What Are Tear Stains?

Tear stains can be an unsightly problem for certain breeds of dogs, particularly those with wrinkled faces like English Bulldogs, French Bulldogs, and Pugs. There are many reasons your lovable pooch might suffer from tear stains, but they can be managed with proper care and attention. In this blog post, we'll discuss what tear stains are, how to spot them, and how to care for them properly!


What Are Tear Stains?

Tear stains are reddish-brown discolorations that occur when tears overflow from a dog's eyes and evaporate over time. This is most common in breeds with short noses and deep wrinkles around the eyes, as these physical traits cause the tears to remain in contact with the skin longer than usual.

Brachycephalic dogs are also more susceptible to tear stains. Brachycephalic dogs are those that tend to have shortened snouts, restricted airflow and shallow eye sockets.

With shallow eye sockets, some dogs struggle to fully close their eyelids (this will be obvious if they sleep with their eyes slightly open) meaning they have to produce extra precorneal fluid to compensate.

Some brachycephalic breeds that are susceptible to dog tear stains are:

What Causes Tear Stains?

The most common cause of tear stains is an excess of tears due to a dog's facial anatomy.

However, some of the most common causes of tear stains are:

  • Allergies
  • Diet changes
  • Teething
  • Certain medications
  • Eye infections

Other factors such as genetics, light-colored coats, and environmental pollutants can also lead to increased tear production and the subsequent formation of tear stains.

Caring For Your Pup's Tear Stains

The most effective way to care for tear stains is to prevent them in the first place. To do this, you should clean your dog's face regularly with a warm cloth and mild cleanser. Doing so will help remove allergens, bacteria, and other irritants which may contribute to excessive tearing. 

If your dog already has tear stains, there are several ways to treat them. If the discoloration is caused by an infection or irritation of the eye area, your veterinarian can prescribe appropriate medication.

If there are other causes of the discoloration, such as diet or allergies, then you can try switching your dog's food to something more appropriate for their breed. 

There are also a number of home remedies available that claim to reduce tear staining in dogs—namely, our very own wrinkle wipes and tear stain paste!

To use these products effectively, start by cleaning the area thoroughly with Squishface Wrinkle Wipes. Then, apply Squishface Tear Stain Paste to the affected area. Rub a small pea sized amount of Tear Stain Paste vigorously into the fur and onto your dog’s skin.  Squishface Tear Stain Paste contains natural zinc oxide and coconut oil to create a water repellent barrier in order to keep that nasty fungus and bacteria at bay. 

Not only does Tear Stain Paste help to get rid of those unsightly tear stains, it helps to prevent tear stains from returning. While many happy dog owners begin to notice a difference in the appearance of tear stains after using Wrinkle Wipes and Tear Stain Paste just a few days, we recommend using both products together daily for a minimum of 7 to 10 days for best results.  

The Bottom Line

If your doggo suffers from tear stains, rest assured that there are ways to manage them. To prevent them from forming or treat them once present, you should clean your pup's face regularly, keep them hydrated and fed a balanced diet, and potentially use special products designed to reduce staining. If the problem persists or becomes severe, it may be best to consult with your veterinarian directly. By taking these steps, you can ensure your pup's eyes are healthy and free of tear stains!

For more tips, tricks, and all things Squishface, don’t forget to visit the blog every week!