Persians, with their large eyes and flat faces, are prone to constant tearing and mucus discharge. The brown liquid stains the hair around their eyes and nose, making them look sick, old or unkempt. Daily maintenance keeps stains from appearing, but you will need to clean any old ones first.
Wash your hands thoroughly with warm water and soap to remove any dirt or germs; a Persian's eyes are somewhat fragile, and can easily be infected if touched by dirty hands.
Trim or clip the hair around your cat's eyes and nose first; this will eliminate some of the dirty hair. It will also lessen the amount of hair that gets gummed up from the eye discharge in the future, and reduce staining.
Wipe your Persian's eyes with a clean, soft tissue so that you are working with dry eyes.
Pour a small amount of liquid boric acid—which is safe as an eye wash—onto a cotton square, such as the kind used for removing makeup. It should be heavily moist, but not dripping.
Rub the square over the cat's closed eye to clean the stain, pushing gently to make sure the liquid boric acid makes contact. Use the square once; then prepare a second one to wipe over the eye stain again. The squares can be torn in half if they are large enough. Continue this procedure until the stain is gone.
Repeat the process with the second eye, rubbing the liquid boric acid against the eye stain until it has disappeared. Saturate a square with warm water and wipe kitty's eyes to remove any residue from the eye wash.
Clean the area around and below the eyes with cotton balls soaked in clean, warm water twice a day after the staining is removed, to keep stains from reappearing.
- A cotton swab can also be used to clean the area and apply the liquid boric acid.
- Commercial wipes and eye cleaners are also available; read the labels carefully to make sure that any ingredients used are not harmful if they come into contact with the eyes.
- In the event the staining is caused by an infection, your veterinarian will need to prescribe an antibiotic for treatment.
- Never use household bleach to remove tear stains around your Persian's eyes, as it could cause serious eye damage.
Lori Lapierre holds a Bachelor of Arts and Science in public relations/communications. For 17 years, she worked for a Fortune 500 company before purchasing a business and starting a family. She is a regular freelancer for "Living Light News," an award-winning national publication. Her past writing experience includes school news reporting, church drama, in-house business articles and a self-published mystery, "Duty Free Murder."