Ear diseases and infections can significantly impact your pet's ability to function and hear properly. When you notice symptoms of an ear infection, it's crucial to seek immediate veterinary care. Some common symptoms of ear diseases in cats and dogs include:
• Ear scratching and pawing
• Dark ear wax
• Head shaking
• Foul odor
• Weeping and oozing from the ear
• Hearing impairment
• Excessive wax
• Head tilting and groaning
If you observe any of these symptoms in your dog or cat, it's essential to seek treatment promptly to prevent permanent damage and hearing loss.
What should I do if I think my pet has an ear infection?
Call us to schedule an appointment as soon as possible. Inform the office staff about the problems or symptoms your pet is experiencing to prioritize your appointment with the vet. In the meantime, you can clean your pet's ears out with an ear wash solution. Do not use alcohol as this could be painful to your pet.
At your appointment, the vet tech will take samples for cytology to check for any underlying issues and obtain vital information. The sample taken will be examined under the microscope to determine what kind of infection may be present. The most common types of infections are yeast and/or bacterial infections.
Based on the results of the cytology and the ear examination, we will create a customized treatment plan to address the infection and make your pet more comfortable. Additionally, we may request follow-up exams to monitor the effectiveness of the treatments.
My pet is feeling better and the ears look good. Why do I need to come back for a recheck ?
The structure of the ear forms an "L-shape" and must be checked thoroughly to make sure the infection is healed deep within the ear. If still present, the infection will most likely reseed and your pet can develop a chronic infection that can become so severe that may rupture the eardrum and/or create a middle ear infection. At a recheck exam, we will take another cytology and perform an ear check to ensure the infection has completely cleared. If not cleared, we may need to continue cleaning and medicating. If it looks cleared, a maintenance plan is made to help prevent future infections.
Preventing Ear Infections
Prevention is key when it comes to ear infections. Regular ear cleaning and maintenance can help keep your pet's ears healthy. However, it's essential to use appropriate cleaning products and techniques to avoid causing harm to the delicate ear structures.
If your pet is prone to ear infections, we may recommend routine ear cleanings as part of his/her wellness care. We can demonstrate the proper way to clean your pet's ears and recommend suitable products to use at home. Ear infections can also be associated with allergies, so identifying and managing any underlying allergies can help reduce the risk.
Reach Out to Erie Animal Hospital
If your pet is experiencing discomfort or symptoms of an ear condition or infection, don't hesitate to contact us at Erie Animal Hospital. Call (814) 838-7638 to schedule an appointment and provide the office staff with essential details. We can also answer any questions you may have about the products and services we offer.
Remember, early detection and proper treatment of ear infections are crucial in ensuring your pet's well-being and preventing long-term complications.