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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We have trouble cleaning our toy's eyes. We typically use some eye wipes and a nit comb and it does ok, but when they get really gunk'd up the only thing that does much is to wet them and let it sit. It still isn't great. A groomer suggested using dawn dish liquid, but I wiped some on my eyeball first and it burns, so that's a no-go for him.

Anyone have a good product or technique to break that gunk up well enough to get it out of there reasonably quickly?
 

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A damp wash cloth works for me.

Maybe you need to wipe several times a day so it doesn’t build up?

Has your vet examed your dog’s eyes? Maybe there’s another issue such as inward growing lashes that may cause more than the normal amount of tears and requires special treatment.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
A damp wash cloth works for me.

Maybe you need to wipe several times a day so it doesn’t build up?

Has your vet examed your dog’s eyes? Maybe there’s another issue such as inward growing lashes that may cause more than the normal amount of tears and requires special treatment.
I think he's fine. We're just not staying on top of it like we should, and once it builds up much it's hard to make up for our failure to maintain it properly in the first place. I feel a little bad about sticking our groomer (not the dawn liquid recommending one) with the task of getting it off there. They always apologize for the staining and I always tell them it's our fault for not keeping up with it enough.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Diamond eyes melts our Yorkie's eye gunk. Dab on, wait, wipe off. Eye gunk is one reason I keep Annie's face shaved, so it is easy to flick off.
And that's a big part of it too. We don't do the clean face. He has a very non-traditional poodle look. Mustache, furry paws, even fur all round, short ears, etc. It was my only stipulation for being a grown man walking an 8lb froo-froo dog, although he's now my little buddy and I don't really care all that much. Overall, though, we just prefer this look to the traditional style. I'd just like to have a way to get the gunk out when we let it go too far. He's also outside a lot and always shoving his face into something disgusting. Everything just builds up quickly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Diamond eyes melts our Yorkie's eye gunk. Dab on, wait, wipe off. Eye gunk is one reason I keep Annie's face shaved, so it is easy to flick off.
Is that KW Diamond Eyes or Johnson's Diamond Eyes? Or maybe they're one in the same now or something.
 

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Johnson's - Blue bottle.

As for face shaving - I notice that on long haired shedding breeds, like rough collies, long haired German shepherds, Aussies, afghan hounds, etc the hair is naturally short on the face area to keep hair out of the eyes, mouth, etc. I think poodles look more like dogs and less like teddy bears with a shaved face, but it's all personal preference. Plus, no icky wet beard. I originally planned to do all one length, but I can't stand the food/gross stuff stuck in the beard if it starts growing out.
 

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Winnie 10/24/20 standard poodle
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I'm not sure what color your boy is but I had a much harder time keeping our old black spoo cleaned up than our young cream pup. We often had to sit with a warm wet cloth on each eye in order to soften the gunk up. Indie knew what I was thinking and would run and hide behind my husband's office chair. Pulling those tiny hairs really hurt her. I now clean Winnie's face every day. She loves the attention because it doesn't hurt. It's just part of our daily grooming spa routine. 🐾💜
Cindy, Winnie's mom
 

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Every morning when I go to the bathroom, Basil follows me for pets and I wipe out her eye boogers there. It's just part of the wake up morning routine.
 

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Every morning when I go to the bathroom, Basil follows me for pets and I wipe out her eye boogers there. It's just part of the wake up morning routine.
i think Basil’s plan is a good one. Look for times in the day where you can build into your routine to wipe tear stains. When they build up in the hair under the eyes it can be very painful to the dog and I’m sure you don’t want to cause pain.

I find the little wash cloths used for washing newborn babies are great for wiping eyes; they are small and soft. If you make a habit of getting one damp after washing your face or brushing your teeth then you wipe the dried tears you’ll find it will become a habit and much easier for your dog.

I understand you don’t want a traditional poodle clip, sounds like you have an Asian style. There are ways to shave below the eyes to limit staining and make it easier to keep clean, while retaining fluffy around the face. You may also have problems keeping your dogs mouth area clean too with some fluffy faces if the mustache area isn’t wiped regularly.

Google “donut mustache poodle“ or “donut head poodle“ and see how parts of the face can be shaved for easier more comfortable maintenance while still having that Asian look of a stuffed animal. It still requires more maintenance than a shaved face but less work than some other styles. I believe this photo is on Poodle Forum, I found it on google images and copied it but don’t know who to attribute it too.


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Peggy Sue, Standard Poodle Born May 2019
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Yes to keeping her little face shaved at least around the eyes. It can follow her natural contours and be very, very subtle. I think a lot of the “natural” poodle styles people like actually do involve shaving around the eyes. It’s just not obvious, so people tell their groomers NO FACE SHAVING. :)

And yes, too, to daily cleaning. My last girl had a fair amount of tearing, but early on a vet told me not to clean her face daily, as it could cause irritation. I held tightly to that, and ended up torturing her instead when the gunk built up. Sigh. Coconut oil helped make it a little less painful, but it was no fun for her at all.

With Peggy, I keep her hair shaved around her eyes and give them a little swipe with my fingers once or twice a day. It‘s more like affection than grooming, especially since I let her lick my goopy fingers after every swipe. She thinks it’s (gag) the best.
 

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I'll echo what others have said. You mention that you don't clean daily, but that is probably the best way to keep the gunk easy to remove and maintained — moreso than any product you could buy.

I just wipe my girl's eye boogs every morning after I brush my teeth. A good technique for building a solid habit is to link it up to something you know you will do every single day, so I suggest making a plan for that. For me it's every AM after I brush my teeth but it could be every day after dinner, after feeding breakfast, whatever is easiest for you to remember. It only takes a few seconds a day when you stay on top of it.

Other than that, keeping the hair short in the inner corners of the eyes helps. My pup has a teddy cut but I keep the corners of the eyes trimmed for easy cleaning so that the gunk is easier to wipe.
 

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When I was doing Grooming Courses here, there was a heavy emphasis on the "Asian" style (to us it is the normal poodle look). I can say that there is trimming of the fur near the eyes (short, really short), and on the poodles with heavy staining, we shaved the area under the eyes.

My Tzu has pretty gunky eyes, we clean before bed and when she wakes up to keep on top of the staining, also eye drops! Never had a brown streak since coming home as a puppy.
 

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When I get my poodle, I think I will have a groomer do the whole dog every 6 weeks or so. I think the face will need it more frequently to keep a clean look. What tools will I want to get for shaving the face?
 
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