Pug eyes pop out

Can Pug Eyes Pop Out? Really??!!

Can Pug Eyes Pop Out? Really??!!

Pugs are pretty and small creatures. Many conditions affect the overall wellbeing of your Pug. For example, many Pug owners ask about Eye proptosis and other related things. For instance,

Can Pug eyes pop out?

What are the common causes of Pug eye proptosis?

How common is the frequency that Pug eyes pop out?  

How can you prevent Pug eye proptosis?

Is there any need for surgical intervention if your Pug eye pops out?

This article will discuss “Can Pug eyes pop out?” It will also include related facts of scientific literature and general field experience.

What is Pug Eye Proptosis?

Pug eye proptosis is also termed “ocular proptosis.” Ocular proptosis occurs in many dogs’ breeds for many reasons. It is the forward displacement of the eyeball out of the eye socket. This looks so dangerous and is a severe condition in Pugs.

This is a medical emergency, and you should immediately seek veterinary assistance. It is necessary to prevent further eye damage or discomfort to your beloved Pug.

What are the Important Causes of Pug Eye Protosis?

Happy Pug 3 verticle

There are a number of causes that promote Pug eyes to pop out.  Here we have summarized a few important key reasons.

Blunt force trauma: 

Occular proptosis can occur in Pugs due to blunt force trauma. For example, your Pug is hit by a ball or car. 

Dog fight: 

This can also occur due to any trauma induced by the dog fight. 

Excessive pressure around the eyelid:

This is one of the significant causes of Pug eye proptosis. In addition, excessive pressure around the eyelid or scruffing may lead to popping out of your Pug eye. 

Brachycephalic Dog breeds:

Although this condition usually occurs due to any trauma or pressure, it is more common in brachycephalic dog breeds. This includes Pug dogs.

Those dogs that have bulging eyes and shallow eye sockets. A minor trauma/pressure may even lead to eye proptosis in these breeds. Example: Pug, Shih Tzu, and Lhasa Apso dogs.

Excessive scratching:

When your Pug is scratching, he could pull his skin too hard around the face.

Wearing a Collar:

Because Pugs have shallow eye sockets, you must use a Pug harness instead of a collar. Not only is a collar bad for your Pug’s trachea, but it can also cause pressure that may result in your Pug’s eye popping out.

dog pug white background leash 112628 53

What are the Symptoms of Pug Eye Proptosis?

Pug eye proptosis is easy to observe. You will see the following things if your beloved Pug has got proptosis.

  1. Popped eyeball out of the eye socket. 
  2. Inflamed conjunctiva (Eye membrane).
  3. Opened eyelids. They are unable to close over the proptosed globe.
  4. The leathery and dry appearance of the cornea and eye membrane (Conjunctiva).
  5. Bloody eye. 
  6. The cloudy cornea can also be clearly seen.
  7. Constricted pupils can also be seen.

Note: The eye’s cornea can even rupture if you don’t give your Pug immediate veterinary care.

How Common is it that Pug Eyes Pop out?

Many of you must have observed Pugs with only one eye. This condition can occur in Pugs at any time in their life. Yet, other dogs can also get eye proptosis, but Pug dogs mostly get affected by this condition. 

The scientific literature states that Pug eyes pop out more frequently in old Pugs as compared to young ones. However, keep in mind that Pug eyes can pop out, can occur in young Pugs too, and may not happen in older ones. 

It is also the fact that the older dogs have loose muscles, which make them prone to get eye proptosis.

How Can You Prevent Your Pug Eye’s Popping Out?

Different ways can help you to prevent the incidence of Pug eye proptosis. Here we are going to discuss some essential ways in detail.

No smoking

As you know, smoking is harmful to health. If you do smoking around your Pug, it will irritate his eyes. This irritation may lead to eye proptosis. Being a responsible owner, you should avoid smoking around your Pug.

Eye cleaning

This is important to clean the eyes of Pugs at least once a day. There is so many commercially available eye cleaners. Take advice from your vet about which one is best for your Pug.

Use of harness 

It is not recommended to use traditional dog collars. If you are going for a walk with your dog, use a harness. The collar increases the chances of popping the Pug’s eye out. This increases the pressure on the neck and facial muscles, resulting in eye proptosis.

Avoid woods visits 

It is better not to visit the woods with your Pug buddy. Your Pug can be easily hit by any stick or sharp object in the woods that may result in ocular proptosis. 

Veterinary clinic visits

This is highly recommended that you should visit the pet clinic as per your schedule. Get the general medical checkup of your Pug from an expert. In case your pretty Pug has eye infections, talk to your vet immediately. Remember, untreated eye infections may lead to your Pug’s eye popping out.

