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Unhappy ears, mites maybe?

Discussion in 'General Health' started by labgirl, Sep 24, 2013.

  1. labgirl

    labgirl Premium Member

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    Feb 22, 2009
    Suffolk, UK
    Merlin started to scratch and shake his right ear on Saturday. As we no longer have a vet clinic on a weekend I did what I could. I examined his ear, combed gently through the outside fur in case of a burr, looked inside and saw nothing. The ear is not inflamed, sore or smelly. There is no wax. In fact, aside with the shaking of his head and him sometimes holding the ear slightly down there is no sign of poorliness.

    It does not hurt him at all and it seems to have improved over the last few days and he only occasional shakes and rarely itches.

    I did some research and wondered if it could be ear mites? This is the season for harvest mites, so I wondered if it could be similar with ear mites?

    I took a cotton bud and very gently touched the inside of his ear (not right inside, I know better:wink2:). Though nothing appeared on the cotton bud, this gentle touch made Merlin itch.

    Anyway I have ordered an ear powder I've been recommended (Thornit) and I was hoping it would be here by now. I want to try that first as it is specifically for itchy ears and if nothing happens Merlin will go to the vets. I know the vet will just prescribe ABs, which I really don't think Merlin needs as the irritation is improving.

    What other reasons could cause itchy ears?

    I've checked a dozen times for grass seeds or similar.
     
  2. Cindy

    Cindy Forums Enthusiast

    My poor boy has a similar issue. He hasn't been itching his ears, so I was surprised when I looked at them yesterday morning and found yucky red-brown waxy goo in one of his ears! I took more than a few Q-tips and cleaned it out. Gavin is a sweet guy, didn't flinch at all.

    So I look it up online and the red-brown gunk is indicative of ear mites (brown because of blood). He hasn't been touching the ear, but I always pet his ears and he hasn't been indicating any issues. So I don't think it's an infection (after I removed the gunk, the ear is not red and inflamed). Also, we were at a friend's dogsitting for a month a few weeks ago and I know he picked up fleas, so ear mites is not a reach.

    I bought an ear mitocide drop solution at petsmart and have been using it. Will have to wait and see how it works and monitor the ear.
     
  3. Sharon

    Sharon Forums Sage

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    Feb 27, 2008
    Southeastern Ct
    Ears

    I thought the same thing with Sting .Shaking his head and scratching and was treating him for ear mites.Well it didn't get any better and took him to the vet and he had ear infections in both ears.My vet said yes they can get ear mites but not all that likely.Lesson learned I won't play vet anymore.$150.00 later he was on Clamavox and Mometamax.
     
  4. Cindy

    Cindy Forums Enthusiast

    Yeah..I am watching it very carefully, but he has NOT been scratching his ears or shaking his head. So that is the puzzling bit (if he had, it would be an easy call). I honestly would have had no idea but I was grooming him. I am currently unemployed, so I can take him in anytime if needed, but $150 is not insubstantial. So I guess I need to monitor his ear and see if there is a re-appearance of red/brown gunk. So my guess is next week for decision time.
     
  5. labgirl

    labgirl Premium Member

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    Feb 22, 2009
    Suffolk, UK
    Ear mites are pretty common here, of course they then lead to infection. Merlin has been in long grass where there are foxes and apparently they are a carrier.

    The Thornit arrived this morning and I have just applied it. It is supposed to give instant relief so we shall see.

    My friend is currently going through the saga of ear infections with her flat coat, he has been treated by the vet once but the ABs only gave temporary relief.

    Anyway, I'll give the Thornit a couple of days and if no improvement I'll pop Merlin to the vet on Friday. However since his dose both ears are pricked right up, so hopefully I've caught it in time
     
  6. labgirl

    labgirl Premium Member

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    Feb 22, 2009
    Suffolk, UK
    Btw, did you find out what caused the ear infection in Sting? I just wonder what starts it off.
     
  7. Cindy

    Cindy Forums Enthusiast

    So I am just starting day 3 of the anti mitotic. The ear canal has no new brown gunk (that's good). It looks like the un-affected ear (just slightly pink). I am basically just hoping to see the pink go back to white. Still no itching or scratching. No smell either. I did read that you need to re-treat about a month after it goes away because of eggs from the mites.
     
  8. mellie

    mellie Forums Enthusiast

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    May 18, 2011
    East Coast
    Around here ear mites are more of a problem in cats than in dogs. Head shaking, ear scratching and rubbing are signs of ear infection in dogs. Foul odor or discharge from ear are too. This time of year dogs can get seed awns if they run through high grass and sometimes they can lodge in the ears.


    Your vet will use an otoscope to view the inner ear and probably swab the ear and do a cytology to see what kind of bacteria or yeast or both are present and that will determine the Rx needed to treat an infection. The sooner the infection is treated the better- less time on antibiotics or not as "strong" of an antibiotic. And I think ear infections are painful when I have them...I hate to think about how dogs suffer with them before we even realize they have them.


    Some causes may be food allergies or pollen allergies, gunk and debris that becomes infected, poor drainage due to ear canal formation...IDK but you vet will. Seems like I always recommend seeing the vet, but who better to treat our best friends !??! :hide
     
  9. Justicemom

    Justicemom Premium Member

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    Minnesota
    Ear mites in dogs is very rare. In cats it is very common. It is even rare for the dog in the house to get ear mites when the cat in the house has them. In 17 years of practice and working in a humane society(read parasitology is my life) for 3 yrs I can count the number of cases on 1 hand.

    Now dog do get ear infections way more commonly then cats. It is usually yeast and less commonly bacterial infections. It is almost always secondary to something the most common cause is allergies.
     
  10. Sharon

    Sharon Forums Sage

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    Feb 27, 2008
    Southeastern Ct
    Ears

    Yes, when he went swimming I guess water got in his ears and thats my guess and the vets also.
     

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