Category Archives: Grooming

Angel Eyes for Dogs: A Review of the Best Tear Stain Remover


Angel Eyes for dogs is easily considered the best dog tear stain remover product on the market and used by professional breeders, showers and owners of many different breeds. Quick note, the actual product name is called “Angel’s Eyes”, but the general public overwhelmingly refers to it as Angel Eyes.

We discussed dog tear stains in great detail previously so I will only briefly cover it here.

Dog tear stains appear when there is frequent and excessive tearing of the eyes. The tears contain iron and magnesium and when mixed with sunlight creates a reddish-brown discoloration. Please note that tear staining may also be signs of more significant health issues in some dogs and you may consider discussing the matter with your local veterinarian.

How Does Angel Eyes for Dogs Work?

Angel Eyes for dogs is an oral treatment regimen designed to prevent your dog from excessively tearing in the first place. The active ingredient, tylosin tartrate, is essentially an antibiotic that wards off bacterial infections that cause excessive tearing. The manufacturer states that the Angel’s Eyes formula binds with the porphyrin (iron/magnesium) pigments and prevents it from binding with the hair on your dog.

Since it is an oral regimen, there is no need to apply any ointment, paste or solution to the actual fur itself. In fact, the product doesn’t actually remove the stain that is present. What it does is prevent future staining. Consequently, it takes about 3-5 weeks for the new hair to grow out and replace the currently stained strands.

Pros & Cons of Angel Eyes for Dogs

We just alluded to one of the major cons of selecting Angel Eyes for dogs and that is the amount of time it takes to start seeing results. For many folks, 3-5 weeks may seem like an eternity. However, you are fundamentally solving the problem in the long run.

The other negative about this product is that you are giving your dog regular doses of an antibiotic. Some people have concerns about this because they fear that this might compromise the immune system of their animal in the long run. However, I have yet to see any scientific evidence that Angel’s Eyes has any deleterious impact on animals.

The major benefit of this product is that you are treating it at its root. Other products call for topical/external application of the medication. This can be a pain in the butt, messy and leave your pooch irritable. Especially, if you happen to accidentally get some of the product in their eye.

The major selling point of Angel Eyes for dogs is that the product is used by nearly everyone. Tens of thousands of people use it on a regular basis and report overwhelmingly positive reviews. At this moment, it has 2,232 reviews and a 4.4 star out of 5 rating. I didn’t even see another product with more than 50 reviews.

Angel Eyes Alternatives

There are some alternative products on the market to choose from. These include, but are not limited to:

Optimex, like Angel’s Eyes, is an oral supplement to be taken while your dog eats. Diamond Eye and Eye Envy are external topical solutions.

RECOMMENDATION: Angel Eyes for dogs is the best tear stain remover and should be your choice. If you aren’t too keen on the idea of waiting 3-5 weeks for it to work its magic, you may want to try an external treatment mentioned above.

Dog Tear Stains: Searching for a Tear Stain Remover


Many a dog owners have cursed the appearance of dog tear stains on the face of their pooch. These tear stains naturally draw the attention of the human eye away from their beautiful, shiny and glossy coat and towards this unsightly development.

White Pomeranian and white teacup Pomeranian owners can be especially pained by these tear stained faces since they usually pay a premium for the privilege of owning a pure white dog.

Before we get into tear stain remover options, let us first take a look at what tear stains are and why the discolor the fur around your dog’s eyes.

What Causes Dog Tear Stains?

Generally speaking, there are two primary ways in which discoloration will start to occur around the eyes of your dog. This coloring will normally appear reddish or brown and is obviously most prominently recognized on dogs with white or light colored hair.

Moisture from the eye will leak out and spill onto the fur of your dog. One of the best ways to prevent or at least minimize tear staining on your dog is to keep him well groomed and ensure that hairs are not growing long enough to touch the eye or tear duct area. When the hair is long like that it essentially wicks away the moisture inherently needed by the eye and it drips down long the hair and to the skin.

Some dogs may have eyes that get extra moist and teary from allergens, windy conditions or other environmental factors.

Also, some dogs can frequently show discoloration from water and feeding practices around their mouths. Over time, their hair is frequently bathed in their water dish when they drink and this repeated occurrence will discolor the coat.

