Many have asked, “What can I do to remove Frenchie tear stains?” I understand that this may not look cosmoetically the way you want. I’d like to say, most of the time it bothers us more than it bothers them. Bracheocyphalic breeds (flat nosed with big eyes), are often prone to more tear staining than other breeds since their flatter noses can affect their tear ducts by making them narrower or crooked, which can lead to an overflow of tears onto the fur. Porphyrin is a molecule containing iron that is broken down and excreted via the digestive system, urine, saliva and tears of dogs. These porphyrins contain iron and are responsible for the reddish coloration which can become darker when exposed to the sunlight. The tear staining is more pronounced on lighter colored Frenchies such as cream, platinum, white, and pied colored.
The reason most Frenchies have tear stains is because of the shape of their muzzle causing narrow/crooked tear ducts with the porphyrin being excreted through the tears resulting in the reddish coloring under the eyes. You may want to confirm with your vet that is the case. Other reasons may include:
Medical Reasons for Frenchie Tear Stains:
- Eye infection- cuase discharge from eyes.
- Conjuncitivits- inflammation in the eye producing mucus, pus, or discharge.
- Ear infeciton-may cause the eye of the same side to tear.
- Ingrown eyelashes- may rub and cause irritation
- Entropion-eyelids may roll in causing the eyelashes to rub against the eye and tear more.
Mechanical Reasons for Frenchie Tear Stains.
- Blocked tear ducts- cannot remove excess liquid from the eye
- Scarring–if your Frenchie had a previous infection or eye damage.
- Hair around the eyes- a fluffy Frenchie may have hair in the eyes drawing the moisure from the eye to the fur.
Environmental & Other Reasons for Frenchie Tear Stains.
- Irritant exposures: irritants like dust, smoke, scented plug-ins, candles, chemicals used on lawns, cleaners used on flooring, beds, and doggie clothes. Irritants make the eyes water more to rid them of the irritating substance.
- Allergies- allergic reactions can be caused by seasonal, environmental, or a reaction to the dog food causing the eyes to water excessively.
- Poor quality diet- poor quality ingredients may place undue stress on aa dogs body causing it to water.
- Stress- Depending on how your Frenchie responds to stress it can make your Frenchies eyes produces more fluids.
- Teething- Frenchie pups may produce more tears while in their teething stage an usually disappears once they have finished teething.
Tear stains are usually a reddish color. If they are brown in color instead of red, and have an odor it may be due to a yeast infection caused by the skin being constantly wet.
Here’s what you can do to remove Frenchie Tear Stains:
- Rule out any medical reasons with your vet such as eye or ear infections, ingrown eyelashes, entropion, glaucoma, and scaring. If any of these are confirmed, treat appropriately.
- Remove or reduce chemical irritants.
- Remove synthetic fragrances such as plug-ins and candles. Replace if desired with clean candles and essential oil diffuser. Warning: only use essential oils that are safe for dogs. Some are poisonous.
- Find pet friendly lawn care options instead of spraying your lawn with irritating chemicals.
- Replace your cleaning supplies with “clean” cleaning products. Remember your Frenchie’s skin is 3 times thinner than yours and they spend most of their time on the floor. I love using BioKleen’s products which I order on Amazon. These are affiliate links.
- Use a non-toxic shampoo that your Frenchie body doesn’t have to work overtime to rid it’s body of the toxins. We use and carry this brand in our stores.
- For environmental allergies you can try:
- Giving your Frenchie bovine colostrum which contains the antibody igG to help boost his immunity to common allergens and Proline-rich polypeptide which acts as an anti-inflammatory. Use 1/16 tsp powdered colostrum per 25 lbs of body weight daily.
- Raw, organic apple cider vinegar can relieve environmental allergies. Place 1 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar in your Frenchies water bowl daily. I actually mix it with their raw food with each meal.
- You may also make apple cider vinegar foot bath if you suspect it’s environmental allergies. Keep a bucket by the door of 2 parts water and one part apple cider vinegar. (I realize this doesn’t directly help the eyes but it can be helpful in addition.)
- Soak the paws for up to five minutes. You may find just dipping in the solution may be all your Frenchie will tolerate.
- Don’t rinse but dry paws well after soaking.
- Use Vetericyn antimicrobial eyedrops in your Frenchies eyes to prevent tear staining.. It’s non-stinging solution that gently cleans the eyes and surrounding tissue to help relieve irritation and burning, remove debris, and control issues caused by mucous, pollen, and other irritants. It also cleans tear stains to leave the fur surrounding the eye clean and free of the bacteria that leads to discoloration.
- Wipe tears stains with a warm cloth or cotton pad twice daily to reduce staining. If stubborn stains, you may use a solution containing boric acid such as contact lens solution.
- You may apply coconut oil under the eye to act as a gentle water repellant preventing stains.
- Use porecelain, glass, or stainless steel bowls instead of plastic.
- Feed your Frenchie a clean, non-irritating food that is not full of fillers. We feed raw meat, lightly steamed veggies, eggs, and organ meats to our little French Fries. This is it’s own topic in and of itself which we will discuss in the future.
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