Vaseline For Dog Eye Boogers: Is it Safe to Use?

Vaseline is a product that you are bound to find in every household. Its moisturizing properties have made it an essential product in skin care routines.

It can moisturize your skin after a shower, remove makeup, hydrate your nails, and heal minor skin scrapes and burns. In addition, it can make your perfume stay on longer and add shine to your hair ends. Vaseline can also help prevent diaper rash in babies.

Vaseline For Dog Eye Boogers Is it Safe to Use
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Now, those are a lot of uses and advantages. So, it is understandable for you to wonder if this beneficial product can be used on your furry friend as well. More specifically, can you use Vaseline for dog eye boogers?

The article will look at Vaseline, whether it is safe to use on dogs, eye boogers, how to clean them, and when they become a problem.

What is Vaseline Made From?

Vaseline, originally called ‘Wonder Jelly,’ has been around for over 160 years. It is basically petroleum jelly, a mix of natural minerals, oils, and waxes. It has a gooey jelly-like consistency.

The brand has become synonymous with petroleum jelly so much that in many countries, Vaseline is the generic term used for petroleum jelly. In addition, several products like lotions and cream are now manufactured under the Vaseline brand umbrella.

Today, we will focus on the original Vaseline jelly made from 100% triple-purified petroleum jelly. This ingredient helps the skin by sealing it under a water-protective barrier. As a result, the skin retains moisture and can heal well from minor burns and scrapes.

Is Vaseline Safe to Use on Dogs?

Is Vaseline Safe to Use on Dogs
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Yes, but to a limited extent and to certain areas where its tongue cannot reach. Vaseline is not a toxic product for dogs. But, it also cannot be safely lathered on dogs.

Vaseline may help with skin issues, but the dog does not realize the product is not to be eaten.

Licking is a common concern for any topical or cream used on the dog’s skin. The dog may not exhibit any symptoms if a small amount is ingested. But, if the dog ingests enough, it can have stomach upset, vomiting, or diarrhea.

So, the trick with Vaseline is to use it cautiously on dogs. For example, use it for areas where the dog cannot easily lick, like around the eyes.

When applying to paws, use a small quantity. Ideally, apply it once the dog has walked, you have cleaned its paws, and it is time to rest. This way, there is limited movement and fewer chances of the product being licked off.

If the dog’s skin is irritated, it has an infection or allergy; you may notice other symptoms like:

  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Scabs
  • Bleeding

In such cases, it is best not to rely on Vaseline and consult the vet for a proper diagnosis and treatment.

Why Do Dogs Get Eye Boogers?

Why Do Dogs Get Eye Boogers
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Goopy eyes and boogers are a common concern in the canine world.

It is normal for the dog to have eye boogers in the morning after it wakes up. As long as the quantity of the booger remains consistent and the dog does not have any discharge during the day, it is not a cause for concern.

The tears produced by the tear glands are necessary to keep the pet’s eyes healthy, clean, and hydrated. These tears will drain from the ducts at the inner corner of the eyes.

Due to the accumulation of debris in the inner corner of the eyes or the eye lining, the dog can have boogers or goop. This is normal.

What is not normal is dogs having discharge around their eyes throughout the day. If the discharge has a certain color or consistency, please contact the vet rather than relying on home remedies.

What Can Eye Boogers Mean?

Making a note of discharge type from the eye can help the vet determine the cause of the condition.

For example, if the dog has a clear, watery eye discharge, it could indicate an allergy. Pollen or dust can get inside the dog’s eyes and cause irritation.

If the pet has keratoconjunctivitis sicca (KCS), it can have a white discharge. In this condition, the tear ducts do not function like they normally do. So the eyes can dry out and not be cleaned properly. This can lead to white discharge that may stick in and around the eyes.

If you see the dog’s eye boogers turning green or yellow, it could be a symptom of a bacterial infection and will need vet care.

Can You Use Vaseline for Dog Eye Boogers?

Can You Use Vaseline for Dog Eye Boogers
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Yes. Ideally, you should not need Vaseline to clean dog eye boogers. In the morning, your dog can have a small amount of goop which can be cleaned using cotton balls and a dog-safe solution.

If the situation has gotten so bad that the dog’s eyes are shut, and you need Vaseline to moisten the goop, then the vet must investigate the cause. However, if your dog’s eyes are healthy, there is no need to use petroleum jelly.

If the dog has dry skin around the eyes, you may apply a minimal quantity of Vaseline. It can be difficult for dogs to lick their own eyes, so it removes the concern of ingestion. You could also have an e-collar to prevent any rubbing or scratching of the eye area.

Vaseline is a home remedy commonly used for a dog’s paws or nose. When used appropriately, it may provide relief to your dog. But using Vaseline every day for dog eye boogers is not recommended.

What Can You Use for Dog Eye Boogers?

If the dog greets you in the morning with boogers in its eyes, you can clean it off using a saline solution. The solution can be the usual contact lens solution or dog-safe eye washes.

Use a cotton ball and damp it with the solution. Next, place the cotton on the dog’s eyes for a few seconds. Then, gently wipe the booger using the same cotton ball. If the booger has crusted and the dog cannot open its eyes properly, you must repeat the procedure a few times.

Avoid using your bare fingers or cotton swabs. The eye is a sensitive area, and you should be careful during cleanup. You might think a cotton swab can provide precision, but there is the risk of accidentally poking the dog in the eye. And if your fingers are not clean, it may lead to an infection that could be easily avoided.

