Canine inner ear infection is a common problem in dogs and can cause significant discomfort. Early...
Dog Inner Ear Infection Treatment - All You Need to Know
Dog inner ear infections can be very painful and uncomfortable for your pup. Knowing the symptoms and how to treat them is essential for the health of your pet. This article will provide a comprehensive overview of dog inner ear infection treatment, including causes, diagnosis and prevention.
What is a Dog Inner Ear Infection?
An inner ear infection in dogs, also known as otitis interna, is an infection of the inner structures of the ear. It is usually caused by bacteria, yeast or mites, and can lead to hearing loss, balance problems and facial nerve paralysis if left untreated.
The most common symptoms of a dog inner ear infection include:
- Head shaking
- Ear scratching
- Odor coming from the ear
- Hearing loss
- Balance problems
- Redness or swelling of the ear
- Painful to the touch
Causes of Dog Inner Ear Infections
The most common cause of dog inner ear infection is an underlying skin condition called atopy. Atopy is an allergic reaction to environmental allergens such as pollen, dust mites, and mold. Other causes of dog inner ear infections include ear mites, foreign bodies such as grass awns, and trauma.
Dog inner ear infections can also be caused by bacteria and yeast, which can enter the ear through the ear canal. Bacteria and yeast can also enter the ear through the eustachian tube, which connects the middle ear to the throat.
Diagnosis of Dog Inner Ear Infections
In order to diagnose a dog inner ear infection, your veterinarian will perform a physical examination of your pet's ear and take a sample of the ear discharge. The sample will be examined under a microscope to determine the type of organism causing the infection. Your veterinarian may also take a sample of the ear wax to check for the presence of ear mites.
Your veterinarian may also recommend a CT scan or MRI to get a better look at the inner ear structures. This will help to determine the extent of the infection and whether there is any damage to the inner ear structures.
Treatment of Dog Inner Ear Infections
The goal of treatment for a dog inner ear infection is to reduce the inflammation and pain, eliminate the infection, and prevent any further damage to the ear. Treatment will depend on the underlying cause of the infection and may include antibiotics, anti-inflammatory medications, ear drops, and/or topical ointments.
Your veterinarian may also recommend the following treatments for dog inner ear infections:
- Cleaning the ear with a solution to remove debris and discharge
- Flushing the ear with a medicated solution to reduce inflammation and pain
- Administering antibiotics to treat the infection
- Administering antifungal medications to treat a fungal infection
- Administering anti-inflammatory medications to reduce inflammation and pain
- Administering ear drops to reduce inflammation and pain
- Administering topical ointments to reduce inflammation and pain
- Administering steroids to reduce inflammation and pain
- Administering antihistamines to reduce itching and inflammation
Prevention of Dog Inner Ear Infections
The best way to prevent dog inner ear infections is to keep your pet's ears clean and dry. This can be done by regularly cleaning your pet's ears with a solution recommended by your veterinarian. It is also important to keep your pet away from potential allergens such as dust, pollen, and mold.
Your veterinarian may also recommend a diet change to reduce the risk of allergies and ear infections. This may include switching to a hypoallergenic diet or adding supplements to your pet's diet.
Dog inner ear infections can be painful and uncomfortable for your pup. Knowing the symptoms, causes, diagnosis and treatment of dog inner ear infection is essential for the health of your pet. Keeping your pet's ears clean and dry, and avoiding potential allergens, can help to prevent dog inner ear infections. If you suspect your pet has an inner ear infection, contact your veterinarian for a diagnosis and treatment plan.