I will today write about a Dog’s ear infection topic in details. Dog and ear infection can start from simple scratching at its ears or whining until a bad infection from different organisms like Bacteria or Yeast ( Fungus ).
You need as a dog owner to take care of your dog ears hygiene otherwise your dog will face this annoying and sometimes painful infection, your dog will start whining and scratching them so hard that sometimes make them red and raw which indicate an ear infection or ear problem.
The same as Humans, Dogs might have 3 kinds of ear infections (Otitis externa, media and internal). The Infection is common in those with floppy ears such as Basset Hounds and Cocker Spaniels. It is good to know and read about this kind of problem to understand and know how to reduce or prevent this infection or at least reduce its severity.
Before I start with the symptoms of the infection I want to point out what these terms mean.
Otitis externa is an inflammation that affects the outer part of your dog ear canal (external portions of the canal the effect mainly on the cell lining this area) the Otitis media is the inflammation of the middle ear and for Otitis interna refer to the infection of the inner ear canal, both Otitis media and interna are the cause of the spread of infection to the external part of the ear. You need to know that Otitis media and interna are very serious because if the infection is not treated it can lead to deafness, signs of vestibular disease such as head tilting or lack of coordination and let us not forget that it might lead to facial paralysis.
I want to start with the Symptoms of the Dog’s ear infection. After that, I will point out the Causes of this problem for dogs. Then I will write how they diagnose the infection. In the end, I will write about the Treatment and the Prevention of it.
Dog and Ear Infection – Symptoms
We all suffered from an ear infection and maybe some of us have this infection every year and we all felt that annoying pain the urge to itch and that bad smell discharge. It is simply a sensitive area that got inflamed so most of the time the symptoms are clear.
The most common symptoms can include: Head Shaking, Scaly skin, Whining and may be pawing at the infected ear ( if one is infected), smelly discharge ( Dark in colour), Redness and swelling and itchiness.
Dog and Ear Infection – Causes
the structure of humans ear canal is different from that in dogs and it is in our benefit, in dogs the structure of the canal more vertical which is a risk factor to hold fluid and easy to have ear problems like infection.
Most common causes of ear infection in dogs include Bacteria, Yeast(fungus), Moisture(A great environment for bacteria to grow) Viruses, Mites( But more common in puppies), Thyroid problems, Injury, Autoimmune disease, Allergies, Endocrine problems and Excessive cleaning.
Dog’s Ear Infection- Precise Diagnosis
Once you notice your dog with one or more of the symptoms of an ear infection, you should take it to the veterinarian to confirm the diagnosis and it is important to not wait and take your dog as soon as possible as I said it can cause deafness if not treated! And it is important because with the proper early treatment you will protect your dog and prevent the infection from spreading to the middle or inner ear.
Without a doubt, your veterinarian will ask you about your dog history because the dog and ear infection are connected, Dogs can have infections so easy, and you should answer honestly, remember the vet might be a different person than your normal person so they need all the information you can provide.
Do not worry, the questions will be like any normal question even you answer them when you visit your physicians such as questions about symptoms and the duration, if there are bad odour, discharge, the colour of discharge or pain, if your dog has allergies, if its on medication and so on with normal questions.
After that, the examination will begin which due to the painful infected ear, your dog might need sedation. The examination may include different things, One procedure is diagnostic in case of middle or inner ear infection is to insert a spinal needle to take a sample from the ear fluid for microscopic examination, it can show the infection and which type. Other examinations might include CT or MRI scans, blood tests, urine analysis Or even Biopsies and X-rays in extreme or chronic cases.
Treatment of Dog’s Ear Infection
I want here to divide the treatment into 2 types depending on the severity of the infection. Dog and Ear Infection both are just like Magnets, Dog’s ear infection can happen so often and rebound if we didn’t pay attention to the treatment and do it right.
If the infection is not so severe your vet will clean your dog ears thoroughly to make sure its clean and sterile then give you a prescription and instructions, the prescription will include topical medication and/or antibiotics, pain killer for the pain and/or steroids to ease the inflammation and instruct you to give it to your dog at home.
You need to follow the instruction precisely, because stopping the treatment or not doing it right might lead to recurrent infection, which we do not want it!
If the ear infection is a severe infection your vet might keep your dog in the hospital for treatment and to monitor its condition closely. Most of the infection take from 10 days up to 30 days to be completely resolved. However, some might take longer especially if the case is chronic.
Dog and Ear Infection – Prevention
The best question you should ask is HOW to prevent ear infection in Dogs as the best in the prevention and keep your pet healthy and happy.
It is simple when it comes to prevention, all you need to do is routine ear cleaning which reduces the chances of infection( but be careful too much cleaning is bad too), If your dog has a moisture factor then you need to dry its ears after swimming or after taking baths.
So basically all you need to do is keep your dog clean and dry, when you own a pet it might feel like a big duty and so many things to do but remember your dog is your family now. As for how to clean and methods to do it I will write all that and some tips in the next posts.
Today’s funny Quote:
“In order to really enjoy a dog, one doesn’t merely try to train him to be semi-human. The point of it is to open oneself to the possibility of becoming partly a dog.” — Edward Hoagland
Founder of Fluffy Health & Life