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2021 Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away

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Best Dog Food For Tear Stains

Do you ever wonder why some dogs have tear stains? Are these signs of a serious illness or lingering pain in dogs? What causes tear stains in dogs? Can dog food help prevent tear stains?

These are some of the frequent questions of dog parents about tear staining in dogs. In this article, we will talk about what dog tear straining is all about and how to prevent it. We will also review some of the best dog food for tear stains in dogs.

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What Are Tear Stains In Dogs?

Tear stains in dogs are usually the reddish or brown-colored blemishes around the inner corner of the eyes that are caused by a chemical called porphyrin in the dog’s tears.

Porphyrins are chemicals that help make hemoglobin, a protein in the red blood cells. Porphyrins carry iron from the body and are excreted through urine, saliva, and tears. 

All dogs have porphyrin in their tears. Some dogs however produce more porphyrins than others, and some dogs also excrete more tears than others. 

Light-colored and white dogs naturally have more noticeable tear stains. The same is true with porphyrins in a dog’s saliva.

Notice how some parts of the dog’s body like the feet and forelegs also have these reddish-brown stains? These are the result of excessive licking or chewing due to skin itch or irritation.

Tear stains are not generally harmful or painful to dogs. It’s more of a cosmetic issue as unsightly tear stains can ruin your pup’s pretty face.

However, there are many possible causes to tear staining, including allergies and potentially more serious health conditions. So if your dog has continual tear stains, it may be time for a visit to the vet.

OUR TOP 3 PICKS FOR BEST DOG FOODS FOR TEAR STAINS

[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 2
  • Roasted bison & venison food
  • Real meat as the #1 ingredient
  • Contains K9 Strain Proprietary Probiotics
VIEW LATEST PRICE →See Customer Reviews →
[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 4
  • Made with LifeSource Bits
  • Limited-ingredient dog food
  • Recipe starts with real turkey
VIEW LATEST PRICE →See Customer Reviews →
[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 2
  • Real salmon is the #1 ingredient
  • Made for dogs with sensitive systems
  • Vet recommended
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What Causes A Dog’s Tear Stains?

There are several possible causes of tear staining in dogs. It typically happens when there is excessive tearing in dogs – a condition known as epiphora.

As mentioned earlier, the porphyrin in the tears brings the colors usually associated with the tear stain, and so the continuous and excessive transit of the porphyrins accumulate in the dog’s face and leave the unsightly tear stains.

So what causes epiphora? Here are some of the most common causes:

Conjunctivitis

Conjunctivitis is the inflammation of the eye lining that causes the discharge. There are several reasons for conjunctivitis in dogs that include parasites, allergies, microorganisms, eye injuries, pollen, grass seeds, air irritants like smoke, and even chemicals from dog products.

Ear infection

Ear infection is another common health issue in dogs that is triggered by many factors including food allergies. This can cause excessive tearing in the eye from the same side of the infected ear.

Allergies 

Most dogs experience various allergies throughout their lives. Some allergies are mild and temporary, while others are more serious and deep-rooted.

There are many origins in dog allergies such as the environment, parasites, medications, and food. Some allergies also cause excessive tearing in dogs as the immune system fights off the unwanted elements.

Diet 

A dog’s diet can also provoke tearing especially when the dog has food sensitivities. But even without the common sensitivities, some artificial ingredients, especially colorings, in the cheaper dog foods and treats can cause tearing. 

[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 7

Glaucoma

Glaucoma is a condition that damages the optic nerve. Just like in humans, this condition is more prominent in senior dogs. It can cause excessive tearing.

Some dog breeds are more prone to this condition such as the Jack Russell Terrier, Chow Chow, Shih-Tzu, Shar-Pei, and Husky.

Shallow eye sockets 

Some dog breeds are naturally built with shallow eye sockets, such as the brachycephalic or flat-faced dogs (French bulldogs, boxers, Lhasa Apsos, Pekingese, and pugs).  

Their naturally beautiful big round eyes cause certain challenges in fully closing the eyelid, which then irritates the eyes and results in over-tearing.

Ingrowing eyelashes

Some dogs have eyelashes that grow directly towards the eyes instead of away from them. When the eyelashes touch the surface of the eyes, they get irritated and cause tearing.

This is typical of long-haired dogs like Maltese, which is why regular grooming and trimming are necessary. Sometimes, the ingrowing eyelashes are a result of trimming itself, when the regrowth is directed inwards after the eyelashes are cut too closely.

