Common Dog Ear Problems
Ear problems frequently plague canines. Yes, infections are common but so are other issues. In this article, we will explore common dog ear problems that might be bothering Fido. If you detect problems early, then you can prevent major issues later.
Dog Ear Problem Symptoms
Virtually all ear problems cause symptoms such as itching and pain. You might also notice redness, discharge, and odor. Fido might shake his head or hold it at a tilt in discomfort.
One of the most common dog ear problems is infection. Certain breeds are very prone to the problem. Known as otitis externa, the term refers to inflammation that occurs in the external ear canal.
Canine ear infections arise due to an overgrowth of yeast or bacteria within the dark, moist canal. Sometimes the canal becomes inflamed due to allergies and irritation. Within the inflamed folds, yeast and bacteria begin to multiply. Ear infections can arise in one or both ears. You might notice that the dog starts to itch and shakes his head. If you examine the canal, you'll probably see redness, discharge, inflammation, debris, and a foul odor. Let go, and the infection can lead to permanent damage and deafness in some cases.
An aural hematoma happens when the blood vessels within the dog's ear flap rupture. The hematoma can happen due to excessive shaking which is often a side effect of an ear infection. You'll be able to see the hematoma. It will appear as a soft, warm, swollen spot on the ear flap. Some dogs experience no pain. Typically, a veterinarian will drain the blood from the hematoma. Some dogs develop scar tissue as the ear flap heals, which can cause a cauliflower-like appearance on the flap.
Ear mites feast on the blood of your dog. The tiny parasites live within the ear canal. Their bite causes itching and inflammation. The ear often becomes red and swollen with a buildup of debris.
A diagnosis of ear mites is made via an ear swab test to detect the presence of eggs and mites. Topical medications will clear away the parasites. However, if you have more than one dog in the house, then you'll want to treat all of the canines because they can easily pass the mites between each other.
You might think that your dog's ear flap would prevent a foreign object from entering the ear, but things always find a way in. Cheatgrass, barbed seeds from plants. Grass lawns and other small objects often enter the ear canal when the dog is playing outside.
If a small item becomes lodged in the dog's ears, it can quickly lead to irritation, inflammation, and a wound. Your dog might need to undergo otoscopy or surgery to remove the item from the canal. You must have the item removed, or it could cause a life-threatening abscess or infection.
If you suspect that your dog is suffering from a common ear problem, then it's time to seek prompt medical care.