Small Red Spots in a Dog’s Eyes: Top Causes & Treatments

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small red spot on a dog's eye

Inflammation or hemorrhage

When a dog has pink-red spots on its eye, it is usually due to inflammation or hemorrhage. Conditions that cause inflammation are varied but may include:

  • entropion – the eyelid turns inward and irritates your dog’s cornea
  • foreign body – a grass awn, piece of sand or dust, or other particle can get trapped in your dog’s eyelid and irritate the corneal surface
  • injury – an injury to the eye can cause capillary rupture and blood pooling
  • allergic reaction to an environmental or food trigger
  • ruptured capillary – sometimes blood vessels in the eye rupture and cause blood pooling without an identifiable trigger

Treatments: When inflammation or hemorrhage is the cause of your dog’s red eye spots, your veterinarian will treat any underlying conditions, if possible.

Pooling caused by ruptured capillaries usually resolves in a week or so without treatment.

Your veterinarian will prescribe topical antibiotics and anti-inflammatory eye drops to treat inflammation. He may also recommend using an eye wash to flush irritants from the eye gently.

Minor irritation may clear up in a few days, but infections and other medical conditions take a week or more of treatment.

Medical conditions causing red spots in dog eyes

Red spots in dog’s eyes can also be caused by underlying medical conditions including:

  • Uveitis – inflammation inside the eye(in the iris and ciliary body) caused by bacterial or fungal infections, tick-borne diseases  
  • Keratitis – corneal inflammation caused by chronic irritation or an autoimmune disease(pannus)
  • Glaucoma – fluid and pressure buildup in the eye
  • Lymphoma (cancer) in the eye


  • Dr. Liz Guise, Veterinarian

    Dr. Liz (Elizabeth) Guise graduated from the University of Minnesota with a doctorate in Veterinary Medicine (DVM). She worked as a veterinarian for two years before working for the US Department of Agriculture for 13 years.

Disclaimer: This website's content is not a substitute for veterinary care. Always consult with your veterinarian for healthcare decisions. Read More.

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