Unlike human ears, your pets ears, particularly in dogs, come in all shapes and sizes. Dogs also have a longer ear canal with both vertical and horizontal components. This causes the canal to form the shape of an L or a J. Because of this, it makes it more difficult to keep the ears free from debris.
Ear infections are typically caused by yeast, bacteria, or a combination of both. Ear mites, wax buildup or allergies can even be the source of an ear infection. Knowing the right things to feed your loved one is also important as excessive sugars and grains can feed the yeast that already lives in the ear. This will result in a dark, yeasty, foul smelling buildup.
Cats tend to be more susceptible to ear infections if they have a suppressed immune system, have contracted ear mites, or if your cat suffers from allergies or diabetes.
Signs that your pet might be suffering from an ear infection could include, circling around, smelly ears, red or swollen ear canal, pawing or scratching at the head, loss of hearing, head shaking, ear discharge, head tilt and nystagmus, (unusual eye movements).
An ear swab is highly recommended as it helps diagnose what kind of infection your pet may have. This allows the doctor to prescribe a more precise medication to treat the problem best. One thing to keep in mind is that ear infections don’t go away overnight. It typically takes anywhere from 3-10 days before you will start seeing improvements on medications.
If you notice any of the above symptoms in your pet, give our office a call to schedule an examination and consultation with one of our doctors.