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Old 01-13-2020, 04:40 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default My tear stain regimen, sigh...

I had hoped that Zita's tear staining would go away when she was finished teething, but it continues to be an issue. I keep her looking fairly presentable with a LOT of effort. For anyone else battling the dreaded tear stains, here's what I'm doing, with photos attached.

Twice a day, I go through these steps:
1. Wipe eyes dry with a clean cloth.
2. Wipe with Tris Optho wipes (I cut them in quarters because it doesn't cover up her whole face that way, and a jar will last 4x longer!) I can visibly see some of the stain coming off onto the pad, so I know it's helping.
3. Wipe with a cotton round (also cut in quarters for better fit to her face) wetted with 4-5 drops of Eye Envy Tear Stain Remover Solution (non-refrig formula). This product claims to close the hair shaft to reduce staining, as well as have antibacterial properties.
4. I use my finger to dab on Eye Envy Tear Stain Remover Powder. This product claims to be a mild cleanser, antibacterial, and moisture repellant.

Throughout the day I dry her eyes (admittedly it's often with my shirt tail!) just because her tear duct area gets so wet (the vet says she has very tiny tear ducts so her tears overflow instead of draining internally). I also keep the hair in that area trimmed very short, carefully using dog scissors with a rounded safety tip and sometimes an eyebrow razor (weirdly called "Tinkle").

Lastly, I give Zita 1/16 tsp of Tylosan powder mixed in her food everyday. That required a prescription from the vet. I know a lot of dog owners are adamantly opposed to using Tylosan, but I'm trying it for a couple months.

Even if I am faithful to do all of the above, her tear staining is never gone, but it's not horrible. If I miss even a couple days (as I did while traveling over the holidays), it gets much worse. The attached photos are the "as good as it gets" photos. BTW, our previous Maltese rarely had tear stains. A few days of Angel Eyes and they'd be gone for at least a couple years.

Edited to add: Zita now uses a drinking bottle (like a guinea pig would use) instead of a water bowl, which has greatly helped in keeping her mouth area white.



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Last edited by kayanne; 01-13-2020 at 04:43 PM. Reason: addition
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Old 01-13-2020, 07:37 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Geez...she looks great to me. Are you sure she’s done teething. I feel like my girls were well over one year before their eyes cleared up from teething.
What about food? Maybe something doesn’t agree. I remember reading that food with beets in it, can contribute to staining. You might want to check ingredient list.
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Old 01-13-2020, 08:28 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Geez...she looks great to me. Are you sure she’s done teething. I feel like my girls were well over one year before their eyes cleared up from teething.
What about food? Maybe something doesn’t agree. I remember reading that food with beets in it, can contribute to staining. You might want to check ingredient list.
Well, I thought she was done teething now that she's 9 months old. Maybe not. And maybe she will clear up in a few more months as yours did. Thanks for that encouragement.

Regarding your "Geez...she looks great to me," I'm not sure if that was supposed to be a compliment or your way of saying I'm fretting over nothing. I agree, she looks beautiful now. But before I started my "regimen," she had horrible, dark reddish-brown stains that dominated her poor little face. (I didn't have any photos of that to include).
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Old 01-13-2020, 08:46 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Well, I thought she was done teething now that she's 9 months old. Maybe not. And maybe she will clear up in a few more months as yours did. Thanks for that encouragement.

Regarding your "Geez...she looks great to me," I'm not sure if that was supposed to be a compliment or your way of saying I'm fretting over nothing. I agree, she looks beautiful now. But before I started my "regimen," she had horrible, dark reddish-brown stains that dominated her poor little face. (I didn't have any photos of that to include).
That was a big compliment!
I think she looks beautiful
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Old 01-14-2020, 09:43 AM   #5 (permalink)
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That was a big compliment!
I think she looks beautiful
Thanks you! Sometimes her stains look worse, but I had just trimmed as much of the red off as I could before taking those pictures.

I don't really mind spending the time grooming her, but I worry about leaving her for a week or two with a dog sitter when we travel (which we feel we can't do until she's fully housebroken, a whole 'nuther battle!). I would never expect a dog sitter to spend all that time taking care of Zita's tear stains. I know we'd come home to a very messy face. Oh well.
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Old 01-14-2020, 03:56 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I think she looks beautiful. You are doing a great job with her care.

I know what you mean about leaving them and fearful about what they will look like when you come home. Abella has long hair and requires a lot of daily grooming. I recently had right shoulder surgery and knew it would be very hard for me to groom her. I also knew I could never ask a relative or friend to spend the amount of time required on her daily grooming. My choices were to cut her hair into a puppy cut or do the best I could with my left arm. I opted for the left arm routine - We both survived!

"Life is good - Life with a Maltese is Better!"
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Old 01-18-2020, 07:21 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Thanks you! Sometimes her stains look worse, but I had just trimmed as much of the red off as I could before taking those pictures.

I don't really mind spending the time grooming her, but I worry about leaving her for a week or two with a dog sitter when we travel (which we feel we can't do until she's fully housebroken, a whole 'nuther battle!). I would never expect a dog sitter to spend all that time taking care of Zita's tear stains. I know we'd come home to a very messy face. Oh well.
I used to take a bit of boric acid and cornstarch, mix together, tap to remove excess powder and apply with tiny eyeshadow brush under eyes area.
The cornstarch keeps the area dry, while BA would help with any infection that might be brewing due to staying wet in that area.
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