Tear Stain Remover for Dogs

| Modified on Sep 12, 2017

Certain breeds of dogs are prone to develop tear stains around their eyes. Breeds that commonly suffer from excessive tear stains are Pugs, Bichon Frise, Maltese, and Pekingese, along with Poodles and Cocker Spaniels. While unattractive, tear stains will not affect your dog's health. The most common cause of tear stains is eye irritation. Any fur that grows too closely to the eyes can cause irritation, which then results in tearing. Other conditions that might cause excessive tearing include glaucoma or problems with the eyelid or eyelashes. Another cause for a dog's tear staining is blockage of the puncta (tear drainage holes), which could be the result of injury or infection of the eyes.

Home Treatment for Tear Stains

There are some treatments to cure tear stains that you can do simply and inexpensively using remedies you may already have in your home. These include keeping your dog's eyes clean by carefully trimming the fur around the eyes so it cannot cause irritation. Other home remedies include adding a touch of vinegar to your dog's water bowl and herbs. Below you will read more recommendations from our wonderful contributors!

If you have any more remedies to cure Tear Stains in Dogs, please share them with us!

Colloidal Silver

1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Dickens's Mom (Germantown, Wi) on 09/09/2016

I use Colloidal silver 10 PPM in a spray bottle and spray the end of a Qtip and use it to clean the mucous (pookies) out of my standard poodle'e eyes in the corners twice a day. Also good for soaking crusty accumulations around the eyes. Never had any tear staining from day one of owning her from eight week on. She is now 8 years old. Never an eye inflection. Also spray in the mouth to freshen breath.

Replied by Lorene
(Montgomery Tx)

My shitzu is 9 mo. old. Terrible stains. On expensive no grain dog foods, no junk. Tried everything from a cornstarch powder to warm salt water, 10ppm colloidal silver in eye, around eye duct, clipping stained hairs, distilled water, probiotics, and still no perfect results. Thinking of trying H. peroxide, or human Collyrium eye wash (if not bad ingredients). I would not hesitate to do internal colloidal silver - I trust it very much. Is 10ppm strong enough is my question? I know, its the eyes! Scary. What about 500ppm internally, too harsh? Any suggestions are welcome. Pulling my hair out as well as his! ( Never have a white eye dog again. ) It just looks like "bleeding eyes" and ppl ask me what is that? duh HELP!

Replied by Theresa
(Mpls., Mn)

Hey Lorene,

I cannot answer as to the dose for the colloidal silver, but you might consider Halo makes an herbal eye wash. I do think excessive tearing can be a common occurrence in brachycephalic breeds as they grow from puppyhood to adulthood, however if time does not improve this condition you might have your vet do an eye check at your next well puppy visit. Distichia is very common in the breed and may be your culprit.

Theresa's Remedies

Posted by Theresa (Mpls., Mn) on 10/07/2013

Tear Stains in Dogs

Tear stains are caused by excessive tearing which allow bacteria and yeast to build up. To address the tear stains the cause of the excessive tearing must first be diagnosed and addressed. Excessive tearing may be due to many factors; physical conformation such as shallow eye sockets as found in brachycephalic breeds; eye conditions such as glaucoma, distichia or entropion, excessive facial hair around the eye, undiagnosed health conditions including ear infections, teething, blocked tear ducts, airborne irritants or allergies, dietary considerations such as artificial dyes in the brand of kibble being fed or high mineral content in the dog's drinking water. It is important to see a veterinarian to determine the cause of your dog's excessive tearing. Keeping the eye area clean with daily wiping and carefully trimming the hair around the eye to help prevent yeast and bacteria building will help until a veterinary diagnosis can be made.

The most common cause of red staining is red yeast Ptyrosporin which are caused by bacteria. The warm, damp fur under the eyes creates the ideal breeding place for bacteria; the bacteria contributes compounds required for the enzyme necessary for the red yeast to grow. Common antibiotics used to treat tear stains are Tylosin and Terramycin; these antibiotics work by killing the bacteria in the tears and saliva, which breaks the chain of nutrients needed for the formation of the red yeast. One theory is that by oxidizing the trace elements of iron in the body via diet, it reduces the trace elements of iron in the tears, which will again break the nutrient chain needed for the red yeast to grow.

The most basic approach to control tear stains is regular hygiene; carefully wash your dog's face or wipe under the eyes on a daily or twice daily basis using ACV, or a 1% solution of hydrogen peroxide. Some people have had some excellent results controlling eye stains with the human eye product Collyrium - a very mild, soothing eye wash that has some boric acid and buffers in it. It is available through most drug stores and doesn't require a prescription.

Dietary approaches include omitting any food item, biscuit or treat that has red dye food additives, offering only distilled drinking water, or by changing the dog's PH by offering ACV in the drinking water or by using one of Ted's Alkalizing remedies.

Replied by Karen
(Ohio, US)

How much ACV should be added to their drinking water? Is it safe for dogs?

Replied by Theresa
(Mpls., Mn)

Hey Karen!

Yes, ACV is safe for dogs to take internally. A fairly typical amount would be 2-3 teaspoons into 1 liter of water.