Abnormal Tear Ducts

Sometimes, a dog’s tear ducts get clogged, which causes the tears to unnaturally deviate from the normal path that is the nasal cavity, thus resulting in the accumulation of tears near the corner of the eyes.

Water

We mentioned the iron in porphyrins earlier. Some water sources like wells have more iron, resulting in greater amounts of porphyrins in the tears.

Distilled water is safer for dogs. Food and water bowls made from plastic may also trigger some adverse reactions, so try switching to stainless steel bowls.

Teething 

Teething in puppies can also cause tearing as the adult teeth begin to grow.

Stress

Yes, stress can also be a trigger for tearing in dogs. Dogs do have feelings and are actually subjected often to different stressful conditions when not well taken care of by their human parents.

[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 8

What's In The Best Dog Foods For Tear Stains?

It turns out the dog's food you serve can have a direct effect on having or preventing tear stains, except in some more serious cases.

Health issues in dogs are often prevented or even alleviated with high-quality dog food and proper nutrition. Simply put, the best dog food can help prevent tear stains in dogs.

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Earlier we talked about porphyrins and excessive tearing, which lead to tear stains in dogs. Well, a poor diet can lead to the dog’s digestive system or liver working harder in filtering the body from toxins, increasing the porphyrins secreted by the body through the tears.  

Many cheap dog foods use inferior quality ingredients and limited good quality ingredients in their formulas, putting unwanted elements in the dog’s body and denying dogs the nutrition they need. 

These dog food products typically use artificial preservatives and cheap fillers that are known allergens like soy, corn, and wheat gluten, and even chemicals that have been found to be toxic.

Food sensitivities and food allergies are also common causes for excessive tear production that creates tear stains.

The other unpleasant ingredients found in cheap dog foods are unnamed animal derivatives and by-products, unnamed meat meals, MSG, xylitol and other sugar alcohols, BHA, BHT, and other artificial flavors and colors to name a few.

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What To Look For?

Regardless of the health issues, a high-quality and complete dog’s diet is vital for your pup’s overall health and wellness. The quality of a dog’s meal often dictates the health status of most canines.

This is why it’s highly imperative for pet parents to provide their four-legged kids with the best quality dog food they can afford.

Similar to other health issues in dogs, dog foods with high-quality and natural food ingredients are necessary to alleviate such issues.

Some premium dog foods also contain the essential vitamins, minerals, and even antioxidants and probiotics that can give dogs optimal health. 

The guaranteed analysis of these dog foods can guide the dog owners about the needed proteins for the essential amino acids, fats, carbohydrates, and fibers that their particular dog needs. Different dog sizes, breeds, and ages have specific requirements that can be obtained from dog foods.

So whether you feed your pups dry kibble or canned pate, it’s paramount to check the quality of ingredients. If you have the extra time, you can prepare some real foods, raw or cooked, to ensure the quality of the meal.

High Quality and Natural Ingredients

Always look for high-quality and natural ingredients in dog foods. Real meat is preferred over meat meals. Meat meals are okay as secondary ingredients. Wholesome foods in the form of natural fruits and veggies are healthy additions too, and sources of nutrients. 

Poor quality diets lead to more expenses in the long run due to food-induced illnesses. Always check the ingredients deck of each brand.   

Best Dog Food For Autoimmune Disease

Complete and Balanced Nutrition

Dogs need complete and balanced nutrition to live a healthy, active, and happy life. Select dog foods with the right nutrition content.

Vitamins A, C, E, and various B’s are all fundamental needs for dogs along with several other minerals like iron, zinc, and potassium. Omega fatty acids are beneficial to the dog’s skin and coat health, as well as digestive health.

No Food Allergens

If your dog is suffering from food allergies and food sensitivities, choose a dog food that has no common food allergens like beef, chicken, egg, dairy, soy, corn, wheat, and cheap fillers. Try other novel proteins like salmon, turkey, and rabbit as the main ingredients and protein sources. 

Limited ingredients diets (LID) can help avoid food sensitivities and at the same time can help you easily identify ingredients that cause your dog’s allergies. 

A grain-free diet is also preferable for food-sensitive dogs, as some grains are known to induce sensitivities and food allergies in canines. But it’s best to consult the vet first before shifting to a grain-free diet.

