State College Veterinary Hospital

1700 W. College Avenue
State College, PA 16801-2719



How to Administer Eye Medications


Safety Tips


  • Clean the eyes of any discharge or debris before applying medications.
  • Keep hair around the eyes trimmed (excessive hair can collect ocular discharge and traumatize the corneas).   
  • Don't use scissors!  If you need help, ask your veterinarian or groomer to clip the hair for you.


Applying Eye Medications

  • Hold the bottle or tube between your thumb and index finger. Steady the heel of your hand against your pet’s forehead to prevent the tip of the bottle or tube front touching the eye. Use the third finger of either hand to lift the upper eyelid.
  • Instill a ribbon of ointment or a drop or two of solution onto the eye. Release the eyelid.
  • If you need to give your pet more than one eye medication, wait a minute between applications. Because solutions can’t penetrate through the film of an ointment, administer solutions first.
  • Solutions may enter the duct which connects the eye to the nose, and drip from the end of the pet’s  nose. Some bitter medications may cause salivation. You should not be concerned if either occurs.
  • Your pet may require an Elizabethan collar, which will prevent the pawing and rubbing of eyes after medications are applied.


Copyright Fall 2008 Merial