'Tear staining' is a common problem in bulldogs, especially when they have white or light-colored coats or heavy wrinkles. The creases, especially around the eyes and nose, gather dirt and are inclined to produce brownish stains, which are particularly difficult to eradicate. These are not only unsightly, but in extreme cases can become infected.
Tear stains appear when the hair below the eyes remains wet and forms the breeding ground for bacteria and yeast, more specifically Red Yeast or Ptyrosporin, which causes a deep-brownish stain. Causes can be excessive tearing, genetic conditions, infections, parasites and diet.
After insuring that irritation, infection, diet issues or an external agent have been eliminated as a cause of excessive tearing) tear stains can be removed.
Clean the area at least weekly with a tear stain remover. Try out different brands, as there effectiveness may vary from brand to brand. Many breeders simply use a 50/50 solution of hydrogen peroxide applied on a cottonball to clean the area and then dry the creases with talcum powder. You can use human hair peroxide diluted or mixed into a pasta that you apply on the stained area. Hydrogen peroxide is highly irritating so be careful not to get any in your bulldog's eyes. A heavy layer of a tick ointment, such as those used to treat diaper rash, may also work. Reapply the ointment consistently whenever your bulldog tries to rub it off. Continue this treatment until hair begins to regrow and the stains have completely vanished.
Other products that have given good results with other bulldog owners: Angels Eyes for Dogs a product developed to eliminate unsightly tearstains from the inside out, by sprinkling some of the product on your dog's food, Diamond Eye, tear stain remover and facial cleanser, and I-Stain, a water soluable oral supplement that is high in probiotics, natural products, and bioflavonoid that is also mixed to the food.
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References and external links:
The Bulldog, yesterday, today & tomorrow by John McGibbon.
Tear Staining. Causes and Cures: a very complete article written by Bobbie Linden for Maltese dog owners, but the tips and advice given are applicable for bulldogs as well.