If your dog is itching ears, then you are not alone. It’s one of the most common complaints vets hear from dog owners. Dog Itching Ear is a common problem caused by various things, notably allergies and parasites.
Many commercial products are available to treat this problem, but natural remedies can also be very effective. This blog post will discuss why dogs are itching ears, the causes of ear itching in dogs, the symptoms, and the best ways to treat it, both with commercial products and natural remedies.
Ear scratching or itching is a very common issue in dogs. The severity of ear scratching differs in each dog, and it could be localized or generalized. There are many causes of ear problems in dogs, and they range from mild to severe. Flea, ticks, mites, and food allergies are the causative agents of itching ears in dogs.
The most commonly cited causes for itching are food allergies and mites. Your dog with ear infections can be very painful and stressful.The condition is uncomfortable for the dog and negatively affects their health.
The best way to determine if your dog has an ear infection is by examining his ears with a flashlight, looking for any discharge or redness. If you notice fluid discharge or soreness in your furry friend’s ears, it may be time for him to visit the veterinarian for treatment.
Why is my dog itching ear?
It’s natural to worry when you first notice that your dog has started to scratch at his ears. If your dog is scratching the ear, it could be due to an external cause like an allergy or fleas, or it could be due to an internal reason like an ear infection or inflammation.
If your dog is healthy and happy, there’s no need for concern. But if the dog’s itching continues and he doesn’t seem to be responding to any of the usual treatments, you should take him to the vet as soon as possible.
What are the symptoms of itching in dogs?
The most common symptoms of itching in dogs are:
- Scratching ears, licking, and chewing paws
- Redness and irritation of the skin around the ear
- Dog itching ear and shaking head vigorously
- Pawing at the ears
- Loss of hairs from ears and bleeding from the skin surface
- Soreness and inflammation of the ear flaps or inside of the ears
- The dark, crusty buildup of dried blood or discharge in the ear canal (often accompanied by a foul odor)
- Holding the head to one side or tilting it
- Jumping or scratching at the ground when walking
- Excessive rubbing against furniture or other surfaces
Causes of Dog Itching Ears
There are many different causes of dog itching ears, including:
1) Ear Mites
Ear mites are tiny parasites that live under the skin and suck the blood by piercing and biting. The well-known Sarcoptic mites are the cause of ear itching in dogs. These parasites can cause scratching, head shaking, and pawing at the ears. They are sometimes associated with secondary bacterial or yeast infections of the ear canal.
2) Otitis Externa
Otitis Externa is an inflammation of external structures of the ear caused by exposure to cold temperatures or excessive moisture and by trauma. A dog suffering from “otitis externa” are often shaking their heads or scratching its ears.
Fleas suck blood from the skin around the ear, causing irritation and infection. These flea bites can cause intense irritation and inflammation of your dog’s ear leading to severe itching.
Some breeds of dogs are more likely than others to develop allergies, such as Labradors, German shepherds, and Golden retrievers. If your dog has allergies, he may experience itching around his neck, body surfaces, and paws!
Dogs with bacterial infections in their ears may exhibit symptoms similar to those of an allergic reaction, such as excessive itching, scratching, tilting the head, and shaking the head vigorously while trying to get relief.
6) Foreign objects
If your dog gets something stuck in his ear, such as a leaf or piece of grass, he will likely try to scratch it out himself, resulting in irritation and inflammation, which can lead to a case of itching.
7) Aural Hematoma
Aural hematomas are among the most frequent cause of swelling of the ear in dogs. Auricular Hematoma is caused by trauma or accident resulting in minor blood vessels rupturing under the ear skin, resulting in blood accumulation under the skin, known as Hematoma.
The most common sign of an aural hematoma is a red, painful, swollen ear flap. The dog may also shake the head or scratch at it excessively.
8) Ear Polyps
Ear polyps are small growths that form inside your dog’s ears. They are not cancerous but can be very painful and sometimes cause infection due to pus drainage. These cause excessive scratching and itching in dogs. Treatment involves surgically removing them if they are causing problems.
