Dog Ear Cleaning: Everything You Need to Know

Caring for your dog includes more than just feeding and walking them. It’s also about making sure they’re healthy in every way, including their ears. This blog will dive into the importance of dog ear cleaning, what it involves, and why it’s an essential part of your dog’s health routine. If you’re looking for expert advice or need help with your dog’s ear care, Heart + Paw is here to help. You can always contact us for more details or book an appointment by finding the Heart + Paw location nearest you.

dog getting its ears cleaned

Why Is Ear Cleaning Important for Dogs?

Dogs’ ears can be a haven for dirt, bacteria, and yeast, especially in breeds with floppy ears. Regular cleaning helps to prevent infections, which can be painful and lead to serious, ongoing complications if left untreated. It also allows you to check for any signs of issues like mites, allergies, or injuries.

When Should You Clean Your Dog’s Ears?

There’s no one-size-fits-all answer to how often you should clean your dog’s ears, as it depends on their breed, activities, and health. Some dogs might need weekly cleanings, while others might only need it monthly. It’s always best to consult with a vet, like the professionals at Heart + Paw, to determine the right ear-cleaning schedule for your dog.

The Do’s and Don’ts of Dog Ear Cleaning

There are right and wrong ways to clean your dog’s ears. Here’s a breakdown:

What You Should Do

  • Inspect Regularly: Regular ear checks can help you spot any ear problems early.
  • Use the Right Tools: Special ear cleaning solutions and soft cloths or cotton balls are ideal.
  • Be Gentle: Your dog’s ears are sensitive, so always handle them with care.

What You Should Avoid

  • Don’t Use Cotton Swabs: These can damage the ear canal.
  • Avoid Over-Cleaning: This can irritate the ears and cause problems.
  • Don’t Ignore Signs of Discomfort: If your dog seems to be in pain during cleaning, stop right away and contact your vet. 

Common Signs of Ear Issues in Dogs

How can you tell if your dog is having ear troubles? Here’s what you can look for. 

  • Shaking their head frequently
  • Scratching their ears
  • Rubbing their ears/head on surfaces
  • Ears give off a noticeable unpleasant odor
  • An ear or both ears have discharge
  • Redness and swelling of one or both ears

Consult with your veterinarian as soon as possible if you observe any of these signs in your pet. 

Routine Vet Visits Can Prevent Serious Ear Conditions

If you visit with your pet’s vet on an annual or semiannual basis as recommended, you should be able to prevent ear issues in your dog, or at the very least, catch them before they can escalate. In addition to examining your pet, we can perform ear cleanings in-hospital and recommend treatment options to prevent or reduce future ear flareups.

Partner with Us to Maintain Your Pet’s Health from Ears to Tail

Taking care of your dog’s ears is an essential and lifelong part of their health routine. Regular cleaning, along with professional check-ups, can help us prevent problems and keep your pup comfortable and happy. If you have any concerns or need advice on dog ear cleaning, the team at Heart + Paw is here to help. Get in touch with your nearby Heart + Paw hospital and make an appointment today.

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About Us

Heart + Paw was founded in 2018 by Chief Veterinary Officer Dr. George Melillo, who currently serves the Mid-Atlantic area. Heart + Paw offers a combination of veterinary care, pet grooming, and dog daycare to help be a resource in your pet parenthood journey.

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Find out how the friendly veterinary team at your local Heart + Paw can help your pets live longer, healthier lives by searching for a location near you.