Eyelid Growth in a Dog: What Was the Growth on Ted’s Eyelid?

Meibomian cysts are one of the most common growths that can develop on your dog’s eyelid. They are benign and require no intervention as long as they don’t irritate the eye.

Eyelid Growth in a Dog: What Was the Growth on Ted's Eyelid?

Ted’s story

Ted was a senior Beagle. He started showing early signs of aging, including developing bumps on his body. Having all lumps and bumps checked is important at any age.

One of Ted’s growths developed on his muzzle and it looked like a small skin tag. The other, however, started growing on Ted’s eyelid. At first, it wasn’t anything more than a little mark. However, it continued to grow. Given the location, even benign growth can become a problem when they start rubbing against the eye, which this one did. This was causing irritation to his eye, resulting in Ted rubbing his face against surfaces. It was time to do something.

At the veterinarian

The veterinarian examined the growth to determine whether he ought to remove it. It became apparent that the affected eye was irritated and sore. An irritated eye is a breeding ground for bacteria, adding to the problem—Ted’s eye developed conjunctivitis. No wonder he was fussing with his eye.

Further information: Conjunctivitis in Dogs

Eye drops can address conjunctivitis but it was clear that the growth had to go.

Identifying the growth

Skin tags are raised bumps with the appearance of normal skin. However, the growth on Ted’s eyelid had an irregular shape and it has ulcerated and oozed bloody discharge. The veterinarian suspected it was a meibomian cyst.

Meibomian cysts can develop at the sebum-producing glands at the edge of the eyelids. This sebum is part of tears and is there to prevent them from drying too quickly. These cysts are benign but can cause trouble. If Ted’s cyst wasn’t irritating the eye, it wouldn’t need removal. However, this trouble-maker had to go.

Ted’s treatment

A family veterinarian can remove a small meibomian cyst but when they become large, it might require a specialist.

After removal, it is a good idea to have a lab analyze the tissue to confirm it is indeed a meibomian cyst. While these cysts are common, there are malignant tumors that can look similar.

Source story:
Ted the 10-year-old Beagle

Related articles:
What Is That Bump on My Dog: Canine Lumps, Bumps, and Growths
Melanocytoma in a Dog: Cookie’s Eyelid Bump that Was Not a Cyst

Further reading:
Meibomian Gland (Eyelid) Tumors in Dogs


Categories: Dog health advocacy

Jana Rade

I am a graphic designer, dog health advocate, writer, and author. Jasmine, the Rottweiler of my life, was the largest female from her litter. We thought we were getting a healthy dog. Getting a puppy from a backyard breeder was our first mistake. Countless veterinary visits without a diagnosis or useful treatment later, I realized that I had to take Jasmine's health care in my own hands. I learned the hard way that merely seeing a vet is not always enough. There is more to finding a good vet than finding the closest clinic down the street. And, sadly, there is more to advocating for your dog's health than visiting a veterinarian. It should be enough, but it often is not. With Jasmine, it took five years to get a diagnosis. Unfortunately, other problems had snowballed for that in the meantime. Jasmine's health challenges became a crash course in understanding dog health issues and how to go about getting a proper diagnosis and treatment. I had to learn, and I had to learn fast. Helping others through my challenges and experience has become my mission and Jasmine's legacy. I now try to help people how to recognize and understand signs of illness in their dogs, how to work with their veterinarian, and when to seek a second opinion. My goal is to save others the steep curve of having to learn things the hard way as I did. That is the mission behind my blog and behind my writing. That is why I wrote Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog, which has turned out being an award-winning guide to dog owners. What I'm trying to share encompasses 20 years of experience.

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