Does Your Dog Have An Ear Infection?
13 December, 2011
Now that winter is here, both dogs and cats can get different ailments. However, it is very common in dogs to get ear infections. And, even more specifically, dogs with floppy ears rather than those who have ears that stick up are more prone to infection.
When dogs with floppy ears have bacteria or yeast in the canals, it gets mixed with wax creating an infection. Sometimes swimming, bathing or humidity can cause excessive moisture to become trapped in the ears.
If your dog is scratching his ears a lot and you find any of the following, it could be indicative of an ear infection.
1. Discharge that is wet, oily, and brown, bloody, or yellow in color
2. Redness and swelling of the ears; crust or scab near the ear flaps.
3. Hair loss around the ears from scratching.
4. Your dog shakes his heads a lot and tilts it.
If your dog does any of the above and you think he or she might have an ear infection, you should take your dog to see your veterinarian. Your vet can take a sample of the discharge, look into the canal, and see if it is an infection or parasites, or just a waxy ear. Your vet will often prescribe a common treatment which includes a good cleaning and flushing of the ears followed by medication and wiping of the ears for a number of days.
Your vet may recommend that you clean your dog’s ears regularly and try to keep them dry to prevent a repeat infection. Some dogs have a lot of hair that grows around the opening of the canals and you should try to remove or cut that hair on a regular basis. Your vet or a groomer can gently remove the fur if you are unable to do it. Some dogs are easy-going about it and others won’t let you near their ears.
There are many products available at your local pet store for cleaning your dog’s ears. Some are oily while others are dry. Ask your vet which kind would be best for your dog. Remember that even though dogs tend to let us know when they are uncomfortable, there are those moments when they don’t. It’s up to us to remember to be good owners and check their ears, teeth, and paws on a regular basis.
Good luck if they have an ear infection and even if they don’t, lets keep their ears clean!