Conditions or ailments that are the cause of a problem that you see - your observation.

Your vet may diagnose

Eyelid Inflammation, Generally

Synonyms: Blepharodermatitis, Blepharoconjunctivitis, Blepharitis


Excessive exposure to the sun, allergies and infections can all inflame the eyelids.

Sunburn is common in horses that lack pigmentation in the skin around their eyes. Insect irritation contributes to this condition during the summer months. Typically, the affected eyelids peels and ooze. Tears and pus-like discharge tend to make the problem worse, and bacterial infection often compounds the problem.

Affected horses often rub their eyes and may cause trauma and ulceration to the eye itself.

Treatment of the eye with various steroids and antibiotic ophthalmic preparations as directed by your vet helps manage inflammation and bacterial infection. Tattooing of pink eyelids may be helpful.

my vet's role


In climates with high UV exposure, horses with pink skin around their eyes must often be managed for life. The affected eyelids are predisposed to squamous cell carcinoma cancer.

further reading & resources

Author: Doug Thal DVM Dipl. ABVP