Category

Infectious Disease

Dog Sore Ear

Pet Ear Care

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Of all the reasons a cat or dog requires a visit to the Veterinary Surgery, an ear problem is among the most common. Their deep, curved ear canalsNormal Canine ear make it difficult for air to get in and moisture to get out and moisture retained in the ear after swimming or bathing can often lead to infections. Spring and summer when it is hot and particularly when it is humid is the worst time of the year for ear infections. Not only are ear infections likely to occur but quite often they are difficult to cure. Bacterial infections, fungal infections, ear mites and foreign bodies such as grass seeds are the most common causes of ear infections.

Ten Important signs of Ear problems

It is important to know what early signs might indicate an infection so treatment can be started.

  1. Odour – bad odour coming from the ears
  2. Scratching at the ears
  3. Excessive discharge (usually yellow, brown or black)
  4. Inflammation – redness of the ear flap or canal
  5. Shaking the head or ears
  6. Obvious pain when touched around the head or ears
  7. Head tilted to one side or held down
  8. Stumbling or circling to one side
  9. Lethargy or depression
  10. Marked swelling of the ear flaps

If your dog or cat is showing any of these signs then a visit to the veterinarian is necessary, as there is a high likelihood an ear problem is present.

WHAT CAN YOU DO

The best way to prevent ear problems is to establish a regular ear care program aimed at preventing such problems from developing.

  1. Keep ears dry.  Ears should be dried thoroughly after bathing or swimming.
  2. Cleaning. A regular ear clean following your dog’s bath using an alcohol-based ear cleaning solution such as Epi-Otic or Bayer Ear Cleaning solution will remove any dirt or wax buildup that may encourage infections. All of these cleaners are readily available over the counter at the surgery without consultation.
  3. Clipping/Plucking. It is important to clip or pluck the hair from around the ear canal. Dogs that do not shed hair such as Poodles, Schnauzers, Bichons, Labradoodles, Spoodles etc. often need to have hair plucked from the canals. This allows better air flow into the canal and prevents wax from being trapped thus reducing the chance an infection will develop.
  4. Controlling skin disease. Many ear infections are simply a continuation of a generalized skin condition such as bacterial or fungal infection. When this happens it is impossible to treat the ear infection without controlling the skin disease.

Australian Bat Lyssavirus

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What should you do if your Pet has eaten or been bitten by a Bat or Flying fox?

Potential Lyssavirus hostsImmediately call us on 07 33571588, there is a specific protocol in place to handle dogs or cats that have had potential contact with a bat or Flying fox infected with Lyssavirus.

Should I try and move the bat from the pet?

  • AT NO TIME SHOULD YOU ATTEMPT TO HANDLE A LIVING BAT.
  • IF YOU’RE NOT SURE DON’T TOUCH IT.
  • Even if the bat is dead I would advise against any direct contact.

What Should I do if I think I might have been bitten or scratched?

GO IMMEDIATELY TO YOUR NEAREST HOSPITAL EMERGENCY ROOM

What can happen if I don’t get treatment or post-exposure vaccination for my Pet?

  1. Maybe nothing – if the bat wasn’t carrying Australian Bat Lyssavirus. The risk of infection is low. but the result of infection could be death, that’s a big risk!
  2. If the pet becomes infected, it will die usually within 90 days but it has been recorded for deaths to take as long as 27mths

You can call us and ask to speak to Dr Ben Charlton, to further clarify all of the points discussed above, the Queensland government has a protocol in place we follow to provide the correct treatment for these patients.

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