Ear Problems .

Health and Medical topics may be posted here.

Moderators: Barb Wright, Lisa

Post Reply
Dave
Field Trial Champion
Field Trial Champion
Posts: 4459
Joined: Wed Jun 23, 2004 11:25 pm
Location: Montana

Ear Problems .

Post by Dave »

My former foster Sheamus has a sore ear and there is black stuff in there looks like dirt . My vet gave me a yellow ointment that has cortisone and I'm not sure what else . Anyway with of all the Brittanys I've had over the years , several had this and I used that ointment along with using that blue earwash and cotton balls to clean them out . My vet's partner flatly told me we weren't dealing with mites when I had another of my dogs in . She said mites have to be verified under a microscope . Any thoughts on this ? Thanks Dave 8)

Barb Wright
The Grammar Police
The Grammar Police
Posts: 6851
Joined: Wed May 12, 2004 12:45 pm
Location: Montana

Post by Barb Wright »

Sounds like a yeast infection, especially if it has a rather stinky odor. And I am wondering why the vet didn't take a swab to check and see just what it actually is :?

If it is a yeast infection and this is the first occurance of it you want to be sure and get it whipped NOW.....if it gets to become chronic it is extremely difficult to get rid of. Ask your vet to determine EXACTLY what it is, get on the correct regimin to get rid of THAT PARTICULAR bacteria or fungi.

Once you determine what is the cause, then I am sure there will be suggestions forthcoming to go along with the medical treatment.
RIP Sweet Cassie 4/98 - 3/13

Karen_P
Field Trial Champion
Field Trial Champion
Posts: 1792
Joined: Wed May 12, 2004 5:43 pm
Location: New Jersey
Contact:

Post by Karen_P »

Dave, Blaze's breeder swears this recipe works on just about anything that ails ears:

Blue Power
pint of isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol)
4 tablespoons of boric acid powder (drug store)
16 drops of 1% gentian violet (drug store)

Shake well immediately before each use. The boric acid does not fully dissolve and must be kept dispersed.

He's an M.D., so it's not some whacky recipe that would harm the dogs. His directions say to flood the ear twice a day to deal with bacterial and fungal infections, and even ear mites. He told me it even takes care of yeast infections, unless the ear canal is swollen shut, then you'll need a single dose of Panalog from the vet to get the swelling down first.
Image
Home of DC Britt Haven's Blaze of Glory
http://www.woodlandbrittanys.com

Brenda Dom
Master Hunter
Master Hunter
Posts: 730
Joined: Mon May 10, 2004 4:37 pm
Location: Maryland

Post by Brenda Dom »

Karen_P wrote: Blue Power
pint of isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol)
4 tablespoons of boric acid powder (drug store)
16 drops of 1% gentian violet (drug store)

Shake well immediately before each use. The boric acid does not fully dissolve and must be kept dispersed.
This is almost identical to a "recipe" that was given to me several years ago by one of my dogs' breeders. I've used it on many dogs for over 20 years with success and my Vet's approval.

Brenda
Kelcy, Susie, Bodie and Max
Image
"Some of us learn forgiveness by studying the lives of saints. And some of us keep dogs. . . ." - Charles Gusewelle

Dave
Field Trial Champion
Field Trial Champion
Posts: 4459
Joined: Wed Jun 23, 2004 11:25 pm
Location: Montana

Post by Dave »

Thanks gals :D . I'm not firing on all cylinders yet , still stressed out . I believe this mixture my vet gave me is for yeast and Imflamation . I trust him completely . I thought I'd ask some pro owners here in case he doesn't clear right up . I'll cut and paste this recipe to an email to them . Also I'll have Bernie's mom post some really neat pics for me of Hammer and Shaemus . 8) Dave

Barb Wright
The Grammar Police
The Grammar Police
Posts: 6851
Joined: Wed May 12, 2004 12:45 pm
Location: Montana

Post by Barb Wright »

One thing to keep in mind is that yeast infections usually get going because of a depressed or compromised immune system, for what ever reason. Could be poor general health, meds like preventatives, a generalized systemic infection of some kind, etc. The ears always have a naturally occuring yeast in them, free yeast that is in the air, but it only gets out of hand when the environment in the ear, that is the protective bacteria that should also be present in the ear, is not able to keep control. There are other areas of the body that can get yeast infections for the same reasons.

With this showing up I would be very militant about boosting the immune system in general so that all of the skin (which BTW is the largest organ in the body) is able to defend itself strongly and properly against imbalances and invading "armies" that are always present in our invironment. The only protection we have (drugs and meds notwithstanding) against all the "bad guys" out there looking for weakness is our immune system, and our dogs immune systems as well. The "bad guys" are opportunists and will set up housekeeping every and any where they can....it is what they do :evil: And of course they are quite proficient and expert at survival...they are older than we are by a few million years :shock:

Hmmm....well, I guess you get my drift :wink:
RIP Sweet Cassie 4/98 - 3/13

Kathy
Field Trial Champion
Field Trial Champion
Posts: 1562
Joined: Wed Oct 27, 2004 11:49 am

Ear infections

Post by Kathy »

Hi Dave,
As a puppy & adolescent, Duke used to get ear infections with some regularity. His ears would smell & have blackish/brownish stuff in them. And he would flap his ears alot. Our vet ascribed it to yeast infections. We think that we'd get bath water in his ears, which would help make the perfect environment to grow yeast. We always got ear ointment for him & when we'd drop him off at our kennel (so we could take a trip), we also gave the kennel some ointment for just in case. Now that Duke is older, and that my husband cleans his ears out regularly, Duke doesn't have many ear problems.