If this sounds like your pooch, then the good news is that there are tear stain removers you can buy that will fix this problem and help return your dog’s coat back to its original color.

However, dog tear staining can occur due to genetic issues, along with diet and/or health issues that may need to be addressed with your veterinarian. This condition is known as epiphora. Epiphora is when there is excessive tear production or problems with your dog’s tear ducts preventing drainage. Our eyes naturally secrete excessive moisture when irritated as that is our mechanism to remove debris in our eyes. When epiphora occurs the dog continually produces tears. The tears have no place to go but onto the fur around the eyes.

The ongoing presence of this moisture creates a hospitable environment for bacteria to grow and irritate the skin. If your pooch shows signs of skin irritation by scratching or rubbing around the eyes, it is possible that your dog may need to see a veterinarian and seek guidance as to how to resolve the problem.

It may only require a thorough flushing done by a trained professional, antibiotics or at the more extreme end of the scale, various types of surgeries to correct the problem.

Tear Stain Remover Products

If you believe your pooch just needs a thorough cleaning around the eyes and that there is nothing wrong with their tear ducts, you can purchase various tear stain removers or try some home remedies.

There are four major tear stain remove products you may want to consider.

Angel’s Eyes is the most popular product by far and you can read literally thousands of positive reviews over at Amazon…or you can read our review of Angel Eyes for dogs.

Make no mistake, you will not see overnight success as it takes a while to get the stains out. It can take several weeks if you use the oral supplements (Angel’s Eyes and Optimex) and lots of effort if you go the external treatment route (Diamond Eye and Eye Envy).

There are a host of home remedies for dog tear stains you can find on the internet, but I do not feel comfortable recommending any of them. They require a significant amount of effort, trial and error and even some mention using bleach, etc.  Just seems like a lot of work and risk in the grand scheme of things when you can buy a product like Angel’s Eyes, which has thousands of glowing reviews on Amazon.

How did the Teddy Bear Pomeranian name come about?

Have you ever heard someone refer to a Pomeranian as a Teddy Bear Pomeranian and wondered what that meant?

The American Kennel Association (AKC) dictates that Pomeranians require a “fox shaped face” in order to most accurately reflect the external traits of their breed. Though they are not all officially registered by show Pomeranian breeders, three prominent facial structures dominate the Pomeranian market today: Fox, Teddy Bear and Baby Doll. Before delving into these differences, clarification should be made that there are no other physical discrepancies between them.

Pomeranians, nicknamed Pom-Poms, are descendant of the larger Spitz from the regions of Northern Poland and Eastern Germany today—once known as the Pomeria Region.

Though their ancestry is attributed to Germany, Pomeranians originate from the Wolfspitz (“sharp point” in German, referencing the formation of their nose and muzzle); large breed working dogs from the Arctic.

The first Pomeranians weighed between thirty and fifty pounds. As the breed increased in popularity, beginning as early as the seventeenth century with Queen Victoria’s “Windsor’s Marco” weighing in at only twelve pounds, breeders decreased this size by nearly fifty percent during her reign (1837-1901) to meet the supply and demand of the public.

Other well-known Pomeranian owners include Josephine, the wife of Napoleon the First, of France, and King George the Fourth, of England. They even traveled among the rich and famous aboard the Titanic (1912); two out of the three dogs rescued—one on boat number six, owned by Elizabeth Rothschild, and the other, on boat number seven, owned by Margaret Hays, were Pomeranians.

All of this leads to the present day norms for a breed that is anything but average. Though Pomeranians retain popularity throughout the world, consistently ranking among the Top 20 Most Popular Breeds in the United States, their sizes and appearance can vary significantly.

These three to seven pound, seven to twelve inch height toy breeds are both sturdy and compact. Their life spans from twelve to sixteen years, and they enjoy resistance from most diseases. There are also smaller versions of the Pomeranian, also known as teacup Pomeranians. They can weigh as little as two pounds.

Their personality is friendly, outgoing and lively; protective, ultra aware of their environment and highly intelligent. They are trainable, extroverted, and prefer to be the center of attention. Pomeranians also specialize in manipulation of any unsuspecting owner. If they maneuver into the dominant position of the household (alpha), they will eagerly take control over all they feel is theirs, including their owner.

With adequate training as a puppy and consistent discipline as an adult, assertive tendencies within the household should be minimal.

