If you have ever experienced irritation or burning in yours eyes you know the effectiveness of Visine or other over-the-counter eye drops in alleviating those painful symptoms. Do you know what to do if your dog is experiencing that same discomfort? Administering Visine eye drops is not the answer. The FDA does not approve the drug for pets, and if your dog has eye issues from conjunctivitis, glaucoma, allergic reaction, or invasion of foreign objects, using Visine can cause more harm than good. 

Why Is Visine Dangerous to Dogs? 

You are not recommended to use Visine on your dog if it has eye problems. The active ingredient, tetrahydrozoline HCL, has not been tested in detail on animals, and there are still unfamiliar cardiac and neurological effects that may result from using it. Applying Visine to your dog’s eyes may reduce some redness, but you will put your pet at risk of further eye injury. The drug narrows blood vessels and contains some preservatives that may further irritate the eyes. 

In some situations, a saline solution would be a safer alternative to Visine eye drops. But even then, preparing a saline solution of the right concentration can be tricky, and only a veterinarian or ophthalmologist will be properly equipped for the task. Consult your veterinarian so they can point you to a dog-friendly alternative to help their eyes. 

Symptoms Of Eye Problems in Dogs 

If you notice any of these symptoms listed below, your dog is experiencing serious discomfort in its eyes. These symptoms include: 

  • Red eyes 
  • Pawing at the eyes 
  • Squinting 
  • Blinking 
  • Pus discharge around the eyes 
  • Swollen eyelids 

If you have seen these signs, contact your veterinarian so they can assist you in figuring out what is wrong with your dog and what medication they should have to help treat them. 

What Do You Do If You’ve Used Visine on Your Dog? 

If you have applied Visine to your dog’s eyes and just recently discovered the dangers, you can quickly contact Pet Poison Helpline® at (855) 764-7661 for advice on the next steps to take. If needed, take your pet to a vet clinic so a veterinarian can examine it.