Diagnosis and Treatment of Pet Ear Infections with Our Del Mar Veterinary Team
Have you ever had an ear infection before or witnessed a loved one suffering from one? If so, you probably have a good idea about how uncomfortable they can be! Unfortunately, cats and dogs can suffer from ear infections, too. At All Creatures Hospital in Del Mar CA, our veterinary team helps hundreds of pets every year find relief from this common health condition.
What is a Pet Ear Infection?
Ear infections occur when the outer, middle, or inner part of a pet's ear becomes inflamed and irritated. They are most common in dogs, particularly canine breeds with floppy ears.
While outer ear infections can be extremely uncomfortable for animals, they can spread to the middle and inner ear and if left untreated may lead to severe health complications. That's why early treatment is so essential.
Risk Factors for Pet Ear Infections
Pet ear infections are most often caused by:
- Bacteria, yeast, ear mites, viruses, foxtails/ stickers and ticks and parasites
- Moisture or ear wax build-up
- Drug reactions
- Excessive cleaning of the ears
- Underlying health conditions, including disorders of the thyroid, endocrine, and autoimmune systems
Signs of Ear Infections in Pets
As mentioned, ear infections can be very uncomfortable for pets. It's usually relatively easy to tell if your pet has an ear infection by looking for the most common signs and symptoms:
- Frequent head shaking and/or whining/vocalizations
- Scratching and pawing at the affected ear
- A foul odor emanating from the ears
- Dark discharge from the ear
- Redness and swelling in and around the ear
- Dry scaly skin in and around the ear
Untreated inner ear infections can lead to signs of more severe complications including hearing loss and vestibular equilibrium dysfunction.
What our Del Mar Vet Can Do for Your Pet with Ear Infections
Our Del Mar veterinarian can diagnose the underlying cause of your pet's ear infections using lab tests, physical exam techniques, and medical history. Based on our examination, we'll implement the most appropriate treatment plan to relieve your pet's signs and restore their ear health.
Common treatments include:
- Medications (including oral or topical) to reduce inflammation, relieve pain, and kill parasites
- Pet parent education on how to care for your pet's ears at home and administer meds
- Home care directed at preventing future ear infections
Do You Think Your Pet Has an Ear Infection?
Contact All Creatures Hospital at (858) 481-7992 to schedule an appointment with our Del Mar veterinarian and give your pet the compassionate, cost-effective, and affordable treatment it needs.