Ear Infections in Dogs
Ears are one of the most common locations for infection in dogs. Dogs with long, floppy ears or ears that have fur growing inside are especially likely to experience ear infections because large ear flaps or fur trap moisture in the ear canal, making it a great environment for bacteria or yeast. If you notice that your dog’s ears are bothering them, you should have your veterinarian take a look to see what is going on.
The most common cause of ear infections in dogs is exposure to water from swimming or bathing. Other causes of ear infections include build-up of wax in the ear, mites, allergies or other health conditions such as diabetes. If the infection is secondary to another condition, you need to address the root problem – not just the ear infection. Allergies for example alter the flora balance within the ear making them easily susceptible to picking up chronic ear infections.
If a dog’s ears are infected you can usually find a dark or yellow foul-smelling discharge in their ears and your dog will be noticeably bothered by them. Infected ears are painful so they will probably be red, swollen and sensitive. Your veterinarian will prescribe ear drop medications that your can put in your dog’s ears to clear up the infection. Dogs that get ear infections can get them chronically so take a peek in your dog’s ears regularly to make sure they look clean and healthy. Severe and chronic cases may require surgery. It is a good idea to clean your dog’s ears occasionally, especially if they could have gotten water in them. Make sure to use an ear cleaner that is safe for dogs and simply wipe away debris with a cotton ball. Do not stick anything down deep into your dog’s ear because you could damage their ear drum.