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Common French Bulldog Eye Problems (EXPLAINED)

As much as we love these adorable little dogs with their unique personalities, it’s important to recognize and understand the potential health issues that can arise with their eyes.

French Bulldogs are known to be predisposed to certain eye conditions due to their facial structure, including their large, round eyes and short snouts.

This article will cover everything you need to know about French Bulldog eye problems. It will include information on common conditions, symptoms to look out for, treatment options, and preventative measures you can take to keep your furry friend’s eyes healthy and happy.

Whether you’re a new French Bulldog owner or a long-time enthusiast, this guide will provide the information you need to keep your pet’s eyes in top shape.

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Common French Bulldog Eyes Problems

  1. Cherry eye
  2. Dry eye
  3. Entropion
  4. Corneal ulcers
  5. Conjunctivitis
  6. Cataracts
  7. Eye Infections

Cherry Eye 

Cherry eye is a condition where the gland that produces tears in the dog’s eye, known as the third eyelid gland, becomes swollen and protrudes from the inner corner of the eye.

The gland becomes a red, fleshy mass that begins to protrude from the dog’s eye, which can be very uncomfortable and may even cause the dog to scratch at its eye.

Normally, the third eyelid gland is attached to the lower rim of the eye. Certain breeds, like French Bulldogs, have a weak attachment, which causes the gland to prolapse.

Signs of Cherry Eye infection include:

  • Pawing or rubbing at the eye
  • A bulge at the corner of the eye (also called a “cherry pit”)
  • Eyes unable to close
  • Excessive tearing
  • Discharge from the eye
  • Impaired vision

It is important to treat the cherry eye as soon as possible because, when left untreated, cherry eye can lead to various other problems, including vision loss.

Treatment consists of surgically replacing the third eyelid gland. Typically the outcome of surgery is quite good, with everything returning to normal within just a few weeks of surgery. 

Dry Eye 

Dry eyes, also known as keratoconjunctivitis sicca (KCS), is a condition that occurs when a dog’s tear glands do not produce enough tears to keep its eyes lubricated.

This can lead to significant discomfort, irritation, and even vision problems if left untreated.

French Bulldogs are prone to dry eyes due to their brachycephalic (short-muzzled) facial structure, which can cause their eyes to be more exposed to air and dust.

Sign your Frenchie has dry eyes include:

  • Excessive blinking or squinting
  • Redness and inflammation around the eyes
  • Watery discharge or mucus in the corners of the eyes
  • Eye irritation or discomfort
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Changes in the color of the cornea
  • Corneal ulcers or infections in severe cases

Dry eyes in French Bulldogs require veterinary treatment. The vet may prescribe artificial tears or other medications to help lubricate the eyes and reduce inflammation. 

It’s important to note that prevention is the best way to avoid dry eyes in French Bulldogs. Regular grooming, including cleaning around the eyes, can help prevent debris and dirt from irritating the eyes. 


One common health issue that French Bulldogs can experience is entropion, a condition in which the eyelid folds inward, causing the eyelashes to rub against the eyeball.

This can lead to irritation, inflammation, and even damage to the cornea if left untreated.

Entropion can be a hereditary condition in some dog breeds, including French Bulldogs, and can also be caused by trauma, scarring, or infection.

Symptoms of entropion in French Bulldogs may include:

  • Excessive tearing
  • Squinting
  • Rubbing the eyes
  • Eyelids rolled inwards
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Bloodshot eyes

Treatment for entropion in French Bulldogs typically involves surgery to correct the eyelid position and prevent the eyelashes from rubbing against the eye.

After the surgery, the French Bulldog may need to wear an Elizabethan collar or other protective device to prevent them from rubbing or scratching their eyes during the healing process.

It is important to promptly address entropion in French Bulldogs, as untreated entropion can lead to more serious eye problems, including corneal ulcers and blindness.

Regular eye exams with a veterinarian can help to detect and treat entropion and other eye conditions early before they cause more serious health problems for your French Bulldog.

Corneal Ulcers

Corneal ulcers are open sores that develop on the clear outer layer of the eye, called the cornea.

This can happen as a result of injury or trauma to the eye, as well as infections or underlying health conditions.

Signs of corneal ulcers in French Bulldogs may include:

  • Redness and swelling of the eye
  • Excessive tearing or discharge
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Excessive blinking and squinting
  • White spot or ulcer on the cornea

If left untreated, corneal ulcers can cause permanent damage to the eye and even lead to vision loss.

