Dog ear infections are generally treatable. You should make sure you get your dog to the veterinarian in Matthews, NC as soon as possible. This need for treatment is especially true if you believe the infection is severe. If your dog goes untreated for too long, it could impair their hearing.
When your dog has an ear infection, it is your job to clean it. If you are not able to, your veterinarian can clean your dog’s ears. Be mindful that your dog may be in severe pain because of the infection. Ear infections in dogs typically have an underlying cause.
Dog ear infections can be caused by bacterial infections, fungus, and other irritants. Once you know the cause of the problem, the condition can be treated appropriately. Read below to learn more about dog ear infections.
How Can You Tell Your Dog Has an Ear Infection in Matthews, NC?
If your dog has long, floppy ears, they are more susceptible to having an ear infection. Their ears will typically trap dirt and moisture. You must be diligent when cleaning their ears. The breeds that are more prone to having an ear infection include pit bulls, poodles, cocker spaniels, and shar-peis.
Below are some signs that indicate your dog has an ear infection:
Constantly Shaking Their Head
Dogs in Matthews with ear infections will constantly shake their head because the ear is very itchy, and they are uncomfortable.
Relentlessly Scratching Their Ears
The itching may be enough to lead to wounds in and around the ears.
Sliding Their Head on a Rug
Another sign that your dog may have an ear infection is that they start sliding their head on a rug. This can lead to eye issues as they are attempting to relieve their irritation.
Fungal or bacterial infections and ear wax build-up can cause a nasty odor to linger in the ear.
Fluid in your dog’s ear is common with an ear infection. Depending on the color of the wax, it could also be a yeast or bacterial infection. Keep an eye out for any ear discharge that may come from your dog.
Ear Inflammation and Swelling
The ear may appear red and sore. It could also swell.
Your Dog Appears to be in Pain
An ear infection can be painful for dogs in Matthews. There can be pain throughout the whole ear, and it can even cause pain in the head.
Hair Loss Around the Ears
Hair loss around the ears is typically due to constant scratching and/or dogs shaking their head.
You must examine the condition of the ear thoroughly to know what is going on. Make sure you alert your veterinarian in Matthews to anything unusual with your dog’s ear.
What Does a Dog Ear Infection Look Like in Matthews, NC?
Your dog’s ears are often red and swollen when an infection is present. There is typically a foul odor coming from the ear canal. There can be a black or yellowish discharge. If the condition is chronic, you may see crust that has formed inside the ear. The ear canal often becomes inflamed.
How to Avoid and Treat Dog Ear Infections in Matthews, NC
The presence of dark or black ear wax means that the ear canal needs to be thoroughly cleaned. You should routinely clean your dog’s ears, but if you have trouble you can always consult with your vet for help.
If your dog has an ear infection, there are different treatment options your veterinarian in Matthews may recommend. Don’t hesitate to contact them for help in treating this condition in your dog.
Below are some ways to help prevent and treat dog ear infections:
Clean Your Dog’s Ears
Here are some helpful steps on how to clean your dog’s ears:
- Tilt your dog’s head down with one hand and spray a gentle cleanser into the ear canal with the other
- Hold the ear and let that cleanser do its job
- Once the cleanser releases the ear wax from the inside of the ear, clean the outer ear with a cotton ball.
Anti-biotics are also used and prescribed by your veterinarian. You should use antibiotics for the time prescribed by your vet. If the infection is fungal, anti-fungal medication may be given.
Prescribed Ear Cleanser and Topical Medication
Your vet in Matthews may also prescribe a medicated ear cleanser and topical medication for you to clean your dog’s ears at home. You should tell your veterinarian if there is a yellow, white, or bloody discharge from the ear.
The yellow, white, or bloody discharge could indicate other symptoms, such as a fever. If your dog exhibits any of the indicators, call your vet right away.
What Causes Ear Infections in Dogs in Matthews, NC?
A human ear canal is horizontal as opposed to the vertical placement of our canine friends. This positioning allows fluid, bacteria, and yeast to settle in the ear without the ability to drain, causing ear infections to be common in dogs.
Some common causes of dog ear infections include:
Bacterial Infections Caused by “Staph”
Staph is a group of bacteria that can infect different areas of your dog’s body. Puppies and older dogs are prone to have staph because they have less developed immune systems.
This is a group of two hundred species of bacteria that can cause dog ear infections. This infection is generally characterized by ears that are swollen and filled with fluid.
Proteus Mirabilis Infections
This is a common bacterial infection in your dog’s ears. These organisms are usually found in the intestines of humans and dogs.
Ear Mite Infections
This is a less common ear infection in dogs in Matthews, and it typically occurs in cats. Mites are tiny parasites that trigger severe inflammation.
Yeast Infection in the Ears
This can be described by itching and flaking. These infections come about because of allergies or some other type of infection. If your dog is often around water, this type of infection can occur.
Allergens that can harm your dog’s ears include pollen, dust, mold, or certain foods.
When the underlying cause of your dog’s ear infection is found, it must be treated immediately. It is essential to find the source of the irritation, especially if it is environmental, so you can keep your dog as protected as possible.
Call Caring Hearts Animal Hospital for Your Dog’s Ear Infection in Matthews, NC
If you see your dog itching and rolling on the carpet in a mad attempt to satisfy their itch, your dog may have an ear infection. Check to see if your dog’s ears are red and swollen and if they are, you need to get them to the vet. They can recommend the best treatment that will generate healing and pain relief for your pet.
The risk of not treating your dog’s ear infections can lead to a condition called “ear hematoma”. This condition fills the flap of the ear with blood because the vessels are broken when the dog scratches and shakes its head excessively. This blood can cause the ear flap to swell and, if not treated ,to be permanently malformed.
For more information about dog ear infections, or if your dog needs to see a veterinarian, contact our team at Caring Hearts Animal Hospital. We’ll make sure to find the underlying cause of your dog’s condition and help develop a treatment plan tailored to your pet’s needs. Make an appointment for your dog by calling us at (704) 893-2799 or by scheduling an appointment online.