Have you ever cleaned your dog’s ears? Did you know you need to? If you’re not experienced with cleaning your dog’s ears but you feel like it’s time she had her ears cleaned out, you’re in the right place.
Although many groomers and vets usually handle this part of the grooming process, it’s important to know how to clean your dog’s ears in case you ever need to handle it yourself. Read through the guide below to learn more, then take some time to practice the steps outlined here with your own down.
Gather Your Supplies
You’ll need a few things before you can begin cleaning your dog’s ears. The most important supply to gather is an ear cleaning solution designed specifically for dogs. There are plenty of these available over the counter, and your veterinarian can also provide a prescription strength cleaning solution if needed.
Next, you’ll need some cotton balls (not Q-tips!) and a towel. These two supplies will be used to help clean up your dog’s ear and her face after you’ve finished administering the ear drops. Finally, be sure to grab plenty of your dog’s favorite treats!
Gather Your Dog
Next, you’ll need to locate your dog. If she knows you’re going to try to clean her ears, she may have already tried to hide somewhere. If this is the first time you’re trying this, however, she may be easy to locate.
Either way, you should wait until your dog is calm before you begin this process, as it will be easier on both of you this way.
Use the Cleaning Solution
Find the ear cleaning solution you have chosen. Squeeze it into your dog’s ear, making sure the tip of the applicator bottle doesn’t touch your dog’s ear at all. You should try to get the fluid into the base of your dog’s ear, if possible, as this is the part that needs to be cleaned the most.
Massage the base of her ear until you hear the ear cleaning solution sloshing around. This should take 20 to 30 seconds. Your dog may be uncomfortable at this point, so be sure to pet her and talk gently to her—and give her lots of treats if that will help!
Wait for the Head Shake
Remove your hand from your dog’s ear and wait for her to shake her head. She will do this automatically, and it will help her clear out some of the fluid from her ear before you move on to the next step.
After she shakes her head following the first ear, you’ll need to repeat the process for the second ear. She may not want you to do this immediately after, but it’s best to go ahead and get them both done at once if possible. This way, she won’t shy away from you later on.
Wipe Your Dog’s Face
It’s likely your dog probably got some ear cleaning fluid on her face in the process of shaking her head. You should make sure to clean it off her face and keep her from licking it, as the solution could cause some nausea in some instances.
Ear cleaning solution is safe for use on dogs, but it isn’t meant to be ingested. Therefore it’s important to clean up your dog and yourself after you tackle the task of cleaning out her ears. You may both be a mess after this process has been finished!
Wipe Out the Ear
Finally, use a cotton ball to wipe out the top portion of your dog’s ear canal. Don’t press the cotton ball down into her ear, but simply wipe up what you can get of the cleaning solution. The general rule here is to make sure you don’t go any deeper than one knuckle on your finger.
If you’ve done this correctly, chances are you’ll see some dirt or ear mites on the cotton ball. If you do see mites, you should schedule a vet visit to figure out how to tackle this new problem. If you don’t, then your cleaning was successful, and you’re finished!
Dog Ear Cleaning in Zion, IL
When you learn how to clean your dog’s ears, you’ll be one step closer to taking care of her grooming needs at home. You can save money on regular grooming appointments by doing this, and you can also cut down on the risk of your dog developing ear mites or frequent ear infections as well.
It’s a good idea to start practicing ear cleanings with your dog as early as possible so she can get used to the process.
And of course, if you are unable do it yourself because of her temperament or behavior, then there’s no harm in asking the vete or groomer to do it instead! The Gray Animal Hospital team can help, call (224) 304-0668 or book an appointment online!