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When your pet has mite-y itchy ears
Dogs and cats scratch their ears for a number of reasons. Most of the time it is an absent-minded response to an itch that they will forget about by the time they put their foot down. But when pets are constantly scratching their ears, you can be sure that there is something in there that is bothering them. Most of the time, these ear issues will need some attention from you or a veterinarian.
Ear mites can cause serious itching problems in dogs and cats alike. Ear mites are tiny little eight-legged creatures that are similar to spiders. They live on or just under the skin, and certain species are particularly likely to cause ear infections. In fact, ear mites are the most common cause of ear infections in pets. Young pets are especially susceptible to this condition, since they do not have anti-parasite pet products yet. Pets that are abandoned or in shelters will not have any resistance to the pests, so they are more likely to have them. If you are bringing a pet home from a shelter, make sure to look for ear mites as they can be easily transmitted to other pets in your household.
Your dog or cat may have ear mites if it is constantly shaking its head and scratching its ears and head. There may also be an odor and a dark ear discharge that can be crusty and crumbly. Continued scratching can cause bacterial and yeast infections, so it is important to treat this condition right away so you don't have even more infections to treat. Only your veterinarian can diagnose ear mites, and will then prescribe pet drugs to make them go away.
Topical pet drugs like Mita-Clear will kill the mites in adult and larval stages. It is best to use this product after your pet's ears have been cleaned with 1-800-PetMeds Ear Cleansing Solution. Your vet will also prescribe medications like Advantage Multi and Revolution, since these monthly topical medications will clear up the mites now, and prevent ear mite infestations in the future. Proticall for Dogs is another helpful product because it works to kill the mites right away along with fleas.
Once your dog is on a flea, tick and other insect preventative medicine, ear mites should not be an issue again.