Vegan dog food is also an option for food-sensitive dogs. If your pup has food allergies to animal proteins that you can’t easily identify, it won’t harm to try vegan dog food.

The best vegan dog food products, such as Natural Balance Vegetarian Formula and V-Dog Kind Kibble Vegan are formulated with high-quality plant-based ingredients and essential nutrients that are highly favorable to your pooch. 

Also, the best vegan dog food recipes avoid even plant-based ingredients that are known food allergens in dogs, like soy and wheat. But again, give the vet a quick call before shifting to a vegan dog food option.

Manufactured in Countries with High Safety and Quality Standards

The best dog food brands are manufactured in countries with high quality and safety standards like the United States, Canada, and Australia.

Many reputable pet food makers also source the ingredients from trusted and USDA-certified farms and suppliers. Dog food products that adhere to the standards of the AAFCO are best. You can see this on the label.

10 Best Dog Food For Tear Stains

IMAGE PRODUCT  
[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 9
Blue Buffalo Basics LID Formula Turkey & Potato Recipe
  • Made with LifeSource Bits
  • Limited-ingredient dog food
  • Recipe starts with real turkey
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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 10
Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe
  • Glucosamine is added for joint health
  • With vitamins, chelated minerals and antioxidants
  • No corn, wheat, soy or chicken (or poultry) by-product meals
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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 11
Hill's Science Diet Adult Sensitive Stomach & Skin Chicken Recipe
  • Crafted with beet pulp
  • Recommended by veterinarians
  • Contains vitamin E and omega-6 fatty acids
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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 12
Taste of the Wild High Prairie
  • Crafted with real meat as the #1 ingredient
  • Contains species-specific K9 Strain Proprietary Probiotics
  • Made without grains, corn, wheat, artificial flavors or artificial colors
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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 13
Hill's Science Diet Chicken & Barley Recipe
  • Fresh chicken is the #1 ingredient
  • Recommended for adult dogs 1-6 years of age
  • Exclusive blend of omega-6 fatty acids, vitamin E and other nutrients
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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 14
VICTOR Purpose Hero Formula
  • Sourced and Made in the USA
  • Ideal for highly active adult dogs
  • Unique VPRO Blend promote superior digestibility and immune system function
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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 15
American Journey Salmon & Sweet Potato Recipe
  • Free of corn, wheat and soy
  • High-protein dog food with real, deboned salmon
  • Includes fiber-rich chickpeas and sweet potatoes
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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 16
Forza10 Nutraceutic Sensitive Tear Stain Plus
  • Complete and balanced formula
  • First ingredient is wild-caught anchovy meal
  • Support overall health and eliminate tear stains
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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 17
Purina ONE SmartBlend Sensitive Systems Formula
  • Real salmon is the #1 ingredient
  • Made for dogs with sensitive systems
  • Purina ONE is veterinarian recommended
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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 18
Dr. Gary's Best Breed Holistic Salmon with Vegetables & Herbs
  • Balanced, hypoallergenic diet for dogs
  • Balanced ratio of omega-3 and 6 fatty acids
  • Antioxidant-rich vegetables support immune system health
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Reviewed Dog Foods for Tear Stains

  1. Blue Buffalo Basics LID Formula Turkey & Potato Recipe
  2. Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe
  3. Hill's Science Diet Adult Sensitive Stomach & Skin Chicken Recipe
  4. Taste of the Wild High Prairie
  5. Hill's Science Diet Chicken & Barley Recipe
  6. VICTOR Purpose Hero Formula
  7. American Journey Salmon & Sweet Potato Recipe
  8. Forza10 Nutraceutic Sensitive Tear Stain Plus
  9. Purina ONE SmartBlend Sensitive Systems Formula
  10. Dr. Gary's Best Breed Holistic Salmon with Vegetables & Herbs

1. Blue Buffalo Basics LID Formula Turkey & Potato Recipe

First 5 Ingredients: Deboned Turkey, Potatoes, Turkey Meal (Source of Glucosamine), Pea Starch, Peas, Tapioca Starch

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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 19
Recipe starts with real turkey, followed by other high-quality ingredients like potatoes, peas and pumpkin to support healthy digestion, plus gluten-free grains for sensitive tummies.

We start our list for the best dog food for tear stains with our top choice – Blue Buffalo Basics limited ingredients turkey and potato recipe – a premium dry dog food that’s remarkable in all aspects. 

