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Tear stains in dogs and cats are evidence of red yeast. This also holds true for stains elsewhere on the body that come into contact with saliva, such as the "beard" or paws. The building block for the red yeast is created by the naturally occurring bacteria in the tears consuming the oxidizing iron deposits in the tears (or saliva). The principle ways of eliminating the problem are # Always keep the fur dry, the warm/damp fur promotes the rapid reproduction of the bacteria. # Check to see if the tear ducts are blocked. Blocked ducts will cause the tears to fall onto the fur under the eyes. # Kill the bacteria using antibiotics- not without risk in the long term. Oxidize the iron inside the body before it enters the tears. This can be done though diet change but can be difficult to achieve. There are food additives that will do this for you- One example is Angels Delight

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7y ago
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13y ago

Your local pet supply store (or vet) should sell wipes. They are small cloth squares in a solution. You wipe the area with the cloth and then rinse the dogs face off (many vary upon brand). Gradually the stains will go away, and the solution helps to prevent stains from returning.

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13y ago

I have a Yellow Lab. We get the same thing. You can't prevent it, but you can clean the area around their eyes. I just use a wash cloth dampened in warm water and wash her eyes. That will help.

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Tear stains are easy to prevent. One can either elect to try to reduce the degree of tearing or to deal with the after effects of the excess tearing.

Excess tearing could be the result of a number of factors, such as blocked ducts or they might be diet related.

Blocked ducts can be flushed by a vet.

Dogs have not yet evolved to be able to process refined grains and commercial bulking agents. Switching the diet to foods that are grain free is sufficient for many owners.

For those that find that it helps but that it is not 100% successful there are tear stain remover food supplements that will help.

These fall into two classes and they work in different ways.

Before explaining how the two classes work I will give you a break down on the processes at play work.

Your dog or cat has bacteria that lives on its skin- much in the same way that we have. This bacteria is pretty harmless and does not pose a health issue. Your dogs tears contain a number of metals. As they hit the air they start to oxidise. The bacteria oxidises these metals and create an enzyme. This enzyme is a building block of a red yeast- hence the stains are red.

1. Tylosin (an antibiotic) is used in the following products- Angels Eyes- Angels Glow and Clear Tears works by killing the bacteria. With the bacteria dead the yeast cannot be formed. Unfortunately Tylosin has never been approved for dog or cat use and is legally only licensed for poultry, cows and pigs.

2. The second class of products are legally acceptable as they do not contain pharmaceutical antibiotics- they use antioxidants to oxidize the metals before they can be metabolized by the bacteria. in essence they deprive the bacteria of "fuel" and thus the yeast is not born. Examples include Bichon Hotel's Angels Delight and NaturVet's Tear Stain Remover.

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12y ago

hydrogen peroxide

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Q: How do you remove tear stains from a 12 week old havanese puppy?
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