Pet Health Concerns: Cherry Eye

Cherry eye is a very common congenital eye defect in dog breeds. Also called canine nictitans gland prolapse, this defect occurs in the gland of the third eyelid, causing it to protrude. This visible tear gland appears as a bright red bulge in the corner of the pet’s eye. Unfortunately, the exact cause of this gland swelling is still unknown, but it is believed to be related to connective tissue weakness that is surrounding the eye.

Cherry eye is most often seen in Beagle, Bulldog, Neapolitan Mastiff, Weimaraner, Cane Corso, and Cocker Spaniel dog breeds. If your pet scratches or rubs on the irritated portion of the eye, it may create an ulcer. Treatment costs can range to be $100-$500+ for surgical gland repositioning, steroids, and antibiotics.

To learn more about Cherry Eye in pets, check out our Pet Health Concerns Guide. By enrolling your pet with Trupanion pet insurance, your cat or dog’s policy will include coverage for diagnostic tests, medications, surgeries, hereditary and congenital disorders, as long as treatment for a certain condition is required after enrolling and is not pre-existing.

Has your pet ever been diagnosed with this condition? If so, we’d love to hear from you and any comments, advice, experiences, of thoughts on this serious condition.

About Akvile @

Akvile is an avid fan of surfing on snow, on water, and the web! Growing up in NY, she moved to Seattle a few years ago and has found her happiness here, where she can do all of the above. Aside from working during the week in the Trupanion office, she has her hands full being the mother of Batman, her massive-eared mini schnauzer who is a cuddle monster by day and super hero by night. She enjoys traveling, wakeboarding, snowboarding, camping, painting, and DJ'ing for fun.

One Response to Pet Health Concerns: Cherry Eye

  1. Yes, my lhasa apso has cherry eye. The weird thing about his case according to our vet is that he’s five years old already and this condition apparently affects more younger dogs. Also, his cherry eye so far has always regressed on its own. Sometimes it took two days and the latest was two weeks. We are in observation mode right now and have a corticosteroid drop solutions on hand to reduce inflammation if it appears again.

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