Doxies may be playful and energetic puppies but not in their earliest days when they can’t even see properly. When do dachshund puppies open their eyes and what does this mean for how you should take care of them? Is there a risk that they hurt themselves accidentally as they can’t see where they are going? Should you keep them away from direct sunlight or bright lamp light?
When Do Dachshund Puppies Open Their Eyes?
Any newborn dachshund will have its eyes closed for anywhere between 10 and 14 days after birth. Some late bloomers can remain with their eyes closed for as long as 21 days or 3 weeks after birth. Most of the time that’s ok, although a quick consultation with your vet on the phone is recommended if your Doxie has started approaching the 3-week mark and still hasn’t opened its eyes.
What If My Doxie’s Eyes Aren’t Open After Its Second Week?
Most of the time there shouldn’t be anything to worry about. Some dachshunds, especially the smaller pups in the litter, can develop slower than others.
However, if your pup’s eyes keep staying open after the 21st day and/or if you’re noticing something wrong with its eyelids either before or after that, there may be a physical problem that’s plaguing your puppy. The most common culprit is an eye infection some puppies pick up called Neonatal Ophthalmia or Neonatal Conjunctivitis. Put plainly, this eye infection is caused by bacteria that have infected the eye and are multiplying behind the dog’s closed eyelids.
The way you can identify such a problem is if your pup’s eyelids are not just closed but have started secreting liquid. There may also be some matting or mucus buildup over and around the eyelids, or they may be getting swollen.
If anything like that is present and/or if your puppy is being lethargic and lacks appetite, you should definitely rush to your vet as soon as possible. The condition is usually treatable but only if you catch it in time.
When Do Dachshunds Start Seeing Clearly?
Of course, even if your pup’s eyes open normally and there are no health problems to deal with, the pup is still not going to be able to see clearly for a while. This is perfectly normal too – newborn puppies will only be able to see what’s directly in front of them for the first few weeks after opening their eyes and their eyesight will gradually get better and better with the coming weeks.
How long does this process take? Well, we don’t know for certain but it’s definitely at least a few weeks. Even when completely functional, dogs’ eyes don’t distinguish details or color as well as human eyes, and it’s not like dogs can mark the day on the calendar when their eyesight stopped improving.
However, suffice it to say that a few weeks after opening its eyelids, your puppy should be able to see well enough to go about its day without a hiccup.
Should You Protect Your Puppy From Direct Sunlight and For How Long After Birth?
Indeed. Regardless of when do dachshund puppies open their eyes, you should keep direct sunlight or overly bright lamp light away from them. That’s because their eyes and the nerve endings inside of them are still underdeveloped after birth and can be damaged by bright light.
So, both in the couple of weeks before and in the couple of weeks after your pup’s eyes open up, it’s best to keep their environment only dimly lit.
In Conclusion, When Do Dachshund Puppies Open Their Eyes and What Should You Watch Out For?
Dachshunds’ eyes will take two or three weeks to open and then a few more weeks to clear out and improve to their full potential. This is quite normal and, barring any unfortunate eye infection, the whole process should be quick and uneventful.
You will need to keep direct bright light away from your pup’s eyes for about a month until its eyes are both open and well-developed, however. And, naturally, you’ll need to keep your puppy safe until both its eyes and legs work properly. Needless to say, leaving a blind puppy unsupervised on a tall table is not the best idea.
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How long after a puppy opens their eyes can they see?
Pups’ eyes may open around the 2-week period or soon after but their vision is still blurry for a while. How long, exactly? The truth is that we can’t know for certain but pups’ eyes definitely keep improving for at least a few weeks after they’ve opened. So, your puppy will still be very near-sighted at first after opening its eyes and will gradually get to see better and better with time. Keep in mind that dogs’ eyes never get as good as human eyes when it comes to distinguishing details or colors. However, they are better at seeing in the dark, or at least they get better at it after a few weeks.
Why hasn't my puppy opened his eyes?
Puppies usually start opening their eyes around the 10th to 14th day after birth, however, some pups are late bloomers. It’s fairly normal for a puppy to stay with its eyes closed for as late as the end of its third week or its 21st day. If a puppy is behaving normally, it’s eating well, it’s active, and there doesn’t seem to be anything else wrong with its eyes (liquid discharge from the eyes, mucus or matting over the eyelids, etc.), then everything is probably fine and the eyes will open on their own after a while. That being said, it is possible for a pup’s eyes to stay closed even after that which would usually indicate a health problem. If you suspect anything may be wrong, consult with your vet to make sure.
What if puppies eyes don't open?
If a puppy’s eyes just refuse to open on their own and/or there seems to be something wrong with them (discharge, matting, mucus, etc.), you should call your vet immediately. They will be able to treat your pet best and they’ll help open its eyes too. Whatever you do, however, don’t try to force open your pup’s eyes by yourself at home.