Ear infections in dogs are common and most dogs will suffer from this painful condition sometime in their life. Scratching and rubbing at the ear(s) and head shaking/tilting are common signs.
You may also notice an abnormal odour from the ear or see redness or swelling. Most ear infections in adults are caused by bacteria and yeast, though ear mites are a common cause in puppies.
Treatment for ear infections
You will need to see a vet to firstly diagnose the problem and then administer the correct treatment for your dog. Remember not all ear infections are the same. You may have medication at home from a previous infection, but it may not be the correct one to use the next time. It’s important to always speak with a Vet before administering medication.
Preventing ear infections
Prevention will be determined by the underlying problem or cause of the ear infection. In many cases ear infections cannot be so easily diagnosed or identified. Some dogs can suffer allergies that can be environmentally related (pollens, grass, trees, weeds, mites, etc.) or diet (beef, chicken, fish etc) and are predisposed to ear infections. This is due to the microscopic inflammation that allergies cause in the skin allowing overgrowth of bacterial and yeast organisms that normally inhabit the skin. Cleaning your dog’s ears regularly with an ear cleaning solution can sometimes reduce the frequency of reoccurring ear infections.
If you are uncomfortable cleaning your dog’s ears the Best Friends Grooming team can do this for you. Our Beauty Bath, Groom Out, Full Groom and Breed/Style Clips all include this service for your dog.