If you suspect your French Bulldog has a corneal ulcer, it’s important to take them to a veterinarian for an evaluation and treatment.

Depending on the severity of the ulcer, treatment may include topical or oral antibiotics, pain relief medication, and in some cases, surgery to repair or replace the damaged cornea.

To prevent corneal ulcers in French Bulldogs, it is essential to take certain measures, such as:

  • Keeping their eyes clean and free from debris
  • Protecting them from potential hazards such as sharp objects or chemicals
  • Seeking prompt veterinary care if any eye injuries or infections are suspected

By following these simple steps, you can significantly reduce the risk of your French Bulldog developing corneal ulcers and help them maintain healthy eyesight.


One common health issue that can affect French Bulldogs, as well as other dog breeds, is conjunctivitis.

Conjunctivitis is an inflammation of the conjunctiva, the clear membrane that lines the eyelids and covers the white part of the eye.

Symptoms of conjunctivitis in French Bulldogs can include:

  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Discharge
  • Irritation of the eye.

A number of factors, including allergies, viral or bacterial infections, and environmental irritants, can cause the condition.

Treatment for conjunctivitis in French Bulldogs typically involves cleaning the affected eye with a saline solution and administering eye drops or ointments to reduce inflammation and combat infection. 

It’s important to seek veterinary care promptly if you suspect your French Bulldog has conjunctivitis, as the condition can lead to more serious eye problems if left untreated.

In addition to treating the symptoms of conjunctivitis, it’s important to identify and address any underlying causes that may be contributing to the condition.

This may involve changes to your French Bulldog’s diet, environment, or lifestyle, as well as additional medical interventions if necessary.


Cataracts are a common eye condition that can affect dogs of all breeds, including French Bulldogs.

This eye condition occurs when the lens of the eye becomes cloudy, leading to impaired vision or even blindness.

There are several different types of cataracts, including:

  • Genetic cataracts: These are inherited and can occur in young dogs.
  • Acquired cataracts: These can develop due to age, injury, or other factors.

In French Bulldogs, genetic cataracts can be a concern, and responsible breeders will screen their breeding stock for the presence of cataracts before breeding.

Regular eye exams with a veterinary ophthalmologist can also help detect cataracts early on, which can improve the chances of successful treatment.

If a French Bulldog has cataracts, the treatment may involve surgery to remove and replace the affected lens with an artificial lens.

In some cases, medication or other non-surgical treatments may also be used to manage the condition.

It’s important to work closely with a veterinarian or veterinary ophthalmologist to determine the best course of treatment for an individual dog with cataracts.

Eye Infections 

French Bulldogs are susceptible to various eye infections. These infections can cause discomfort, irritation, and even vision loss in the affected dog.

The most common eye infections in French Bulldogs include conjunctivitis, keratitis, and uveitis. 

  • Conjunctivitis (pink eye) is an inflammation of the conjunctiva, the mucus membrane covering the front of the eye, that can be caused by various factors and can result in redness, discharge, and itchiness. 
  • Keratitis is an inflammation of the cornea that can be caused by injury, infection, or other underlying health conditions and can result in cloudiness, redness, and discharge. 
  • Uveitis is an inflammation of the uvea, the pigmented layer of the eye that includes the iris, ciliary body, and choroid.

Treatments for these infections usually include anti-inflammatories and antibiotics. 

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Preventing Eye Problems in Your French Bulldog

Regular checkups with a veterinarian who specializes in French Bulldogs can help identify and treat any eye problems early on.

Additionally, keeping your dog’s eyes clean and dry can help prevent infections, and avoiding exposure to irritants such as dust and smoke can also help prevent eye issues. 

Additionally, aim to provide a healthy and balanced diet for your Frenchie, as good nutrition can help maintain overall eye health.

If you notice any signs of eye problems, such as redness or discharge, it’s important to take your French Bulldog to a vet as soon as possible. 

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Wrap-Up: French Bulldog Eye Problems 

French Bulldogs are dogs that are adored all over the world. They are known for their charming personalities and distinctive physical features.

Unfortunately, these features, such as their large eyes and short snouts, can also make them prone to various eye problems.

It is important for owners of French Bulldogs to be aware of these potential issues and to take steps to prevent and treat them.

Regular veterinary checkups, good hygiene practices, and careful breeding can all help to ensure the health and well-being of these special dogs.

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Lisemaine is a dog lover. She currently owns two Frenchies and enjoys working with and training them. She'll share her best tips with you to keep your Frenchie happy, healthy, and active.

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