) - see photo2. It almost seems like mild conjunctivitis.
I do have cats, but Burt leaves them alone and they keep to themselves unless provoked (and the other Bichon is the one who does that, not Burt).
Their diet consists of only high quality food. Nothing from China, and all USA high quality brands. They were on a raw diet (K9 Natural) until recently. I switched them over to non-raw because they're picky and get sick of the same thing. I had fed them Merrick cans in the past and the day before yesterday, got them started on Merrick Turducken kibble. They have never been on the Merrick dry food before, but have had the Turducken wet food many times with no problems. He has also never had any negative reaction to any food aside from gastroenteritis on a couple of occasions. But no eye or skin problems.
At this point, I'm looking for advice on how to treat this and what it could be. If he needs to go to the vet, I will do that without hesitation. But I figured I would try your service.
Thanks very much!
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