Squinting and Inflamed Eyelids in Dogs
This condition, in which the eyelids roll inward, is the most common
congenital defect of the eyelids. It can also be caused by injury and long-standing eyelid
infections that cause scarring. The abnormal eyelids produce irritation with
tearing and squinting. Corneal injuries are common from abrasion by the
It may be difficult to distinguish entropion from blepharospasm. The best
way to tell them apart is to administer a topical eye anesthetic. If the
inverted eyelids are caused by blepharospasm, temporarily blocking the eye pain
causes the inversion to disappear.
Breeds most commonly affected by entropion are the Chinese Shar-Pei, Chow
Chow, Great Dane, Great Pyrenees, St. Bernard, Bulldog, and the hunting breeds.
Most cases involve the lower eyelids. In dogs with large heads and loose facial
skin, such as Chinese Shar-Pei, Bloodhounds, and St Bernards, the upper eyelids
may be involved.
Treatment: Entropion requires surgical correction. Note that dogs who have
had corrective surgery on their eyelids cannot be shown in conformation.
In dogs with this condition, the lower eyelid rolls out from the surface of
the eye. This exposes the eye to irritants and leads to a high incidence of
chronic conjunctivitis and corneal
injury. Foreign bodies may get caught in the pocket created by the loose
eyelid. Ectropion occurs in dogs with loose facial skin, such as scenthounds,
spaniels, and St Bernards. It is also seen in older dogs whose facial skin has
lost its tone. It can occur temporarily in hunting dogs, after a long day in
Treatment: Mild ectropion that causes no symptoms needs no treatment. But in
most cases, ectropion should be corrected by a surgical procedure that tightens