Swelling under a Dog Eye: Holly’s Strange Bump

What do you think is the most common cause of facial swelling in dogs? What if it is asymmetrical in the form of a bump?

If you suspect an insect sting, spider, or a snake bite, you could be right; such things do happen. Speed of onset might help narrow things down. A swelling for one of these reasons may or may not be an emergency.

What if the swelling creeps up and doesn’t go away?

Swelling under a Dog Eye: Holly's Strange Bump

Holly’s story

Holly is a Jack Russel Terrier, which makes her an energetic busybody despite her age. I would be no surprise if she sustained a sting, bite, or a wound during her activities.

The first thing Holly’s mom noticed was a small, swollen blemish on Holly’s right cheek. The bump was dome-shaped, smooth, red, and about the size of a pea.

Because Holly is an older dog, her mom suspected a tumor. Worried, she made a veterinary appointment.

At the veterinarian

The veterinarian examined Holly and suspected a more common and less scary cause—a tooth abscess.

The most common possibility, however, doesn’t mean the only possibility.

What if it was a superficial infection? A course of antibiotics could resolve the problem. Such a therapeutic trial made sense before taking more complicated steps.

Therapeutic trial

As Holly started taking her antibiotics, her swelling was reducing in size until it was barely visible. That was a good news but a tooth abscess couldn’t be ruled out yet. A tooth root abscess too would respond to the treatment.

The difference is that if a superficial infection was to blame, it would go away for good. A problematic tooth would abscess again and the swelling would return.

The swelling returns

Unfortunately, that’s exactly what happened—after Holly finished her treatment, the swelling started gradually grow again, angrier than before.

The veterinarian scheduled Holly for dental work.

The evening before the appointment, Holly’s lump burst spilling puss. That all but confirmed the diagnosis.

Dental work

Holly went in for full work-up. Dental x-rays confirmed the suspicion—tooth root abscess.

Holly had to have the affected tooth removed. With the tooth gone, the swelling disappeared as well. Along with the pain it must have been causing her. Bad teeth are just as painful for your dog as they are for you.

Source story:
Holly the Jack Russell Terrier Had a Strange Swelling under Her Eye

Related articles:
Facial Swelling in Dogs: Why Is My Dog’s Face Swollen?
Swelling (Edema) in Dogs

Further reading:
Facial Swelling in Dogs: Causes and Treatments

Categories: ConditionsDental diseaseDog health advocacyFacial swellingReal-life StoriesSwellingSymptoms

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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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