how to clean shih tzu eyes

How To Clean Shih Tzu Eyes in 2023: Complete Guide For Sparkling Eyes

It’s essential to know how to clean shih tzu eyes. Proper eye care ensures their vision remains sharp and infection-free.


For any Shih Tzu owner, taking care of their beloved pet’s health is a top priority. This includes proper eye care, which can help prevent serious issues and ensure that your furry friend remains healthy and happy. In this article, we will discuss the importance of proper eye care for Shih Tzus, common eye problems that they may experience, and provide a step-by-step guide to cleaning your Shih Tzu’s eyes.

The Importance of Proper Eye Care for Shih Tzu Dogs

Shih Tzus are known for their big expressive eyes which give them an adorable appearance. However, these beautiful eyes are also prone to various eye conditions which can cause discomfort and pain to your pet. Therefore, it is crucial to take proper care of your Shih Tzu’s eyes to keep them healthy. Caring for your dog’s eyes involves regular monitoring and immediate attention when necessary. Your dog should have a yearly check-up where the vet examines their overall health including the condition of their eyes. Proper eye care will not only improve the quality of life for your Shih Tzu but also provide peace of mind that you’re doing everything you can to keep them healthy.

Common Eye Problems in Shih Tzus

Shih Tzus are prone to several eye problems due to their unique facial structure. Their large round eyes can make them particularly susceptible to infections such as conjunctivitis or even corneal ulcers. Dry Eye Syndrome (DES) is another common issue in this breed caused by insufficient tear production resulting in dryness and irritation in the eyes. Additionally, excessive tearing or discharge around the eyes could be due to allergies or other irritants causing epiphora (excessive tearing).

Overview of the Article

The article will provide a complete guide for Shih Tzu owners to take care of their pet’s eyes properly. We will start by discussing the importance of proper eye care and common eye problems that your furry friend may experience. We then move on to preparing for cleaning your dog’s eyes, including creating a safe and comfortable environment, calming your dog, and gathering necessary supplies. The article will also detail a step-by-step guide to cleaning your Shih Tzu’s eyes with appropriate methods and techniques. We touch on tips for preventing eye problems in your Shih Tzu through regular grooming practices, avoiding irritants or allergens that can cause eye irritation or infection and watching for signs of any health issues.

Understanding Your Shih Tzu’s Eyes

Shih Tzus are known for their big, expressive eyes that can melt anyone’s heart. However, their delicate eyes also make them more prone to eye-related health problems than other dog breeds. As a loving owner, it is essential to understand your Shih Tzu’s eyes and how to properly care for them.

Anatomy of a Shih Tzu’s Eyes

Shih Tzus have large, round eyes that are set slightly apart on their flat faces. Their eyes are typically dark brown, but some may have lighter colored or blue eyes due to genetics. The structure of the Shih Tzu’s eye has three layers: the outer layer is the cornea, the middle layer is the iris and ciliary body, and the innermost layer is the retina. Shih Tzus also have long eyelashes that serve as protection against debris and irritants in their environment. They also have tear ducts that produce tears to keep their eyes moist and wash away any foreign particles.

Eye-Related Health Problems in Shih Tzus

Due to their large and exposed eyes, Shih Tzus are prone to several eye-related health problems such as dry eye syndrome (keratoconjunctivitis sicca), cataracts, glaucoma, cherry eye (prolapsed nictitating membrane), corneal ulcers, and entropion (an inward rolling of the eyelids). These conditions can cause discomfort and pain if not treated promptly.

Recognizing Signs of Eye Problems

As a responsible owner, it’s important to keep an eye out for any signs of discomfort or abnormal behavior related to your dog’s vision. Some common signs of eye problems in Shih Tzus include excessive tearing or discharge, redness or swelling around the eyes, squinting or blinking excessively, cloudiness in the eyes, and changes in eye color. If you notice any of these signs, seek veterinary attention to prevent further complications. Understanding the anatomy of a Shih Tzu’s eyes and recognizing signs of eye problems are critical for maintaining your dog’s vision and overall health. As a responsible owner, it is essential to stay vigilant and take care of your furry friend’s delicate eyes.

Preparing for Cleaning Your Shih Tzu’s Eyes

Gathering necessary supplies

Before starting the cleaning process, it is essential to gather all the necessary supplies. You will need a clean towel, a bowl of warm water, cotton balls or pads, and a vet-approved eye cleaning solution. It is important to use only products specifically designed for dogs as some human eye products can be harmful. If you are unsure which product to buy, consult with your veterinarian or groomer who can recommend the best product for your dog’s needs. Make sure all items are within easy reach so that you do not need to leave your dog unattended during the cleaning process.

Creating a comfortable and safe environment

Cleaning your Shih Tzu’s eyes requires them to feel comfortable and relaxed. Ensure that both you and your dog are in a relaxed state before starting the process. If possible, choose an area where there are minimal distractions. Make sure that you have good lighting so that you can see what you are doing clearly, but avoid harsh lights that may cause discomfort to your pet. Also, keep in mind that some dogs may be nervous about having their eyes cleaned, so it is important to create an environment where they feel safe.

Calming your dog before cleaning

To make the process more comfortable for your Shih Tzu, take the time to calm them down before beginning the cleaning procedure. This can be done by talking in a soothing tone or gently petting them until they have relaxed. It’s also essential not to rush things as this could lead to stress and anxiety on their part. If at any point during preparation or cleaning, they become uncomfortable or agitated; take a break and try again later when they’re more relaxed. Once they have calmed down and are ready for cleaning their eyes out carefully remove any excess fur around the eyes to prevent it from falling into them. Remember that grooming is a vital part of maintaining your dog’s eye health and preventing irritation or infections. By taking these steps, you will not only be able to clean your Shih Tzu’s eyes effectively but also create a comfortable and safe environment for them during the process. Keep in mind that patience and care are crucial for successful eye care for your furry friend.