As expected of a Blue Buffalo formula, this dog’s diet is made with the finest ingredients led by real deboned turkey meat and potatoes and supplemented with an outstanding line up of wholesome foods including pumpkin, dried chicory root, flaxseed, blueberries, cranberries, barley grass, parsley, turmeric, dried kelp, and yucca schidigera extract to name some. 

It also has a generous load of fish oil for the needed omega fatty acids for a healthy coat and skin. None of the ingredients is known as a food allergen so this dry dog food is safe for pups with allergic reactions to food or those with sensitive stomachs.

Of course, it wouldn’t be Blue Buffalo if it didn’t have probiotics, which are super healthful to a dog’s digestive system.

The turkey-flavored kibble is surely delectable, using just natural flavor, and without any form of artificial preservatives or artificial flavors and colors.

For smoother digestion, this dog food has a good amount of fiber content at 6%. It is not only the best dog food for tear stains, it’s also ideal for dogs of all life stages and especially suited for older and overweight dogs.

2. Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe

First 5 Ingredients: Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Brown Rice, Barley, Oatmeal

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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 20
Starts with real chicken, whole grains, garden veggies and fruit, plus added LifeSource Bits, a precise blend of nutrients that have been enhanced with a Super 7 package of antioxidant-rich ingredients.

The next best dog food for tear stains is also from Blue Buffalo, its Life Protection formula, which is another first-rate dry dog food that features all-natural components led by real deboned chicken as the primary source of protein and essential amino acids.

Brown rice, barley, oatmeal, peas, potatoes, and sweet potatoes are the main suppliers of carbs and fiber in this premium kibble. It also has chicken fat and natural flavor to make a delicious diet.

Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula was created for the holistic health and well-being of adult dogs. All formulas start with real meat, whole grains, garden veggies and fruit, plus added LifeSource Bits, a precise blend of nutrients that have been enhanced with a Super 7 package of antioxidant-rich ingredients.

What’s even better news is that this dry dog food, despite being from Blue Buffalo, is not so heavy on the pocketbook.

3. Hill's Science Diet Adult Sensitive Stomach & Skin Chicken Recipe

First 5 Ingredients: Chicken, Brewers Rice, Chicken Meal, Yellow Peas, Cracked Pearled Barley

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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 21
This dry dog food is specifically designed for adult dogs. It features real chicken first and contains prebiotic fiber to support a balanced microbiome for healthy digestion.

Not to be outdone is Hill’s Science Diet, another renowned premium pet food company, with its Sensitive Stomach and Skin formula.

According to the Hill’s Science Diet website, this formula is supplemented with prebiotics to promote digestive health and nutrient absorption, with antioxidants for immune system support, and with healthy fats for radiant coat and healthy skin.

Real chicken is the first ingredient on the deck, with chicken liver flavor for the rich savory flavors that can entice even finicky dogs.

One thing to remember about fresh meats, however, is that they contain up to 80% moisture by volume – when the product is cooked and much of that moisture is lost, the actual volume of protein could be much lower.

Yellow peas, brown rice, and dried beet pulp provide prebiotic fibers that are favorable for digestive health. This proud Hill’s Science Diet formula is also plentiful with vitamins and minerals, and omega-6 fatty acids for a healthy coat and skin. 

This recipe also contains soybean oil and pork fat which help to balance the omega fatty acid content. The fresh fruits and vegetables used in this recipe add some supplementary fiber, but they are largely included as natural sources for key vitamins and minerals.

4. Taste of the Wild High Prairie Formula

First 5 Ingredients: Water Buffalo, Lamb Meal, Chicken Meal, Sweet Potatoes, Peas

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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 22
Formulated with novel proteins including buffalo and bison, this grain-free recipe includes peas and sweet potatoes that deliver the highly-digestible energy your active pup needs.

Now here’s another great choice for the best dog food for tear stains – Taste of the Wild’s High Prairie premium dog food – a popular pick among dog parents.

It has a stellar blend of all-natural components with water buffalo as the first ingredient and special novel protein, accompanied by other animal proteins like lamb meal, roasted bison, roasted venison, beef, and ocean fish meal, plus natural flavor for a tasty kibble. 

Sweet potatoes, peas, and potatoes are the primary sources of carbs. Aside from the plentiful essential nutrients and healthy fatty acids, this premium dog food also features probiotics for a strong digestive system.

