Our dog gas been mopey the last few days, but we thought she was just tired since we've been home more. She has also

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Customer: Our dog gas been mopey the last few days, but we thought she was just tired since we've been home more. She has also been running her face a lot lately, but she does have seasonal allergies so it wasn't abnormal for this time of year. Now she is shaking a bit, her eye is swollen, and it seems like she is really not feeling well
JA: I'll do all I can to help. Could be a lot of things that cause lethargy. The Expert will know how to help the dog. What is the dog's name and age?
Customer: Punky and she is 5
JA: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Punky?
Customer: She does have a regular apaquel prescription for her allergies that we use as needed
Answered by Dr.Fiona in 7 mins 2 years ago
26+ years of experience

8,206 satisfied customers

Specialities include: Dog Veterinary, Dog Medicine, Dog Diseases, Small Animal Veterinary

Hi there, I'm a veterinarian and would like to try to help you and Punky. What breed (or mix) of dogs is she? Are you able to take a photo of the swollen eye?


She is a border terrier mix, we believe she has either corgy or daschund (maybe both)
Customer attachment 3/29/2020 8:26:00 PM

thanks for the photo - looking at that now

Oh, ouch, that does look swollen! Is she holding it partly closed like that all the time?


Ok, thanks for that information. And the other eye looks normal?

Sometimes she will have an eye swell a bit when her allergies are acting up, but she is more lethargic then normal
She isn t even wanting to play with her ball, which is very unlike her
Are you still there?

Thanks for that information - I was just working on your answer!

Ok, thank you

The most likely thing that is causing Punky to hold her eye closed would be a corneal ulcer. In a situation where a dog won't open the eye, she needs to see a vet promptly (ideally today). If the eye swelling were just due to allergies, I would expect it to be both eyes. I really think she has injured her eye.

A corneal ulcer can be caused by a scratch on the eye - either in a fight with a cat, or on a twig, or on a sharp object in the home. With your dog, I wonder if she scratched it as she was rubbing her face due to itchiness from allergies. Corneal ulcers are serious and need prompt treatment. Also, they are very painful. Just think how uncomfortable your eye is with an eyelash in it, and then imagine what it would be like with a cut on it!

When I have an animal with this problem come into the clinic, I do a full ophthalmologic exam. I might put local anesthetic in the eye to make it pain-free so I could open it to examine it closely. After an initial look, I would stain the eye with fluorescein dye. This gentle dye sticks to any parts of the eye that are damaged. This dye glows under a black light. Thus, you can easily see where the damage is.

If there were indeed a corneal ulcer, I would start the animal on antibiotic drops or ointment. If there were a lot of inflammation (uveitis) I would also start an ointment to dilate the pupil. I would also suggest the patient wore a cone on her head until the eye is healed so she could do no further damage (definitely she will think this is adding insult to injury!). I would likely start oral painkillers as eye ulcers are painful. I expect that is why Punky has been mopey.

I would have my patient come back in a few days to a week to check that things had healed up properly.

I will include a link with more information:


In short, I think your girl has a corneal ulcer. It is urgent that she see a veterinarian promptly!

If you absolutely cannot get to a veterinarian today, then you could use sterile saline solution (sold in the contact lens section of your pharmacy) to flush the eye really well until you can open it. This could take several tablespoons of solution. You could purchase polysporin eye medication at your pharmacy and apply that to her eye every 3-4 hours (even through the night) until you can get her to your vet for a stronger and more effective antibiotic.

Here is a link: https://www.webmd.com/drugs/2/drug-14899/polysporin-ophthalmic-eye/details

Also, do put the "cone of shame" on her so she can't do herself further injury.

I hope she feels better soon!

Good luck with her!

If this has been helpful, please accept my answer and leave a star rating. If you need more information, just click on reply and I will still be here to provide it.

The above is given for information only. Although I am a licensed veterinarian, I cannot legally prescribe medicines or diagnose your pet's condition without performing a physical exam. If you have concerns about your pet I would strongly advise contacting your regular veterinarian.

Dr. Fiona

Thank you

You are so welcome! I hope that Punky feels better soon!

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