It's not uncommon or a dog to get water in its ears from a bath or swimming. However, if you don’t dry out the ear canal, the pup can develop inflammation or infection as bacteria or yeast starts to grow in the moist folds of the skin. Your dog will start to rub his ears with his paws or by rubbing across the floor. The animal might also shake his head vigorously in an attempt to clear away the water. If your dog has water in his ears, here are a few tips on how to remove the liquid from the ear canal.
How to Clean Water Out of a Dog’s Ears
You’ll find many over-the-counter solutions that will effectively dry and clean your dog's ears. Your veterinarian can also prescribe an ear drying solution if your dog frequently suffers from wet ears which is common in some breeds such as Golden Retrievers or Labrador retrievers who often swim and spend time in the field.
However, if you do not want to invest in a commercial ear cleaner or drying solution then you can use either hydrogen peroxide or apple cider vinegar to dry your dog's ears.
Steps to dry your dog’s ears:
- Gently rub your dog’s ears with a dry towel. Lift the flaps of the ears to softly dry the area.
- Lift the flap of your dog’s ear and apply several drops of hydrogen peroxide or apple cider vinegar into the dog’s ear canal.
- Massage the base of the dog’s ear to help the solution sink deep into the ear canal. Your dog might start to shake his head when he feels the formula entering the ear canal because it tickles. If your dog starts to shake his head, simply step back, and let Fido shake.
- After your dog stops shaking his head, take a soft cotton swab, lift the ear flap, and gently clean the debris from the ear canal. Do not plunge the cotton swab deep into the canal. Only remove the debris that you can visually see at the start of the ear canal. Do not push the cotton swab into the ear canal or you will push the debris deeper into the pup's ear and cause discomfort or additional infection.
Does Your Dog Have an Ear Infection?
You should frequently clean and dry your dog’s ear canal, but if your pup shows signs of pain or discomfort then you‘ll need to consult with your veterinarian for a full examination. In some situations, your canine companion might have an ear infection that is going to require prescription medication to clear up the infection.
Symptoms your dog has an ear infection include:
- Unpleasant odor
- Dog shows signs of pain
- Digging on the ears with a paw
- Crying or whining
Left untreated, an ear infection can become very painful and even lead to loss of hearing or damage to the ear flap from the constant scratching.
Removing the water from your dog’s ears after swimming, playing in the water or bathing helps prevent painful ear infections and brings comfort to your dog.