Because of the Pomeranian’s close bond to their humans, they are prone to separation anxiety and, at times, believed to be a nervous breed. However, they respond well to praise from their owners and territorial instincts make them into excellent watchdogs, as long as barking doesn’t become excessive.

Size is one of their most convenient attributes. Though they are not ideal housemates for young children, they are the perfect size for apartments, needing less space for both living and exercise.

Though these attention cravers adore their homes, many of them tout “big dog” attitudes without awareness of their size in comparison to other dogs, which leads to a wide variety of dilemmas. To avoid this situation, supervision and proper socialization as a puppy, is a “must”. Also, proactive prevention is key to keeping their active minds occupied, or owners will also add “mischievous” to any list of misgivings.

Pomeranians are lookers, though, sporting flashy double layer coats: long course outer coat with dense, short undercoat. The hair on their hindquarters feathers, as they proudly show off their plumed tail. Though they shed all year–similar to other breeds that live in the Arctic, they ring in seasonal changes with two predominant periods of shedding.

The three main variances in face shape evolve from irregularities within the Fox Faces of the breed. Pomeranians born with a shorter snout and eyes that appear closer to the nose and cheeks, are called Teddy Bear Pomeranians.  When they are paired with mates sharing this same appearance, consistency results. Baby Doll Pomeranians resemble the Teddy Bears, but they have a flatter snout, with eyes set higher back on the face.

Another reason why the Teddy Bear Pomeranian name caught on was due to what is known as the “Teddy Bear Trim”. Care needs to be taken, however, whenever their double coat is shaved down or guard hairs clipped. If trimming removes the outer coat, the under coat may changepermanently, making its grooming into a life-long commitment.

And so we come to the question: why would someone choose a Teddy Bear Pomeranian? Which leads to the next question: why not? The breed’s appeal stands on its own, yet, similar to choosing color or size over alternatives in other aspects of our lives, we enjoy choices–leading to a personal experience that embellish the seed of future relationship.

Regardless whether the shape of the Pomeranian’s face resembles a fox, a teddy bear, or a baby doll, these popular household companions include their own source of energy, frivolity and charisma. Though humanity sometimes kids itself into thinking that they open their doors simply to shelter an animal, seldom foreseen is the intertwining facets of each other’s lives from that point on: entertaining, healing, and building each other up into what often develops into long-term idyllic camaraderie.

References:

http://www.petpom.com/Teddy_Bear_Poms.html (As of 12-1-13, 1:19 p.m. CST).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pomeranian_(dog)  (As of 12-1-13, 1:23 p.m. CST).

White Pomeranians: Searching for the Unicorn?

If you were to research white Pomeranians on your own and speak to various breeders you would learn that producing a pure white coat is the most difficult color of them all to breed when attempting to breed show quality Pomeranians.

Because they are so difficult to breed there are relatively few out there available for purchase.  Also, with feverish demand by the public so high, white Pomeranians can command exceptionally high prices — and white teacup Pomeranians even more!

This can and does lead some unethical breeders to scam unwitting buyers out of their hard earned money by passing off a non-white Pomeranian as a real, honest-to-goodness White Pomeranian.  The truth is that many light and cream colored Poms start out as pure white puppies that eventually change color as they age.  This happens all the time when puppies begin to lose their puppy coat at around 4-8 months and the sellers are long gone with your money after you have handed it over – especially, if you are buying through a backyard breeder – which of course you should not do!

FACT: The earliest examples of the breed were white!

Buying a high-priced designer puppy online really takes a leap of faith.  You have no idea if the dog you are buying is really the same dog you see in the picture.  And when it comes to white Poms and white teacup Pomeranians, you need to be especially certain that the image has not been “photoshopped” to give the white Pomeranian puppy for sale that beautiful snow-like appearance.

You can’t just breed two white poms and call it a day.  What will quickly happen in this situation is that the coat and pigmentation attributes will degrade. In fact, in a couple of generations of breeding white Pomeranians together, the breed will revert back to its German Spitz roots.

Fortunately, for diversity sake, there are many shades of whites and blacks. Unfortunately, when it comes to breeding these various shades make it incredibly challenging to produce pure white and black Pomeranians. The constant struggle for professional Pomeranian breeders is finding that right balance between breeding out the other colors without losing the benefits these colors bring to the table.

