Does your pup have floppy ears that fold down over the ear canal? You may not realize it, but you could have been missing out on a very important grooming habit for your pup if so – cleaning their ears!
Pups with floppy ears have a much higher chance of getting an ear infection than other pups, and it’s a pretty painful condition! Nationwide Pet Insurance even said that ear infections were the main reason behind vet visits last year. Yikes!
So how often do you need to clean your pup’s ears at home? Keep in mind that a health amount of wax in a dog’s ears is healthy to help lubricate and protect ear canals. Basically, while under-cleaning can cause infection due to buildup, over-cleaning can do the same by removing the healthy wax. So only clean your pup’s ears when they get dirty – most vets recommend once a month, although this can change depending on humidity, activity level, and other factors.
Check your pup’s ears during baths or after big play sessions or trips to the park. Most pups’ ears just require a gentle swipe on the outer ear and the ear flap with a vet-approved cleanser and a cotton ball. To see if it’s time for a full on inner ear clean, lift the ear flap and look inside the ear. If you see dirt or other buildup in the outer ear, then it’s time to start cleaning more thoroughly inside the ear canal!
But remember, if you notice odor, pus or blood discharge, redness, swelling, or pain in the ear, or if your pup starts scratching at their ears a lot, it may be a sign of an ear infection. In this case, do not try to clean their ears – bring them to a vet immediately instead! Do like and share this information with other pup parents!