How Else Can You Use Vaseline on Dogs?

Vaseline for dog eye boogers may not be a wise choice. But, if you want to include it in the dog’s routine, here are some ways you could do so.

1. Paws

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A dog’s paws are what provide it with stability and balance. It is how they make sense of the ground they are on, accordingly apply pressure and then walk. The paws also act as shock absorbers, protecting the bones and tendons in the legs.

The paws are tough, but they have their share of wear and tear. In addition, as the season changes, they can become dehydrated or cracked.

You can use Vaseline to hydrate the dog’s paws and provide it some relief. It can also act as a good barrier during winters when the dog is out in the snow. It prevents snow and salt from getting stuck between the paws.

Clean the dog’s paws and then apply a small amount of Vaseline. Massage the paw to ensure the product is absorbed. Do not let the pet instantly lick its paws. 

2. Nose

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As a dog parent, you know your pet’s nose is its window to the world. So it will try to smell anything and everything it can get its nose on.

A dry nose could result from prolonged exposure to the sun, cold, or wind. For example, if the dog spends too much time in the snow, playing on the beach, or sitting in front of a heater, it can lead to a dry nose.

According to AKC, some other causes of the dry nose include dehydration due to strenuous exercise, old age, allergies, and auto-immune disease.

The vet can provide the correct treatment plan if the reason is allergies, infections, or any other health condition.

If the reason is seasonal changes, dehydration, or old age, you may apply a small amount of Vaseline to moisturize the area. Dogs with short snouts like Bulldogs, Boston Terriers, and Pugs often have dry noses. They have difficulty licking their noses; thus, you must use a moisturizer to keep the nose moist.

3. Skin

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Dry skin could result from seasonal changes, environmental irritants, allergies, parasites, and infections. Some dog breeds, like the hairless ones, are prone to having dry skin. In addition, practices like excessive bathing or using the wrong bath products can strip the pet’s skin of natural oils and cause dryness.

Vaseline may be used to hydrate your dog’s skin. Massage it well into the skin. Please do not leave a clump of it anywhere on the dog’s body.

If the skin’s condition does not improve or you notice additional symptoms like bleeding or pus, please get in touch with the vet. If your dog is prone to dry skin, there are better moisturizing alternatives that can be safely used regularly.

Are There Any Risks of Using Vaseline on Dogs?

As mentioned above, Vaseline is not toxic for canines but is not 100% safe either. It is a mix of natural oils and waxes and has no place inside your dog’s stomach. So when you apply the product, make sure to use a small quantity and massage it well into the skin. 

If the dog licks at the Vaseline-covered area, it will probably be fine, considering there was not much product to be licked. But if you leave a chunk of Vaseline on its skin, ingestion can cause health issues.

For puppies, this could be worse. Consuming Vaseline can cause vomiting and diarrhea. This can further lead to dehydration. A vet visit will be necessary if the dog’s condition is severe. The vet might prescribe medications or use intravenous drips to stabilize the pet.

At the end of the day, Vaseline is a product made using petroleum jelly. The ingredients are purified and are classified as non-carcinogenic. But that may not be true for all petroleum jelly products on the market. So, stick to trusted brands like Vaseline if you want to keep using petroleum jelly on your pets.

What is the Alternative for Vaseline?

When it comes to pets, using products specifically formulated for them is a good rule to follow.

In dogs, the products will even differ depending on the breed, size, and age. For example, there are gentle shampoos for puppies and comparatively stronger shampoos for long-haired dogs.

For eye boogers, you can use saline solution or eye washes instead of Vaseline. And if you do not have any solution at hand, use warm water and a soft towel.

If your dog’s skin, nose, or paws are dry, there are organic healing balms that come in a Vaseline-like consistency. Look for products that have been approved to be used on pets. If you do not want to use organic products, the vet can prescribe medical-grade topicals that can keep dry skin at bay.

When Do Eye Boogers Become a Problem?

Eye boogers when your dog wakes up from its sleep are normal. But, if you notice the amount of eye boogers increasing, then there could be an eye issue.

If the dog shows any of the below eye symptoms, contact the vet for their advice:

  • Excessive watery eyes
  • Noticeable increase in eye discharge
  • Dry eyes
  • Change in discharge color
  • Rapid blinking
  • Straining to see
  • Visible injury

How Can You Keep a Dog’s Eyes Clean?

How Can You Keep a Dog’s Eyes Clean
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Your dog’s eyes should be well-hydrated. If there is an issue with tear production, you can use pet-safe eye washes that can lubricate the dog’s eyes while flushing out any irritants.

Consider trimming the hair around the dog’s eyes. Long hair could irritate the eyes and add to the accumulation of debris. You can trim the hair at home or ask the groomer to do it at your next appointment.

You can use saline solutions or tear stain removers to clean the boogers. They are gentle around the eyes and get rid of boogers safely.

Use cotton balls or a soft towel to clean the eye area. Do not stick your bare finger into the dog’s eyes.


Vaseline is a petroleum-based product that is not toxic to dogs. If you are using Vaseline on the dog, ensure you use a small quantity, massage the area to help it absorb the product, and do not let the dog lick it off.

Though, using Vaseline for dog eye boogers may not be a wise choice. Eye boogers are a natural occurrence in canines. They can be effectively cleaned using a pet-safe solution.

If the eye boogers increase in quantity, the eyes become too watery or dry; if you notice an abnormal color of eye discharge, please get in touch with the vet as they could be symptoms of a health issue.

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