Dog Breeds With Bulging Eyes Guide

Last Updated on January 12, 2022 by Griselda M.

Dog breeds with bulging eyes and those susceptible to eye troubles should be met with concern and helped to avoid unfortunate incidents.

The eyes are very sensitive body parts not only for humans but also for dogs. Even dog breeds are more susceptible to eye issues than others. They require extra care and love so that they will not experience conditions that could threaten their eyesight.

Are you aware of the eye issues that could potentially harm your dog with bulging eyes? Read on to learn more in this guide below.

Dog Breeds With Bulging Eyes

Do you have a bug-eyed Chihuahua or Pug at home? What are other dog breeds susceptible to this kind of eye trouble? These are the dogs with big eyes that seem to bulge from their heads.

Brachycephaly is a condition where the skull is shorter than average. This makes their appearance look short-nosed or flat-faced. The following are some of the breeds that have this condition:

  • Boston Terrier
  • Boxers
  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniels
  • Chihuahua
  • English Bulldogs
  • English Mastiff
  • French Bulldogs
  • Japanese Chin
  • Lhasa apsos
  • Pug
  • Pekingese
  • Shar-Pei
  • Shih Tzu

bug eyed chihuahua

Aside from the telling eye condition, there are also other characteristics tying brachycephalic dogs together: their susceptibility to and airway condition. There are some issues that are caused by the flattened skulls and the development of the face and airways.

Some conditions like narrow nostrils, the soft roof of the mouth affecting the trachea, narrow trachea, and outward laryngeal saccules are common problems in these dogs.

Why Are My Dog’s Eyes Bulging?

There’s a couple of medical situations for the eye to be bulging, and you need to determine it to assess your dog’s needs. You need to address them as soon as possible to maintain their eyesight.


Exophthalmos is the general condition where the eyes are bulging unnaturally from their sockets. While it’s not that the eye has fallen out of the socket just yet, there is still some concern with the changed position of the eyeball.

The cause of the protrusion must be studied. Sometimes, this is caused by a cancerous growth that is growing behind the eyes or a foreign object that has become stuck behind the eye, especially when the dog’s eyes are quite big.

Cysts of certain glands or muscles in and around the eye can also become inflamed and push the eyeball forward.

It is important to get your dog to a vet to determine what is causing this protrusion. They may run tests like x-rays, MRIs, or CT scans in order to determine the correct cause and course of action.

As you can see, there are many reasons as to why this could be happening, so narrowing down the criteria will be helpful for the next steps.

Ocular proptosis

Ocular proptosis is a condition where the eyeball protrudes from the socket. The displaced eye moves forward, and the eyelids get trapped behind it, making it difficult to return it to its original spot. If the dog’s eye popped out, there may be blood, ligaments torn, the eyeball may be red, or the cornea may even be cloudy.

This is an emergency and the dog must be brought to the veterinarian for treatment. It is the best bet for making sure the eye is unharmed.

Brachycephalic dogs are prone to this because their shortened skulls make it easier for accidents or blunt trauma to occur and affect their eye, for example, hitting a wall and other incidents.

Read more about How To Get Rid Of Glassy Eyes?

Are There Considerations For Dog Breeds With Bulging Eyes?

Are there things you should be concerned with when caring for dogs with big eyes?

Brachycephalic dogs are also susceptible to respiratory issues as a result of their shortened skulls and flattened face. This is because the upper airways are constricted and may not allow the dog to breathe as efficiently as possible. Together with their eye problems, you need to make an effort to help them clear their airways and to keep their eyeballs safe in the sockets where they belong.

Manage their weight and diet

This step helps avoid typical respiratory issues that are a result of obesity. After all, since these dogs already have a predisposition to blocked breathing, we should take care to remove all the risk factors that could contribute to this difficulty.

Avoid using collars

Sometimes, choking can happen with the use of the collar around the neck. The application may have been too tight, or the collar may get caught on a foreign object and choke the dog. Opt to use harness-style leashes instead.

Clean the skin around the eyes and folds

Use special eye drop formulas or eye wipes in order to clean the skin around the eyes. You should also observe any mucus or crust forming around the dog’s eyes. This could be a sign of infection.

For dogs with folds close to their face, take care not to ignore them during bath time. Try to clean them gently to remove any dirt trapped there, which could easily transfer to the dog’s eyes.

Maintain the hair length around the dog’s face

Sometimes, unruly hair makes its way into the dog’s eyes, occasionally even incessantly rubbing at the eyeball throughout the day. You can prevent this by scheduling your dog’s regular trimming. Keep the hair close to the eyes short and ensure there is a reasonable distance from the fur to the eye.

Read more about Dog Cloudy Eyes Suddenly; 7 Potential Causes And Related Symptoms.

dogs eye popped out


There are many considerations you need to have if you have a dog with bulging eyes. While they may be predisposed to these conditions, attentive care and immediate response to issues could help make sure your dog lives a healthy life.

While there are a lot of factors that could harm a brachycephalic dog, it’s the owner’s responsibility to ensure that the dog is cared for and comfortable if a situation occurs. Always remain calm in the face of an eye incident and ensure the dog that they are in safe hands.

Do you own a dog with big eyes? How did you manage or maintain their eyes? Let us know your stories, tips, and tricks in the comments below.

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