Can You Use Optrex on Dogs? Is It Safe to Use?

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Author: Jacob Kay

Redness, dryness and itchiness, everyone might have experienced some kind of eye infection and just like us, dogs too suffer from these problems. Certainly, as an immediate solution, we keep Optrex eye drops handy to get quick relief from eye discomfort. But can you implement this on your dogs? Can you use Optrex on dogs? Is it safe?

Key Takeaways

  • Optrex is a human eye drop composed to provide relief from eye discomfort like itchy eyes, redness or discharge from the eyes.
  • However, it can be used on dogs after approval from veterinarians as they are more likely to know the health and safety concerns of your dog.
  • You can use give the first doses two hours apart for 24 hours and then every 4 hours. Also, Optrex should be given for only 3-4 days. If the symptom persists consult a vet to diagnose the underlying cause.
  • Eventually, Optrex is a human eye drop, composed and tested for human use and thus, while using them for your dog, you must be careful.
optrex eye drop

Let us dive deeper and explore what Optrex is and if its safe usage is possible on dogs.

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What is Optrex?

Optrex is an infected eye drop, which contains an antibiotic called chloramphenicol. It helps to soothe itchy eyes and limits eye discharge by providing relief. It is also used to treat bacterial infections that affect the front surfaces of the eye like conjunctivitis.

Optrex eye drop instantly rehydrates and refreshes dry, tired or irritated eyes. These drops are specially conceived to help your eyes tackle the concerns of daily life such as contact lens wear, computer usage, driving and polluted atmospheres.

The compound formula contains chemicals that replenish your tears and lubricate your eyes to feel instant difference and gain relief from dryness and itchiness.

Can You Use Optrex on Dogs?

Optrex is not designed for the usage of dogs. Thus, it is not officially licensed for dogs. However, many owners and vets have experimented this eye drop to examine its effectiveness on dogs. As a good part, many owners have reported positive results from using Optrex on their pets.

can you use optrex on dogs?

On the other hand, there have been incidents of side effects from the use of Optrex. This includes irritation, itchiness and allergies, or other serious health issues if ingested, which worsen the conditions. Hence, we always recommend using Optrex after consulting your vet since your dog may be showing early symptoms of a serious disorder.[1]

Some common eye disorders in dogs are:

How to Use Optrex on Dogs?

Optrex is an eye drop officially tested and licensed for human use. But, it can also be used for your Fido to get relief from eye discomfort at an early stage. This can act as a first-aid medication for your canine. A problem with your canine’s eyes means he might be suffering from a mild to any fatal disease.[2] Hence, the first and foremost clearance is to use Optrex only if your vet consults.

Firstly, wash the eyes of your dog properly. You can splash water if your dog is comfortable or just clean the area using a moist cotton ball. You may read the instructions given on the pack and follow the dosage accordingly or else you can try vet recommended dosage.

As a thumb rule, you have to give the first doses two hours apart for 24 hours and then every 4 hours. Most importantly, you must not use it for more than 5 days.

If your dog does not get even a slight relief from the irritation and discomfort in the eyes, you should consult a veterinarian immediately. It can be something fatal and needs an expert opinion.

how to use optrex on dog?

Usually, Optrex provides comfort and soothes the eyes in 2-3 days. Thus, redness and irritation even after the usage of this eye drop can be a serious problem which your vet should diagnose and cure as soon as possible. As my personal recommendation, you should avoid using human medications for your dog, this can even worsen the infection. Only use Optrex if your vet advice to do so.


  1. Can you use human eye drops on a dog?

    It is not recommended to use over-the-counter (OTC) eye drops for humans on dogs without approval from a veterinarian. Dogs will not respond to most human eye drops well. Popular eyedrops for itchiness and redness often contain an ingredient called Tetrahydrozoline hydrochloride, which narrows blood vessels in the eye. However, some others have safe usage on dogs and thus, a vet recommendation is necessary prior to the use.

  2. What eye drops are safe for dogs?

    The only safe human eye drops for dogs are saline eye drops and artificial tears. For other antibiotic drops you should check the ingredients and ask your vet to use them for your dog. Many eye drop uses naphazoline and brimonidine which is poisonous for your pet. Both of these ingredients can cause blood pressure and heart rate to drop significantly, even if your dog was exposed to a small amount.

  3. Can I use coconut oil for my dog’s eye infection?

    The dogs’ eyes and ears are the parts of the body that are most prone to infection. Luckily, coconut oil can help here too. If your dog is having an itchy infection of the ear or eye, you can apply coconut oil to the affected area to help ease the inflammation and clear out the infection.

Wrapping Up

It is difficult to clear up whether your dog can use Optrex because it depends on your dog. No dog is similar and hence its eye infection. Thus, it is a good idea to ask your vet for the use of Optrex and he/she may recommend it as per the health and body condition of your dog.

You can also try using the eye drops for 3-4 days and then consult a vet if you don’t get a positive result. Make sure you are around your pet to look for any side-effect arising from the use of human eye drops. The closing warning is: as a human product Optrex should be used with caution.


  1. Pet Eye Health. (n.d.). The College of Veterinary Medicine at Michigan State University.
  2. Fassbaugh, E. A., DVM. (2022). Dog eye problems. PetMD.
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Jacob Kay
Jacob Kay is a Veterinary Advisor and Editor at WWD. He’s also a dog lover and has two pet dogs of his own. He has extensive knowledge in the field of veterinary medicine and is always happy to share his insights with others.

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