Animals Pets

Dog Ear Infection: Every Thing You Need To Know From Causes To Treatments

A dog ear infection is also known as “otitis”, it is one of the most common dog’s diseases these days. Also, it is most frustrating to deal with, because maybe your dog suffers from it again and again. You should know the symptoms, treatments, and prevention of dog ear infection.

There are few breeds which are affected by ear infection more than others because they have floppy and hairy ears such as Cocker Spaniels, Miniature Poodles, and Old English Sheepdogs.

ear infection

The swimming dogs also get affected by it immediately, because of too much moisture trapped in the ear.

Types of Canine Ear Infection

It is estimated that 20 percent of dogs are affected by some sort of ear diseases. There are three kinds of ear infection. They are listed below:

  • Otitis Externa
  • Otitis Media 
  • Otitis Internal

In Otitis externa infection, the external portion or cells lining outside the ear of the dog is affected by the infection. In Otitis media and internal, affect the middle and internal part of the ear. They are the rarest and very serious cases. So it is important to treat such diseases in early stages.

Ear Infection Symptoms

In such a situation the dog suddenly starts scratching himself and sometimes it makes ear surrounded area red. Below is the list of few common symptoms of ear infection.

  • Head-Shaking
  • Odors
  • Scaly Skin
  • Whining and Pawing at the affected ear
  • Dark and Smelly Discharge
  • Redness and Swelling
  • Itchiness

Common Causes

The structure of the dog ear is different from humans.  The dog-ear structure is “L” shaped, due to which some time fluid stay in the ear and lead to the ear problem especially ear infection. Some most common causes of ear infection are given below:

  • Thyroid Disorders
  • Autoimmune Disease
  • Endocrine Disorders
  • Wax Buildup
  • Foreign Bodies
  • Excessive Cleaning
  • Any kind of Injury
  • Meningitis or Encephalitis
  • Bacteria
  • Yeast or fungus
  • Moisture
  • Viruses
  • Mites: It is most common in puppies
  • Drug reactions
  • Allergies

Diagnosis Of Dog Ear Infection

Once you notice the sign of ear infection in your dog, you should visit a vet as soon as possible. Such condition is very painful and also it this infection spread quickly. Consult with the veterinarian before it reaches to the middle and inner ear. Never try to treat at home in such a serious condition.

ear infection symptoms

To Diagnose an ear infection, the vet will ask a few questions such as how long does the dog is suffering from it. They will also physically exam the dog ear. For the accurate diagnosis may be vet recommend you some test, few of them are listed below:

  • Cytology test, that will identify the presence of yeast, bacteria, or other microorganisms.
  • A culture test that will help to determine the type of bacteria is present
  • Blood tests

Treatment For Dog Ear Infection

Treatment of ear infection is quite tricky and treatment depends upon nature, cause, and kind of ear infection. Your vet will recommend the best treatment for your dog’s particular condition. Your veterinarian will clean the ear and will prescribe some antibiotics to overcome the pain.

inner ear infection

Maybe the ear infection is debilitating, in such condition your dog will be kept in the hospital. once the condition is stabled then you can take it home. The vet will prescribe a few medications that you need to continue serving at home.

Follow the vet prescription neither the ear infection will reoccur. It is also important to complete the medication course.  It is difficult to tell the exact timeline of healing from this disease. Some cases will take 10 – 30 days to get well, but some may take months.

Treatment may include:

  • Antibiotic ointments
  • Drops or Sprays for the ear
  • Oral antibiotics
  • Maybe a Surgery for dogs with repeated ear infections or no response to other treatment

Can You Prevent Ear Infections in Dogs?

Almost with all diseases, prevention is the best thing. In such condition, you need to know how to clean dog ears. As moisture is one the common factor in causes the ear infection, so make sure that dry the ear properly after swimming or bath. You can use cotton balls, they are best in such a situation.

Below is the list of few suggestions which you need to follow in order to save your dog from any sort of ear infection:

  • Always keep your dog’s ear clean and dry
  • Remove moisture in your dog’s ears with the help of a cotton ball
  • Treat an ear problem just after symptoms appear
  • Follow the vet prescription about how and where to put medication
  • Do follow-up checks, as recommended by your veterinarian
  • Complete the medication course, even if the ear looks better

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