It’s important to learn about the structure of the ear in order to understand infection. The three parts to the ear are the outer, middle, and inner ear. These infections actually occur in the outer ear, which is the pat of the ear you can actually see.
It is this structure that makes dogs prone to getting ear infections. The way the different parts of the ear are laid out makes it hard for the ear to drain. That means that water and other debris can become trapped inside.
If you’re not sure if your dog has an ear infection it’s important to learn the signs. Many dogs that are infected will shake their head often, their ears will drain with a yellowish-brown fluid, and the ear gunk might smell a bit like yeast. There may also be some redness and swelling around the area depending on how bad off the infection is.
There are many reasons these infections occur. One of the most prevalent is because of allergies. Some dogs are more apt to get allergies than other dogs, which can cause a chain reaction of more ear infections.
If your dog swims that might be another reason they’ll develop ear infections. The ear anatomy makes it hard for water to drain out so yeast and bacteria multiply in the area. You can try and dry the area as thoroughly as possible in order to prevent the problem.
After your dog has been diagnosed with having an ear infection you’ll want to take steps to get rid of it. 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 you can put the medication in your dog’s ear. Be very careful to follow all directions from your vet so you can be sure the treatment will work. Your vet will usually specify to put a few drops of medication into each ear.
Now, not every dog with an ear infection receives the same treatment. If it is more of a yeast problem your dog will most likely receive an anti-fungal medication. If it is more of a bacterial infection your dog will get an anti-bacterial. Also, if your dog’s symptoms are very bad they might not get drops at all, but rather 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.
Once you know what to look out for you can do a lot to prevent ear infections in your dog. 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.