Grooming your poodle should include caring for the sensitive areas around their eyes, ears, and nose. This area can get stained and mucky compared to the rest of their coats if they have a problem with excessive red tears from their eyes.

Whether your own a toy, miniature or standard poodle, this active tearing is not something that is unusual but can often look alarmingly like they have red tears as it stains their hair in a red to brownish tinge. This is a common canine occurrence and can be treated with either simple eye care, medication or with veterinary care if your Poodle is one of the dogs with an issue that needs surgical correction.

Reasons for Red Tears

If you think your poodle is overly teary with eyes that are constantly running and marking their hair, then they may have a medical condition called Epiphora. This means that the tears have porphyrin, which is a pigment that will dye your poodle’s hair red-brown as the tears sit on the hair. This is a condition that is quite prevalent in all sizes of poodles.

It is especially noticeable if your dog is white or cream-colored. Epiphora may become evident for a short or long term period depending on the cause. If it is short term, then it may be due to the effect of allergens, or perhaps an ear or eye infection that is making your dogs eyes water constantly.

The reason for long term tearing issues may stem from a genetic problem that your poodle has and gives them the medical predisposition of being prone to these eye issues. Genetics may have left them with shallow eye sockets, or blocked tear ducts. These conditions both cause their tears to run onto their hair more so than dogs without the condition.

Whether your poodle’s tear problem is short or long term, it is best to have your dog visit the veterinarian to make sure these red tearing issues are not caused by something more serious. Glaucoma, eye, and ear infections all need to be treated and may need some medications to heal them properly if they are behind the situation you never want to assume that the answer to condition your poodle has is simple as that could lead to a bigger and longer-term problem with their eyes.

Marron has no tears, only joy – from @iamlittlemarron

Preventing Red Tears

Preventing excess tearing in your poodle’s is not difficult if the cause is not an eye or ear infection or medical defect. If you think it is an allergen that is triggering the tearing, then you need to do your best to eliminate those things that may be causing your dog’s eyes to be overly sensitive and water. Aside from using an air filter to remove allergens from the home, try the following:

  • Trim long hair around the eyes (do this VERY carefully or have a professional do it). Use good scissors such as Four Paws Grooming Scissors. They are safe scissors have rounded edges and adjustable blades when there is extra caution needed.
  • Bathe with a product that is tear-free such as Vets Best Hypo-Allergenic Shampoo. It is considered tearless, so it will reduce eye irritation and lessen the chance of red tears. Regular baths will also rid your poodle of allergens that can get trapped in their coats and continue irritating their eyes.
  • Check to make sure there is nothing in your poodle’s eyes. You can use water to flush them out of a product such as Tomlyn Opticlear Dog Eye Wash. This product will wash out allergens and foreign specks. The squeeze bottle will help in the process.

Along with these items, make sure your poodle’s eyelashes are healthy and growing properly and do not let your dog hang their head out the window when you are driving as this can irritate the tear ducts as well. Following these tips for preventing red tears may help stop the problem before it starts.

Cleaning Red Tear Stains

Once your poodle has red tear issues, the stains can become noticeable, especially on light-colored dogs. If you consistently wash your dog’s eyes with warm water and a gentle pad, this will help alleviate some of the stains. There are also products such as, Eye Envy NR Tear Stain Remover Kit that can help with the discoloration.

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Choose a product like this that is all-natural and will help with removing and the ongoing maintenance of the color around your Poodles eyes. It is important to choose a product that will not further irritate their eyes so talk to your veterinarian or groomer for suggestions of what will be helpful for your poodle and steer clear of allergens.

Veterinary Care for Red Tears

Sometimes poodle eye care may require more than simply preventative care and maintenance. Your veterinarian can offer the best diagnosis and advice in this area. Your dog’s vet may prescribe a medication such as Terramycin that will help with certain issues that can cause excessive tear production and further the staining of their hair.

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If the eye condition is not treatable with medications, then your dog may need further veterinary care that investigates tear drainage problems and other eye issues. Surgery is the most drastic outcome for your poodle, but only your veterinarian can determine which path is the best to take care of the excess tears and staining.

Final Thoughts

Red tears can be a worry when they first start to appear around your Poodles eyes. However, a quick trip to their veterinarian will get you on the right path with a proper diagnosis and health maintenance plan. For many Poodles, these red tears are easily preventable and treatable. A small number need more detailed medical intervention.

Once you and your Poodles veterinarian have figured out the cause of red tears, then you can begin to start preventative maintenance as well as cleaning the eye areas that are stained leading to their hair returning to regular color.