Those pesky Tear stains

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Can't touch- this...can't- catch me!
Barked: Thu Mar 10, '11 9:51pm PST 
Anyone have suggestions on how to eliminate or at least diminish those darn tear stains?

Also, I've heard they could be allergy related but can a dog just be prone to them?
Stella Agnes- CGC/TDI

CGC, Therapy- Dog. My velcro- girl!
Barked: Tue Mar 15, '11 8:44am PST 
The dreaded tear stain problem is quite common. There are many different reasons for a dog to get them....allergies, shape of eye/eyelid, etc. What has worked the best for my dogs is using an all natural, gluten free, preferrably grainfree kibble, the use of probiotics/enzymes. Solid Gold Seameal is a powdered supplement that contains enzymes. I've used it, as well as some others that have worked for my dogs. I also add high quality, meat based can food to their food. This has worked for mine. Some people swear by the product Angel Eyes, and I must say I've used it myself, though not for long. The original formula does contain an antibiotic called Tylosin. Now they make a formula without it, I believe. I haven't seen it anywhere but online, though. There are many other remedies, recommendations that people will have. The first thing I would do is see the vet to see if there is a physical problem with the eyes. If not, then I would look at the diet. Are you feeding corn, wheat, or any kind of glutens. If not, then I'd maybe try a grainfree food or even a limited ingredient food. I would also add an enzyme supplement to the food that is of good quality, like Prozyme, SG Seameal, etc.
Hope this helped. Good luck!
Lexi Hope

Mamma\'s little- attitude girl
Barked: Tue Mar 15, '11 10:55am PST 
Both of my Maltese had big problems with the tear staining....I used to take Lexi to the vet pften and swear she just "must" have an eye infection...she did once but the rest was the tear staining so here is what I did and in our case it has worked!!smile I take a cotton ball with warm water and wipe their eyes off to get any matter or whatever off the eye....and we did and DO give Angel Eyes. We put a litle in just a bit of wet dog food and they eat it right up. If you enlarge the pic of Lexi and Billie you will see it has worked. Now mind you they can be stubborn...it took forever with Lexi's but now she hardly ever gets them and Billie responded a little quicker. I just got really dedicated to it and did this almost every day. I know I missed a few days but not many. You can buy Angel eyes through Pet Edge and Ebay for sure. Our local pet store sells them as well. They are a little spendy but to me it was worth it! Good luck.


Pocket Wolf
Barked: Tue Mar 15, '11 12:01pm PST 
Dogs aturally excrete an iron-rich color in their tears. All dogs do this, which is why their eye goobers are always brown. It's also in their saliva, so lots of dogs with white bears will get oragnge or rusty staining around the mouth and feet when they lick their paws.

While it is natural, it can also be a sign of stress, genetic problems, mineral imbalances, pH imbalances, allergies, malnutrition. Puppies tear up a lot as their faces grow and change, so puppy tear stains are the worst. brachycephalic dogs tear up more, as do dogs with prominent eyes like chihuahuas, and also droopy eyed dogs like bassets and bloodhounds. Only your vet can tell you what is really wrong. With the maltese with long hair tugging at the lids, brachycephalic face and prominent eyes, and white fur it's a perfect combo for unsightly rust stains.

The problem with many tear stain removers is that they are mild antibiotics. People swear by their use, but I think it's a dangerous practice to introduce low levels of antibiotic and risk a resistance to that drug.

Foxxy gets tear stains. I have to wash her face every morning with a warm water cotton ball to get the goobers out in the morning, as they stick and harden to her hair so she can't wipe them out, but she also gets a bit of cider vinegar mixed into her filtered water, which helps.

Barked: Wed Mar 16, '11 12:22pm PST 
I agree with foxy that using antibiotic based products is a bad move, unless they are prescribed by a vet.

Those products: Angels Eyes, Angles Glow, Clear Tears, Pets Spark, etc-all of them are illegal as the active ingredient, the antibiotic tylosin tartrate, may only legally be prescribed off-label by a vet.

