Brown and red tear stains in the under eye area of dogs are a common problem. Although it is generally thought to occur in dogs with white and light-colored hair, tear stains can occur in all dogs. Since there can be many different reasons behind the formation of tear stains, in this article, we will both get to know tear stains closely and “how to remove tear stains in dogs?” We will present the answers to the question. We wish you pleasant reading.
What Are Tear Stains In Dogs, How Do They Occur?
Some dogs’ tears contain pigment-containing molecules that cause tear stains. When red blood cells are broken down in the dog’s body, these molecules are broken down as waste. Molecules called “porphyrins” can cause red stains when exposed to sunlight because they contain iron. These molecules are usually thrown out of the body through the digestive tract, but they can also come out through tears, saliva and urine. For this reason, tear stains can occur both under the eyes and around the mouth. Tear blotches cause more noticeable results in white dogs. However, as we have just mentioned, they can also be seen in our friends with dark hair.
There can be many potential causes behind tear stains that increase their effectiveness with increased tear production. For this reason, veterinarians should be consulted when tear stains occur in dogs. Veterinarians can both determine the causes of tear staining and prevent their formation with treatment processes specific to the cause.
Why Do Tear Stains Occur in Dogs?
Tear stains can occur as a result of excessive tear production or the accumulation of excessive tears on the face as a result of the tears not flowing properly. There may be many different health problems behind the formation of tear stains:
Glaucoma: Also known as glaucoma, glaucoma can cause increased intraocular pressure and damage to the optic nerves.
Eye Infection: Eye infection can occur due to bacteria, viruses or parasites.
Conjunctivitis: Inflammation of the conjunctivitis membrane, which covers the inside of the eyelids and the white part of the eye.
Ear Infection: An increase in tear production may occur in the eye near the infected ear.
Apart from all these health problems, problems in the development of the eyelids, the size of the lacrimal glands, clogged lacrimal duct, injury, hair around the eyes, not deep eye sockets, exposure to disturbing substances such as dust or smoke, allergies, unhealthy diet, stress and teething period. It is known that specific conditions can also cause the formation of tear stains in dogs.
How to Remove Tear Stains in Dogs?
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Tear stains in dogs are very easy to diagnose. Spots may begin in the lower part of the eye canals, and these spots may spread to a wider area if no cleaning or treatment is performed. In this case, good observation is necessary, if a bad smell is felt along with the tear discharge, the risk of fungal infection may come to the fore.
It is important that dogs are examined by veterinarians when tear staining is noticed. If there is a health problem that causes this problem, first of all, treatment planning should be done specifically for the dog.
If tear stains are caused by infection, medical treatment is planned; The use of medicated drops or antibiotics may be recommended. Surgical options may be required when the “Entropion” condition, which is characterized by the curving of the eyelids towards the eye and the irritation of the eyelashes, is diagnosed. If tear stains in dogs are caused by allergens and irritants, the problem can be resolved by identifying them, using antihistamines, and reducing exposure. If the cause of the tear stains is unhealthy diet or stress, the problem can be alleviated with the use of the right food and stress-reducing measures. In other words, the causes of tear stains in dogs should be determined first, and if there is no health-related problem, care processes should be carried out completely. In this context, taking steps to prevent the formation of tear stains rather than cleaning them comes to the fore as a more correct approach.
It is possible for dogs to have tear stains under the eyes or on the corners of the mouth due to the secretion of pigmented molecules through saliva. It is beneficial to regularly shorten the hairs that come into contact with the eyes or that extend significantly from the corner of the mouth. Brushing and gently cleaning the facial areas of dogs every day can prevent the persistence of stains. Cleaning between the skin folds of dogs with folds under the eyes should not be neglected. It should be ensured that the solution to be used for face cleaning does not pose any health hazards.
You can apply tear stain removal lotions to clean tear stains. However, you should consider the product content during product selection and you should definitely choose the product recommended by your veterinarian. Depending on your dog’s health condition and needs, your veterinarian may suggest you try different mixtures. For this reason, it would be healthier to consult with your veterinarian before applying herbal solutions for tear stains in dogs.