There’s a good chance you have noticed your dog scratching at his ears at one time or another. Sometimes, it’s just an itch. Other times, it can be something more serious and persistent.
Dogs have sensitive and complex ears. Their ear canals are deeper than ours, making it hard for things to get in and, unfortunately, out of their ears. Plus, some breeds have more sensitive ears than others. That makes good ear health a must for dog owners.
Warning Signs of Ear Trouble
Part of knowing how to keep your dog’s ears healthy involves keeping a lookout for signs of trouble. Here are some symptoms to look out for:
- Your dog frequently scratches at her ears
- Ear discharge or odor
- Ear sensitivity, redness, or swelling
- Dark ear wax
- Flaky skin on or around the ears
Prevention: How to Keep Your Dog’s Ears Healthy
Make ear care a regular part of your dog’s grooming routine. When you give them a good cleaning on a regular basis, you help get impurities and other gunk out before they build up to an excessive degree. You can use cotton balls and an appropriate ear rinse that isn’t too harsh for your dog’s ears. Talk with your veterinarian for cleaning tips that specifically apply to your dog’s breed and for recommendations on the type of ear rinse and how frequently it should be used.
Visit the Vet
Wellness exams are important for a number of reasons, and ears are no exception. Keeping your dog’s ears healthy requires regular checkups. Your vet can catch problems before they get worse. If your dog is experiencing persistent ear problems, take him to the vet to get it looked at and sorted out. Your dog might need a prescription to deal with an infection.
There might be other underlying causes for your dog’s ear problems that you can discuss with your vet. Food allergies, for example, can contribute to ear infections.
Keeping your dog’s ears healthy is an important part of her overall health. Plus, keeping your dog’s ears free of buildup means he won’t have an excuse not to listen to you.