Dog Ear Care

In most cases, dog ears have sufficient self-cleaning power, but they should be checked regularly for dirt. If the ear is clean, pink, and odorless, it doesn’t need any further care and should be left alone. Routine checks are essential, however, because romping around in the great outdoors, digging holes, and rolling around in the meadow can get a lot of dirt, grass seeds, or blades of grass in your ears, which should be removed if possible.

Perky ears versus floppy ears

Prick-eared dogs are generally less prone to ear problems. With them, checking and wiping the ear funnel with a damp, soft cloth is usually sufficient. Baby wipes or special ear-cleaning lotions are also suitable for ear care. Only ever gently clean the outer ear. Under no circumstances should cotton swabs be used to poke around in the dog’s sensitive auditory canal! They only push the germs deeper into the curved auditory canal.

Some dog breeds, those with a lot of hair on the ear canal such as poodles and dogs with floppy or lop ears, are more prone to infections and ear problems. Their ears are less well-ventilated. Dirt and earwax accumulate more easily, providing ideal conditions for germs, mites, and other parasites.

Opinions differ as to whether the ear canal of dogs with floppy ears or very hairy ear canals should be cleaned as a precautionary measure. On the one hand, excessive cleaning of a healthy ear can lead to ear problems, on the other hand, timely removal of excess earwax can also prevent inflammation.

Dark deposits in the auricle

Dark, greasy deposits inside the auricle should be taken seriously and removed quickly. “These dirty deposits usually consist of a mixture of bacteria, yeast, and mites,” explains Dr. Tina Holscher, a vet. “If left untreated, it can quickly develop into a serious infection,” warns the veterinarian. This is because the body tries to heal the infection, causing the skin in the ear to thicken until the ear canal is completely sealed.

Clean ear canal

The auditory canal can also be cleaned with special cleaning solutions or ear-cleaning drops from the pet trade or the veterinarian. To do this, the cleaning liquid is carefully dripped into the ear and the ear is then kneaded and massaged to loosen earwax and dirt. Then the dog will shake itself vigorously, throwing off dirt and earwax (so it’s best not to do this treatment in the living room). The remaining plaque can be removed from the ear funnel with a soft cleaning cloth. If you don’t get the dog’s ear permanently cleaned in this way, the only option is to go to the vet.

Tips on ear care and proper cleaning

  • Check your dog’s ears regularly – if the ears are clean, pink, and odorless, let them go!
  • Only ever gently wipe the outer ear (with a damp cloth, baby wipes, or special cleaning lotions)
  • Cotton buds have no place in dog ears!
  • Only use special cleaning solutions to clean the ear canal
  • If the ear is heavily soiled, contact a veterinarian, and do not poke around in the dog’s ears yourself!
Ava Williams

Written by Ava Williams

Hello, I'm Ava! I have been writing professionally for just over 15 years. I specialize in writing informative blog posts, breed profiles, pet care product reviews, and pet health and care articles. Prior to and during my work as a writer, I spent about 12 years in the pet care industry. I have experience as a kennel supervisor and professional groomer. I also compete in dog sports with my own dogs. I also have cats, guinea pigs, and rabbits.

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