Small dogs look adorable in sun glasses and you can get glasses to match their jackets, raincoats, booties etc. in a variety of styles and colors. But sunglasses are not just a fashion statement, they actually protect your dog’s eyes. Veterinarians often recommend sunglasses for dogs, citing both UV protection and element protection as logical reasons sunglasses should be a part of your pet’s health-care kit.
There are several reasons to get sunglasses for your small dog:
We may think dogs are tough, but their eyes can be injured just as easily as ours if a bug hits them in their eye. If you’ve ever had a bug hit you in they eye the, you know how it feels. Doggie sunglasses can give dogs protection from flying insects when they are riding in a car or outside, especially on a windy day.
2. DIRT AND DEBRIS
Sunglasses are a great way to eliminate debris getting in the dogs’ eyes when they are running, hanging out the window, or playing outdoors. Having something like a small rock strike the soft tissue of the eye at fast speeds could be catastrophic — for a human or a dog! Even hiking can pose a danger to dogs running through thick brush and encountering low hanging branches.
3. UV PROTECTION
The glare of the sun is another consideration. The sun’s ultraviolet rays can damage a dog’s eyes, and if your pooch spends a lot of time outside, sunglasses can help give him protection from the sun. Even in the winter, the glare of the sun off of the snow can cause snow blindness in dogs and humans. Many of the glasses give dogs 100 percent UV protection from the sun’s harmful rays.
4. EYE CONDITIONS OR DISEASES
Many chronic eye conditions make it imperative to avoid direct sunlight. Just as in humans, pink eye (conjunctivitis) can also be a problem with dogs. Dog breeds that are inclined to have eye problems, such as shepherds or pugs, may benefit greatly by wearing sunglasses for protection from the sun.
Some chronic eye diseases and conditions, like Dry Eye or cataracts, can make being outside painful for dogs with eye problems.
Glasses are sometimes recommended by vets for dogs that have chronic superficial keratitis, also known as pannus, a disease of the cornea. Vets say that dogs can get pannus because of immune related issues. So dogs can benefit from the reduction of UV rays.
You can even get eye glasses that correct the eyesight of dogs with eye problems!
If you do decide that your dog could use their own pair of sunglasses, the original and biggest name on the market is Doggles. These dog-specific sunglasses offer UV protection, anti-fog, and shatterproof lenses, with a snug fit. They are available in 5 sizes and come in almost every color in the rainbow. They are reasonably priced at $25.00.
Another style option comes from www.doggieshades.com, offering glasses for about $15.00 a pair.
How To Fit Your Dog For Sunglasses
Sunglasses specially made for dogs work best because they’re designed to fit the head and around the eyes of dogs better than people glasses, and have straps to help keep the glasses on.
A small dog will not wear the same glasses as a much larger breed of dog, and for owners to ensure the right fit, they should measure the dog before purchasing the sunglasses.
To measure a dog to figure out what size sunglasses are needed will take a bit of skill.
- For the back strap and frame length, measure the circumference of the pooches’ head, over the eye, and underneath the ears.
- The chin strap is measured under one ear, underneath the chin, and up to the bottom side of the other ear.
The glasses need to be sturdy and comfortable when worn and not easily breakable or prone to falling off.
Training your dog to wear the dog goggles or sunglasses can be accomplished in a small amount of time if you follow these easy steps:
- Don’t put the goggles on your dog while indoors. Imagine yourself wearing dark tinted glasses inside. You cannot see, and neither can your dog.
- When you first put the goggles on your dog, don’t let him paw at the glasses or roll to get them off. Reassure him that its okay. Take him immediately to bright sunlight and let him realize that he can see with them on. Walk around, get his mind off the goggles.
- Try to go through this routine as often as possible. The number of training sessions required depends on your dog.
For a small price — around 15-25 bucks — your four-legged friend can look trendy, and you can have the satisfaction of knowing his eyes are protected.