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Posted on 11-24-2015
Ear infections can manifest in a variety of ways in your pet. Your may notice a malodor from the ears, redness or excess discharge at the ear canal entrance or head shaking and ear scratching. There are a variety of reasons why dogs and cats get ear infections. It can be caused by ear mites, bacteria, yeast, moisture build up (especially in long-eared dogs that swim) and allergies.
Our Etobicoke animal hospital diagnoses ear infections by a thorough visual assessment of the outer ear and inner ear canal using a scope. The scope allows us to visualize the vertical and horizontal canal and tympanic membrane (ear drum). We then swab the ear canal to obtain a sample for testing. We look for evidence of ear mites, yeast, bacteria and white blood cells under the microscope and then formulate a treatment plan. This typically includes dispensing an ear drop that contains anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial medications. If there is excess debris in the ear canals, we will dispense an ear cleaning solution and teach you how to properly clean the ear canals. Clean canals are essential to enable the ear drop medication to work properly. The medications are typically used 1-2 times daily for 1-2 weeks. We then will have your pet back in for a recheck to ensure the infection has cleared. Most ear infections will clear with 1-2 weeks of treatment but some pets will have chronic infections. This may be due to a resistant bacterial infection or underlying dietary or environmental allergies. We will formulate a long term plan to get your pet’s ears on the right track!
Dr John Booth
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