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Keeping your pooch’s ears healthy and clean
There are few conditions less comfortable for a dog than having an ear infection. Considering most dogs' ears flap around when the pooch moves, shakes its head and more, ear infections can be extremely painful. As much as you want to treat the condition as fast as possible, take care to apply ear cleaners or medications in a way that will not cause your pet more pain or discomfort.
Pet drugs for ears should be the right temperature, too. Dogs prefer to have ear medication that is around body temperature – anything warmer or cooler is extremely uncomfortable, particularly if your dog has an ear infection. If you have a medicine like Tresaderm that needs to be kept in the refrigerator, heat the solution in a hot water bath (not in the microwave) or leave it out until it is room temperature before putting it in your pet's ears.
Most ear medications are liquids that come in a squirt bottle. However, you should never squirt the solution directly into your pet's ears. If you are using pet products like 1-800-PetMeds Ear Cleansing Solution, you should apply it to a cotton ball, put the saturated cotton ball in the dog's ear then close the flap, massaging the medicine into the ear.
Make sure not to massage too firmly or rub the ears firmly, and do not let your pet scratch or rub its ear too firmly, either, as this could damage the dog's cranial nerves that travel together in this area. When these are stretched or irritated by rubbing, it can result in hearing loss or put your pet off balance, since its ears are a key part of its overall equilibrium.
The good news is that most dogs like this method – it is much like having its ears rubbed. However, it may be difficult to get any dog – healthy or not – to sit down for an ear massage when it is excited. It is best to perform this activity after a long walk when the dog is tired. You should also always give a treat like Greenies Dental Chews as a reward after the cleaning.
These ear cleaning sessions are also a good time to make sure your pet is up to date on all of its other medications. It might be easier to remember to give your pooch flea and tick preventatives like Frontline and Comfortis or heartworm medicine like Heartgard when you do it during ear cleaning sessions.