Chronic ear infections in dogs are quite common in dogs, especially in specific breeds such as basset hounds and cocker spaniels. When a dog has an ear Fortunately, there are several steps that you can take that can help prevent these infections.
Here are some symptoms to look out for:
Related: Does Your Dog Have Allergies?
Environmental and food allergies are the most common reason why dogs get ear infections. About 97% of dogs get ear infections because of the following reasons:
Some dog breeds are more prone to ear infections due to the formation of their ear. For example:
If you suspect that your dog is developing an ear infection or has chronic ear infections, it is essential to bring him to the vet. Doing this will prevent an ear infection from worsening and creating new issues.
Otitis externa refers to the inflammation of your dog’s outer ear canal. This type of infection is the kind that you can see on your dog’s ear. Unfortunately, 50% of dogs will have chronic otitis externa.
Otitis media is the infection of your dog’s middle ear.16% of dogs of otitis externa will have otitis media.
Interna media is the infection of the inner ear canal. This may occur if your dog has an infection of the middle ear (otitis media), and it is not resolved quickly.
A study at Texas A&M University found that there is a specific type of strain of ear infection called pseudomonas that can be contagious to humans and other pets in your home. If you suspect that your dog has pseudomonas, make sure to avoid going to the dog park. Check with your veterinarian if you suspect your dog has this infection to avoid spread.
Otitis and interna media are much more severe and can lead to facial paralysis, vestibular signs, and deafness.
Dogs with long, floppy ears tend to trap dirt and moisture creating a moist environment where bacteria thrive and grow.
Breeds who have this issue is:
Cavalier King Charles
Dogs that are bred to swim are prone to get ear infections as well because they love to swim and that tends to spend a lot of time in the water. Water accumulates in the ear and is unable to escape because of the shape of the ear canal of these dogs. The trapped water also creates a moist environment that bacteria and yeast can breed in. Yikes!
Breeds that love to swim:
Chesapeake Bay Retriever
Irish Water Spaniel
Portuguese Water Dog
Dog’s ear hair is great because it can help keep debris out of their ears.
However, with some breeds, too much hair can also cause infections because it can trap extra debris, moisture, and dirt.
Breeds with hairy ears:
Cavalier King Charles Spaniels
Whether or not your dog is on any of these lists, it is important that you frequently have your dog’s ears checked at the vet and/or cleaned consistently, especially after bathing, swimming, or rolling around in the dirt.
Listed below are natural and holistic remedies for your dog’s ear infections.
If your dog is eating a highly-processed diet of only dog kibble, this can cause extreme allergic reactions and other health issues. On a kibble only diet, your dog lacks the proper nutrition they need for a strong immune system. This is because kibble is not only high in carbohydrates, preservatives, but also other processed ingredients.
Switching to a raw diet will allow their immune system to be stronger and be able to fight infections.
Witch hazel is an astringent that is commonly used as a natural topical remedy. This is because it helps with decreasing any type of swelling in the ear canal, which can also help relieve any pain that your dog might have. There is alcohol in this product, so if your pup has any sores or cuts on their ear from them scratching the area, avoid this product.
Doctor Michael Dym, a homeopathic veterinarian, recommends using green tea bags.
1. Boil 8oz of water and adding two green tea bags
2. Steep the tea bags for a few minutes
3. Add some cold water to make sure the temperature of the tea is lukewarm.
4. Use a sponge or syringe to put some of the green tea solutions into your dog’s ear canal
These remedies are not recommended in lieu of going to the veterinarian if you believe that your dog’s infection is severe. Instead, it is more of a way to soothe the ear infection while you are trying to find the root of the cause.