Why Your Dog is Losing Hair Around His Eyes
If you have a fluffy dog, it’s going to be pretty noticeable when he loses hair around his eyes. Aesthetically, it doesn’t look good. Medically, you’re probably worried that something could be wrong with your pet. Is it normal for a dog to lose hair around his eyes? Does it go with age or is there an underlying cause?
Baldness and a Dog’s Age
You might think that the cause could be age since humans also experience pattern baldness. Yes, it’s true that dogs could get bald too when they advance in years. However, it doesn’t usually start around the eyes.
Also called canine pinnal alopecia or acquired pattern alopecia, it usually occurs on the outer ear flaps, under the neck, on the chest, backs of the thighs, and behind the ears. There’s also no itching, redness, or inflammation. By extension, your dog won’t be experiencing any kind of pain.
A Dog Losing Hair Around His Eyes Could Have Skin Problems
Instead of focusing on your dog’s age, you should be focusing, first, on what he is allergic to. Just like in humans, dogs could also get red puffy eyes when they are allergic to something. Because the eyes are puffed up, the skin is stretched, spreading the hair and making it seem like your dog is balding around his eyes. In most cases, however, the hair does fall off because of irritation.
So, what is your dog allergic to? It’s hard to say without a diagnostic test, but one of the most common causes of canine allergy is diet. Did you introduce a new kind of dog food or treat?
If not, then you can move on to the next possible allergy cause which is his environment. During spring, for example, dogs can get allergies from the pollen in the air. Or, if you recently took a walk in a nearby park, then he could have gotten allergies from the plants he ran through.
The next culprit could be Demodex Mange which is caused by a mite called Demodex Canis. It is a parasitic mite that lives in the hair follicles of dogs. Don’t even bother checking your dog’s skin because these parasites are microscopic. Commonly, it’s natural for dogs to have a few mites on their skin, but it shouldn’t affect them much when they are healthy or when their immune system is not compromised.
How Do You Know if Your Dog Has Mange?
When your dog has mange, he will typically lose his hair, then develop thickened and oily skin (with a distinct smell). First, the hair loss will start on his face, especially around his eyes. Then, hairless patches could appear in localized cases. In severe cases, on the other hand, the hair loss could spread all over the body.
Aside from your dog losing hair around his eyes and having patches on his skin, the best way to tell would be through a vet. The vet will take skin samples and have them observed under the microscope to confirm the presence of mites or other potential parasites and infections.
A Dog Losing Hair Around His Eyes Could Have Eye Problems
If it is not a skin problem, then the main cause would likely be an eye problem. If your dog’s eye is infected, it will could feel itchy. He will, most likely, repeatedly paw at his eye or even rub it on the furniture and carpet, causing strands of hair to fall out.
When Should You Go to the Vet?
If you see that your dog is losing hair around his eyes, the safest approach would be for you to visit your vet as soon as you can. Whatever he has, you would want it to get diagnosed as soon as possible.