The following passage from WhitePom illustrates this point:

Breeding out to the other colors like Orange improves type, but can cause lemon shadings, or what some people refer to as “ivory white” in the White Pomeranians. Lemon tones on your White Pomeranians, can be very difficult to breed out at a later stage.  A quote from the Pomeranian breed standard:

“Whites must be quite free from lemon or any other colour.”

Canton Pomeranians, another prominent Pomeranian breeder states that whites are incredibly difficult to breed and that you also have to watch out for other factors that may tint or color the dogs white coat as it matures.  He writes:

Puppies may be born white but as they grow older, the back of the ears, the saddle at the back of the body, and other parts, tend to become yellowish.  And so, they should be kept clean and washed all the time.  In our area wherein our water is from the deep well, the water has a lot of mineral including manganese, which turns the white coat to light cream/yellow; chlorinated water becomes necessary.  The dog cages has to be stainless…or risk the rust of an old cage to transform their white coat from yellow to light red; the play pen should be stainless steel.  Plus, they should be kept individually separate or risk their playful attitude…plus saliva to stain and redden their immaculate clean and white coats.  This discoloration is partly genetic but a lot of it has to do with care and maintenance. An additional big problem is the tear staining the many dogs have…and in the whites, one can easily be brought in despair.

Finding a true white Pomeranian can be an elusive task.  If you are genuinely and sincerely interested in purchasing a snow white Pom, please do your due diligence so that you do not become another victim.  There are so many horror stories about people trying to purchase a white Pomeranian or a teacup Pomeranian and getting scammed.

Pomeranian Lifespan: Do Teacups Live Longer?

 

On average, the Pomeranian lifespan can range from 12-16 years with some living to be 19 or older not uncommon.  The longevity of each individual dog will depend on numerous factors.  These factors can be broken down into two distinct categories: environmental and dog specific.

Some argue that the dog food we buy at various pet stores in America manufactured by large companies are actually shortening the lifespan of our pets and that we can actually lengthen the lifespan of our dogs by several years if we pursue alternative food options.

Environmental Factors Influencing Pomeranian Lifespan

One could put together an exhaustive and extensive list of environmental factors influencing the lifespan of your dog, but we will stick to the most important ones.

  • Healthy well-balanced diets
  • Exercise and routine veterinarian check ups, including preventative dental maintenance
  • Stress factors

Feeding your Pomeranian a healthy, well-balanced diet to ensure the proper ingestion of needed vitamins and minerals is essential. This will help provide your dog with healthy skin and hair and hopefully limit shedding and hair loss.  Additionally, proper diet is the singular biggest factor in ensuring strong bones that are so susceptible to breakage.

Exercise and dental/medical check ups are just as important for canines as they are with humans.  If you do not exercise your Pomeranian you run the risk of cultivating a host of physical and behavioral problems.  Pomeranians are extremely vulnerable to dental issues and tooth decay/loss.  You absolutely must keep close tabs on this part of their health as it will have a domino effect once they start losing their teeth.  This will result in an inability to eat certain types of foods and potentially compromise their health.

Stress destroys humans and dogs.  Pomeranians can be stressed out with a lot of noise and activity in their living domain.  Besides their inability to handle Pomeranians with the care they need to prevent injury, the noise and activity level of y0ung children stresses Pomeranians very much and this can lead to a degradation of their health. Other things that may stress your dog are other pets and animals and frequent visitors.

Dog Specific Factors Influencing Pomeranian Lifespan

Like human beings, each dog is a complex living organism and some of us have stronger bodies and systems capable of keeping us alive longer.  Some of us are genetically predisposed to certain health conditions or diseases and what not.  The same can be said of our furry canine friends.

Here are some dog specific factors that impact the lifespan of your Pomeranian:

  • Females live longer than males (anywhere from a year to two years longer)
  • Smaller dog breeds tend to live longer than bigger dog breeds (but there are caveats)
  • Genetics and health conditions will cause some dogs to die prematurely

Above it states that smaller dogs tend to live longer than bigger dogs because it is believed that larger bodies require more energy and effort to produce the biological necessities to ensure life.  Does this mean that a smaller Pomeranian will live longer than a bigger Pomeranian?

