Dirty ears are a real pet peeve for both dogs and their owners. It can give your dog’s ears a terrible odor, making cuddle time a lot less enjoyable. Worse, dirty dog ears can lead to canine ear infections. This will help!
Did you know? Ear infections are the most common, yet overlooked, health issue in dogs and can have serious consequences if left untreated.
Here’s the good news: cleaning your dog’s ears is the best way to avoid ear infections … and get rid of those nasty odors!
It doesn’t require any serious detective work to gauge the health of your pet’s ears. Two simple tests will do the trick.
The Sniff Test
Sniff your dog’s ears on a regular basis. We know – this isn’t the most pleasant part of being a dog owner, but it is important. First, be aware of what your dog’s ears should smell like. The glands inside a dog’s ears naturally produce a light yeasty smell. If they start to smell overly yeasty, moldy or funky, it either means they need a good cleaning or there’s already an ear or yeast infection in progress.
The Eye Test
When your pet is relaxed, take a moment to look inside his ears. What should they look like? Pink with a small amount of pale yellow wax. If your dog’s ears look red or have discharge, or if your dog shows signs of pain during the exam, it’s time to see the vet.
Canine ear infections can be caused by a number of things: bacteria or yeast growth; ear mites; excessive moisture in the ear; an abundance of wax; or allergies.
While any dog can get an ear infection, floppy-eared breeds and dogs with allergies are more prone to this painful condition. Be on the lookout for these signs …
Also, don’t ignore your dog’s body language. If your pet normally likes having you rub his ears but begins to pull away, he could be trying to tell you that he’s in pain.
1. Don’t Overdo It
Don’t clean your dog’s ears just for the sake of cleaning them. If your dog’s ears look healthy, leave them alone.
2. Back Away from the Tweezers
You can pluck your own eyebrows at will, but when it comes to your dog’s ears, put the tweezers down! Contrary to popular belief, plucking those hairs in the ear won’t prevent ear infections. It can actually cause redness and inflammation and predispose the ear to infection.
3. Keep The Ears Dry
There’s nothing better than watching your four-legged swim champ play in the sprinkler or doggie-paddle at the lake. The only downside? Water play can make your pup prone to ear infections.
This is due to the L-shaped structure of a dog’s ears. It traps water inside and makes it difficult to escape. When water gets trapped, bacteria and yeast that normally inhabit the skin and ear canal multiply, causing infection and irritation of the outer ear canal.
After water play, let your dog shake off to remove much of the water himself. Then gently dry the ears. If you have a dog with floppy ears, carefully life the ear and gently dry the underside.
4. Use a Dog Ear Cleaner
Remember – keeping your dog’s ears clean is the best way to avoid ear infections (and those stinky odors)!
There are many ear cleaning products on the market, and it’s important to be a savvy shopper. Many store-brand ear cleaners contain alcohol, which can burn and irritate otherwise healthy skin in the ear canal.
And all those DIY recipes you’ll find online? They often call for alcohol and vinegar … both ingredients that can sting and burn your pet’s ears.
Additionally, many store brand ear cleaners contain slow-acting surfactants that need significant time to work. This can leave an undesirable coating behind in your pet’s ears and make cleaning your dog’s ears much more difficult than it needs to be.
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Oxygene® is our safe, non-toxic ingredient that dissolves odor-causing compounds on contact, rather than artificially masking odors with harsh chemicals or fragrances. More information...
Oxygene® eliminates odors, provides relief from itching and neutralizes harmful bacteria, promoting healthy, odor-free ears. You won’t find this exclusive ingredient in any other dog ear cleaner.
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