September 27, 2010

Should you be concerned about your dog’s health if they have ear mites?

Filed under: ear infection in dogs — Dr. Amber Reed @ 10:40 am

canine ear mites While ear mites mostly seem like an irritation, they can actually lead to more serious health concerns. Ear mites are very small infectious parasites that love to live in dogs’ ears. They are very difficult to spot with the naked eye, but generally appear as small white dots in your dog’s ear. Indeed, ear mites will nest in a dog’s ear for their entire life cycle eating your dog’s ear wax until the sensitive skin inside the ear is exposed and irritated.

Veterinarians will usually diagnose ear mites after carefully examining your dog’s ear wax under a microscope. But, since these annoying critters are so small, it can be very difficult to self-diagnose ear mites in dogs. However, there are a range of signs that your dog may in fact be suffering from ear mites.

  • Dry, black discharge from your dog’s ears
  • Your dog constantly scratches behind or inside his ears
  • Frequent head shaking or unusual head tilt
  • Loss of balance
  • Inflammation of the ear canal
  • Loss of appetite
  • Vomiting

dog ear health

Because ear mites are very contagious, and in extreme cases fungal and bacterial infections can result, it is important to take these parasites very seriously. If you notice any or all of the above symptoms, you should take your dog to the veterinarian immediately.

For ear mite treatment, you need to first focuses on cleaning your dog’s ears and removing all of the discharge that has built up. Your vet will likely flush your dog’s ears with warm, soapy water to remove discharge as well as clear out the majority of ear mites. The vet will then prescribe some medicinal drops that can be applied directly to the ear canal.

Ear mites in dogs are relatively easy to treat but you should always visit the veterinarian. Over-the-counter ear medications are often ineffective while your dog is probably suffering from pain and irritation. Your veterinarian can quickly diagnose ear mites and provide your dog with near instant relief.

About Dr. Amber Reed

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Disclaimer: CritterCures is an educational resource, and all information herein is strictly for educational purposes. It is not intended to diagnose, treat, prevent, or cure diseases, nor is it meant to replace the (prescribed) treatment or recommendations of your veterinarian or healthcare provider. Always inform your veterinarian or healthcare provider of any products that your pet are taking, including herbal remedies and supplements.