SpotOnTM Case Study #X that Includes Your Dog’s Symptom(s)Case Study #X

Ask Our Vets < Back to Search Results< Back

Dog with red eye, eye discharge and hardening of the outside of the eye

by Alexis Taylor
(Lutz, FL, USA)


When I came home from school today my dog Coco had his left eye half open with a mucus-looking discharge coming from it. He won't let me wipe his eye, and when I force him, there is an orangish-red residue on the tissue. After wiping away the residue, the discharge still comes back.


Coco is 10 years old and is an Australian silky terrier. He has demodex mites and is losing hair on his hind quarters as well. I have already ordered medicine for the mites, but it won't be here for at least 2 weeks.

Could the eye problems be caused by the demodex mites? Could it be an eye infection? Do I need to take him to the vet, or is there a home remedy that I could try? Is the combination of problems in a dog of his age serious enough that the vet might recommend putting him down?

Thank you very much. I really appreciate this service because it is difficult for me to afford the high cost of taking Coco into the vet.

Have a happy thanksgiving break!

Comments for Dog with red eye, eye discharge and hardening of the outside of the eye

Click here to add your own comments

Nov 24, 2010
My Online Vet Response for Dog with red eye, discharge and hardening of the outside of the eye
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman


Hi Alexis,
It is difficult to see Coco's eye from the photo you submitted. I can tell that the discharge has matted her hair down, and is causing it to be crusty and dried.

Demodex mites (see our page on dog skin conditions under parasites) can involve the eyelashes. There will be hair loss around the eyes, with increased discharge and crustiness around the eyelids. This is not a condition that would warrant euthanasia!

It is very treatable, and taking a holistic approach will help Coco become healthier than she was before. To find a holistic veterinarian in your area click here:
find a holistic veterinarian in your area

Although, if she has scratched her cornea, she may need to be seen by a veterinarian, either at an emergency clinic on Thanksgiving, or the day after Thanksgiving.

In the meantime, improving Coco's immune system is vital to helping her overcome Demodectic mange.
This is done by eliminating all dry food from her diet, improving her diet with home-prepared food, or a high quality canned food. But a raw natural dog food diet would be best.

For more information about Coco's diet, check our page on the 10 best dog food options.

Adding supplements such as OrthoMolecular Specialties, Mega C Powder (buffered Vit C powder with a multi-vitamin/mineral mix) and Omega 3 fish oil for dogs, about 250-500 mg per day to her food will also help.

Place 2-3 drops of olive oil into the eye that has the crusted discharge to help with lubrication. This will not hurt if it is a corneal ulcer, and it may give her some relief. Clean off all crusty discharges 2-3 times daily.

Also, she may need to have some of the hair trimmed around her eyes and top of her nose.

NO VACCINATIONS until she is back to normal. And even then I would worry that a booster vaccination may cause a relapse of the mange. Better yet, have a holistic veterinarian guide you in diet, supplements, homeopathic remedies, and to write an exemption form to avoid vaccinations.

Please keep us posted by coming back to this page and clicking the 'click here to add your own comments' link below.

Take care, and Happy Thanksgiving to you,
Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

DISCLAIMER: This educational advice is based on the depth of your question and the picture you submitted. The above should never replace the advice of your local veterinarian, as they have the ability to evaluate your dog in person.

Dec 19, 2010
Coco's Health Update
by: Anonymous

Hello again Dr.Tillman,

I wanted to let you know that coco is doing better his skin has cleared up once we took him to the vet and got him some medicine. My dad got coco some new food it is a dry food called Blue.

I was wondering since it seems to be a better food, should we still switch to a raw food to get Coco's immune system better because you said we should switch to raw food or a good canned food?

Also, coco's eye is red and I'm pretty sure it is infected from the mites or irritated or something, is there anything we can do to make his eye less red?

Jan 10, 2011
My Online Vet Response for Dog with red eye, eye discharge and hardening of the outside of the eye
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

Hi Alexis,
Yes, you should gradually switch to a raw diet, even though the Blue (Buffalo?) brand that Coco is eating is a better quality. Since Coco has a skin problem and his eyes are still red, he is trying to become healthy, but he will not be able to if he is eating a dry dog food, no matter how good the quality may be. Dry dog food has no moisture in it, and his eyes, his skin and hair coat all need adequate moisture.

And a raw diet is better than canned food, although if he is a picky eater, you may need to start first by adding some canned food to his dry food, and once he has adjusted to canned food, then start to gradually add in the raw diet and transition him over to an all raw diet.

Check our page on the 10 Best Dog Food Options and look at the raw dog food diets offered.

In the meantime, you will need to add moisture to his eyes to alleviate the redness. You can use artificial tear ointment, purchased over the counter at your Pharmacy, or add 2-3 drops of olive oil into his eyes. You will need to do this at least 4 times daily to maintain adequate moisture for his eyes.

Also, refer back to my first post regarding supplements to support his immune system. If his eyes are not improving over one week, please take him back to your regular veterinarian for a recheck. Or seek out the help of a holistic veterinarian.

To find a holistic veterinarian in your area click here:
find a holistic veterinarian in your area

Please keep us posted by coming back to this page and clicking the 'click here to add your own comments' link below.

Take care,
Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

P.S. If you've found this service or our web site helpful, please "Like" us by clicking the like button at the top of the left margin. Thank you!

DISCLAIMER: This educational advice is based on the depth of your question and the picture you submitted. The above should never replace the advice of your local veterinarian, as they have the ability to evaluate your dog in person.

Related Pages:
- Dog Eye Problems,
- Ask a Vet Online Library - Dog Eye Problems Section

Click here to add your own comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Ask a Vet Online via My Online Vet (SUBSCRIPTION REQUIRED FOR NEW QUESTIONS).

This is the end of SpotOnTM Case Study #X for Your Symptom(s).End of Case Study #X

Ask Our Vets < Back to Search Results< Back

Want to ask our veterinarians a question but haven't subscribed to My Online Vet? Click here to learn how or click here to go back to the Ask a Vet Online Library of questions.

Want monthly "News You Can Use" and important Organic Pet Digest new content updates?  Click here to sign up for our FREE Dog Care Monthly newsletter.


Do you believe in holistic pet care?  If so, please tell your friends about us with a Facebook like, Google +1 or via Twitter, Pinterest, email or good old fashioned word of mouth. Thank you for supporting our efforts!

For additional research, search for your topic...



Disclaimers: The information contained in this web site is provided for general informational purposes only. It is not intended as nor should be relied upon as medical advice. Rather, it is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between a pet owner/site visitor and his/her local veterinarian(s). Before you use any of the information provided in the site, you should seek the advice of a qualified professional.

In the spirit of full disclosure, we wanted to let you know that we proudly support this website through advertising and affiliate marketing. In other words, when you click on a link that takes you outside of this website, we often earn a small commission. These small commissions allow us to keep the site up and running and to continue offering it completely free of charge to you. Rest assured that all content, recommendations and advice are created before, and are independent of, any sponsorship or affiliate relationship. Click here for more info.