Ear infections are all too common in dogs.
Did you know that one in five dogs suffers from ear infections? That means that 20 percent of dogs deal with itchy, painful and downright uncomfortable ears. Because ear infections are so common in dogs, it’s important that dog owners know how to treat them, what causes infections in the first place and how to treat them. That’s why we’ve come up with this guide on ear infections in dogs.
How do you know when your dog has an ear infection?
No matter how close of a relationship you have with your dog, or how deep your connection is, your dog can’t come right out and tell you when there is a problem — no matter how much they might want to. As a dog owner, it’s important to keep a vigilant eye on your dog to watch out for any sign of an ear infection. Here are a few signs that indicate ear infections in dogs:
- Head shaking
- Odors from the ear
- Pawing or whining at the ear
- Swelling or redness
- Discharge from the ear
- Scaly skin
If you’ve noticed any of these signs, schedule an appointment with your veterinarian in South Bellmore. The necessary treatment option will be determined by the cause of the ear infection.
What causes ear infections in dogs?
There are many different things that can cause a dog’s ear or ears to become infected, and the proper treatment option can only be determined once the cause of the ear infection is determined. Here are a few of the most common causes of ear infections in dogs:
- Allergies – Allergies are, by far, the most common cause of ear infections in dogs. In fact, it’s thought that about 80 percent of dogs with food sensitivities and 50 percent of dogs with allergic skin disease also develop ear infections. Cocker Spaniels, West Highland Terriers and Labrador Retrievers are a few breeds that commonly develop allergy-related ear infections, but they can happen to any dog.
- Moisture – If your dog regularly swims or is groomed or bathed often, the cause of their ear infection could be related to moisture getting trapped inside the ear. This makes the ideal breeding ground for bacteria to grow, causing an infection.
- Breed Predisposal – Some dog breeds are more predisposed to ear infections than others. Some dog breeds have ear canal structures that trap in moisture. Other breeds may have thick hair in the ear or low airflow to the ear, which also makes them predisposed to infections. Basset Hounds, Springer Spaniels and Beagles are a few breeds that are predisposed to ear infections due to the structure of the ear canal or thick ear hair.
Although these are a few of the main causes of ear infections in dogs, they can be caused by everything from viruses to foreign bodies in the ear to wax buildup.
Stay tuned to learn about treatment and prevention.
Now that you know how to spot the signs of ear infections in dogs, as well as what causes them, it’s time to learn how to treat and prevent them. Please stay tuned for our next blog to learn about the treatment and prevention of ear infections in dogs, and don’t hesitate to contact us if you think your dog might have an ear infection.