Two successful natural alternative supplements are NAturVet and Angels Delight

http://www.naturaldogs.co.uk/store/naturvet-dog-and-cats/ naturvet-natural-tear-stain-remover/natural-tear-stain-remover-food- supplement.html

http://bichonhotel.co.uk/shop/index.php?main_page =index&cPath=13

I disagree with foxy about the pigment in the tears theory. My understanding is that the stains are due to oxidising metals in the tears being used by the bacteria to create the red yeast.

I do agree that diet change can help a lot.

Missing you- Always...
Barked: Wed Mar 16, '11 1:29pm PST 
Changing diet would help alot. When I had Rickards he had bad tear stains, his past owner fed him IAMS which obviously did not agree with him. It took a little while to find a food that worked (turns out chicken allergy was the culprit), but eventually I put him on Acana and the tear stains slowly went away. Also have you tried something likeSPA Fresh Facial Scrub ? I have heard good things about it getting rid of tear stains safely. Might be worth a try too smile
Kitsune- Trouble

Divide and- cuddle!!
Barked: Wed Mar 16, '11 3:38pm PST 
Kit is on raw and still gets tear stains. We've had him checked by a vet who said his eyes are healthy, but he does have allergies. I decided not to use any of the products on the market like Angel Eyes because like others have said I don't like the idea of giving antibiotics for something that's really just a minor aesthetic issue for us.

I give Kit raw apple cider vinegar and that seems to have decreased his tear stains but so far not completely eliminated them. I wash his face as needed with a warm wet wash cloth and that alone seems to be enough to almost eliminate the staining - you just have to keep up with it and wash their face if they have watery eyes that day. On days when Kit's allergies seem to be bothering him more than normal I'll sometimes put a thin layer of Vaseline on the fur under his eyes. The Vaseline repels the tears and keeps them from soaking into the fur and causing the staining. But yeah, usually all I do is make sure to keep his face nice and clean. If you wash the tears off before the bacteria has a chance to stain the fur then you can avoid the staining.

Extremely- Squirmy Escape- Artist
Barked: Thu Mar 24, '11 2:03pm PST 
I also have tear stain trouble with Jujubee. I asked the groomer what she recommends and she said Diamond Eyes. Does anyone know or recommend this product? After reading the previous posts, I think I'm interested in trying the SPA Fresh Facial Scrub. I've also been considering the apple cider vinegar. Just want to say thanks to all who posted. This is a very helpful thread.
Ch. Ali, CGC

We don't do- doodles!!
Barked: Thu Mar 24, '11 3:34pm PST 
My toy poodles have them but only in the winter. I always blamed the furnace, but now I am wondering if it's a lack of sunshine since they are already stopping and the furnace is still running BUT they have all been out in the Spring sunshine in the last two weeks.
They all eat grain free kibble and eyes are checked annually by a veterinary opthalmologist, so they do not have structural issues.
I do use angel eyes but only in the ones I am showing and only while they are being shown. It is NOT illegal because of the amount of tylan in the product...there is not a "normal" dose of it contained in the whole large bottle.
Interesting note on tylan, my vet prescribes it in a dose of 1/8 tsp. per gallon of water for prevention of tooth tarter. I (human) once had to take an antibiotic which contained tylan and my teeth were absolutely squeaky clean the whole time I was on it. I didn't have any tearstains, either, BOL!
Another interesting note... tylan powder is available OTC at many stores, including tractor supply and agway. No prescription is required.

My head is- broken, not my- heart!!
Barked: Thu Mar 24, '11 4:27pm PST 
Everyone has pretty much covered this topic thoroughly! I just wanted to say in my case with Sassy, it's dust related. If there's too much dust about, tear stains are undefeatable. I have also heard that poorly bred small dogs have issues with their eyes actually fitting properly in their sockets, which causes constant watering. I would not be surprised if that was Sassy's case too. Though they get better, I can't get them away, and I've seriously tried EVERYTHING.
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