If we are talking about standard Pomeranians, I have seen no evidence that suggests normal dogs meeting the breed standards have any life expectancy advantage as a result of being a smaller size.  We are talking about incredibly small dogs in general so any difference in size is relatively minor in the grand scheme of things.

The next logical question that follows is whether or not teacup Pomeranians live longer than their regularly sized brethren.

Do Teacup Pomeranians Live Longer than Regular Pomeranians?

The anecdotal evidence overwhelmingly suggests that teacup Pomeranians have a shorter life expectancy.  There are many reasons why a teacup Pomeranian may die sooner than a regular Pom. Let us a take a look at the following reasons:

  • Smaller size makes them more susceptible to injuries, broken bones and accidental deaths
  • They are generally the product of litter runts being bred and as such possess inferior breeding lines
  • Teacups possess weaker immune systems

If you are thinking of buying a teacup Pomeranian you must understand that you are making more than just a financial investment and commitment.  And given the fact that you are more likely to visit the veterinarian for health issues than had you purchased a normal sized Pomeranian, that investment can add up.  However, you and your family is making an emotional investment. With a shorter life expectancy you are essentially bringing pain and sadness into your home earlier than had you purchased a regularly sized Pomeranian and that is something you may want to consider.

Please note that many breeders of teacup Pomeranians argue that lifespans of responsibly bred and raised dogs can live as long as regular Poms.

The Shaved Pomeranian Lion Cut Grooming Style

 

These beautiful dogs are obviously known for their trademarked fur ball appearance with a lush double coat of short and long hair and many owners often ask whether or not the shaved Pomeranian lion cut is appropriate or if there will be long term negative effects.

The beautiful Pomeranian coat requires a lot of work to keep that gorgeous appearance.  Many individuals underestimate the amount of work and energy it will take to maintain a Pom’s appearance.  Truth be told, your Pom will/should require a daily grooming session.  At the very least you will need to give some quality time to your pooch every 2-3 days.  The amount of work required to combat shedding and keep Poms looking sharp often causes weary owners to seek out a shortcut – hence the shaved lion cut look.

We are going to take a look at shaving your Pomeranian or teacup Pomeranian and provide you with the information you need to make an informed decision.  Though we recommend against the shaving of your Pomeranian’s body, we do believe you can and should shave your dog in some instances and in certain locations.  Read below to learn more.

Fact:

Many owners of Pomeranians have shaved their dog for a variety of reasons and had their groomer give it a lion haircut without any issue whatsoever.  They report that with time (it varies) the dog’s coat grows back just like normal.

Fact:

Many owners have shaved their dogs for a variety of reasons and had their groomer give their Pomeranian a lion cut only to experience uneven regrowth, bald spots and patches.

The truth of the matter is that your dog may fall into either category and you will never truly know unless or until you do shave your Pom. Many people blindly shave their dog assuming that the hair will grow back normally and others shave their dog after being told that their dog will suffer no ill effects.  Now that you know that either result may occur you need to assess whether or not the lion cut is suitable for you.

 

Why You Should Not Shave Your Pomeranian

There are many breeders and enthusiasts who vociferously oppose the shaved Pomeranian lion haircut style.  And there are many reasons for this opposition.  Here is a list of reasons to avoid shaving your Pomeranian:

  • Hair may not regrow or may grow back unevenly and/or leave bald spots
  • Your dog will lose core body temperature during colder parts of the year as there is no longer any hair to protect it from the cold
  • Your dog will overheat in warmer seasons because there is no longer any hair to provide insulation
  • Dogs are living beings and are not toys, fashion statements or human accessory options

If you are one of those individuals who pamper your pooch, you probably looked at the last three reasons above and dismissed them.  You are an attentive owner who probably keeps your dog(s) inside in a controlled temperature environment and consider your pooch to be part of the family, not a fashion statement.  Maybe you just think the lion haircut style is adorable and cute.

Then the question that arises is whether or not you will be devastated if your dog’s hair doesn’t regrow back normally once you shave it.  The odds are your dog’s hair will grow back just fine and you will not have to worry.  But, if you love the fur ball look and are only considering the lion cut for a temporary style change then you should probably reconsider.

Never Say Never to Shaving Your Pooch?