It is worth pointing out, however, that some of the protein in this formula is vegetable-based, with pea protein and potato protein featuring on the ingredients list.

Vegetable proteins are harder for your dog's stomach to break down, but it shouldn't be too much of a concern if your dog does not have any digestive problems.

As well as its great protein and fat content, Taste of the Wild has packed this formula full of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. This will help your dog maintain a healthy coat and skin.

5. Hill's Science Diet Chicken & Barley Recipe

First 5 Ingredients: Chicken, Cracked Pearled Barley, Whole Grain Wheat, Whole Grain Corn, Whole Grain Sorghum

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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 23
Made with an exclusive blend of omega 6 fatty acids and other nourishing nutrients, this recipe promotes a noticeably shiny coat in just 30 days.

Another commendable dog food recipe from Hill’s Science Diet is its Adult Chicken and Barley premium kibble for adult dogs.

Real chicken is the first ingredient along with a host of high-quality ingredients to make awesome and delicious dog food.

It’s enriched with essential vitamins and minerals, and an ample supply of omega-6 fatty acids for skin and coat health.

Even picky eaters will love this chicken liver flavor-enhanced dry dog food. Moreover, this product is surprisingly affordable. 

This food claims to provide all the same benefits of the previous two which were for sensitive stomachs and digestive health; it’s almost as if all the food has a placebo effect.

The food also has an excellent reputation on Chewy just like every other food line from this brand. They have 378 reviews with 95% of reviewers recommending the product.

Most people say their dog's coat improved and that they switched back to a grain diet and noticed improved health in their pup.

6. VICTOR Purpose Hero Formula

First 5 Ingredients: Beef Meal, Peas, Sweet Potato, Chicken Fat (preserved with mixed Tocopherols), Menhaden Fish Meal (source of DHA-Docosahexaenoic Acid)

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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 24
This multi-protein, nutrient-dense recipe is formulated for dogs with allergies to certain proteins or grains. It is made with premium-quality beef, pork and fish meals and ideal for highly active adult dogs.

VICTOR Hero Grain-Free is a fry dog food from VICTOR’s Purpose range. Hero Grain-free is made specifically for active adult dogs who need additional joint health support.

This grain-free dog food from Victor is made for dogs saddled with allergic reactions and sensitive stomachs.

It boasts premium-quality ingredients led by beef meal, fish meal, and pork meal as rich protein sources. Peas, with sweet potato and chickpeas, provide the carbs and fibers in this dry dog food.

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This adult and puppy food has a high 33% crude protein, plus a bounteous supply of healthy probiotics to support the digestive system.

Hero Grain-Free has selenium yeast which promotes healthy metabolic function, cellular regeneration, and a strong immune system.

It contains Mineral Complexes which support healthy skin and coat, paw pad integrity, immune response and efficient metabolism. Prebiotics and probiotics aid digestion, and also contribute to overall immune system health.

7. American Journey Salmon & Sweet Potato Recipe

First 5 Ingredients: Deboned Salmon, ChickenMeal (A Source of Glucosamine and Chondroitin Sulfate), Turkey Meal, Peas, Sweet Potatoes

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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 25
Features real, deboned salmon with the protein and amino acids your dog needs for leaner muscles, and the exceptional flavor she instinctively craves.

American Journey has produced an affordable dry dog food that contains an above-average amount of protein, a near-average amount of fat, and a below-average amount of carbohydrates.

On the surface, these stats are pretty great for a budget brand of dog food and should provide a good base for the development of healthy bones and joints.

Great for food-sensitive dogs, this grain-free formula features real deboned salmon as the first ingredient and novel protein.

The other incredible natural ingredients include peas, sweet potatoes, chickpeas, menhaden fish meal, blueberries, and carrots to create a well-balanced diet, plus salmon oil for essential omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids.

For muscle building among other health benefits, this salmon and sweet potato recipe offers a high 32% protein load.

It has no cheap fillers, artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives, which should be good in preventing tear stains and also easy on sensitive stomachs.

8. Forza10 Nutraceutic Sensitive Tear Stain Plus

First 5 Ingredients: Anchovy Meal, Peas, Fava Beans, Pork Meal, Fish Oil (Preserved With Mixed Tocopherols)

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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 26
Designed to help dogs with ocular issues, including excessive tearing, it also offers complete and balanced nutrition for healthy dogs.