Keep an eye on your Pug

Being a responsible owner, this is your duty to keep an eye on your Pug. For example, if your Pug is excessively scratching his eyes or face, you must stop him from doing that. Also, try to keep your Pug away from sharp objects, irritating chemicals (Household disinfectants, medications, etc.).

How Can Pug Eye Proptosis Be Treated?

Vet 1

As discussed earlier, this is an eye emergency. Seek medical attention immediately to prevent further complications in your beloved Pug. You can cover the proptosed eye with wet gauze (preferably of normal saline). Don’t remove the gauze yourself. 


Your vet can go for the surgical intervention if the eyeball is not damaged. The primary purpose of surgery is to replace the eyeball and prevent further damage to the eye. This is also important to note that eye proptosis can also damage the optic nerve. This may cause permanent blindness.

Your vet will determine the line of treatment according to the condition of your Pug. For example:

The extent of nerve damage

Evaluation of optic nerve damage

Check if the eye is salvageable or not.

Note: If the eye is salvageable, your Pug will undergo the surgical procedure. This is called repositioning the eyeball. If not, then the enucleation will be performed. 

Enucleation – This surgical procedure refers to the removal of the eyeball.


These are a few complications that may occur after the surgical procedure. However, the chances of these complications are not too high. Better post-surgical care can prevent the incidence of these complications.

  • Blindness 
  • Glaucoma 
  • Corneal ulceration 
  • Keratitis 

Pain Killers

When a Pug eyes pops out, it is a painful medical condition. It causes severe irritation and a painful sensation in your dog. Your vet can give pain killers to reduce the severity of pain in your beloved Pug friend.


Your vet can prescribe antibiotics and topical medications to prevent other bacterial infections. Infection can worsen the situation to a greater extent. 

Other medications include NSAID (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs). This is given to reduce inflammatory complications.

Diagnostic Tools

Pug with cone

Your vet may take a skull and chest X-ray to figure out the internal condition. Then, your vet may recommend a complete blood count and other hematological parameters.

Your vet will perform a thorough ophthalmic examination of your beloved Pug friend.

Precaution: Don’t use any medication without the prescription of a registered veterinary practitioner.


Eye proptosis is an emergency medical condition in Pug dogs. The brachycephalic dog breeds are more susceptible to this condition. This is because they have a flat and wide skull and protruding eyes. 

Several causes are considered responsible for Pug eyes popping out, otherwise known as proptosis. These include trauma, excessive pressure on the skin around the eyes, or a furious dog fight. If you observe this condition in your dog, seek veterinary attention immediately. You will know this is an emergency if this happens to your Pug. 

Your vet will suggest a treatment regime according to the extent of the damage. Hopefully, there won’t be significant damage to the eyeball. However, if there is, she may need to remove the eyeball. This procedure is known as enucleation. 

It is your responsibility to take care of your beloved Pug after the surgical procedure. You must follow the post-operative care instructions by your vet. The prognosis of this condition is poor to fair.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need to get insurance for my Pug?

Yes, the treatment cost of eye proptosis can be very high (according to the current situation of your Pug). Generally, it may exceed $1000. Therefore, this is better to get the health of insurance of Pug.

Can I use baby wipes to clean my Pug’s eye?

Yes, you can clean your Pug’s eyes with unscented baby wipes. In addition, you can also use sterile eye cleaning pads. 

Note: Baby wipes are not a good option. Make sure the wipes you use are free from chemicals, fragrances, etc. These things can irritate your Pug eyes.

My Pug has cloudy and red eyes, is there something wrong?

If you report cloudiness and redness in your Pug eyes, talk to your vet and immediately get the solution. 

Are older Pugs at higher risk of getting proptosis?

This is not a fact at all. However, Pug dogs of any age can get eye proptosis. Over and above, as the Pug dog gets older, the skin around the eyes becomes lax. This increases the chances of Pug eyes popping out in more senior Pugs.

How dog collars lead to Pug eye proptosis?

Pug eyes can pop out if your Pug is straining against his collar. The pressure that leads to popping out of Pug’s eyeball. This is why it is recommended that you should use a harness instead of a dog collar. This will prevent the risk of eye proptosis in Pugs.

Why must you keep the wet gauze onto the proptosed eye?

The proptosed eye is more prone to get dried. Therefore, it is recommended that you keep a wet gauze soaked in physiological saline on the proptosed Pug eye to prevent irritation and dryness.

Can eye proptosis cause permanent blindness in Pugs?

Yes, eye proptosis can lead to permanent blindness in Pug dogs. This is due to damage to the optic nerve and other related structures.

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