When we adopted Herman this past November, he had a nasty ear infection. We had him on MalOtic ointment for 3 weeks - that cleared it up. (Daily ear cleaning, followed by ointment application every day) . MalOtic ointment has gentamycin sulfate (antibiotic against bacteria), betamethasone valerate (steroid to decrease inflammation) and clotrimazole (antifungal against yeast & fungi). Herm's ears have been fine since.

My guess is that the vet prescribed a combination product for Sheamus.

Hope this helps,
-Kathy

Barb Wright
The Grammar Police
The Grammar Police
Posts: 6851
Joined: Wed May 12, 2004 12:45 pm
Location: Montana

Post by Barb Wright »

I guess my point was/is, if you get the immune system built up you don't have to use ointments, washes, etc. to keep the ears healthy. For example...when I got Cassie from the breeder at seven weeks old she had a yeast infection in both ears.....I used what the vet prescribed to clear it up, which it did. But I also got very busy working on building up the immune system...healthy diet, supplements to help support the immune system, etc. Cassie is now almost 7 years old...has never had a recurrence of infection of any kind, and I NEVER WASH HER EARS OUT WITH ANYTHING :!: I DO check her ears often during the summer for general debris (leaves, small twigs, dirt accumulation from running through the brush, that sort of thing) and just use a damp cloth to wipe out the small amount of grime that may have collected in the outer, easily accessible, part of the ear. The normal wax that the ear produces, plus the ear hairs, will corral most debris and when a dog shakes its' head will allow it to move forward and out of the ear.....this is Mother Nature working properly.

In a non-infected ear, ointments, rinses, washes, etc. just interfere with the proper climate of the ear IF (big IF) the immune system is working properly. There should be some wax in the ear, that is the lubrication that protects the ear, traps debris, microbes, bad guys, and sends it forward to be flicked out of the ear with shaking.

Even dogs that swim a lot should be able to just shake the excess water from their ears, and unless the water they have been swimming in is badly contaminated with filth there should be no problem. That situation would be a judgement call, and if suspicious, then a very mild anteseptic rinse would be the most you would want to do, a diluted vinegar rinse for example....or even, just rinse with clear warm water so the dog can shake it out.

The more "stuff" you put in the ear the more you interfere with the normal climate that should be allowed to exist in the ear. And to belabor this a little farther....you should not cut the hair out of the ear, this is part of the sytem to TRAP debris, dirt, bacteria, bad guys, and be shaken out. This is how it all works :!: Yes, I know there are some breeds that definitely have excess ear hair, and intervention to some extent is necessary. But not to the extent of pulling ALL the hair from the ear...this not only injures the skin and follicles, it leaves the ear partially defenseless against "invaders".

Well, this is all just my opinion on the subject....and no doubt others have experiences that belie my call on the matter :wink: But, I just felt the need to present this view and hopefully it appeals to some as sensible and appropriate :) At least think about it, do some investigation on your own, and then of course make your own decisions 8)
RIP Sweet Cassie 4/98 - 3/13

Liz H
Senior Hunter
Senior Hunter
Posts: 206
Joined: Mon May 10, 2004 9:47 am
Location: Maryland

Post by Liz H »

When I had Dalmatians, they would occasionally get 'gunky' in their ears...not a lot, however. I used (and still keep on hand) Nolvasan Otic. It is a liquid and works to dry the ear out. I wouldn't use it on a routine basis - but it does work fast and I never had to have any serious ear doctoring done by the vet. The key to ears is to look at them frequently, smell them, and keep them clean. My dogs used to love having the attention. I would say "let's do ears" and they would hotfoot it into the bathroom and sit. I always put the bottle in the sink first, filled with hot water ...warmed the liquid to body temp.
Liz,Max CD,RN APDT RL1 CL, RL2, CGC;Tyler CD, CGC; and at the Rainbow Bridge - Connie RCP (Retired Couch Potato)

Myra
Senior Hunter
Senior Hunter
Posts: 287
Joined: Mon May 10, 2004 8:29 am
Location: North Carolina

Post by Myra »

Very often, yeast infections in the ears are related to food allergies/sensitivities, so while you do whatever the vet suggests to clear it up, I'd be considering a food change. It's a lot of guess work and trial-and-error to find what a dog is allergic/sensitive to (unless you do allergy testing, which is spendy but well worth it IMO). But first thing I'd do is make sure he's eating a food that doesn't contain any corn or wheat. It's certainly not a sure bet that they're causing/contributing to the yeast infection, but it's a common scenario.

I agree with Barb that most healthy dogs rarely (if ever) should need their ears cleaned.

Barb Wright
The Grammar Police
The Grammar Police
Posts: 6851
Joined: Wed May 12, 2004 12:45 pm
Location: Montana

Post by Barb Wright »

Liz brought up a very good point and one to always keep in mind, so I would like to comment for emphasis.....ALWAYS WARM whatever you are putting in the ear, and that means higher than room temperature. Remember, a dogs body temp is around 101, so anything cooler than that is going to feel cold, and if it is cold enough (even room temp) it is going to HURT :oops: , especially if the ear is already sensitive and inflamed. Which means you are going to have a battle on your hands every time you go to administer the med/rinse/whatever. So, as Liz suggested, place the ointment/drops in hot water to warm, then test on your wrist much as you would baby formula, if it feels comfortable and warm to you it will feel comfortable to the dog 8) Most medications are meant to soothe as well as medicate, but if it is applied cold soothe turns to torture :cry:
RIP Sweet Cassie 4/98 - 3/13

Post Reply