Ear infections, or Otitis Externa, is very common in dogs with long and floppy ears. These types of infections are in the top ten reasons why dogs go to the vet in the first place. An estimated twenty percent of dogs have an ear infection at least once in their lives.
What causes ear infections in dogs?
The major causes of dog ear infections are fungus, parasites and bacterias. Lab tests can usually identify the primary cause without many problems, at all.
There are many diagnostic tests that your vet can do to identify the cause and to lay out a good treatment plan for you. They will take into special account your dogs medical history and perform a complete physical on him/her. They might decide to take a small sample of the discharge or mass, if any have formed. This sample will them be viewed underneath a microscope to help with an accurate diagnosis.
If your dog has a recurring problem or has not responded well to treatment, in the past, they might require some additional tests. These include: More thorough lab testing of samples, radiographs, allergy tests, complete blood count, skin scraping and a biochemical profile.
How can dog ear infections be treated?
A treatment plan for dog ear infections is going to require aftercare of your dog. Make sure that you are clear on how to administer the medicine to your dog’s ears before you leave the vet office. Also, make sure that you return to the vet if they have set any follow-up appointments.
You want to not use cotton swabs when cleaning your pets ears. This will only push the infection further up into the ear and likely cause the situation to become worse. The ears should be cleaned each time before medicine is given.
After a bath or swim make sure that you dry your dogs ears and also check to make sure that no foreign matter has become stuck there.
If you notice your dog shaking his/her head, notice swelling, smell an odd odor, see a discharge you should go see the vet as soon as possible.
Can other conditions cause dog ear discomfort?
It is easy to confuse otitis externa with other medical conditions. 55% of dogs that deal with atrophy, or itchy skin disease, also have symptoms inside their ears. Allergies to things they eat or come into contact with can also be confused with an ear infection. Parasites, such as ear mites, can also mimic this common condition.
Make sure that your vet follows through on testing so that you can attack this problem head on and allow your dog to live a happier and healthier life.
Are there natural remedies for ear infections in my dog?
While the basic structure and functions of the ears of dogs and cats are similar to humans, dogs in particular differ in the shapes of their outer ear. While some dogs have pointed upright ears, others (like Spaniels) have long, pendulous ears which can predispose them to ear problems.
This interesting fact highlights the importance of keeping ears healthy, and clean (to prevent scratching and irritation). Your pet’s ears also contain certain amounts of wax, as well as a variety of flora (e.g. yeast and certain bacteria) to keep ears clean and free of infection.
Maintaining the natural balance of normal flora and healthy organisms in the ear is therefore important, and it is only when a weakened immune system causes over proliferation of the inner flora of the ear that problems arise.
Ear Dr. is a natural remedy to help soothe itchiness and promote clean healthy ears on cats and dogs
Ear Dr. contains a blend of natural, herbal ingredients in a medicinal olive oil base, all specially selected to support the health of the skin and structures inside the ear.
Learn more about Ear Dr. now.
Dog Ear Infections
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