Dog Ear Infections

Dog getting ears checked

Dog Ear infections are very serious; According to Doctors Foster and Smith: “Ear disease is one of the most common conditions we see in pets. The medical name for inflammation of the outer ear canal is 'otitis externa.' It is estimated that up to 20% of the dog population is affected by this disease.”

Dog ear infection is very common to with flopped dog ears. Cocker spaniels are a type of dog most prone to this disease.


Have you noticed you dog shaking his head a lot or his ears are draining yellowish or brown fluid that smells like yeast? Is there redness and swelling around the ear area?

These are all signs of a possible dog ear infection and need immediate attention. There are 3 parts to the ear, the outer, middle, and inner ear. These infections usually occur in the outer ear, which is the pat of the ear you can actually see.

Possible Causes

One of the most common causes is allergies. Some dogs are more apt to get allergies than other dogs, which can cause a chain reaction of more dog ear infections.

Is your dog a swimmer? That might be another reason they’ll develop ear infections. The way the different parts of your dog’s ear are laid out makes it hard for the ear to drain.

That means that water and other debris can become trapped inside. You can try and dry the area as thoroughly as possible in order to prevent the problem.


The first thing you need to do is clean your pup’s ears. Try putting a few drops of ear cleaner in their ear and massage the area. This will loosen anything that might be stuck in there. Be sure to wipe away the dirt afterwards.

When you’re sure the ear is very clean your vet will usually specify a few drops of medication be put into each ear. Be very careful to follow all directions from your vet so you can be sure the treatment will work.

If your dog’s symptoms are very bad they might not get drops at all, but instead your vet may prescribe a systemic treatment where your dog takes oral medication.

In addition to medication your vet might also cut the hair down around the ear. That will increase the airflow that the ear receives and speed up the healing time. If things do not clear up your dog might require surgery to reconstruct the ear canal for better drainage.

Ear Care Make It Part Of Grooming Routine

Ear care and inspection should be a part of your grooming routine. This gets the pet used to having its ears handled, making exams and medication administration easier when necessary.

Keeping the hair trimmed around their ears will help prevent foxtails or other foreign objects from working their way into the ear.

Don't use Q-tips or cotton buds in cleaning. Instead, use cotton balls. Dip them in an ear cleaning solution obtained from the vet's clinic.

Once you know what to look out for you can do a lot to prevent dog ear infections. If your dog happens to get one, you can rest assured knowing there is treatment available and that you’ve done your job as a pet owner to learn all about it.

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