Ear Infections

Ear infection is one of the most common issues dealt with by vets – and it’s possible to reduce the ear problems that occur. Our warm climate, humidity and swimming can contribute to these issues. Other causes can be allergies, parasites, foreign bodies like grass seeds and medical problems.

Canine Anatomy

Because of the twisty, curvy design of a dog’s inner ears, it’s easy for parasites bacteria and yeast to hide and thrive in them. This also means that any debris in the canal must work its way up to escape. Infections can result from trapped debris. Dogs with allergies are particularly vulnerable, as are those with floppy ears, like such as Spaniels, Pugs, Hounds, Beagles, Retrievers, Shih Tzu, Poodles, Rottweilers and German Shepherds

Routine Care

Your dog’s regular grooming/maintenance routine should include regular ear checks. This is especially important for dogs who produce excessive earwax or have a lot of inner-ear hair:

If your dog’s inner ears appear dirty, clean them with a cotton ball dampened with mineral oil, hydrogen peroxide or a solution formulated specifically for this purpose. Inner-ear skin is delicate, so allow your vet to demonstrate the proper method for cleaning your dog’s ears.

Do not clean your dog’s ears so frequently or deeply as to cause irritation and take care to NEVER insert anything into your dog’s ear canal.

If your dog sprouts hair from his ear canal you or your groomer may have to tweeze it out every few weeks to prevent problematic mats and tangles from forming. Please discuss with us whether this is necessary for your dog.

Wet Behind the Ears?

If you’re not careful, frequent bathing and swimming can lead to irritation and infection. To prevent this from

happening, place cotton wool  in your dog’s ears before baths, and be sure to dry their ears as thoroughly as you safely can after all water sports and activities.

If your dog is prone to ear infections, you might want to organize a maintenance program with us to help prevent these infections.

Danger Signs

Contact us if you notice any of the following symptoms affecting your dog’s ears:

  • · Ear discharge
  • · Bad smells
  • · Redness
  • · Swelling
  • · Crusty skin
  • · Hair loss
  • · Head tilting
  • · Rubbing face along the carpet
  • · Walking in circles

 

Please also be aware that brown or black ear wax-and dry, dark wax resembling coffee grounds-are classic indicators of microscopic ear mites. Only your vet can tell for sure, so please

 don’t delay bringing a gooey-eared pooch in for a checkup Trauma to the ear canal and the pinna may occur as a result of continual scratching. A condition called aural hematoma may result and this will often need surgery to correct. If you suspect your pet may have an ear infection, please call us to arrange an examination.  In severe cases, the ear drum can rupture and it can be dangerous to apply home treatments

 

 

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