Here’s a grain-free dog food that’s created to address dog tear stain issues. Forza10 presents this dry formula intended for supporting a dog’s eyes and prevent excessive tearing.

It also has limited ingredients, with wild-caught anchovy meal as a primary protein source, to suit dogs with a sensitive stomach and allergic reactions to common proteins. 

The kibble also has a blend of hydrolyzed salmon protein and hydrolyzed fish protein for a wealthy 30% minimum crude protein.

Fish oil is part of the formula for essential fatty acids to boost the dog’s skin and coat. 

9. Purina ONE SmartBlend Sensitive Systems Formula

First 5 Ingredients: Salmon, Rice Flour, Pearled Barley, Oat Meal, Corn Gluten Meal

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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 27
Real salmon is the #1 ingredient in this dry dog food for sensitive stomachs. This crunchy dog kibble is loaded with protein to support your four-legged friend's strong muscles as he runs along on his daily adventures.

Sensitive systems need a fully supportive diet that can get the ailing skin, coat, and entire body up to scratch.

This recipe by Purina ONE does this by loading it up with vitamin E and omega fatty acids to nourish dull or itching skin, while keeping the meal highly-digestible to go easy on the tummy.

This dry dog food offers cost-conscious dog owners an economical option that still carries all the goodness of the best dog diets in the market today.

Made of high-quality ingredients, this formula is intended for dogs with sensitive stomachs and allergic reactions. Real salmon is the top ingredient, which is a first-rate protein source.

As mentioned earlier, the first ingredient is salmon, which is not only an excellent source of protein for building lean muscles and glucosamine for joint health, it’s also loaded with omega fatty acids.

Omega fatty acids significantly reduce the signs of allergies, which often show up as extreme itching and inflammation of the skin.

Lastly, there is beef fat, fish oil, and a few token vegetables (carrots and peas). The veggies balance out the diet; the fat is there to fuel your pet’s muscles, and we like that the brand uses a high-quality type of fat by using beef; and the fish oil is a key ingredient that helps reduce joint pain, allergies, and itchy, inflamed skin.

10. Dr. Gary's Best Breed Holistic Salmon with Vegetables & Herbs

First 5 Ingredients: Salmon Meal, Brown Rice, Pearled Barley, Oatmeal, Whitefish Meal

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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 28
This unique recipe begins with highly digestible Atlantic salmon that’s rich in omega-3 and also includes probiotics for better nutrient absorption.

Completing our top ten list for best dog food for tear stains is Dr. Gary’s Holistic salmon formula, with salmon meal as the primary ingredient, and whitefish meal as a supplemental protein source. 

This diet has a spectacular roster of natural plant-based ingredients headed by brown rice, barley, and oatmeal, plus nutrient-rich whole foods including carrots, spinach, blueberries, and cranberries.

It’s also teeming with healthy probiotics for the digestive system.

[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 29

Best Treats, Supplements, and Cleaning Products for Tear Stains in Dogs

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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 30
Angels' Eyes Chicken Flavored Natural Soft Chews
  • No added food dyes, wheat, corn, or soy
  • Helps to eliminate staining around the mouth and coats
  • Specifically developed for all dogs to eliminate unsightly tear stains
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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 31
NaturVet Tear Stain Plus Lutein Soft Chews
  • Comes in a palatable soft chew
  • Helps eliminate unsightly tear stains
  • Lubricates mucous membranes to help with tear stains
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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 32
Petpost Tear Stain Soft Chews
  • Yummy cheese flavor and chewy texture
  • Quickly reduces discoloration of the eyes and mouth
  • Contains no harsh chemicals or artificial additives
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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 33
TropiClean Spa Tear Stain Cleanser
  • Lightly foams for quick stain removal
  • Tear-free formula doesn't irritate eyes
  • Vanilla and blueberry blend naturally exfoliates and gently hydrates
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[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 34
Nutri-Vet Dog Eye Rinse
  • Formulated by veterinarians
  • Regular use can help fight tear stains
  • Specially formulated rinse cleanses irritated eyes
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  1. Angels' Eyes Chicken Flavored Natural Soft Chews
  2. NaturVet Tear Stain Plus Lutein Soft Chews
  3. Petpost Tear Stain Soft Chews
  4. TropiClean Spa Tear Stain Cleanser
  5. Nutri-Vet Dog Eye Rinse

1. Angels' Eyes Chicken Flavored Natural Soft Chews

Angels' Eyes Chicken Flavored Natural Soft Chews are made to lessen a dog’s tear stains.

