Anna Olson

Anna has a passion for keeping pets healthy and happy. She grew up with a Great Pyrenees as a family dog. Currently and currently has an orange tabby. She worked at a dog grooming and bathing salon where she learnt more about canine behavior and bathing. She lives in Wisconsin, in the United States. When she is not writing, she helps her partner run their small business, knitting, and enjoying local parks.

SHARE
Health Learn About Dogs Raising a Dog

Dog Ears

user
Anna Olson
Aug 2 ·

You know keeping your dog’s ears clean is an important part of keeping them healthy. Regular ear cleaning cuts down on ear infections and earwax buildup. Maybe you’re stuck on how to clean them, though. You’re in luck, because this article will teach you how to clean dog ears.

how to clean dog ears

How Often Should I Clean My Dog’s Ears?

Depending on your dog’s ear type, you may not need to clean them all that frequently. Dogs with long hanging ears, especially basset hounds and cocker spaniels, generally need more frequent ear cleaning than pointy-eared dogs. If your dog loves swimming and spending a lot of time in the water, they may need more frequent ear cleaning.

Some dogs naturally have healthy ears that don’t need frequent cleaning. Others are more susceptible to ear infections and the buildup of dirt in the ear.  How often you need to clean them depends on several factors. Make sure to check your dog’s ears frequently to see if they need a clean.

How Do I Know My Dog Has Dirty Ears?

Even though it’s important to clean your dog’s ears, over-cleaning them could cause irritation and ear infections. You’ll want to make sure your dog actually needs their ears cleaned before doing so. Checking your dog’s ears after bath time, or after a swim, is a great way to make sure you’re checking them frequently enough.

A clean and healthy dog ear looks pink and dry inside. There should be no dirt and no odor.

If your dog’s ears are dirty, you may notice them shaking their head more frequently than usual. If you look inside, you may see some dirt and earwax buildup. There may also be a mild odor. This is when you should clean your dog’s ears.

If you notice a yeasty odor coming from your dog’s ear, this may be a sign of an allergic reaction or an infection. Your dog may show signs of pain around the ear, too. If this is the case, contact your veterinarian immediately. Cleaning your dog’s ear at this point may make things worse for them. It’s better to get medical attention.

What You’ll Need

Dog ear cleaning only requires a few supplies:

  • Cotton Balls or gauze
  • A vet-approved dog ear cleaning solution
  • A towel

Don’t use q-tips or anything with pointed ends. These tools could push earwax and dirt further into the ear, potentially causing damage to the inner ear.

You may have found recipes online for homemade dog ear cleaning solutions. However, these may contain ingredients which will irritate your dog’s ears. It’s best to talk to your vet about an appropriate ear cleaning solution for your dog. Many vet offices carry ear cleaning solution for sale. Your vet will probably be able to recommend their preferred brand as well.

Do not use hydrogen peroxide to clean your dog’s ears. While this works for cleaning human ears, it hurts the living tissue cells in a dog’s ears. If used too often, hydrogen peroxide can permanently damage your dog’s ears.

Cleaning Your Dog’s Ears

Try to clean your dog’s ears while they’re calm. This will make the procedure easier. If they’re not used to having their ears touched, build up to the cleaning process by rewarding your dog every time they let you touch their ear.

Ear cleaning solution usually comes in a bottle with an applicator tip. Squeeze enough solution to fill the ear canal. Don’t insert the applicator tip fully into your dog’s ear, as this could cause pain and damage. It could also introduce bacteria and other pathogens into the ear.

Massage the base of the ear with your fingers for about 30 seconds. You’ll hear a squishing noise. This is the dirt detaching from the walls of the ear canal.

Let your dog shake their head. Use the towel to wipe their face, or anywhere the cleaning solution landed. Once they’re done shaking, clean the excess solution from their ear with a cotton ball or gauze swab. Repeat the process for the other ear. Give your good doggo some treats to reward them afterwards.

If your dog looks like they’re in pain at any point, stop cleaning and call your vet immediately.

Keep Dog Ear Cleaning Quick And Simple

Now you know how to clean dog ears! Cleaning your dog’s ears should be a simple process with only a few necessary supplies. Make sure to check first to make sure your dog needs their ears cleaned. If they do, clean their ears while they’re calm, not agitated. If your dog looks like they’re in pain, it’s best to contact your vet for immediate medical attention instead of cleaning ears yourself. You now know how to clean dog ears.

user
WRITTEN BY
Anna Olson

Anna has a passion for keeping pets healthy and happy. She grew up with a Great Pyrenees as a family dog. Currently and currently has an orange tabby. She worked at a dog grooming and bathing salon where she learnt more about canine behavior and bathing. She lives in Wisconsin, in the United States. When she is not writing, she helps her partner run their small business, knitting, and enjoying local parks.

Recent posts
Can Dogs Eat Ham?
You may be wondering, can dogs eat ham? The short answer is yes and no. While ham is technically safe for dogs to eat, it’s not the best option. A bite or two of ham may be okay, but you shouldn’t give your pooch this treat often. Always check in with your dog’s veterinarian before trying new foods with them. For example, the ham may be a safe choice for...
Dog Names That Start With R
Is there anything more daunting than picking your dog’s name? Many owners are afraid they’ll make the wrong choice. Some want to test out a few names in recall and other situations to make sure they’ve made the right one. However, it’s important you choose a name for your dog and stick to it to avoid confusion — unless changing a shelter dog’s name, which should be fine if there’s...
Schnoodle – The Complete Guide
Not only does the Schnoodle look like a teddy bear, but it’s also an intelligent, energetic mixed breed. This hybrid is a Schnauzer Poodle mix. The Schnoodle takes after both of its parents and inherits some awesome traits, allowing them to fit in any home.  Let’s take a closer look at this lovely mixed dog breed. Appearance Schnoodles will typically have a round, fluffy head similar to their Poodle parent...
Find by breed
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Next