Lip Balm for Tear Stains?? - Maltese Dogs Forum : Spoiled Maltese Forums


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Old 05-04-2012, 11:39 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Lip Balm for Tear Stains??

Rather than reply to some recent threads on tear stains, I thought I'd start one to get opinions and share knowledge. My beloved Shayna used to get terrible tear stains. I never tried Angel Eyes, but I tried other products and would use corn starch to try to lighten and dry the hair (I read they do this for show dogs). Then one day, I was watching some show about an inside look into dog shows from a "celebrity" groomer's perspective (I really don't remember his name). He advised using lip balm or chapstick on the tear stain areas.

I searched the internet just to determine if Chapstick would be harmful, and there are dogs which actually injest them and are OK (albeit they're probably larger dogs). DH and I scrutinize the ingredients every time we bought a lip balm for Shayna (even though we're in other fields now, I have training as a biochemist and DH as a microbiologist).

The lip balm won't lighten hair already stained. You have to cut off the stained area first and put the lip balm on this area. I would put a light coat on Shayna around the areas where she gets tear stains. Shayna never got tear stains again. Sometimes, I would forget to put the lip balm on, and the tear stains still didn't return. So, I started using it sparingly maybe every other bath, sometimes less. When I think a tear stain was returning, I would put a bit of lip balm in that area. Shayna would lick the area I've just put the lip balm on, but I didn't need re-apply.
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Old 05-04-2012, 11:46 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I've never heard of that but its certainly interesting. Did you use any specific brand?
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Old 05-04-2012, 12:11 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I've used Chapstick and other generic lip balms. I tried one with Aloe once, and those worked really well as it was easier to apply a thin coat. Sometimes it's difficult to apply a thin coat, but you can just wipe/smudge off the excess. The waxy balm prevents moisture from adhering to their hair (fur if you have a Maltese mix), which causes the staining, so it's really a preventative.

I'm not sure if I would use lip balm on a puppy. You want them first to build up the immunities to things.
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Old 05-04-2012, 12:16 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I never heard of using lip balm but wouldn't Vaseline work just as well, if not better? Vaseline is good for many things and might be safer.

Not sure I'd take a dog show person's word for it. A breeder at a show once told me she uses black Magic Marker to darken noses. I was horrified - I'd never use that on a dog's nose or feet pads, but apparantly, whatever gets the job done is ok with some breeder/showers.
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Old 05-04-2012, 12:28 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brendaman View Post
I've used Chapstick and other generic lip balms. I tried one with Aloe once, and those worked really well as it was easier to apply a thin coat. Sometimes it's difficult to apply a thin coat, but you can just wipe/smudge off the excess. The waxy balm prevents moisture from adhering to their hair (fur if you have a Maltese mix), which causes the staining, so it's really a preventative.

I'm not sure if I would use lip balm on a puppy. You want them first to build up the immunities to things.
Just a Heads-Up folks---Aloe plant is poison to dogs if ingested! I am not sure how much a maltese playing w/another (biting face, etc) would consume or how much needed to be harmful, but I would stay away from it w/mine.
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Old 05-04-2012, 12:32 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I never heard of using lip balm but wouldn't Vaseline work just as well, if not better? Vaseline is good for many things and might be safer.

Not sure I'd take a dog show person's word for it. A breeder at a show once told me she uses black Magic Marker to darken noses. I was horrified - I'd never use that on a dog's nose or feet pads, but apparantly, whatever gets the job done is ok with some breeder/showers.
Magic marker? That is terrible. It has such a strong odor, it must drive the poor dog crazy. And it is toxic. They make a special product for that, that is not toxic.

The thing is that chapstick contains camphor which is drying that may be part of why it works. I doubt that it is harmful, since it is for human lips.
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Old 05-04-2012, 12:40 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Hmmm. Have to rethink this lip balm thing.

Sandi - I'm horrified about using that lip balm with Aloe!

Sylie - maybe Josy's puppies are tear-stain free??!
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Old 05-04-2012, 01:01 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Magic marker? That is terrible. It has such a strong odor, it must drive the poor dog crazy. And it is toxic. They make a special product for that, that is not toxic.

The thing is that chapstick contains camphor which is drying that may be part of why it works. I doubt that it is harmful, since it is for human lips.
Oh, I definitely agree. I mentioned the odor and she said it disapates and that it wasn't toxic....not so sure about that.

There are some practices at shows that would make most people on here shudder. One is the use of the foot stands used for grooming and keeping the dog in groomed condition. The feet are on little blocks of wood, the dog cannot move a hair. Last year I saw a Papillon left on one of these contraptions, no one around it, poor thing had to remain unmoving for I don't know how long; I took a picture of it. I mentioned it to the shower next to it, and he was also mortified. I love dog shows but stuff like this is very upsetting.
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Old 05-04-2012, 01:57 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Hmmm. Have to rethink this lip balm thing.

Sandi - I'm horrified about using that lip balm with Aloe!

Sylie - maybe Josy's puppies are tear-stain free??!

Nope. MiMi doesn't have terrible tear stains, but she always has had some.
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Old 05-04-2012, 02:26 PM   #10 (permalink)
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None of my 3 girls have tear stain. My Rose has never had it, and so far, neither has Eva.(she's 6 months) My Lily had mild tear staining as a puppy but it resolved by the time she was a year old. I have never heard of using lip balm.. The only thing I would be concerned about is that it might mat the hair or make it look greasy. All 3 of mine will tear if hair gets in their eyes. They also get little "gunkies" at the corners. I check eyes every day for hair, and remove with eyewash which I dropper in..I also wipe off the gunkies in the corner. I have found that sometimes staining problems can be genetic, and can also be due to some problem with the eye itself. I have had 4 Maltese in 15 years. In my experience, what has helped more than anything with tearing is keeping the eyes free of dirt, pollen, and especially hair, and keeping their faces clean and dry. I know this is easier said than done, sometimes.
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