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The Essential Guide To Dog Ear Care

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Floppy, spiky, droopy, fluffy—there are so many different types of dog ears but they all have one thing in common. It’s so important to care for your dog’s ears and to help him keep them clean! In this post, we’re covering all the essentials of dog ear care so you can help your pet keep his ears healthy, no matter what his ears are shaped like! 

Why Dog Ear Care Is Essential

Your pet’s ears are surprisingly sensitive and ear care is one of the most important things you should be doing at home to help keep your dog healthy. Without regular cleanings, your pet’s ears are prone to oily buildup, an excess of wax, and other debris that can make your pet more susceptible to developing an ear issue. 


It’s also possible for water and other external things to get into your dog’s ears. Think fur, grass, or dirt—all things that can cause problems for your dog if they are not cleaned out of your dog’s eats in a timely manner. 

Certain pups are simply more prone to ear issues, too. This makes it even more important to clean your pet’s ears regularly to help keep Fido healthy. And, the more frequently you practice grooming that includes an er cleaning, the more comfortable your dog will get having you in and around his ears! 

Healthy Dog Ears: What To Look For

If your pup’s ears are healthy, they should not be something you often think twice about. There should be no odor and they shouldn’t visibly be bothering your dog. Inside your pet’s ears, a healthy set of listeners will be pale in color and have no visible agitation. Healthy, clean ears also don’t contain any visible dirt or debris! 

Of course, every dog is different, and so are his ears! What is normal for one pup might not be the baseline for another, so it’s best to have your Vet tell you what to look for when it comes to your dog and his ear health.

Signs It’s Time For An Ear Cleaning

While keeping your dog’s ears clean is important, it’s also key to not overclean your pup’s ears, as well. If you clean Fido’s ears too frequently, it can be uncomfortable for your pet and can even lead to agitation or irritation. For this reason, only clean your dog’s ears when you notice a change that would suggest they need to be cleaned. 

If your pup’s ears smell a little yeasty or like there is an infection, definitely get to cleaning! If you notice he is itching a ton, take a closer look. Or, if your dog’s ears are visibly dirty, it’s probably a good idea to get them cleaned out! 

All dogs are unique and there is no right amount of time to wait in between ear cleanings. It all depends on the individual pet! If your dog is prone to ear issues, it might be a good idea to try to clean your pet’s ears more frequently. But, if your dog doesn’t really have any trouble with his ears, you likely won’t have to do routine cleanings nearly as often. 

Other factors can also influence how often you should be cleaning your pet’s ears. For example, if our dog is often swimming, he might need a little extra ear maintenance to stay healthy. Or, if your dog is active outdoors, you’ll likely have to spend some extra time making sure there’s no dirt or debris in your pet’s ears after an adventure. It all depends on your dog, his ear, and your lifestyle! 

When To Visit The Vet

If your dog is visibly uncomfortable when you go to touch his ears, you should seek a Vet’s opinion before attempting to clean them at home yourself. If your dog has an ear issue and you add a cleaning solution and go to town wiping and cleansing them, it can actually make things worse for your pet. Not to mention it’s downright uncomfortable to have anyone rooting around in your ear if there is an issue and your pet will definitely not enjoy it! 

If you’re concerned about a strong odor or something else that would suggest your dog’s ears require more medical attention beyond a simple cleaning, discuss them with a professional! Your Vet is trained to spot an ear issue and can help you come up with a treatment plan to have your pet’s ears feeling better. 

How To Clean Your Dog’s Ears

It’s a good idea to get your dog used to you touching and cleaning his ears when he is young, if possible. This will make ear cleanings so much easier when you don’t have to deal with a difficult, stubborn dog who does not want to stay still while you help him clean his ears! Keep reading for an overview of the process you should follow.

Choosing A Dog Ear Cleaner

First things first, you’ll need to choose the ear cleaner that’s right for your dog. If your pet has oily or water-logged ears, a drying powder or astringent might be best. They are designed to help keep your dog’s ear canals dry enough to avoid developing ear issues. But, they’re not right for every pet and can cause irritation for some dogs. And that’s where cleaning solutions come in handy! They are designed to gently clean your dog’s ears and contain a variety of ingredients that will help keep your pet’s ears clean. They are typically liquid and are best for pets with lots of buildup or who have incredibly itchy ears.

There are also many home remedies to consider and DIY dog ear rinses that use natural ingredients if you don’t want to purchase one. Just remember, you should always run a recipe by your Vet before you try it out on your dog, to make sure it’s safe! 

Gather Your Supplies

Once you’ve selected the ear cleaner that is right for your dog, you’ll need to gather some additional gear to help you clean his ears. You need something that you can use inside his ear, like cotton balls or gauze. It’s best to use something soft like this instead of a cotton swab since the pointy tip can irritate your dog’s ears. They can also end up making things worse for your pet! Long tools, like Q-tips often just end up pushing dirt, debris, and wax further into your pet’s ears, which is not what you want when you’re trying to get them clean! 

You might also want to make sure you have a trash can handy to dispose of soiled cotton balls and do your routine ear cleaning in a place that’s easy to clean up. Ear cleaning can get a little bit messy, especially if your dog is wiggling and wiggling during the process!

Three Steps to Clean Ears

It only takes three simple steps to clean your pet’s ears. You can make cleaning part of your grooming routine or set aside special time to pamper your pet, clean his ears and treat him to something special after you’ve finished! 

Here’s what you need to do: 

1: Gather Your Supplies & Prep Your Pet

Your dog should be as calm as possible while you clean his ear, so it’s best to make sure he is well exercised and content. If your pet is naturally on edge or doesn’t like having his ears cleaned, you can also consider feeding him a calming supplement with ingredients designed to soothe him and help him calm down shortly before you o ahead and start cleaning! When your dog is ready, make sure you have all the supplies you will need nearby. You don’t want to run out of cotton balls or cleaner when you are in the middle of cleaning your dog’s ears.

2: Squeee The Ear Cleaner Into Your Dog’s Ear Canal & Massage Gently At The Base Of Your Pet’s Ears Gently

Make sure you are following the directions on the cleaner’s packaging and that you have checked with your Vet before you do this step! But, for most dogs, this is the process to follow. Once you have squeezed plenty of liquid into your dog’s ears, you’ll hear it squishing and swishing around. This step is crucial because it helps dislodge any wax, debris, or buildup in your dog’s ears so that you can wipe it out in the next step! 

Make sure you are not inserting the tip of your dog’s ear cleaner bottle into your pet’s ears. It should not come into contact with him at all! This is important to keep in mind to avoid spreading bacteria and cousin a future ear issue. 

2: Let Your Pet Shake It Out & Then Grab The Coton Balls Or Gauze!

Your dog will naturally want to shake his head and at this point, let him. It may get a little bit messy, but it’s an important step in the process because your dog will naturally get a lot of the liquid out on his own. Once he is done with his shaking and shimmying, take a cotton ball or your gauze and insert it into your pet’s ear canal. Make sure you’re not placing this material too deep, to avoid harming your dog! Use the cotton balls or gauze to remove the moisture inside your dog’s ears left from the 

Pet Honesty Products For Ear Care

Pet Honesty OTIC Ear Cleaner and Drier is perfect for routine ear cleanings for your dog. It’s formulated to help with itchiness, smells, odor, inflammation, redness, and build-up by washing away pathogens, dirt, excessive wax, and bacteria. It can even help prevent ear issues from developing thanks to Salicylic Acid, Benzoic Acid, Aloe, and more.