Why Does My Dog Squint At Me? – Explanation

Why does my dog squint at me

Dogs generally love to use their eyes to communicate; when your dog squints at you, you may wonder why.

This gesture is usually a way for the dog to express gratitude, apologize, or even be a technique in begging.

It applies to two different situations.

First, when your dog squints at you and stays/comes close to you.

Second, when it squints at you and moves/stays away from you.

When your dog squints at you and stays away or squints at you and moves away from you, it might just be sick.

Dogs that are sick squint as a way of telling you to stay away.

They are anxious, so they will not appreciate your presence or attention at that moment.

If you are someone who pays attention to details, then you will notice when they are sick.

They exhibit a lot of other gestures, along with squinting their eyes at you.

Reasons Your Dog Squints At You

Your dog can squint at you and stay close in several situations.

1. When You Are Petting Him

Dogs love to play.

Just saying that feels like an understatement because they derive joy from playdates.

They generally love any kind of attention and want to spend a lot of time with their owners.

They cherish those little moments, whether it be a go fetch game, ride along, or a long run. However, we all know their favorite play ritual is to lay on their back and expose their belly to you.

Belly rubs are heaven on earth for dogs.

For dogs, it feels like, most times, it should not just stop.

Some dogs tend to show appreciation for the time you spend with them.

When you get your dog and notice it squint at you, that is a sign of adoration.

Somehow, that is its way of saying thank you.

Sometimes, you do not see them squint at you until after you have stopped playing with them.

An after-play squint is a sign that while it appreciates the time spent, it still wants more.

It is your choice to oblige its request or reject it.

When they try to show appreciation, they constantly lick their lips while squinting at you.

2. When You Are Eating

Your dog squinting at you while eating is a bad trait that should not be tolerated.

It is found in all kinds of dogs – even the wild ones.

This is a sign of it wanting some of what you are eating.

He is begging you, and you should not give in to his plea.

In their wild counterparts, the alpha male eats first when there is a kill.

This is to maintain the hierarchy.

In this case, you are the alpha dog of the house, and you should learn to say no to your subordinate.

Giving in to its antics tells the dog that it can manipulate you.

As time goes on, it will do that more often.

When you eventually decide to reject it, it might get offensive.

It will not be anything serious, maybe just barking.

However, it will try to scare you off the food in the worst-case scenario.

Why does my dog squint at me when I pet him

3. When You Are Talking To Him

When your dog has done something wrong, and you are scolding him, there is a chance it will squint at you.

Dogs are stubborn, especially when you have no good communication.

It would seem as though the exact thing you do not like is what they like to do.

And your dog would naturally step back and squint at you when you scold and raise your voice.

Amidst all these, dogs tend to squint their eyes at you.

It is an “I am sorry” sign, telling you it did not mean to get you angry.

Usually, this gesture is accompanied by the dog licking its lips carefully and blinking when it opens its eyes a little.

However, when talking to a dog, they also tend to squint at you, which means that it is just the dog trying to understand what you are saying.

It is probably reading your body language and whatever body sign it can note.

Dogs can squint their eyes at you and stay away from you due to any of these reasons.

4. When There Is Something In Its Eyes

Dogs tend to squint their eyes at you when there is something in their eyes. This object can be hair from their body, sand, or maybe a wood crumb.

Naturally, the object in their eyes will be washed by tears, so dogs will squint their eyes to force tears to wash off the object.

Sometimes, they are successful, and the object comes off.

While other times, they need you to help remove such an object.

5. Your Dog Might Have Eye Ulcer

Dogs that have this are likely to get blind if not treated immediately.

For a watchful dog owner, noticing an eye ulcer would not be that difficult.

When you notice your dog often squinting at you when you’re not eating/petting it, try to understand what is happening.

Dogs with eye ulcers always appear ok but cloudy in their eyes.

If you notice this, get your dog to a vet as quickly as possible.

6. Your Dog May Have Contracted Glaucoma

This particular sickness can cause extreme pain to your dog.

When the dog has contracted glaucoma, they are forced to squint their eyes.

It is not purposely trying to squint at you; just a response to their pain.

When you notice this situation, you should get that dog treated immediately.

Glaucoma, if not taken care of, can lead to sight impairment.

You have to observe your dog regularly.

7. Your Dog Might Be Infected

It can also be a reason for your dog squinting its eyes.

Like glaucoma, infection can also be painful.

Various bacteria cause infections in dogs.

It, however, is relatively easy to know as it comes with a gesture of its own.

When you notice your dog squinting at you and not being able to open its mouth, it has been infected.

Try to get drugs quickly to relieve the pain before taking them to the vet.

8. Your Dog Has A Dry Eye

This situation happens when your dog’s eye is not well moisturized.

The dog will squint its eyes to maintain little or no entry into the air.

This gesture is not meant for you.

Sometimes, dogs even try to cover their eyes with their paws.

Immediately you notice this, you should book an appointment with the vet.

Necessary actions need to be taken quickly.

9. Your Dog Has an Inflammation on the Front of Its Eye

If your dog is experiencing an inflammation of the front of its eye, medically termed as anterior uveitis, you might observe your dog squinting.

Aside from that symptom, you may also notice that your dog’s eye is excessively red, producing excessive tears or discharge, and its eyeball is swelling.

According to a study on canine anterior uveitis, it can be debilitating and painful for your dog and might threaten its vision too.

You may also notice your dog becoming more lethargic than its usual self, with its appetite reduced and rubbing its eye more than necessary.

Will this disease be treated?

Fortunately, yes.

But the treatment depends on what caused your dog to acquire anterior uveitis in the first place.

So consult your vet immediately when you are convinced that your dog is squinting because of this disease.

The vet knows how to reduce the inflammation and provide the proper medication your dog needs.

What To Do When You Notice Your Dog Squinting At You

Whichever situation you find your dog squinting at you, be aware that it is not lifethreatening.

If your dog squints at you when you pet it, talk to it, or when you’re eating, those situations are welcomed.

However, you should contact the vet immediately when you find your dog squinting at you in a situation other than those mentioned above.

Although it is not life-threatening, it can lead to permanent eye impairment.

You do not want your dog to be blind, do you?


If your dog squints while you are eating, you should rebuff such a gesture immediately.

Set a boundary between you and the dog.

Always maintain your alpha status at all times.

Do not let its pitiful look deceive you.