Step-by-Step Guide to Cleaning Your Shih Tzu’s Eyes

Your Shih Tzu’s eyes require regular cleaning to prevent the buildup of dirt, grime, and bacteria that can lead to infections and other health problems. Here is a step-by-step guide for properly cleaning your pup’s eyes at home:

Washing Your Hands and Preparing the Cleaning Solution

Before starting the cleaning process, it is essential to ensure that your hands are clean. Use soap and warm water to wash your hands thoroughly. Next, prepare the cleaning solution by mixing equal parts of warm water and veterinary eye-cleaning solution in a small bowl or cup.

Gently Wiping Away Any Discharge or Debris from The Eyes with a Damp Cloth or Cotton Ball

Use a soft damp cloth or cotton ball to gently wipe away any discharge or debris around your Shih Tzu’s eyes. Be careful not to rub too hard as this can cause irritation and discomfort for your dog. Pay close attention to folds around the eyes where dirt and bacteria can accumulate. Ensure that you dry any damp areas around the eyes before moving on to the next step.

Applying an Eye-Cleaning Solution to Remove Any Remaining Dirt or Grime

Dip a clean cotton ball into the solution you prepared earlier, making sure it is not too wet. Hold your Shih Tzu’s head still by wrapping one arm securely around their neck while using your other hand to gently lift one eyelid. Place the soaked cotton ball on top of their closed eye, pressing lightly so that some of the solution seeps into their eye area. Gently massage this area for several seconds before removing the cotton ball. Repeat this process with another fresh cotton ball on their other eye. Remember not ever use Q-tips as they may damage their eye.

Drying the Area Around The Eyes

Use a dry cloth or paper towel to gently wipe any excess moisture from your Shih Tzu’s face, paying close attention to the area around their eyes. Be gentle, as you don’t want to rub too hard and cause irritation. It’s important to avoid getting water or cleaning solution in your pet’s eyes. If they show any signs of discomfort or irritation, stop the cleaning process immediately. By following this step-by-step guide, you can keep your Shih Tzu’s eyes healthy and clean while preventing eye infections and related health issues. Remember that if you ever notice any unusual symptoms like redness or swelling around the eyes, contact your vet immediately for professional advice.

Tips for Preventing Eye Problems in Your Shih Tzu

Regular grooming and hygiene practices

One of the most effective ways to prevent eye problems in Shih Tzus is to maintain a regular grooming routine. This includes brushing their coat regularly to prevent matting around the eyes, which can cause irritation and infection. It’s also important to trim the hair around your Shih Tzu’s eyes, especially if it is long or curly, as it can trap dirt and debris that can lead to eye issues. Another vital part of keeping your Shih Tzu’s eyes healthy is proper hygiene practices. Make sure their face is wiped clean daily with a damp cloth or unscented baby wipe. This helps remove any debris or bacteria that may have accumulated around their eyes. It’s essential not to use any harsh chemicals near your dog’s eyes as they can cause irritation or injury.

Avoiding irritants and allergens that can cause eye irritation

Many dogs, including Shih Tzus, are susceptible to environmental allergens that affect their respiratory system and skin, but they can also affect their eyes. Common allergens include pollen, mold spores, dust mites, and certain types of grasses. If your dog has allergies, you may notice they rub their face on anything available or paw at their eyes excessively. To prevent allergies from affecting your dog’s eye health, try removing any potential irritants from your home environment such as perfumed cleaning products or cigarette smoke if you are a smoker. Also avoid using any products near your dog’s face with strong odors like perfume or cologne; these items could lead to an allergic reaction or even chemical burns on sensitive areas like the eyelids.

Watching for signs of infection or other health issues

Even with regular cleaning and maintenance procedures in place, it’s still possible for your Shih Tzu to develop an eye infection or other health issues. Some common signs of an eye infection include redness, discharge, swelling, and excessive tearing. If you notice these symptoms in your dog, it’s essential to seek veterinary care promptly. Other potential health issues that can affect your Shih Tzu’s eyes include corneal ulcers, cataracts, and glaucoma. While some of these conditions are hereditary or age-related and cannot be prevented outright; early detection is key to managing them effectively. Regular visits with your veterinarian can help ensure that any developing eye problems are detected early so that proper treatment can begin quickly.


By following the tips outlined above for preventing eye problems in your Shih Tzu, you’ll help ensure their overall health and wellbeing. By maintaining a regular grooming routine and keeping up with hygiene practices such as daily face wiping; you’ll minimize the risk of bacteria accumulating around the eyes that can cause issues like infections or inflammation. Additionally, avoiding irritants in the environment will help reduce allergy symptoms which often affect dogs’ eyes too. By paying attention to signs of infection or other health conditions like corneal ulcers or cataracts; you’ll be able to seek prompt medical attention when needed ensuring timely treatment which is critical for positive outcomes.


Proper eye care is essential to the overall health and well-being of your Shih Tzu. By understanding the anatomy of their eyes, recognizing common eye problems, and implementing regular cleaning techniques, you can help prevent eye infections and other health issues. Taking a proactive approach to caring for your Shih Tzu’s eyes will not only benefit their physical health but also strengthen the bond between you and your furry companion. With patience, consistency, and proper techniques, you can make eye cleaning a positive experience for both you and your dog. Remember that prevention is always better than treatment when it comes to your dog’s health. By following the tips outlined in this article and seeking veterinary care when necessary, you can ensure that your Shih Tzu’s eyes stay healthy for years to come. We hope this guide has been helpful in providing you with valuable information on how to clean Shih Tzu eyes properly. Don’t forget to share this knowledge with other pet owners who may benefit from it!

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