American Association of Feline Practitioners AAHA Accredited | The Standard of Veterinary Excellence

5580 Route 34 West Oswego IL      •      630.554.3400

Ear Cleaning 101

Ear cleaning may be a normal occurrence for some dogs (or sometimes cats). Dogs who are prone to infections or deal with allergies benefit from frequent ear cleanings. The structure of their ear canal makes it difficult for material to be expelled on its own. However, that also helps in avoiding the ear drum while cleaning – although you should always be careful not to go too deep.

**If your dog’s ears are red, inflamed or painful, please consult us before cleaning.**
Since this is something owners commonly need to accomplish at home, we want to give you some tips…

  1. When you have your supplies ready (ear cleaner and cotton balls or gauze), hold your dog’s ear flap up firmly but gently and squeeze a small amount of cleaning solution into the ear canal.
  2. Then gently massage the base of the ear for about 20 seconds. You will hear a “squishing” sound as the ear cleaner is working, breaking up the debris in the ear. This is VERY important!
  3. Keep holding the ear flap and wipe out the inner ear flap as well as the ear canal – but not too far in. That’s why it’s better to use cotton balls instead of q-tips.

There’s not much to it but there is a proper method. Some other helpful hints include providing treats and praise. It is also beneficial to let your dog shake his/her head to help expel debris.

If your pet needs medication applied, you will clean the ears first then apply the medication as directed. Please consult with your veterinarian on how often you should be cleaning. If you need further assistance, please give us a call at (630)554-3400. We’re always here to help!

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