With limited ingredients and outstanding nutrients including colostrum powder, these delicious chicken-flavored treats are safe for sensitive dogs and support their immune and digestive systems. These chews do not contain any artificial ingredients.

2. NaturVet Tear Stain Plus Lutein Soft Chews

Another healthy treat that can help treat tear stains is NaturVet’s Tear Stain Plus Lutein Soft Chews, which is made of vitamin A-rich veggies and fruits like broccoli, kale, spinach, kiwi, and grapes, plus fish oil.

3. Petpost Tear Stain Soft Chews

If you’re looking for another all-natural and flavorful treat and health booster for your pups, try Petpost Tear Stain Soft Chews.

These cheese-flavored nutritious bites should be well appreciated by your fur babies. Made with outstanding plant-based ingredients led by cranberry extract and Oregon grape root, enriched with vitamin C, fatty acids, and other vital nutrients.

4. TropiClean Spa Tear Stain Cleanser

Made with all-natural ingredients, this dog tear stain cleanser is absolutely effective and safe in wiping off dog tear stains.

Among the fabulous ingredients are blueberries, coconuts, oatmeal, kiwi, and ginger. It’s also mild on the skin and leaves a pleasant vanilla scent on your pup’s face. This is especially helpful to light-colored and white dogs.

5. Nutri-Vet Dog Eye Rinse

To wash irritated dog’s eyes and remove tear stains, Nutri-Vet Dog Eye Rinse is a great product to use. It is non-irritating and safe for cleansing your pooch’s eyes and surrounding areas. It can also help relieve discomfort from eye irritation.

Developed by veterinarians, this eye rinse contains boric acid, which helps fight harmful bacteria. Light-colored and white dogs will benefit the most from this product when regularly used to wipe off tear stains.

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What To Do To Prevent And Reduce A Dog’s Tear Stains?

All dogs are beautiful in the eyes of dog lovers. Getting rid of these annoying tear stains can only make them even more charming. There are simple home remedies to wipe off these messy smudges on your pretty pup’s face.

Here are a few tips to help prevent and reduce tear stains in dogs:

1.    Apple Cider Vinegar

Mix one teaspoon of organic apple cider vinegar with your dog’s diet or drinking water. This will change the acidity of the dog’s pH balance, which should help prevent yeast and bacterial infections that can provoke excessive tearing.

2.    Trim Hair Around the Dog’s Eyes

Keep the hair around the dog’s eyes short so it doesn’t touch the surface of the eyes and cause irritation.

3.    Regularly Wash the Dog’s Face

Dogs can get themselves quite grimy at times and many different tiny particles stick to their faces so a regular face wash can help remove dirt and particles.

Tear stains may also be removed or lightened using a cloth, paper towel, or towel soaked in warm water and with a little baby shampoo. 

There are also certain pet products like face wipes and eye solutions that are safe in washing a dog’s face and removing tear stains.

Contact lens solutions can help dilute the tear stains but be careful not to apply in your pooch’s eyes, as their eyes are not accustomed to this chemical. 

The key is to clean the face regularly, especially the areas around the eyes so the porphyrins don’t build up, and also to avoid the growth of yeast and bacteria.

4.    Fresh, Clean Drinking Water

Always have fresh and clean drinking water beside your dog’s meal. Water is crucial to the health of your pets.

Make sure the water is clean, which means regular cleaning of the water bowl and pouring fresh water, preferably filtered or distilled to avoid extra minerals (like iron) that can contribute to the stains. 

Vets are now recommending the use of non-plastic bowls for food and water, which they believe are safer than plastic bowls.

5.    Play Time and Exercise

As mentioned, stress is one root for excessive tearing. Spending more time with your pups is a surefire way to reduce their stress and anxiety.

Walking them in the park or just around the neighborhood can go a long way in keeping your pets happy, active, and healthy.

Playing catch is a very enjoyable activity for them too, among other fun games you can have to keep them stress-free and also to avoid obesity.

6.    Supplements

Healthy nutrition can largely prevent health issues including epiphora. There are many available food supplements and vitamins for dogs that can provide them with essential nutrients for good health.

