Also called “Poodle Eye,” tear stains are dark blotchy areas that form on the hair under the eyes of some dogs—and they don’t have to be poodles. In fact, cats can get tear stains, too! This discoloration is particularly obvious in lighter-coloured dogs. The “stains” are caused when the eye expresses an excessive number of tears, which react with the bacteria in the hair. If tear stains are a chronic problem with your pet, it may indicate that is an underlying medical cause, such as infected tear ducts. You should bring this to the attention of your veterinarian. If routine cleaning with a moist washcloth doesn’t remove the stains, you can try solutions that are specially made for this condition. You can find them in pet-supply stores. Be sure to follow the directions.