Caring for a dog can become overwhelming. From feeding and training to showing love, it is easy to see the challenging of bringing a dog into your home and family's lives. No matter how much care you provide, your dog may still develop conditions that affect their well-being. Considering the presence of bacteria or yeast in the ear will result in an infection, understanding the signs and treatment options for this common problem is key to caring for your dog. With this guide, you will learn about ear infections and what to do if your dog is showing symptoms.
Ear Infection Symptoms
Your dog will not be able to verbalize their discomfort if they have an ear infection. However, they will show you many signs. If you are noticing the following, your dog may have an infection in one or both ears:
- Scratching ear
- Shaking or tilting head
- Redness or swelling of ear
- Discharge in ear
- Loss of balance
- Loss of appetite
It is important to remember that these symptoms do not always mean your dog has an ear infection. It is best to consult your dog's veterinarian immediately if they are showing one or more of these signs.
Treating Ear Infections
If your dog is showing signs of discomfort in the ear, use your hands to gently inspect the inside and outside. Cleaning the ear is helpful, so you can see inside the ear better, but you must use a solution specifically designed for cleaning dog's ears. Or, create a solution using one part white vinegar and white part water.
Apply a small amount of the cleaner into the interior of the ear and use a cotton ball to massage the solution around the ear. Do not use forceful motions, since this could cause your dog pain. Also, avoid sticking a cotton swab into the ear canal. This will only push the bacteria or yeast further into the ear, which will make the infection spread or cause permanent damage to your dog's ear.
Allowing moisture to remain inside the ear will increase the risk of an infection. After cleaning, use a clean cloth to dry your dog's ears.
Inspect the ear after cleaning. If it still appears red and swollen or you notice discharge and a foul odor, it is most likely infected.
Your veterinarian will use a simple swab test to determine the cause of the infection. Then, medication will be prescribed.
Without treatment, an ear infection can lead to enormous pain and permanent hearing loss. Thankfully, this guide will allow you to realize your dog has an ear infection so proper treatment can begin.