Ear infections are common in pets, especially those with long, floppy ears. As a result, many dog owners are aware of the signs and symptoms of dog ear infections. The following are some of the most common symptoms of dog ear infections:
- Excessive itching and scratching at the ear
- Head shaking, particularly when it looks awkward or unnatural
- Swelling and redness around the ear canal
- Scratching at the affected ear
- Unusual discharge and odor
- Scabs or crusted over the skin in the ears
- Otitis externa, the most common one that typically affects the outer portion of the ear
- Otitis media, affecting the middle part of the ear canal and usually a secondary development in up to 50% of chronic otitis externa cases
- Otitis interna, referring to inner ear infections that can result in neurological damage
Ear infections in dogs can be dangerous, resulting in hearing loss or facial paralysis. Because of these potential consequences, it’s critical to prevent infection and get treatment as soon as symptoms appear in your pet.
Cleaning, treatment, and aftercare are all part of treating and managing dog ear infections.
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Remedies and Treatments for Dog Ear Infections
Otitis externa can affect up to 16.5 percent of dogs, with problems including the development of more serious canine ear infections. Fortunately, there are simple things you can take to help your dog’s symptoms and reduce the severity of such infections.
Your vet will clean your dog’s ear completely to remove dirt, discharge, and ear wax after deciding the level and type of ear infection your dog is suffering from. They may apply a topical medicine or use a medicated ear cleaning.
Anti-inflammatory drugs or oral antibiotics may be prescribed by your veterinarian in more serious situations.
Your dog will most likely be prescribed a topical medicine by your veterinarian. It’s important that you follow your veterinarian’s specific instructions and orders. You can make the application process go more easily if you do the following:
- Keeping your dog relaxed with affection and treats.
- Relying on a partner’s help to hold and comfort your pet while you apply medication to the ear.
- Ensuring that you place the applicator safely outside of the dog’s ear when dispensing medication.
- Gently massaging the medication into the affected area.
Even if your pet appears to be doing better, always finish the entire course of medicine. Treatment lapses or errors can extend your puppy’s illness.
Maintenance and Prevention
Ear cleaning is a crucial component of your dog’s hygiene, whether it’s to prevent an infection from forming or to manage the healing of an existing dog ear infection. Cleaning your dog’s ears can help with the following:
- Make it easier for you to examine your dog’s ear canal
- Remove microbes and other small foreign objects that may cause dog ear infections
- Clean and expose the ear canal for possible topical medication applications
Excess wetness is a common cause of ear infections. After a swim or wash, make sure your dog’s ears are completely dry. If your dog has recurring infections, consult your veterinarian about possible underlying reasons, such as allergies.
Keeping track of your dog’s hygiene is a good approach to avoid ear infections in the future. Clean your dog’s ears by doing the following:
- Using absorbent gauze, gently clean the ear. A washcloth or a paper towel should never be used.
- Cotton swabs should be avoided since they can push debris further into your dog’s ear.
- Your dog’s ears should be cleaned on the outside.
Ear infections are a common condition in many dogs. Keep your dog’s ears clean and dry to avoid ear-related health problems in the future.
When to See a Vet
Contact your veterinarian as soon as you observe symptoms of an ear infection in your devoted companion. Your dog’s comfort and pleasure will be guaranteed by prompt and proactive treatment.
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