Some probiotic supplements are also known to be helpful in eye conditions and fighting harmful microorganisms. But it’s best to consult the vet for the right supplement.

7.    Proper Diet

One of the best ways to maintain a healthy dog is to give them a complete and balanced diet, whether wet or dry dog food, that’s free of unfavorable ingredients such as cheap fillers, artificial flavors, and artificial preservatives.

High-quality wet or dry dog food is made of all-natural and human-grade ingredients and fortified with all the essential vitamins and minerals for overall health. 

More than the tear stains, the total health of your dog depends on the quality of the dog food. It's integral for dog parents to try and strengthen the dog's digestive health and immune system too, as well as support healthy skin and coat by providing the best dog food they can afford.

If you are unsure about the main cause of your dog’s tear stains, or if after some remedies the tear stains persist, don’t think twice about bringing Fido to the animal hospital for proper diagnosis. Prevention is better than cure, and definitely much cheaper.

[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 36

Conclusion

Tear staining in dogs is usually a result of excessive tearing, which can be caused by several factors. Tear stains per se do not indicate something serious.

But if your dog is having chronic excessive tearing, chances are she has a health issue that needs to be diagnosed by the vet. The accumulation of porphyrins as a result of excessive tearing tends to produce tear stains.

The most common causes for dog tear stains are eye infections, eyelash or eyelid issues, scarring, shallow eye sockets, stress, and allergies to name a few. All these can trigger excessive tear production, which tends to develop dog tear stains.

Some canine breeds are also naturally prone to tear staining because of the shape of their face. Short-nosed dogs like the Shih-Tzu, Pekingese, and pug, are prone due to their shallow eye sockets or hair growth in their eyes' skin folds. Cocker spaniels and poodles, on the other hand, tend to have blocked tear ducts.

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The allergic reaction to dog food can cause dog tear staining too. This is why choosing the right dog food is crucial also in the effort to prevent tear stains. Check the dry dog food (or wet) you serve your pups if it contains common allergens like cheap fillers and artificial ingredients. 

The ideal dog food is made of all-natural and human-grade ingredients. Addressing your dog's allergic reaction to food is one way to lessen tear stains naturally.

Many cheap dog food brands have ingredients that induce an allergic reaction in dogs. Poor diet is surely a major contributor to a dog's tear staining. Remember that a dog's food is always a critical key to their health. 

Regularly cleaning your dog's face, especially the areas surrounding the eyes, is imperative to reducing and avoiding tear stains, especially for light-colored and white dogs.

But regardless of your dog's breed, regular cleaning will keep microorganisms away, which are also elements to develop tear stains in pets. 

Regular trimming of long hair around the eyes is also a must to avoid irritating the eyes. 

Always give your dogs clean water, preferably filtered to avoid excess minerals. This will help reduce tear staining.

Spending quality time with your furry friends can also reinforce efforts to check tear stains. Stress can also cause tear staining, aside from other more serious health problems in your dogs.

Play with your pups more to relieve their stress. It's also a great way to keep them healthy and maintain their ideal weight. Dogs always look forward to those lovely morning walks with their humans. 

Finally, if you suspect a lingering health issue in your dogs, whether it causes tear staining or not, do not think twice about consulting the veterinarian.

[year] Best Dog Food for Tear Stains and Tips to Keep Them Away 37

How do I get rid of tear stains on my dog?

Wash the muzzle hair with dry shampoo or waterless shampoo and a wet washcloth. You may also try 3% hydrogen peroxide on a paper towel. Comb and blow-dry afterwards. Keep the hair around the eyes trimmed to avoid it irritating the eye and causing tearing.

Are tear stains bad for dogs?

Although tear stains in themselves are not harmful to dogs, in some cases they are indicative of other problems, such as ingrown eyelashes, teething problems in puppies, corneal ulcerations, ear infections, a pH imbalance, certain medications, poor diet, unusually large tear glands or unusually small tear gland.

What causes tear stain in dogs?

This discoloration is caused by a chemical called porphyrin. Porphyrins are excreted primarily through bile and the intestinal tract, but in dogs a significant amount of porphyrin is excreted through tears, saliva and also urine.

Do all white dogs get tear stains?

Regardless of breed, white dogs are more likely to have visible tear staining on their faces, because the pigments in their tears can easily dye light-colored fur. Also, dogs with long hair on their faces may be more prone to excessive tearing.

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