We all know how sensitive dog’s ears are. That is why keeping our canine friends’ ears clean is very important to their overall health and well-being. Doing this on a regular basis prevents common ear problems such as irritations, infections, swelling, and redness.
However, many paw-parents are afraid to clean their pet’s ears themselves. Most are afraid they would only aggravate the existing problem, damage the hearing organ, or just push the earwax further down into the canal. It is thus very important that you understand the structure of your dog’s ears.
Dogs’ ears are not like humans as they have an L-shaped design. The vertical canal has a somewhat diagonal angle. And this diagonal angle is way longer than the vertical canal. This would be hard to reach unless you have an L-shaped tool. However, this does not also mean you can just shove anything inside your pet’s ears. Thus, the best way to clean is to use an ear rinse or ear cleaning solution that can be easily shaken out.
Do understand also that most common dog ear problems can be taken care of. These include major microorganisms like bacteria, yeast, and ear mites. When not properly dealt with, these can result in severe cases and may need veterinarian’s intervention. Thus again, it is very important that we clean their ears right and that we use the correct cleaning solutions.
There are a lot of dog ear cleaners on the market today.
We did our homework and came up with these top three solutions that are both safe and effective in keeping the integrity of your pooches’ hearing.
Pet King’s Zymox Otic Pet Ear Treatment with Hydrocortisone
It is important to note Zymox Otic Pet Ear Treatment is not intended to treat your dog ear infection. But it is capable of killing several bacterial organisms such as Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Escherichia coli, MRSA, Streptococcus species, and Proteus mirabilis. It can also effectively get rid of the fungal species Candida albicans.
Zymox actually comes in two preparations. One contains hydrocortisone, while the other does not. Hydrocortisone helps in reducing ear inflammation with or without an ear infection. With all these in mind, Zymox serves two purposes. It can clean and at the same time disinfect your pooch’s ears. This can be applied once a day for 7 days or 14 days for chronic cases.
- Contains LP3 Enzyme system (antiviral, antifungal, and antibacterial)
- Eliminates antibiotic-resistant organisms
- Has hydrocortisone 1.0% for ear inflammation
- Safe for use even as a long-term medication
- Good for persistent ear problems
- Serves both as a cleaner and treatment
- More expensive than other products
- Comes in a small 1.25 fluid ounce bottle
Vet Organic’s EcoEars Dog Ear Cleaner Infection Formula
EcoEars is a good option for those paw-parents who seek the all-natural route. The product contains five different natural extracts that can help clean, disinfect, and deodorize your dog’s ears. This is specifically used as an adjunct to antibiotic treatment. It can be applied twice a day for ten days.
- All-natural dog cleaner solution
- Ingredients include fingerroot, mullein leaf, tea tree oil, rosemary extracts, and witch hazel
- Targets bacteria, yeast, mites, fungi, and other ear irritations
- Does not contain any harsh chemicals, antibiotics, cortisone, steroids, and enzymes
- Relieves itchy smell and gunk with improvements noticed as early as two days
- Made in the USA in an FDA-registered lab
- Needs to be kept in your dog’s ear for 90 seconds
Virbac’s Epi-Otic Advanced Ear Cleaner
The Epi-Otic by Virbac serves as a good dog ear flush. It can remove dead skin cells and can work as an antiseptic solution. It also has an anti-adhesive property that prevents microorganisms from adhering to the dog’s ears. Its neutral pH formula helps eliminate bacteria and yeast in the ears.
This is intended to treat otitis externa or external ear inflammation. Its active ingredient is 0.2% salicylic acid. This should be applied two to three times every week. Do not use this in ears with ruptured eardrums.
- Keratolytic and antiseptic formula
- Has a pH of 2.2 and anti-adhesive property
- Patented anti-odor technology
- Contains 0.2% salicylic acid and other chemical binders
- Suitable for both puppies and older dogs
- Non-irritating formula
- Helps keep ears dry
- Works even for sensitive ears
- Smells nice
- Believe it or not, using this has no disadvantages by far. Yes, even side effects.
Factors to Consider when Choosing a Dog Ear Cleaner
The key active ingredients should be, as much as possible, safe and natural. Check the label and make sure it does not contain potential irritants. Common irritants include drying agents (alcohol and menthol) and fragrances.
Liquid or Wipe
Both are effective cleaning solutions, but they have advantages and disadvantages too. Going for wipes means you do not have to buy additional items like cotton pads anymore. They also tend to be less messy than liquid solutions. However, wipes cannot get deeper into the ear canal to loosen unreachable debris.
On the other hand, liquid solutions can reach deep into the ear canal and effectively loosen up wax and debris. But it can be messy each time your dogs shake their heads.
Homemade or Commercial
We always want to use the safest cleaner for our dog ears. However, choosing commercial ones over homemade remedies is recommended. This is because they have already been tested for that use, and they have already been found effective and safe. Some kitchen ingredients may cause some untoward reactions to your dogs.
Most pet owners easily overlook the ears until problems arise. Applying a good dog ear cleaner can prevent potential ear problems from developing in the future. All three dog ear cleaner products are excellent choices. They have been proven and tested to be effective in dealing with most ear problems. We suggest you keep and use one of them on a regular basis. You can definitely see the difference in your dog’s ear health.
As a final reminder, always carefully read the instructions, warnings, and indications before applying them to your pooch.