How do I identify if my dog has ear mites?
The first sign of ear mites is a black, waxy discharge coming from the ears. The tip of the ears is always involved. This discharge can be messy and may get on your dog’s fur or bedding. You may also notice that your dog scratches the head more than usual. The tiny mites burrow into her ear skin and make itchy sores that make the dog crazy!
How to diagnose itching ears in dogs?
A veterinarian will diagnose the underlying cause of itching in dogs by thoroughly performing a physical examination. The vet will look for redness, swelling, discharge, and crusting around the ear flaps during the physical examination. He may also take ear skin scraping from ear tips to check for ear mites and examine them under a stereomicroscope.
How to treat a dog itching ear and shaking head?
These are available in different formulations, depending on the severity of the problem. The most common ones are:
1) Anti-allergy medications
Vets often prescribe corticosteroids for acute allergic reactions and skin diseases that cause itching and irritation. It helps reduce inflammation and itching caused by allergies. Add drops or ointment containing antihistamines or steroids such as cortisone into each ear canal daily until all signs of redness disappear (typically two weeks).
Antibiotics treat infections like otitis externa (outer ear infection) or yeast infections. These can also use for other conditions such as allergies or some skin diseases.
These are used to treat ticks, mites, and flea infestations. The injectable drug Ivermectin is used to treat mite infestation. A vet can suggest an anthelmintic Organophosphate solution to prevent severe itching.
Treatment involves surgically removing the cause, like aural hematoma and ear polyps. Most dogs recover well after having their polyps removed surgically. An aural hematoma is treated by a stab incision, washed, and then closed with a simple interrupted suture.
Home Remedies for dog itching ears
There are several home remedies for dog itching ears that you can try. These remedies may not cure the problem completely, but they should make your pup more comfortable while you wait for a vet appointment.
Here are some simple home remedies for dog itching ears:
1) Apple cider vinegar
Blend 15 milliliters of Apple Cider Vinegar in one cup of water and dispense it into a spray bottle. Spray this solution into your dog’s ears once or twice each day to help soothe the itchiness and irritation.
2) Olive oil
Olive oil can help soothe and moisturize dry skin, but it can also use in conjunction with other treatments to help fight infections or reduce inflammation in the ears. Take 5ml of olive oil in a dropper and warm in the microwave. Then carefully drip one drop into each ear.
3) Chamomile Tea
Chamomile tea is a traditional herbal remedy for calming irritated skin. It contains an anti-inflammatory agent that can soothe soreness and irritation on the surface of your canine’s ears.
It has antibacterial properties that may help kill off any harmful bacteria or fungi causing the itchiness in your dog’s ears.
4) Aloe Vera Gel
Aloe Vera gel is another soothing herb that helps relieve itching by reducing inflammation and calming inflamed skin. Apply aloe Vera gel directly onto your dog’s ear canal using a cotton swab or cotton ball once or twice daily until her symptoms improve significantly
5) Coconut Oil
Coconut oil is another natural remedy that can soothe irritated skin and reduce swelling by trapping moisture in the ear canal while helping maintain proper hydration levels of the skin.
6) Ice Packs
You can also try applying an ice pack in case of auricular hematoma to prevent blood flow to the affected area. It will help relieve pain in addition to reducing inflammation and itchiness.
Prevention tips for dog itching ears
- Clean the ear regularly.
- Regular vet check-up.
- It is deworming every three months with Ivermectin to prevent mite infestation.
- Check for external pests, ticks, and mites.
- Use ear cleanser and cotton gauzes to clean the ears.
- Ensure your canine buddy is taking adequate workout and daylight.
- Consider changing your dog’s diet if it’s causing an allergic reaction.
- Provide anti-inflammatory supplements; omega-3 fatty acids, turmeric, fish oil, Vitamin E, and probiotics.
This article has looked at the various possible causes of dog itching ears and what you can do to treat the problem. Itching ears in dogs can be caused by multiple things, from allergies to ear mites. If your furry friend is Itching ears a lot, it’s essential to take him to the vet to rule out the actual cause and how to treat it.