There are instances where you can and should use clippers to shave your Pomeranian.  We recommend two instances where shaving is acceptable:

  • Use clippers to even out the rounded fur ball appearance of your Pomeranian much like a hair stylist will use clippers to trim a man’s hair after they have done the primary cut with shears.  Clippers allows you to be far more precise than clunky scissors when you are trying to create that spherical puff ball look
  • Use clippers to shave all the hair away from the anus so that fecal matter does not clump or get entangled in the hair around the orifice.  This will enhance hygiene and cleanliness.

How often should you bathe your dog?

Many dog owners are often scolded for washing their Fido too often and wonder exactly how often should you bathe your dog? They are told it is bad for their dog’s skin, hair and for other reasons if you bathe them too much.  I cannot speak for other breeds, but Pomeranian experts suggest bathing your teacup Pomeranian rather frequently.

World Champion Pomeranian Breeder Diane Finch advises owners to bathe their dog every one-to-two weeks!  In fact, she has stated that she bathes her show puppies every other day suggesting that it is a myth that frequent washing causes dry skin or skin damage.  She contends that frequent washing helps get the puppy coat out so that their new coat can start growing.pomeranianbath

Many believe that flaky, dry skin has more to do with poor diet and nutritional deficiencies.  Ms. Finch says that bathing keeps the skin and coat healthy and stimulates hair growth.

Owners are capable of neglecting their pooch and giving them mediocre baths from time-to-time due to ignorance or just the hectic and busy lives we lead.  When you wash your Pomeranian it is imperative that you vigorously and thoroughly rub your canine and ensure that the shampoo sufficiently lathers up all the hair follicles and reaches the skin.  Proper shampooing of your animal means that you clean the skin and the hair of your dog.

Here are a couple of tips that you may want to try during bath time. Use a comb on your Pomeranian while it is lathered up with shampoo.  The vigorous rubbing and lathering will loosen a lot of dead and shedding hair.  This will again provide for a more thorough cleaning and help speed up the shedding timeline.  Also, do not overuse conditioner on your dog’s coat.  If you feel your dog’s coat is a little too flat or soft, you are probably overdoing it.  Try cutting back to once-a-month so you can get that beautiful plumage.

Do Pomeranians shed?

Many people ask: “Do Pomeranians shed?”

The teacup Pomeranian, as mentioned on the homepage, traces its roots to a Nordic heritage.  Nordic refers to Northern Europe in simplistic terms and as such, you can imagine how cold it can get when temperatures plunge below freezing.

The double-coated Pomeranian insulates itself from these ultra-cold temperatures in the winter.  It also keeps him from getting sunburned and overheated in warmer times of year.  Even during the summer temperatures can rise into the 70s and 80s in northern climates and thus animals need to be flexible and capable of adapting to weather changes.

dopomeraniansshedDouble-coated dog breeds like the Pomeranian generally shed twice a year.  Known as “blowing their coat” they will shed their entire undercoat over a 3-6 week timeframe on average.  On a best case scenario you can expect to have your dog shedding 6-12 weeks (or a month and a half to three months) each year.  Generally speaking, shedding is usually more pronounced in the spring and in areas where climate can change rather dramatically between the seasons.

However, prospective Pomeranian puppy purchasers should go into this buying decision with their “eyes wide open” so to speak because, these dogs are capable of shedding throughout the year if they are kept indoors.  Since most Pomeranians are generally house dogs, you do face the potential reality of ongoing shedding and this can be particularly troublesome for some owners.

The fur coat is one of the signature calling cards of the Pomeranian and is often prized by their owners.  Unfortunately, these lovely little dogs require some hands-on care and can be classified as a little high maintenance.  Their delicate fur can get matted, dirty and filled with debris of various kinds quite easily and it takes some work to keep them looking pretty, including lots of bathing.

You should expect to brush your dog’s coat at least two to three times a week to remove any debris, remove loose strands and stimulate hair growth.  During periods of shedding you will want to brush more often to expedite the process, remove the hair that is being shed and to help keep your home free from this annoying fur. Find out if the shaved Pomeranian lion cut is an appropriate solution to shedding.

Do-it Yourself Grooming of Your Pomeranian

Use a slicker for the Poms shorter hair and a pin brush for the outer coat.  Failure to be diligent with the grooming of your Pomeranian may result in the dead undercoat remaining trapped under the outer coat.  This may cause skin problems and also matting.